image of barnstable county courthouse

[January 27, 2022 | 10:30 AM ] January 2022 Nor’easter – MEMA Situational Awareness Statement #1



Confidence is increasing that a strong storm forecast to develop off the East Coast by this weekend will grow into a Nor’easter, bringing heavy snow, strong winds and minor to pockets of moderate coastal flooding to parts of Massachusetts (MA). The National Weather Service (NWS) anticipates the storm will move into MA late Friday night and will intensify overnight into Saturday.

In terms of snowfall, the area of heaviest snowfall will hinge on the exact track of the storm system which remains uncertain. Based on the current forecast, the area of greatest risk for over 1 ft. of snow will be Eastern MA, Cape Cod, and the Islands where 12”- 18” is expected. 8”- 12” is expected in Central MA. Regarding Western MA, areas east of I-91 can expect 6”- 8”, and areas further west can expect 3”- 6”.   

Temperatures will be very cold in the wake of the storm with wind chills remaining frigid into Sunday.

The storm is expected to exit the region by Sunday with snow tapering off in most areas by Sunday morning.

Impacts/ Potential Impacts

  • Hazardous travel:
    • Snowfall, blowing, and drifting snow is expected late Friday night into Saturday night will cause hazardous travel conditions.
    • Visibility possibly lowering to less than a quarter-mile at times
    • Eastern MA will be at the greatest risk.
  • Power outages and wind damage:
    • Strong winds, combined with the weight of heavy snow, may down trees and power lines, leading to power outages.
    • Winds are expected to be strong on Saturday, especially during the afternoon and evening.
    • Eastern MA will be at the greatest risk. Strong northeast winds gusts of 50 MPH are expected with the possibility of wind gusts of 60 MPH or higher for Cape Cod.
  • Coastal flooding:
    • Minor coastal flooding (inundation of less than one foot above ground level). Localized moderate coastal flooding (inundation of 1 to 2 feet above ground level) is possible.
    • The high tide of concern is Saturday evening when a 2–4-foot storm surge (4 feet being a “worst-case” scenario) is expected.
    • Saturday morning: Minor flooding (surge of 1 to 2 feet with seas less than 20 ft). NE winds 20 to 30 mph with gusts to 40 mph.
    • Saturday evening: Minor flooding with pockets of moderate flooding in more vulnerable areas (surge of 2 to 4 feet with seas near 30 ft). Significant beach erosion. N/NE winds 25 to 35 mph with gusts to 55 mph.
    • Rough surf along the coast may lead to debris on coastal roadways, especially during the Saturday evening high tide.
    • Sunday morning: Minor flooding (surge of 1 foot with seas 20-25 ft), especially on Cape Cod Bay from Sandwich to Dennis and Wellfleet and possibly Vineyard Haven and Nantucket Harbor. NW winds 20 to 30 mph.

Weather Forecast Overview

Advisories, Watches, and Warnings

Last updated: 03:33 EST on 01-27-2022

Winter Storm Watch
Issued: January 27 at 3:33 AM EST
Expiring: January 30 at 12:00AM EST
Urgency: Future
Status: Actual
Areas affected: Central Middlesex County; Northern Worcester; Northwest Middlesex County; Southern Worcester; Western Essex


Winter Storm Watch
Issued: January 27 at 3:33 AM EST
Expiring: January 30 at 12:00AM EST

Urgency: Future
Status: Actual
Areas affected: Barnstable; Dukes; Eastern Essex; Eastern Norfolk; Eastern Plymouth; Northern Bristol; Southeast Middlesex; Southern Bristol; Southern Plymouth; Suffolk; Western Norfolk; Western Plymouth

MEMA Operations

The State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) is operating at Level 1 (Steady State Monitoring). MEMA will continue to monitor the situation and will disseminate additional Situational Awareness Statements (SAS), as necessary. The next SAS will be issued later this afternoon.

This afternoon MEMA will be hosting a statewide coordination call, with local municipal officials and Emergency Support Function Team members, to discuss the upcoming storm. During this call, the National Weather Service will provide a weather briefing.


MEMA Region Updates 

MEMA East (Regions 1 and 2) Critical Issues
  • Barnstable County REPC will be hosting a storm coordination call this morning at 10 AM.
  • At 4 PM, EMDs from the South Shore Shelter Group will convene a call to discuss the possibility of opening a shelter.
Unmet Needs None reported.
MEMA West (Regions 3 and 4) Critical Issues None reported.
Unmet Needs None reported.

Preparedness and Safety Information
  • Individuals requiring dialysis during the storm in high impact areas should work with their providers now to ensure treatment.
  • Individuals who are electric-dependent and are in areas that could be impacted by power outages should work with their support networks or make plans for when and where to evacuate should it be needed. If you are unsure if your locality is planning to provide charging locations, shelters, or warming centers, please contact 2-1-1 or your local emergency manager.

Additional preparedness and safety information:


Stay Informed

For additional information and updated forecasts, see (National Weather Service Norton) and (National Weather Service Albany)

Utilize MEMA’s real-time power outage viewer to stay informed about current power outages in your community and region, and across the state, including information from utility companies about restoration times:

Online Resources

Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency
MEMA’s Facebook page
MEMA Twitter @MassEMA
Federal Emergency Management Agency
National Weather Service Boston/ Norton, MA
National Weather Service/Albany, NY
National Weather Service Weather Prediction Center National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center
Northeast River Forecast Center Hurricane Center www.nhc.noaa.govMass211