Ice-covered trees at Payson Park in Portland on March 24 following the previous day’s snow and ice storm. Brianna Soukup/Staff Photographer

April showers – both snow and rain – are on their way to Maine this week.

A spring storm is expected to arrive in New England on Wednesday afternoon and last into Friday. Inland areas could see 6 or more inches of snow, while the forecast is more uncertain along the coast. The heaviest precipitation is expected to fall Wednesday night into Thursday morning, and snow accumulation is most likely during that period.

“There are a lot of moving parts with this storm,” said Derek Schroeter, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service office in Gray. “Folks have seen there is potential for accumulating show. There will be periods of rain mixing with snow. Right now, the confidence is highest for at least interior portions of Maine and New Hampshire to get a significant spring snowstorm Wednesday into Thursday.”

The storm will actually result from a convergence of two storms that are currently hundreds of miles away – one in the Southwest, the other in Alaska. Once combined, their direction will determine the outcome in Maine. An inland track would meet warmer temperatures and a lesser chance of snow; an offshore track would be colder and offer a greater chance of snow.

“One of our key points of uncertainty is when we have two pieces of energy that are supposed to merge and they haven’t merged yet,” Schroeter said. “There’s likely to be subtle track shifts.”

This winter was one of the warmest and least snowy on record for Maine. But many are still cleaning up from an ice storm last week that knocked out power for nearly 200,000 customers across the state. Schoeter said similar freezing rain is unlikely during the incoming storm because of warmer temperatures at the surface, but power outages are still a possibility because of wet snow and strong wind gusts.

A spokesman for Central Maine Power said the utility will be closely monitoring the forecasts in the coming days.

“It’s a little to early to say what the impact will be,” Jon Breed said Sunday. “But as a power company, we’re always looking, in a storm like this, (at) what the snow composition is going to be – a wet snow ratio or a dry snow ratio – and what the winds are going to be.”

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