In Saturday night’s blog post, I wrote about the ‘possibility’ of a storm on Wednesday. After looking at another day’s worth of data, I’m confident that we will see a storm on Wednesday. Now, harder questions arise. The biggest is what track will the storm take?
T.J. Del Santo
The morning commute could be a slow one on Monday. Rain, wind and coastal flooding could create some headaches.
A warm front will be lifting through New England. Ahead of it, we’ll see rain/wind in the morning, some of which could be heavy/strong. Behind it, we’ll get some very mild air. Temperatures will soar into the 60s Monday afternoon! If we get enough sunshine, we could sneak up to 70!
You may have heard some rumors about the possibility of a Nor’easter on one of the busiest travel days of the year…the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. The rumor is true. There is the possibility of a storm which could disrupt travel from the Mid Atlantic to New England.
Based on the latest computer models from Saturday evening, here is what we could be looking at.
Sixty five inches. Nearly five and a half feet. That’s how much snow has fallen in the Buffalo, NY suburbs during the past few days. And more…a lot more… is about to come.
Here are some snowfall reports from the National Weather Service in Buffalo.
- More Information: Snow reports from the Buffalo National Weather Service
- More Information: Tuesday’s Pinpoint Weather Blog Post on Round 1 of the Lake Effect Snow Storm
Snow is piled up as high as doors and covering the tops of cars and roofs of houses.
It felt pretty uncomfortable outside this morning…and for good reason. It’s been awhile since it has been this cold! This morning’s low temperature of 21° in Providence was the coldest temperature we have had in the capitol city since March 27th when the low was 20°.
The amount of snow that has fallen in western and northern New York is mind-boggling. The recent blast of cold air, which has settled over the Northeast, is helping to create monster snow totals in parts of the Empire State. As I type, 51″ of snow has fallen in Cheektowaga, NY!
During the morning, the National Weather Service in Buffalo wrote in their technical discussion that they are forecasting nearly 6feet of snow for Buffalo’s southern suburbs.
This is for good reason. The band of lake effect snow was not moving at all, and it wasn’t expected to move out of the area until about 7pm EST. Snowfall rates of 3 to 4″ per hour were reported and there was even some thunder heard in the area.
Here’s the MODIS satellite photo of the snow bands.
This blast of Arctic air is being felt by millions of Americans today. Here in Rhode Island, busy winds and cold temperatures are creating wind chills well into the 20s. Western New York is dealing with a tremendous lake effect snow storm; parts of Florida have Freeze Warnings; and even parts of Hawaii would give you goose bumps.
Across the country, every single state had a weather station with readings of 32°F or lower this morning. Rhode Island, by the way, was the last hold out. That’s typical…we were the last of the Thirteen Colonies to sign the Constitution, too! Rhode Island’s freezing temperature came at 8:54am when the temperature hit 32.0°F in Chepachet, RI.
Here are some temperature readings from some typical ‘warm’ states:
- Florida: 28°F at Bob Sikes Airport
- Texas: Amarillo 17°F at the airport
- California: Mammoth/June Lakes 7°F
- Hawaii: Mauna Kea: 30° at NASA’s Infrared Telescope Facility
A quick-moving, but powerful storm system will move through the Northeast tonight through Monday evening.
An area of strong winds will pass over Southern New England Monday afternoon and evening. Winds could gust to 50mph from the southwest. A Wind Advisory has been issued by the National Weather Service in Taunton for the Providence Metro Area and points to the south and east.
On the Cape and Islands, stronger wind gusts are possible. Isolated power outages are possible everywhere.
I saw a stray Leonid Meteor Friday evening. It was very colorful, very bright and pretty large. Unfortunately, meteors are fleeting, and I had no time to get a camera ready. It was beautiful, though and you can see these meteors, too, for the next few days.
In the early morning skies of November 16-18, the Leonid meteors will make their annual appearance. These meteors are famous for reaching ‘storm’ level when thousands of meteors could be seen per hour; however, these kind of shows don’t happen every year. In fact, it’s about every 33 years or so when the number of meteors shows a significant rise.
