Michelle Muscatello

Updated Saturday Storm Forecast

December 13th, 2013 at 8:06 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Good Morning,

New data in today continues to show a winter storm impacting southern New England this weekend.  Storm timing hasn’t changed with the height of the storm still expected to be Saturday evening/night.  That means we’re still more than  a day away, and you’ll want to stay tuned to any updates in the forecast as we continue to track this developing storm and it’s eventual track/intensity.

Confidence this morning is high for a period of accumulating snow for ALL OF RI and SE MA.  Most of the accumulations occur between 8pm Saturday and 2am on Sunday.  The highest accumulations (inland) will be where we stay “all snow” with accumulation amounts less where sleet/freezing rain and rain mixes in the longest (near the coast).  I’m still thinking that most of our area ends up with 3-6″ of snow with amounts up to 8″ in far northern/western RI.  The immediate coast of SE MA/lower Cape and Islands could see as little as 1-3″ of snow before changing to freezing rain and rain.

Saturday Night Accums

Saturday Night Accums

Light snow showers will begin to move in Saturday afternoon, with little to no accumulation before 7pm.  However, pavement temperatures will be very cold, so any untreated surfaces could become slick.

temp 2

RPM Model valid at 4:30pm on Saturday

After 7-8pm the snow intensity will pick up and travel will become more difficult with reduced visibility and slippery roads.

RPM Model Valid 10pm Saturday

RPM Model Valid 10pm Saturday

We expect this storm to track very close to Nantucket and the Cape.  That track will bring in enough warm air that during the pre-dawn hours of Sunday, a transition to sleet and then freezing rain and rain is expected at the coast and most likely all the way into northern RI by dawn on Sunday.

temp 4

RPM Model valid at 4:30am on Sunday–Blue is snow, pink is mix and green is rain. This shows the transition to rain from south to north pre-dawn on Sunday.

Lingering lighter rain/freezing rain and/or sleet should taper off by late morning on Sunday with drier, brisk conditions for Sunday afternoon.

Winds in this storm will be from the northeast and peak Saturday night at 20-30mph.


Weekend Storm Potential

December 12th, 2013 at 8:43 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Cold and dry weather on the way for today with temperatures running more than 15° below normal for most.  The arctic air is going to settle in for the rest of the work week and into the weekend…. which brings us to our weekend storm threat.  This morning’s computer models are still painting a picture of a weekend storm with accumulating snow for most of New England.  Keep in mind this is a storm that has yet to form, so determining the exact track/intensity/precip type is still tricky.

Timing wise–first flakes fall sometime Saturday afternoon/early evening with the storm height Saturday late evening and night.

RPM Model Valid 4pm Saturday

RPM Model Valid 4pm Saturday

RPM Model Valid 7pm Saturday--Snowing Most Areas

RPM Model Valid 7pm Saturday–Snowing Most Areas

 

It still looks like it will be cold enough for accumulating snow at the start–even along the coast–before mixing with or changing to rain or sleet.

Weekend Storm

Weekend Storm

It’s still too early to give an accumulation map… but at this point, it looks like most of our area will end up with LESS THAN 6″ of snow from this storm… but northern RI could be close to 6″.  Stay tuned for updates!


Tuesday Snow Update

December 10th, 2013 at 12:55 pm by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Snow continues to fall at varying intensities this afternoon…. sticking mostly to grassy surfaces and car tops.  Another inch or so of accumulation likely for most before winding down early this evening.  Based on latest observations, I have trimmed the accumulation map down slightly… with most of us probably ending up on the low end of 1-3″ .

temp 1

Roadways should be mostly “wet” through the afternoon and evening commute… We’ll have to watch for black ice to develop as temperatures tumble under clearing skies this evening and tonight.


Snow Continues through the Day

December 10th, 2013 at 10:34 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Snow continues to fill in across southern New England this morning with small accumulations of 1/2″ to 3/4″ reported in Glocester, RI by about 10am.  Other areas have had a tougher time seeing the snow stick as temperatures have hovered in the mid-30s.  I envision the air slowly cooling over the next few hours and small snowfall accumulations beginning even in coastal areas as we head into the afternoon.

Here’s an updated timeline for today’s snow:  temp 1

Snowfall accumulations of 1-3″ with isolated 4″ totals still look reasonable for today.  As temperatures tumble under clearing skies this evening and tonight, watch for slippery spots and black ice to form with temperatures falling to near 20 late at night.


