Quick-Moving Snow Hits Boston as Airlines Cut Flights

A thick band of snow over Boston and eastern New England has the potential to drop 5 inches in a few hours, the second blow from winter weather in three days for the U.S. Northeast.

Snowfall started in Boston at midday, said Alan Dunham, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Taunton, Massachusetts. From 2 to 4 inches (5 to 10 centimeters) may fall in the city, the weather service said.

“Steadier snow will fall through the afternoon with the worst coming between 1 and 5 p.m.,” Dunham said by telephone. “By 8 o’clock this evening, it should be all over and done with.”

New York’s Central Park received 1.5 inches before the snow ended there, the agency said.

Across the U.S., 695 flights were canceled as of 2:49 p.m., according to FlightAware, a Houston-based airline tracking service. Traffic into Boston’s Logan International Airport was delayed about three hours, the Federal Aviation Administration said on its website.

A band of light snow may still pass through New York before the storm changes to rain, said Lauren Nash, a weather service meteorologist in Upton, New York.

From 3 to 5 inches of snow may fall across central Massachusetts and as much as 6 inches in southern New Hampshire and Maine, said Rob Carolan, owner of Hometown Forecast Services Inc. in Nashua, New Hampshire.

After the storm passes, temperatures in the Northeast will rise through the end of the week, Carolan said. Colder air will move back in next week.

Computer models are tracking a storm that has the potential to affect the Northeast in about 10 days, Carolan said. While he predicts it will miss the region, it’s an indication winter isn’t over.

“I think spring is a long way off,” Carolan said. “I think it is going to take until April to get out of this.”

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