Archive for May, 2013

THE FLOW AROUND THE BERMUDA HIGH OFF THE COAST WILL KEEP US ON THE WARM SIDE THROUGH THE WEEKEND… RAIN CHANCES INCREASE ON MONDAY AS A FRONT APPROACHES THE MID-ATLANTIC STATES

The weather the past few days here in Hampton Roads has been truly spectacular. Sunshine has been plentiful and temperatures have been on the warm side. Humidity levels have been tolerable for most people. The reason for the summer-like weather is a large Bermuda High pressure system located off the East Coast. The southwesterly flow around this high has brought up the warm air to our region. The great weather should hold for most of the weekend. A slow moving frontal system from the center of the nation will be approaching on Monday and this should bring us a decent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Cooler temperatures are expected behind the front by the middle of next week… Hurricane season for the Atlantic Basin begins tomorrow, June 1st. A relatively active season is being predicted by the National Hurricane Center. Some of the signs that the experts point to are the likelihood that there won’t be an El Nino in the Pacific Ocean, warmer than normal ocean temperatures in the key breeding grounds of the tropical North Atlantic Ocean and the overall weather pattern in Africa and the surrounding areas. Keep in mind that what really matters is not the total number of storms that form, but how many impact land. All it takes is one hurricane to impact the area where you are and it really doesn’t matter how many storms develop overall out in the Atlantic. Hurricane Andrew hit South Florida in 1992 and was one of the most devastating storms to hit that part of the country. The total number of storms in 1992 was below normal but what does that matter to the folks whose lives were turned upside down from that brutal hurricane? You probably recall the images of Homestead, Florida, a town hardest hit by Andrew. So, don’t focus on the numbers. Now is the time to prepare for the season and have a plan in place.

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THE SPECTACULAR WEATHER CONTINUES ON SUNDAY… A WARM-UP WILL BEGIN ON MEMORIAL DAY AND CONTINUE FOR MUCH OF THE UPCOMING WEEK

Yes, this is the start of unofficial summer and many folks want the temperatures to be warmer than they are this Memorial Day Weekend. However, you have to love this weather, although it is on the cool side. Skies are blue and sunshine is plentiful making conditions nearly perfect for most outdoor activities, except for going in the water. The way I look at it, water temperatures (especially the ocean) are still too cool for swimming anyway. The winds should slowly slacken today (Sunday) as the low pressure off the New England Coast moves slowly away. Speaking of that low, it had caused snow in parts of Northern New England. A warm-up will begin on Memorial Day and it should continue well into the upcoming week. Conditions should be summer-like by the time we get to mid-week. What about the chance of rainfall this week? Well, it won’t be like last week when many areas of Southeast Virginia saw heavy rainfall. There was a chance of rain nearly every day last week. It appears that we’ll see chance of a shower or thunderstorm on Tuesday, but most of this week should be rainfree. Sometimes, when warmer and more humid air moves into our area, showers and thunderstorms can develop, especially when disturbances in the upper-atmosphere move overhead. So, as I said in my post yesterday, enjoy the cool and dry weather while it lasts. The hum of the air conditioners will resume in a few days.

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MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND STARTS OFF ON THE CHILLY SIDE… A WARM-UP BEGINS ON MONDAY AND SUMMER-LIKE WEATHER IS LIKELY LATER NEXT WEEK

After a very unsettled week, Memorial Day Weekend will be dry but it will be on the chilly side. Temperatures will be about ten degrees below normal on Saturday. If you are going to the Strawberry Festival in Virginia Beach, you may want to bring a light jacket. There will be a good breeze from the northwest caused by a low pressure system, located this morning near Cape Cod in Massachusetts. As high pressure builds into the Mid-Atlantic States and the aforementioned low pressure area slowly pulls away, winds should slacken on Sunday. This should make for a better day on Sunday, especially for boaters. A slow but steady warming trend is likely to start on Monday (Memorial Day). As the week progresses, the high that is bringing the cool weather this weekend will situate itself off the coast. The clockwise flow around the high pressure area will create a southwesterly wind which will bring up warm and increasingly more humid air. This is sometimes referred to as a Bermuda High. This pattern is typical in late spring and summer and causes our hot, humid days and warm muggy nights. Sometimes, we see pop-up thunderstorms during the afternoons and evenings in this pattern. So, enjoy the cool weather this weekend while it lasts because there are plenty of hot days that lie ahead.

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THE UNSETTLED WEATHER PATTERN CONTINUES INTO TUESDAY… WARMER WEATHER IS EXPECTED DURING THE MIDDLE OF THE WEEK

Saturday wasn’t that bad in Hampton Roads. Clouds did dominate and a breeze off the ocean prevented temperatures from rising that much during the afternoon. Another round of rain moved through my Virginia Beach neighborhood overnight (Saturday night). It rained very heavily for a brief period. Not much has changed since yesterday but the front has moved a little further to the north and east. Our winds should slowly have more of a southerly component as the day progresses. Rain chances remain elevated through Tuesday as the moist flow continues and a weakening upper-level low pressure system lurks to our southwest. The rain chances will remain with us through Tuesday. Temperatures should increase as we get into the mid-week period…. Tornado season got off to a slow start this season, but it has picked up big time this past week as you’ve probably seen on the news this week. An area from central Oklahoma to northwest Missouri will be the area to watch today (Sunday). The Atlantic Hurricane season isn’t that far away (June 1st) and I will be talking more and more about the predictions for this upcoming season in my future posts.

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SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS WILL BE AROUND THIS WEEKEND… RAIN CHANCES WILL REMAIN WITH US INTO THE WORK WEEK BUT IMPROVING CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED BY MID-WEEK ALONG WITH WARMER TEMPERATURES

The weekend is here and so is the rain. There are many outdoor events scheduled for this weekend here in Hampton Roads and they may be impacted by the showers and thunderstorms that are expected. It will not rain all the time but there will be a chance of showers and storms throughout the weekend and the increased rain chances will remain with us into Tuesday. The wet weather is being caused by the combination of a very slow moving frontal boundary, a moist flow around a high pressure system to our northeast, and an upper-level disturbance to our west. Heavy rain is possible so be on the lookout for ponding of water on the area’s roadways. According to the NWS, the heaviest of the rain will be south and west of Hampton Roads. While widespread severe weather isn’t expected, some of the storms can be strong to severe. Believe it or not, precipitation totals this year are running slightly below normal so maybe the rain this weekend will allow us eliminate the rainfall deficit.  I’ll have an update Sunday morning.

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