Updated Snowfall Accums

December 10th, 2013 at 6:51 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Watch for black ice on untreated surfaces this morning… as for the snow… the timing of the snow for today hasn’t changed… this is going to be a daytime event with snow arriving around/shortly after 9am and tapering off by early evening (4-6pm).  It’s going to be enough snow to plow/shovel with 2-3″ totals for most of RI/SE MA.  A heavier band of snow may set up somewhere in our area, bringing slightly higher amounts .  Obviously, this is not a “blockbuster” storm… but the timing is tough for school dismissals and the evening commute… plan on travel conditions to become more difficult on local roads by mid-day and remain slick through the evening.  Visibility will be reduced to 1mile or less in heavier busts of snow and roadways will become snow-covered.  Here’s the latest accumulation map:

Tuesday Accumulations

Tuesday Accumulations


More Snow Likely on Tuesday

December 9th, 2013 at 11:50 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

No time to catch our breath… as quickly as this morning’s burst of light snow/freezing rain/rain is moving out, our next disturbance is taking shape.  It’s one that will bring another round of wintry weather into southern New England on Tuesday.

In fact, there is growing confidence in a period of accumulating snow for our area.   A weak and quick-hitting disturbance will ride southeast of New England tomorrow, overspreading light to moderate snow over the area… with Rhode Island and southeastern MA likely to see the highest impact in New England.  This will be a “daytime” event–with the snow starting AFTER the morning commute and mostly over with BEFORE the evening commute.  Here’s the storm timing for Tuesday: temp 1

Here’s the latest RPM Model guidance:

Simulated Radar valid at 9am Tuesday

RPM Simulated Radar valid at 9am Tuesday

RPM Simulated Radar Valid at Noon

RPM Simulated Radar Valid at Noon

RPM Simulated Radar Valid at 5pm

RPM Simulated Radar Valid at 5pm

The precipitation will fall mostly as snow with many of us ending up with between 1-3″ of snowfall.  Some computer models are forecasting higher amounts, but there’s going to be a very sharp cut-off between those that see accumulating snow and areas that see just flurries on the northern edge of the system.  My concern right now is that any shift in the track to the south will keep the accumulating snow off-shore and bring our area only light snow showers/flurries.  You’ll want to check back in for updates today and tomorrow morning as we fine-tune the forecast.

Snowfall Accumulations Tuesday

Snowfall Accumulations Tuesday

 


Wintry Mix Changing to Rain

December 9th, 2013 at 7:34 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Radar as of 7am showing  the icy mix of light snow/sleet/freezing rain from overnight transitioning to plain rain as temperatures begin to warm above freezing.  Road conditions are improving SE of I-95 this morning, but wintry weather continues in our northern and western suburbs… perhaps into late morning.

Radar as of 7am Monday

Radar as of 7am Monday

Our futurecast show lingering light rain and drizzle late morning and early afternoon before drying out this evening, leading to better conditions for the evening commute.

Futurecast for 10am

Futurecast for 10am

Futurecast for 2pm

Futurecast for 2pm

As quickly as this bout of wintry weather moves out… we have another weak system that will move in on its heels for tomorrow.  Our computer models in the last 24 hours or so have been honing in on the potential for another round of snow, possibly with small accumulations.  This is the latest RPM model for Tuesday at noon, showing light snow in southeastern New England:

12pm Tuesday: Light snow

12pm Tuesday: Light snow

Latest indications are that parts of RI/SE MA could see a coating to 2″ of snow…. timing will be from late morning through late afternoon: 10am-3pm.

 

 


Rain Ending as Brief Snow Showers Tonight

December 6th, 2013 at 12:40 pm by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Cold front has made it through southern New England this noontime with temperatures slowly starting to fall across our area.  It’s a front that’s made headlines across the nation for bringing bitter cold temperatures and snow and ice.  We’ve been able to keep all of that out of New England, but tonight parts of our area will finally get a brief taste of it.

While it’s not “major” in our area, some light snow showers are possible after midnight.  The transition to wintry weather will happen this evening in central and western MA and NW CT where a Winter Weather Advisory is in effect:

Winter Weather Advisory Area is in Purple

Winter Weather Advisory Area is in Deep Purple

In that area, small accumulations of 1-3″ can be expected.  The rain won’t transition to snow showers until around midnight or later in RI, and accumulation amounts will be held to a coating of snow, primarily in northern suburbs.

Snow Accumulations This Evening and Tonight

Snow Accumulations This Evening and Tonight

The cold air will settle in for the weekend with below normal highs, especially on Sunday.  We’re still keeping an eye on Sunday night (after midnight) and early Monday morning.  We’ll have to watch for slick roads from a period of snow, sleet and freezing rain.  Be sure to check in for updates to the forecast throughout the weekend.


Damaging Winds Occurring this Morning

November 27th, 2013 at 6:55 am by under General Talk, Thanksgiving Futurecast, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

It’s been a very difficult morning for travelers with the combination of heavy rain and strong, damaging winds.  Here’s a look at our latest wind gusts as of 7am: temp 1

In addition, we’re getting reports of significant street flooding–leading to streets being closed and numerous spin-outs during this morning’s commute.  So far, rainfall totals are between 1-2.5″ and could end up being as high as 3-4″ in spots.  Flight delays and cancellations are beginning to mount at the major northeast airports and can be expected through the day.


