Another warm winter forecast for swath of the US

(Submitted photo)

U.S. forecasters say chances are good that much of the nation will have a warmer than normal winter.

But it likely won't be as toasty as the previous two winters.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is forecasting a warmer winter from California through the Midwest to Maine. Below-average temperatures are forecast for southern Alaska, the Pacific Northwest and the Northern Tier states.

The report released Thursday predicts normal temperatures from Indiana to Idaho.

NOAA's Mike Halpert says the southern U.S. is likely to be drier than normal, while the north from eastern Washington through the Great Lakes to upstate New York is likely to be wetter.

Halpert says the likely development of a La Nina weather event plays a role in the forecast.

NBC 10's R.J. Heim weighs in on what it means for Southern New England, noting that the NOAA predicts that there is a 44 percent chance of above-average temperatures in our area, but equal chances of average precipitation.

Based on that, if it holds true, expect milder than average temperatures, and average precipitation, which means regular storms, with the lack of cold air, and more rain or mixed precipitation than snow.

But that doesn’t mean we can’t get a regular good old New England snowstorm in there, too. An average snowfall year brings 36 inches of snow to the Providence area, more towards the north and west, and lesser amounts towards the coast.

(NBC 10 News contributed to this report.)

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