The Leonids are created from left over pieces of Comet Tempel-Tuttle. This comet comes in and out of the inner solar system every 33 years. As the comet approaches the sun, the ice melts and bits and pieces of the comet are left in space. These particles are small–usually the size of a piece of dust or a grain of sand. On a rare occasion, however, they can be larger. As the Earth orbits the Sun, it passes through this debris. The little bits of the comet burn up as they fall through the atmosphere, and we see the streaks of light. The larger pieces of debris can create spectacular fireballs which can linger in the sky like fireworks. (more…)
In our area, the last area to see a frost or a freeze is Block Island. The growing season is still technically ongoing on the island, and with another pretty cold night ahead, the National Weather Service has issued a Freeze Warning for Block Island for Sunday 2-6am. In addition, Nantucket also has a Freeze Warning for that same time period.
According to the National Weather Service, a Freeze Warning is issued when freezing temperatures are forecast to threaten outdoor plants. Those with agricultural interests in the warning area are advised to harvest or protect tender vegetation.
-Meteorologist T.J. Del Santo
It was pretty cold today, there’s no doubt about it. At sunrise, temperatures were well below freezing across most of the area.
It was a frosty start to the day, too. I snapped these two photos of Jack Frost’s handywork up in Pascoag where the low was 23°.
Update: Confirmation….Philae has landed on Comet 67P. ESA scientists are trying to see if the lander is tethered to the comet. However, the first image from a comet has been released.
History will be made this morning as the European Space Agency will be landing on a comet…the first time this has ever been attempted. We’ve flown by comets a few times, but humans have never attempted to land a space craft on one.
The Rosetta spacecraft which has been circling the solar system for a decade was in orbit of Comet 67-P since August. It took stunning pictures of the comet, which is currently past the orbit of Mars. A suitable landing site was found in the past couple months and now history is about to be made.
The lander, named Philae, separated from Rosetta this morning. Here’s a picture of Rosetta from Philae just after separation.
…and here is a picture of Philae from Rosetta.
This week will likely average out to be pretty normal as far as temperatures go. That is only because the first half of the week will feature above normal temperatures and the second half will feature below normal temperatures. Our temperatures will go from mid-fall to early winter.
In previous posts, we discussed how ex-Typhoon Nuri in the Pacific Ocean would help create a powerful storm in the Bering Sea which would disrupt the weather patterns over North America. The disruption in the atmospheric flow will bring much cooler air into the eastern half of the country.
- More Info: Colder than Normal Stretch Ahead
This scenario is still playing out. As the cooler air plunges into the United States, we’ll see the first significant winter storm of the season work across the country. Winter Storm Warnings and Advisories are in effect from Idaho through Michigan.
These warnings/advisories are for heavy snow that will fall especially from South Dakota through the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
It has always amazed me how a storm system on one side of the Earth can impact the weather on the other side. This will be the case during the next 10 days.
First, here’s the Climate Prediction Center’s forecast for the next 6-10days. The blue and red represent the amount of confidence the forecaster has in whether it will be cooler or warmer than normal. Notice the higher confidence in cooler-than-normal temperatures in the eastern half of the country during the period November 9-13.
Part of the reason why is on the other side of the world.
Most communities in Southern New England saw snow on Sunday. Most saw just snow flakes mixing with rain while others saw some accumulations. The accumulating snow was mainly limited to Southeastern Massachusetts, and mainly on the grass and decks.
Here are some snow totals from across the area on Sunday.
We’ve seen some rain and gusty winds today and this evening, but the worst of the storm is yet to come. I’m thinking the strongest of the winds will be between 2am and noon on Sunday. The worst of the rain will be this evening until about 7am. Here’s what to expect from the storm in a nutshell…
- Rain, heavy at times
- 1-1.5″ of rain possible.
- Bit of snow possible inland early Sunday (no accumulation).
- Wind gusts to 45mph possible in our area through Sunday.
- Wind gusts to 60mph possible for E’rn MA through Sunday
Here’s how the storm will play out…
As of 6:30pm on Saturday, the storm was a broad and complex area of low pressure with multiple low centers off the coastlines of the Mid-Atlantic and New England. The central pressure was approximately 997mb. The storm will intensify through the night and develop into one main area of low pressure by morning. We’re anticipating the pressure to drop to approximately 984mb by tomorrow afternoon. A typical Category 1 Hurricane has a central pressure of 980mb. This low central pressure combined with a strong area of high pressure to our west will create very strong winds in Southern New England through Sunday.