Thanksgiving Travel Update

November 26th, 2013 at 12:07 pm by under General Talk, Thanksgiving Futurecast, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

The forecast remains on track for a significant wind and rain storm to impact southern New England from tonight through Wednesday.

The center of the storm has been gathering moisture from the Gulf of Mexico over the last 24 hours and is now making it’s way into the southeast US.  Here’s an update on the storm timing for our area:storm-timeline

 

In terms of rainfall amounts, latest data in as of noon on Tuesday is still pointing to widespread 1.5″ to 3.5″ of rain over RI, southeastern MA and eastern CT.

RPM 12z Model Accumulated Precipitation through 7am Thursday

RPM 12z Model Accumulated Precipitation through 7am Thursday

Based on growing confidence in a period of heavy rain, the National Weather Service has placed our area under a “Flood Watch” from late tonight into Wednesday afternoon.  The main concern is for localized street and poor drainage flooding.  Smaller rivers and streams could also see rapid rises in water levels, but our major rivers should stay within their banks.  In addition our area is now under a “High Wind Warning” for the potential for south and southeasterly gusts up to 40-60mph.  Winds of that strength could lead to wind damage and power outages.  The wind warning is from 4am Wednesday through 1pm Wednesday.

Due to the height of the storm in the northeast falling on the busiest travel day of the year, delays in the air and on the roads can be expected.  Delays could be significant… especially prior to 5pm on Wednesday.


Thanksgiving Travel Update

November 25th, 2013 at 8:25 am by under General Talk, Thanksgiving Futurecast, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Here is the latest thinking as of Monday Morning, November 25:

Our computer models have come into good agreement with the storm system moving up the East Coast of the United States on Wednesday.  While confidence is high that New England will get hit by the storm, the latest indications are that, given the storm track, it will bring RAIN and WIND to the major cities of the northeast—from DC/Baltimore to Philly, NYC and Boston this will be a heavy rain maker.  In fact, even far northern New England will see mostly rain from this latest storm with the rain/snow line pushed far to the west–into northern and western New York State and southeast Canada.  That’s good news for pre-Thanksgiving travels; however, any unsettled weather on this busy travel day will likely lead to some delays on the roads and in the air.

The latest runs of the NAM, GFS and ECWMF computer models this morning all show a storm track through western CT on Wednesday morning:

06Z NAM Wednesday

06Z  NAM valid Wednesday Morning

00z GFS Wednesday

00z GFS valid Wednesday Morning

This inland would mean a strong southerly wind in RI/SE MA and temperatures soaring to near 60 during the day.  With that in mind, the biggest concerns will be the potential for heavy rain leading to localized street and poor drainage flooding along with perhaps some minor small stream flooding.

TIMING:

Begins: Light showers arrive after 4pm on Tuesday

Heaviest: From 12am to 12pm on Wednesday

Ends: Showers taper off Wednesday evening

IMPACTS:

Rainfall: 2-3″ of rain likely with isolated amounts to near 4″.

Winds:  South winds 20-30mph with gusts 40-50mph.  Isolated wind damage/power outages possible.

Some travel impacts can be expected from this storm, though not as significant as if wintry weather were impacting the area.  Heavy rain could lead to localized street and poor drainage flooding and slowed travel on local roadways–especially through the first half of  Wednesday.

Air delays should not be too significant due to the storm (volume of travelers causing delays is an entirely different story).

THANKSGIVING THURSDAY: 

Rain is outta here on Wednesday night with dry skies and MUCH COLDER conditions for Thanksgiving.  Temperatures will be in the mid 30s with wind chills in the ‘teens.  Football fields will be soggy from Wednesday’s rain, but dry skies are expected for the high school games.  temp 2

 

 


Rocket Launch This Evening

November 19th, 2013 at 12:42 pm by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

An evening rocket launch out of Virginia will be visible here in southern New England, and it looks like great weather for the viewing!  Under clear skies, RI’ers should keep an eye out for the launch of a record number of satellite’s through NASA and the US Military’s Operationally Responsive Space (ORS) Office– 29 satellites to be exact– which could create a stunning site for millions of sky watchers along the US East Coast.  The rocket launch, dubbed ORS-3, will take place between 7:30pm-9:30pm.

 This map shows how visible the launch will be on the East Coast.

This map shows how visible the launch will be on the East Coast.

For optimum viewing in our area, try to get a clear, unobstructed view of the horizon facing southeast–in the direction of Wallops Island, Virginia.  The trajectory should be about 15° above the horizon.

Click here for more information.

Live coverage of the launch is also available via UStream beginning at 6:30 p.m. EST on launch day at: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/nasa-tv-wallops.

