Archive for September, 2008

COOLER, LESS HUMID WEATHER ON THE WAY… SEPTEMBER TURNED OUT QUITE WET IN MY NEIGHBORHOOD

A cool front moving through the eastern states has brought some showers and thunderstorms to the Hampton Roads region on Tuesday. The front will slowly cross the area on Wednesday, possibily bringing another shower or two. Then, humiditly levels drop somewhat and the temperature should be several degrees cooler than it has been. The nice weather should last through the weekend. September was one very wet month for my neighborhood of VA Beach. I picked up over 10 inches of rain, which believe me, was very welcome rain.  Norfolk wasn’t that “lucky” in the rainfall department. The drought has eased somewhat locally but September was very dry across the Southeastern States. Could parts of the Southeast return to a major drought like last year? Nobody knows for sure, but lets hope for a wet winter down there. There’s a tropical storm way out in the North Atlantic, which will not be a threat to the US.  It’s name is Laura. That’s it for now.

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SUMMERLIKE CONDITIONS CONTINUE… HURRICANE KYLE RACES TOWARDS EASTERN CANADA… COOLER WEATHER IS EXPECTED BY LATE IN THE WEEK

The calendar says it’s fall, but Saturday felt like a day in mid-August. The high levels of humidity made it feel quite uncomfortable, especially if you were physically active on Saturday. Sunday will be a similar day. What about rain chances? Although a shower or thunderstorm cannot be ruled out, I really don’t believe that Hampton Roads will see anything widespread. However, any shower or storm that does develop may produce heavy rainfall rates due to the high levels of humidity. Monday should be a nice day and then a cold front will be approaching on Tuesday. This front may bring a shower or thunderstorm, but forecasters are only giving it about a 20% chance of rain. Later in the week, it looks like temperatures and humidity levels will be more fall-like. Hurricane Kyle is moving towards Eastern Canada and the coast of Maine will feel some of the effects of this minimal hurricane. It will eventually become extra-tropical. Will this be the last tropical cyclone of the season? That is impossible to answer, but with October around the corner, the season will soon be winding down. Just a quick note about our rainfall totals. I picked up 0.70 inches on Saturday, which brings my backyard total to over 10 inches of rain! I realize that many parts of Hampton Roads were not that “lucky” in September.

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THE WEEKEND FORECAST IS A BIT UNSETTLED… HUMIDITY LEVELS COME UP AS THE LOW THAT BROUGHT COASTAL FLOODING SLOWLY MOVES NORTH… KYLE DEVELOPS OUT IN THE ATLANTIC AND HEADS NORTH

The forecast for this weekend is not an easy one. The low pressure area that caused the coastal flooding, high winds, and heavy rain is spinning over Western NC and it will slowly lift NE through the weekend. This combined with a lot of left over moisture will bring us a chance of a shower or thunderstorm at any time. However, forecasters don’t anticipate a widespread rain event. There has been some debate that the low pressure area should have been named as a sub-tropical storm or possibly a tropical storm. Officially, the NHC has not named it. See my previous post on this. It will feel summerlike over the next few days as warm, tropical air has been brought northward into our region. I picked up 3.80 inches of rain on Thursday, which is great news as we still are running a deficit for the year. Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Kyle has developed and this storm will move northward near Bermuda over the weekend. Where it goes after that is dependent on several factors, most notably how strong it gets and how strong the high remains in the North Atlantic. Remember, the stronger a tropical cyclone is, the more it is affected by the upper level wind flow. I will have another more comprehensive post over the weekend.

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LOW PRESSURE OFF THE CAROLINAS MAY BECOME A SUB-TROPICAL OR EVEN A TROPICAL STORM… EITHER WAY, COASTAL FLOODING, STRONG WINDS, AND RAIN ARE A GOOD BET FOR THURSDAY

For nearly a week, computer models have been forecasting a storm developing off the SE Coast and sure enough, a low pressure system has spun up. And to make matters worse, the system may become sub-tropical or even tropical in nature. What does that mean? Well, a typical low pressure system that brings us our winter storms, nor’easters, etc are extra-tropical or cold core storms. These storms get their energy from the differences in the air masses and the warm moist air being drawn into them. Tropical cyclones are warm core systems and are fueled exclusively by the warm water and latent heat given off by condensation. Even if this storm does not become tropical or sub-tropical, it will cause coastal flooding, strong winds, and heavy rain along the NC and VA coasts. The low is supposed to head inland into NC on Thursday. Conditions should improve on Friday. How high will the winds get? It’s hard to say but gusts could reach 60 MPH along the coast. Coastal flooding is going to be an issue during high tides. Please monitor your local media for any updates.

 

{Paul Edit]

Here are some pics of the Flooding in Norfolk

Water Street living up to its name

Water Street living up to its name

Flooded street at Lot F at Harbor Park

Flooded street at Lot F at Harbor Park

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HIGH PRESSURE WILL REBUILD TO OUR NORTH OVER THE NEXT FEW DAYS… AT THE SAME TIME A STORM SHOULD BE GATHERING OFF THE SOUTHEAST COAST… STRONG WINDS AND RAIN ARE POSSIBLE LATE THIS WEEK

Another high pressure area will be establishing itself to our north over the next few days. At the same time, low pressure is supposed to develop off the Southeast Coast. To complicate matters even more, a tropical cyclone may be forming near Puerto Rico which may play either a direct role on our weather or an indirect role. Either way, winds will increase out of the northeast as we head towards the middle of the week. If and when we see the rain from this potential system is the big question as models diverge in their solutions for Friday and Saturday. Here’s what can happen. An extra-tropical low pressure system should form off the Southeast Coast, which in combinations with the high pressure, will increase winds along with the tides and seas. Now, as this low sits over the warm Gulf Stream off the Carolinas, it could become sub-tropical in nature. The other scenario is that the tropical cyclone developing near Puerto Rico is drawn towards the coast by the high to our north which would block the system from moving out to sea. Winds blow clockwise around high pressure areas in the northern hemisphere, so there will be a large area of NE winds off the east coast. While forecasters don’t want to alarm coastal residents, especially with all the uncertainty in the forecast, my advice would be just to pay attention to this developing situation. You should already have your hurricance preparedness plan ready just in case. As I stated in my previous post, since our winds will be out of the NE for the next several days, temperatures will remain at or below seasonal norms.

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