Again, the strongest of the winds will be early on Sunday as the storm is strengthening and making its closest apporach to Southern New England. During this time, the rain will continue and may change to a little wet snow as cold air moves into the area late tonight.
We didn’t take a direct hit from Sandy, but it was reminder (as was Irene the year before) of what hurricanes and tropical storms can do. Sandy side-swiped Rhode Island, after it came up the East Coast and made an unusual left turn into New Jersey. We were spared the worst, New Jersey and New York were not.
- Sandy Photo Gallery: Powerful Photos of Before and After Sandy
Parts of Rhode Island were still devastated. Hurricane-force wind gusts battered the south coast. A 3-5 foot storm surge inundated coastal communities and large waves eroded our fragile shoreline.
Here’s Sandy by the numbers:
TUESDAY AFTERNOON UPDATE: The launch of the Antares rocket was scrubbed Monday evening due to a vessel within the launch zone. The new launch time is set for 6:22pm Tuesday evening. It will be visible in Rhode Island skies at 6:25pm, low in the southern sky (about 5° above the horizon). The weather in Rhode Island won’t be as pristine as Monday evening’s weather. There are lots of clouds out there, but if you have a good view of the southern sky, it’s worth a look. Unfortunately, the International Space Station will not be visible in our skies this evening.
For once, the weather should cooperate with something cool in the sky Monday evening — actually two things within minutes of each other. We’ll have the opportunity to see a rocket launch and the International Space Station.
At 6:45pm, an Antares rocket is scheduled to launch from NASA’s Wallop Flight Facility in Virginia. Approximately 3 1/2 minutes after launch, the launch will be visible in our skies. It will be low in our sky, so you will need to go to a place with a clear view of the southern horizon. The rocket will be visible only about 5° above the horizon. Places where there will be a good view include
- Misquamicut Beach in Westerly
- Matunuck Beach in South Kingstown
- Point Judith in Narragansett
- Beavertail State Park in Jamestown
- Brenton Point State Park in Newport
The week ahead will feature significant ups and even more significant downs. We are going on a temperature roller coaster ride during the next 7days. And if you don’t get dizzy from that, the remnants of a tropical system, which was near Hawaii last week, could affect our weather this week!
The first half of the week will feature a nice warm up. The average high temperature for this time of year is 60°F and that’s where the work week will start. A warm front will be approaching on Tuesday. As the warm air edges closer, we’ll see some extra clouds, and temperatures will begin to rise. After the warm front passes, Wednesday will be a little milder and a tad more humid, too.
Also on Wednesday, a cold front will approach the area, and with it we’ll get some showers. Behind the front, temperatures will fall below normal for Thursday…into the 50s.
The Nor’easter which has been plaguing us with rain, wind, clouds and chilly temperatures is slowly pulling away from New England this morning.
The low will be up in Nova Scotia, Canada this afternoon. In its wake, drier air will return to Southern New England. Today (Friday) will be a transition day as we will still have lots of clouds in our skies this afternoon. The skies will clear tonight, and we’ll get a beautiful weekend.
What will likely be the coldest air of the season, so far, will move into Southern New England Sunday into Monday.
Strong northwest winds will usher in this cold beginning Sunday morning. Temperatures on Sunday will be 15-20° colder than on Saturday when highs were around 71. We’ll probably see more in the way of sunshine Sunday afternoon, but it will be ineffective sun as temperatures won’t budge much.
Northwest winds will be gusting as high as 30mph in the afternoon, and wind chills will be dipping into the 40s. Those winds are expected to quiet down on Sunday night, and the temperatures will be begin to nose dive into the low to mid 30s by dawn on Monday….even in Providence!
Clear skies, dry air and light winds are allowing temperatures temperatures to fall quickly. Areas away from the coastline could see a frost Monday morning. Communities in the advisory include Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Burrillville, Foster, Glocester and Scituate in Rhode Island; Blackstone, Uxbridge and Douglas in Massachusetts; and Sterling, Killingly, Putnam and Thompson in Connecticut.
Light southerly winds will likely keep the temperatures above freezing near the coast and in the big cities. However, it would not surprise me if north and central Bristol County, MA and Kent County, RI get frosts.