Launch status can be followed on launch day on Twitter at: http://www.twitter.com/NASA_Wallops and Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/NASAWFF.

 

 


Snow Showers Possible Early Tuesday Morning

November 11th, 2013 at 9:57 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Dry skies and just a bit breezy and cool for this Veterans day… the weather is looking great for any parades and ceremonies through the day.

Veterans Day

Veterans Day

High pressure controls our weather today ahead of an approaching cold front that will swing through late tonight and early tomorrow morning.   That front will usher in December-like temperatures for a few days.  Brrr!  But the big headline with it will be the potential for a period of snow showers–all the way down to the coast!  We’re looking at rain showers beginning after midnight, and they could mix with, or change to a few wet snow showers between 5-8am.  Temperatures will be above freezing through the night and early morning (upper 30s by dawn), so most of the snow showers will melt  as they hit the pavement.  IF we see a brief burst of heavier snow, a light dusting could form on some colder surfaces and briefly reduce visibility for early morning commuters.

06z RPM Model valid at 6am Tuesday

06z RPM Model valid at 6am Tuesday

Highs behind the front will only be in the low 40s on Tuesday afternoon and may just briefly hit 40 on Wednesday before milder air returns for late week.


Threat of Damaging Wind Gusts Continue

November 1st, 2013 at 10:46 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

What a way to start November!  It’s be a wild Friday morning, with gusty winds, temperatures near 70 and scattered showers.  While we’ve seen a few gusts over 40mph so far this morning, our main concern is a potentially damaging line of heavy rain and wind that’s been moving across western New England and will be in Rhode Island by lunchtime.  This “squall line” of severe thunderstorms–with little to no thunder and lightning– has had a history of producing wind gusts 50-60mph and has been responsible for downed trees, power outages and many airport delays.  As it moves through, we could see some wind damage here, too.  1146260_675522072481838_1683348954_o

Our wind advisory continues until 6pm this evening, but the strongest winds will likely be through mid-afternoon.  That’s around the time that most of the showers will be exiting the region, too… with drier weather and diminishing winds expected for this evening.


High Wind Watch Late Tonight through Friday

October 31st, 2013 at 8:34 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Good Morning,

As Tony mentioned in his blog post yesterday, an approaching cold front will be bringing strong winds, and, as of this morning, much of our area is under a HIGH WIND WATCH from late tonight through late Friday afternoon.  The watch means there is the potential for damaging winds.  The area of main concern is closer to the coast through SE MA, but even interior parts of RI could see some gusts to near 50mph on Friday.  High Wind Watch

TIMING:  Strongest winds will be from 7am-2pm on Friday.  But  this evening winds will be picking up and strengthening through the night.

WIND SPEEDS:  The latest data in from our computer models this morning is continuing to show the potential for strong southwesterly winds.  Gusts will be about 25-35mph during trick-or-treating this evening and then strengthen overnight.  By early Friday morning some gusts over 40mph are possible, with an occasional gust to 50-55mph.

IMPACTS:  We still have a lot of leaves on our trees, but many are ready to drop, so there will be many leaves that come down… in addition winds of this strength could bring down some tree limbs, branches and even isolated trees, leading to potential power outages.  If you have a lot of Halloween decorations in your yard, make sure they are secured.

RAINFALL:  About 1/2″ of rain…. it’s been very dry through October, so stream and river flooding will not be a concern.  However, leaf-clogged storm drains could lead to localized street and poor drainage flooding.

 


“Karen” to Threaten Gulf Coast States

October 3rd, 2013 at 9:06 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

National Hurricane Center has just issued it’s first advisory on “Tropical Storm Karen”, our latest name storm of the 2013 hurricane season.  Here’s what the National Hurricane just released as of 9am:

TS Karen

TS Karen

DATA FROM AN AIR FORCE RESERVE HURRICANE HUNTER AIRCRAFT INDICATES THAT THE AREA OF LOW PRESSURE LOCATED OVER THE SOUTHEASTERN GULF OF MEXICO HAS BECOME A TROPICAL STORM AND IS PRODUCING WINDS OF UP TO 60 MPH IN THE EXTREME SOUTHEASTERN GULF OF MEXICO.

Hurricane “Watches” have been issued for the Gulf Coast of the US from Grand Isle, LA to Indian Pass, FL.

This storm is expected to make landfall in the northern Gulf of Mexico (possibly near the Florida Panhandle) this weekend and then hook up with a slow moving cold front heading across the eastern US.  Some of the moisture from Karen’s remnants could bring tropical downpours to our area by Monday into Tuesday.  Stay tuned!


Warming Trend on the Way

September 18th, 2013 at 9:19 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Boy was it chilly this morning!  With quite a few of our more rural areas falling into the 30s overnight it was one of the coldest morning of the season.

