Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Update on Northeastern Storm for Tomorrow and Thursday...

I didn't post an update yesterday because everything was still on track from the previous day's post.  Since that time, computer models have continued to come into better agreement that the Northeast will unfortunately see a healthy dose of wind, increased tide and locally heavy precipitation tomorrow and Thursday.  This is obviously not good news for the hundreds of thousands that are still without electricity and/or natural gas, and unfortunately more folks are likely to join those rolls as this storm impacts the region.

One thing that has changed since the last update on Sunday is that the models are gradually shifting the track to the East by the middle of the period, which means colder air and snow potential is looking higher now in the big cities, including much of the region impacted by Sandy.  Again, not good news, especially when you are out of power and/or a heating source.

Here is the latest U.S. based GFS computer model forecast valid 7pm EST tomorrow evening:

While strong and gusty winds will impact the region as early as mid to late morning Wednesday, the image above depicts the peak wind impact which will take place from late afternoon into early evening.  It still appears as though Northeast winds will be sustained at 40-50 mph with gusts of 60-70 mph possible, especially along the New Jersey and Long Island coastal areas, into the Southern coast of New England.

As we've pointed out since this past weekend, storm surge flooding will be a major concern, especially along the Jersey shore and Long Island.  Even though wave heights and swells won't be as high as they were with Sandy, much of the protective dunes and barrier islands have been severely compromised or in some cases washed away, which will allow for major imapacts especially near the times of high tide.

Rainfall will be locally heavy at times Wednesday afternoon and evening, especially along the immediate coastal areas where 2-4 inches of rain can be expected:

Cold air will be pulled around the system and into the region by late in the day Wednesday and Wednesday night, with rain changing to snow in interior sections and even approaching the coast based on the latest model runs.  The latest GFS model run is very aggressive with accumulating snow from southern New Jersey into Philadelphia and New York City, up into western Massachusetts, depicting 6-12 inches of snow in that swath:

There will be fluctuations in snowfall forecasts over the next 12-24 hours as the exact track of the system comes into play.  It is safe to say, however, that if you live in the areas where snowfall is forecast on the above image, you should prepare for the possibility of locally heavy snow with this system, along with the strong, gusty winds.

As I mentioned in the last update, if you know someone in the region who is without shelter and/or power or a heating source, please make sure to touch base with them and help them find shelter from this approaching storm.  If you are fortunate enough to have your power back on but still have debris in your area from Sandy, I'd suggest taking a few more hours today and trying to remove and/or secure that debris so that it doesn't become airborne in the strong, gusty winds that are to come tomorrow.

High Wind Watches are in effect for the brown/gold shaded area on the image below for Wednesday and Wednesday Night:

We will continue monitoring this situation with additional updates forthcoming...

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