As of Saturday evening, Southern New England was still in a moderate drought. Recent rains may slowly bring us out of ‘drought’ status, however. We could be labelled as “abnormally dry” when the next drought analysis is released from the United States Drought Monitor. If not this week, we will could be out of a drought by the end of this week. That analysis from the U.S. Drought Monitor will likely come Monday or Tuesday.
There has been measurable rain each of the first 4 days of October.
- October 1: 0.30″
- October 2: 0.31:
- October 3: 0.01″
- October 4: 0.28″
That brings the monthly total (through Saturday evening) up to 0.90″.
Compare that number to all the rain that fell in September…
September was the second driest on record, and we’ve been keeping track of Septembers since 1905.
Most people who have lived in Southern New England their entire lives have never seen a September 28th as warm as this one. A 71 year old temperature record has fallen at TF Green Airport, where the state’s climatological records are gathered.
For most of Sunday, the winds were very light out of the south and southwest, and temperatures stayed in the low 80s. Late this afternoon, the winds turned westerly, and the temperature jumped a couple of degrees to smash the high temperature record for the date.
High temperatures all over Southern New England were quite warm today, including 87° in Boston, 84° in Taunton and a toasty 80° in Newport. Windsor Locks and Providence both set high temperature records for today.
Monday will be a little cooler, but highs should still be well above average. Mid to late week, however, temperatures will likely stay in the 60s.
-Meteorologist T.J. Del Santo
Saturday felt like summer outside. From Newport to Providence to Taunton, temperatures soared into the 80s in the afternoon.
Here’s a look at the high temps from around the area on Saturday.
That 85° mark in Providence was reached at 2:40pm. That was 1° shy of tying the record for the date which is 86°.
We got some rain Thursday into Friday, but for most of Southern New England, it didn’t do much to stop the dry spell.
During the month of September, T.F. Green Airport in Warwick got 0.64″ of rain which is 2.60″ below normal. This was after a fairly dry August when 2.70″ of rain fell…close to an inch below normal. Something to note about that August rain: most of it fell on one day…August 13th when 2.26″ fell leading to flash flooding.
The U.S. Drought Monitor is now classifying Rhode Island and Bristol County, MA in a moderate drought (tan color below).
The leaves are beginning to change color and the temperatures are getting cooler….autumn is upon us. Autumn will officially be here at 10:29pm Monday evening — the time of the Autumnal Equinox.
What is an equinox exactly? Equinox comes from a Latin word, aequus, which means equal — equal days and equal nights. Astronomically, it’s the tilt of the Earth that causes the solstices and equinoxes. The Earth is always tilted about its axis. At a summer solstice, the Northern Hemisphere is tilted toward the sun. In winter solstice, the Southern Hemisphere gets the sun’s more direct rays. At the time of an equinox, however, the sun’s direct rays fall on the equator. This year that exact time is 10:39pm.
A fairly potent ocean storm passing to our south and east is creating some big waves. These waves will have a big impact on our coastline on Monday. This system is passing closer than Bertha, Cristobal and Edouard did this summer. While the system is weaker, its proximity to Southern New England will create larger and more frequent waves.
This low is non-tropical, but it has a fairly deep central pressure of 997mb and winds of 25-30mph with higher gusts. These winds are creating the big waves which will impact Southern New England’s coastline on Monday.
The National Weather Service has issued a High Surf Advisory for Monday 8am-5pm.
Moisture was working its way up the coastline Saturday evening and it’ll be here in Southern New England on Sunday. Expect some showers in the area, but we are not expecting a washout. The bulk of the rain should remain offshore. That moisture is associated with an area of low pressure that developed off the Carolina coast on Saturday.
- Pinpoint Weather Blog: Watching a Low Center off the Carolina Coast
We expect the showers to develop in Southern New England before dawn on Sunday. These showers will be mostly around during the morning on Sunday and they should be fairly scattered in nature.
We are watching an area of low pressure off the Carolina coastline very closely. This steadily developed and strengthened through the day on Saturday.
If this low were to sit off the coast another day or so, this system could become a tropical storm. As of 10:15pm Saturday, the winds around the center were strengthening. This is some weather information from a buoy just to the northeast of the center.