Wednesday Morning Lows

Wednesday Morning Lows

There is change in the air though, as a steady warm-up is slated for the 2nd half of the week, finishing with slightly warmer than normal temperatures by Friday afternoon.  And the best part–we’re going to stay storm free!  High pressure which brought the cold, dry Canadian air on Monday sliding east.  As it does, winds are shifting to a warmer southwest direction.  The result will be highs today about 8-10° warmer than yesterday.  By Friday afternoon, inland areas will be in the upper 70s!

Warming Trend

Warming Trend

Our next weather system is a cold front slated for Sunday which will likely bring a few showers to our area.


One More Round of Storms

September 3rd, 2013 at 9:32 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Water-logged residents of the West Bay can’t let their guard down yet… we have another round of thunderstorms in the forecast today.  We’re already tracking storms that began developing over Long Island early this morning and the storms will start to fire up over RI/SE Massachusetts by late morning and/or early afternoon.  The set-up for thunderstorms development is a bit different than the last few days.  The storms will form along and ahead of an approaching cold front… the front will provide more instability–aided by some morning sun–and the potential will be there for strong to severe thunderstorms.  The storms will move quicker than the last few days, so rainfall totals should be as high. However, there is still a risk for torrential rains  to lead to some flash flooding, but we’ll also have a risk damaging winds, hail and frequent lightning.

As far as the flash flood threat–it is something we are concerned about–particularly for towns and cities like Cranston, West Warwick, Coventry and West Greenwich which bore the brunt of the heavy rainfall on Sunday and Monday.  The ground is saturated and the Pawtuxet River water levels are still running high (but are below flood stage this morning) and any additional heavy rain in those communities will lead to possible flooding.  Please stay tuned to WPRI and Fox Providence and www.wpri.com for the latest as we track the storms.

The storms will start to wind down by late afternoon with clearing skies and drier air moving in through the evening and night.


A Warmer Week Ahead

August 19th, 2013 at 8:28 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Temperatures will be warming up this week… it will be the hottest stretch of weather since mid-July!

From Channel 12 Eyewitness News Meteorologist Michelle Muscatello, here is your updated Live Pinpoint Doppler 12 7 Day Futurecast:

TODAY:   Warmer, dry with a mix of sun and clouds.  Highs in the mid 80s inland and near 80 at the coast.  Winds from the west-southwest 5-12mph.

TONIGHT:  Partly cloudy start and then clearing towards dawn… lows in the low 60s.

TUESDAY:  Mostly sunny and a bit more humid with highs in the mid to upper 80′s.

WEDNESDAY:  Mostly sunny, hazy, hot and humid.. Highs around 89.

THURSDAY: Mostly sunny, very warm, humid. Highs in upper 80s. Chance for a few thunderstorms or showers in the evening and night.

FRIDAY:  Partly sunny with a chance of showers lingering, especially in the morning… not as hot with highs near 83.

SATURDAY:  Sunny, more seasonable with highs around 79.

SUNDAY:  Sunny and seasonable with highs around 81.


Is the Extreme Heat Over till Next Summer?

August 5th, 2013 at 12:35 pm by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

What a refreshing start to the work week!  Temperatures began in the 50s this morning, and with the ultra-low humidity and highs in the 70s the air had a touch of Autumn in it.  For those that wait all year for Autumn’s comfortable days, it was a pleasant change from the extreme heat and humidity that brought us record warmth for the month of July in RI.  So is this the start of early Fall?  That may be a bit of a stretch, as surges of heat (80s and even 90s) are still quite normal well into September… However, we don’t see any extreme heat around here through the middle of August.  In fact, temperatures during the next 10-14 days look to average out near or slightly below normal.  Here’s what the Climate Prediction center shows for August 12-18, with cooler than average temperatures for much of the central and eastern US:

CPC Temperature Outlook for Aug 12-18

CPC Temperature Outlook for Aug 12-18

The reason for the cooler air is due in part to a dip– or trough– in the jet stream over the central and eastern US.  This will give us shots of Canadian air behind departing weather disturbances… so not only do we have a good shot at a cooler start to the month, but also wetter than normal, too.

CPC Precipitation Probability for Aug 12-18

CPC Precipitation Probability for Aug 12-18

 


Calculating the Heat Index

July 16th, 2013 at 9:18 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Lots of talk this month with all of this sultry weather about the “heat index”.  As Tony mentioned last night, it’s a calculation that meteorologists use in the summertime to give you a sense of how the weather “feels”.  Another way to describe it is the “apparent temperature” combining the air temperature and the relative humidity.  It’s similar to the way we use the wind chill in the wintertime to give you an idea of how cold it “feels” to your body, but in the winter we combine the temperature and the winds.

Here’s a heat index chart from the National Weather Service that describes how humidity affects how the temperature feels to our bodies.

 

temp 2

Something to keep in mind is that the values were devised for shady, light wind conditions.  If you’re exposed to full sunshine… the heat index values can jump up to 15°!

Here are some tips and symptoms of heat related illnesses from the National Weather Service:

During extremely hot and humid weather the body’s ability to cool itself is affected. When the body heats too rapidly to cool itself properly, or when too much fluid or salt is lost through dehydration or sweating, body temperature rises and heat-related illnesses may develop.

Factors or conditions that can make some people more susceptible to heat-related illnesses include age (older adults and young children), obesity, fever, heart disease, mental illness, poor circulation, prescription drug and alcohol use, and sunburn. Sunburn, caused by ultraviolet radiation from the sun, can significantly retard the skin’s ability to shed excess heat.

Heat-Related Illness Symptoms and First Aid

HEAT CRAMPS

  • Symptoms:
    • Painful muscle cramps and spasms usually in legs and abdomen
    • Heavy sweating
  • First Aid:
    • Apply firm pressure on cramping muscles or gentle massage to relieve spasm.
    • Give sips of water, if nausea occurs, discontinue water

HEAT EXHAUSTION

  • Symptoms:
    • Heavy sweating
    • Weakness
    • Cool, pale, clammy skin
    • Weak pulse
    • Possible muscle cramps
    • Dizziness
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Fainting
    • Normal temperature possible
  • First Aid:
    • Move person to a cooler environment
    • Remove or loosen clothing
    • Apply cool, wet cloths
    • Fan or move victim to air conditioned room
    • Offer sips of water. If nausea occurs, discontinue water. If vomiting continues, seek immediate medical attention.

HEAT STROKE (or sunstroke)

  • Symptoms:
    • Altered mental state
    • Possible throbbing headache, confusion, nausea, dizziness, shallow breathing
    • High body temperature (106°F or higher)
    • Skin may be hot and dry, or patient may be sweating
    • Rapid pulse
    • Possible unconsciousness
  • First Aid:
    • Heat stroke is a severe medical emergency. Summon emergency medical assistance or get the victim to a hospital immediately. Delay can be fatal.
    • Move the victim to a cooler, preferably air-conditioned, environment
    • Reduce body temperature with a water mister and fan or sponging
    • Use fan if heat index temperatures are below the high 90s
    • Use extreme caution
    • If temperature rises again, repeat process
    • Do NOT give fluids

Heat Wave is Over

July 9th, 2013 at 9:46 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

After 5 straight days at 90° or higher, we woke up to some relief today!

Heat Wave

Heat Wave

A weak front sitting over southern New England has brought a shift in the winds and some cooler temperatures.  The trade-off is that we’re beginning the day with an abundance of low clouds, fog and mist.  The clouds will be stubborn, but the early July sun is strong and by mid-day we should be seeing some peeks of hazy sun.  The air temperature will be running about 8-10F cooler than yesterday, making it a much more comfortable day for summer camps and working outside.

With a front hanging around, though, we’ll also have to watch for a few isolated showers and thunderstorms… mainly in the afternoon and early evening.  The same goes for Wednesday… morning fog/clouds and a chance of a shower or thunderstorm popping up.

By Thursday a stronger cold front will move into New England bringing a good chance of showers and storms–some of them could be strong or severe in the afternoon and evening.  With any luck, the front will sweep off-shore by Friday morning and bring a stretch of dry and slightly more comfortable weather for the weekend.  If the front gets hung up at our coast we could be looking at the showers lingering for a while longer.

 


Microburst Vs Tornado Damage

July 2nd, 2013 at 9:43 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

We saw a number of tornado warnings and flash flood warnings yesterday across CT and MA as severe thunderstorms erupted in the early and mid-afternoon.  We’ve had at least one tornado confirmed–near Windsor Locks, CT–and several other areas with damage being investigated by the National Weather Service.  In one community–Agawam, MA–the team of surveyors from the NWS in Taunton found that the damage was done by a “microburst” rather than a tornado.  Sometimes, it can be difficult to determine whether a storm is producing a tornado or a microburst simply by analyzing the radar alone… that’s why teams are sent out to assess the damage after the fact.  By looking at the direction of the damage, storm surveyors can tell whether it was straight line winds that brought down trees, etc or converging winds from a tornado leading to the damage.  Here’s a visual example:

Microburst vs Tornado Damage

Microburst vs Tornado Damage

A microburst is caused by a strong, but small down burst of destructive winds less than 2.5mi in diameter and lasting only 2-5 minutes.  However small, the damage can be significant.  In one part of Agawam, MA yesterday as many as 40-50 trees were uprooted, wires down and several cars crushed by fallen trees.

Thunderstorm Downburst

Thunderstorm Down burst

A tornado is a   violently rotating column of air that descends from a thunderstorm cloud and is in contact with the ground.  Tornadoes are much more rare than straight line wind damage.

As far as today… the main concern from any thunderstorms will be heavy downpours leading to flash flooding.  The risk is greatest over areas in western CT and western MA.  There is a small risk for damaging winds, including an isolated tornado–especially given that the environment is similar to yesterday–tropical air, stalled front, and stronger than normal mid and upper level winds.

Here’s the outlook from the Storm Prediction Center for today–a 2% chance of a tornado and a 5% chance of straight line wind damage:

Tornado Probability

Tornado Probability

 Wind Damage Probability

Wind Damage Probability

 


The Beat Goes On…

June 28th, 2013 at 9:20 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Rounds of showers and thunderstorms are expected to continue over the northeast through today, the weekend and, at least the early part of next week.  As Tony mentioned in his last post, we’re in an atmospheric traffic jam… one that will continue pump in the high humidity and the potential for soaking storms. This morning was evidence of that, as our area saw a quick 1/2″ to 1″ of rainfall with frequent lightning and gusty storms.

Skies try to brighten up for the late morning/afternoon… with hazy sun adding fuel to the already charged atmosphere… leading to the risk of more thunderstorms.  It looks like there’s a higher risk to our west—through PA, NY, CT… however the Storm Prediction Center does have our area under a slight risk for severe storms.  We’re also concerned about the potential for these storms to have rotating updrafts–which could lead to funnel clouds and perhaps an actual tornado touching down…. right now, there’s about a 2% chance of a tornado.

Tornado Probability

Tornado Probability

Much more likely with these storms would be localized flash flooding due to the torrential downpours and some gusty, damaging winds.

Severe Wind Probability

Severe Wind Probability

This weekend will still feature the chance for a pop-up shower or thunderstorm in spots… certainly won’t be raining all the time… but when it rains it pours, with heavy downpours and possible localized flooding.


More Heat, Humidity and Thunderstorms

June 25th, 2013 at 9:17 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Here we go again… another day of sultry air, temperatures in the 90s and the threat of late day thunderstorms.  Much like yesterday, the temperatures are warming quickly….already hitting 80 at 9am with the heat index in the low 80s.  We’ll climb into the low 90s for highs inland, and low 80s at the beaches.  The heat index will be about 5° higher than the air temperature.

It doesn’t take much in the high heat and humidity to spark another round of thunderstorms, and they are in the forecast for today.  In fact, NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center has much of southern New England under a slight risk for severe storms later this afternoon.

SPC Outlook

SPC Outlook

The biggest threat with any storms developing today will be for torrential rain, strong, damaging wind gusts–40-50mph , hail and lightning.

Damaging Wind Outlook

Damaging Wind Outlook

And get used to this forecast…. while the temperatures won’t be quite as hot as the week goes on, the air will be very muggy, and the weather pattern will be stagnant, with the risk of showers and thunderstorms each of the next 7 days.  In fact, I don’t see any major changes in the weather pattern (warm, humid, showers and thunderstorms) right through the 4th of July.  Because the air is so “juicy” (ie: very moist) any t’showers that develop will have the potential to drop heavy rain.  It looks like our lawns will be staying lush over the next week or two.


Summertime!

June 21st, 2013 at 11:33 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Summer has officially arrived!  The solstice occurred at 1:04am this morning, marking the beginning of the summer season in the northern hemisphere.  And it’s going to be a great kick-off to summer today–mostly sunny skies, warm temperatures and low humidity.  Temperatures will be in the low 80s inland and in the 70s at the beaches.

The solstice occurs when the sun’s direct rays hit their northern most point–23.5°N–the Tropic of Cancer.  As that occurs we have more hours of daylight and a stronger sun angle on this day (and the days surrounding it) than at any other time of the year.  By Monday morning, our sunrise will begin to get a little later and every day or two we’ll lose a minute of daylight… so enjoy today’s 15 hours and 14 minutes of daylight!!

Summer Solstice

Summer Solstice

We are going to have a fantastic weekend for southern New England summertime favorites–beach, boating, pool weather will all be at it’s best… with mostly sunny skies and warm temperatures.  While we’ve had a break from high humidity, that will begin to change by late Saturday and especially Sunday as dew point temperatures creep up, giving our air a “muggy” feel.

The warmth and high humidity will stick around –pun intended–into at least the middle of next week.


Another Round Today

June 18th, 2013 at 9:12 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

What an evening… from stormy skies to vibrant rainbows we had a changing and beautiful show in southern New England at the end of the day Monday… we were lucky that most of the thunderstorms were dying out as the made their way into southeastern New England and we missed the damaging winds and hail that CT and central MA had.  Instead, we were graced with gorgeous double rainbows that were visible for most of our area… and the pictures flew in to WPRI.  One of my favorites was this shot from Erin Stevens of the rainbow over Providence.

from Erin Stevens

from Erin Stevens

We have a gallery of rainbow photos on our website here.

There will be a cold front slowly sliding across southern New England again today that will lead to another round of showers and thunderstorms… mostly between 4-8pm.  With extra  clouds and cooler temperatures the risk of widespread severe storms is lower that yesterday… however, there could be some isolated strong storms with heavy rain and dangerous lightning.  As the front slides south the risk of showers will come to an end through the night with lingering clouds.  Behind the front will come a stretch of refreshing air with low humidity and comfortable temperatures for Wednesday into Friday.


Rain Moving In

June 13th, 2013 at 9:04 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Our parade of storms continues with another round of soaking rain on the way for today into Friday.  We’re getting used to–and sick of this–another FLOOD WATCH issued for all of RI and most of SE MA through Saturday morning.

It’s low pressure moving our way that will be responsible for rain, gusty winds and unseasonably chilly temperatures.  In fact, our high temperatures will be held in the 60s for the next 2 days…unseasonably chilly for mid-June.  Rainfall totals again look hefty… especially considering we’ve already picked up more than 7″ this month.  With saturated grounds and rivers and streams swollen it won’t take much to lead to some street, poor drainage, basement and river and stream flooding.  Here’s what the RPM model is printing this morning out for rainfall from this storm system:

Rain Accums

Rain Accums

I wouldn’t be surprised to see a few areas near 4″.  Some of our local rivers–the Pawtuxet and Pawcatuck Rivers–continue to see minor flooding this morning, even before this latest rainfall, so they are expected to see additional minor flooding–perhaps moderate flooding for the Pawtuxet depending on how much rain falls over Cranston and Warwick.

The other component of this storm will be the gusty northeast winds tonight.  They’ll strengthen to 20-25mph with a few gusts to 35-45mph.  Gusty winds will die down on Friday, with most of the showers tapering off through the afternoon.

Please stay tuned to updates and we continue to track this system.


Flood Threat Continues

June 11th, 2013 at 9:32 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

Heavy rain has come to an end this morning with lingering drizzle, mist and humid air keeping the ground damp this morning.  Even though the downpours have passed for now, we’re still concerned about flooding along the Pawtuxet and Pawcatuck Rivers.

Here’s a look at the rainfall total from overnight:

Rainfall overnight

Rainfall overnight

It was enough rain to send the Pawtuxet River into a flood again with water levels continuing to rise.  In fact, the latest forecast is for the river to crest at just over 11ft early Wednesday afternoon, with moderate flooding for a time tomorrow.

Pawtuxet Hydrograph

Pawtuxet Hydrograph

Minor flooding is occurring at the Pawcatuck River in Westerly and minor flooding is forecast to continue there.

Adding to the troubles, we are also watching for the potential for another round of showers and thunderstorms to move through this afternoon.  Skies will be relatively quiet for a time today, with a little sun even possibly breaking out early afternoon… but a warm front stalled over southern New England will act as the focus for more showers and thunderstorms late day.  The more sun we see, the higher the threat of potentially strong t’storms–one’s that could dump more heavy rain on our saturated ground as well as bring frequent lightning and gusty winds.  There’s the potential for another 1/2″ to 1.5″ of rain and it could fall during the evening commute.

We’ll get a bit of a break on Wednesday and early Thursday before another storm takes aim at southern New England.  Another round of heavy rain is possible from the end of the day on Thursday into, at least, early Friday.  We’ll have to watch local rivers and streams during that wet weather, too.


More Rain on the Way

June 10th, 2013 at 8:55 am by under General Talk, Tony's Pinpoint Weather Blog

More rain is on the way, and with rivers and streams still running high we are concerned about more flooding.

On it’s own the 1-2″ of rain that we’re expecting from late today through Tuesday evening would not be a big deal… but add it to the 3-5″ we saw with Andrea’s remnants just a few days ago and it may be more than our storm drains, streams and rivers can handle.  That’s why our area is under a “Flood Watch” with the bulk of the rain falling through the overnight hours tonight.

Flood Watch

Flood Watch

Minor flooding is still occurring along the Pawtuxet River this morning.  Water levels are expected to fall below flood stage by this evening, but it may be just a brief break as more rain moves in, water levels are expected to rise again, with minor flooding forecast for tonight and through the day on Tuesday.

Showers will be scattered on Tuesday with some partial sun trying to break out in between… we’ll have to watch for an isolated strong t’storm late day Tuesday.

On Wednesday, the rain chances will be much lower, but cold air aloft will lead to at least a small chance of a pop-up shower in the late afternoon.  Most of the day will be dry and warm.

Late week we’ll be keeping our eye on a storm center moving off the mid-Atlantic coast… some of our computer models have it staying well south of our area… but others do bring it close enough to bring a period of rain from late Thursday night into Friday morning.  We’ll watch to see if that trend continues… Regardless, it look like it will be outta here in time for the weekend.