DISCUSSION: For those living in the Northeast, this past weekend has been a soaker. A low pressure system moved up the coast dropping insane amounts of precipitation (mostly rain, but higher elevations even saw snow!) The above map details how much liquid-equivalent precipitation was recorded in the past 48 hours.
Areas in orange received around an inch (2.54 cm), while whole states like Delaware, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Rhode Island were blanketed by over 2 inches (5.08 cm) of rain! The central parts of New York and Pennsylvania have seen the worst of the storm, getting almost 4 inches (10.16 cm) of rain!
The storm underwent bombogenesis, a term used by meteorologists to describe a rapidly intensifying storm, bringing high winds and precipitation.
Millions of people in the Northeast are without power, where some areas experiences flooding, mudslides, and of course, transit problems.
Approximately 5 years ago, Superstorm Sandy made landfall in the Northeast, bringing colossal destruction to the area. Some may say this storm was the ghost of Sandy.
For more severe weather impacts around North America, be sure to click here!
© 2017 Meteorologist David Tedesco
DISCUSSION: It has been fall on the calendar in South Florida for almost 4 weeks, but if you went outside you would not notice it. In fact, when September 22 rolls around I don’t refer to as the first day of fall, but as the first day of “Summer Extension”. So, when does fall really arrive in South Florida? Well, it all depends on your definition. I normally define it as the first day in which the morning low temperature falls below 70 degrees. That usually occurs sometime in mid-October. On the local TV station, they were defining the first day of fall as when the first cold front comes completely through the South Florida area bringing in noticeably cooler and/or drier air. With their definition, that event occurred on October 20 in 2016, October 6 in 2015, and October 22 in 2014.
However you want to define it, I for one cannot wait until that day occurs. Here in South Florida, the joke that floats around is what is the difference between fall up North and fall in South Florida? Up North it is fall when the leaves change colors, in South Florida it is fall when the license plate change colors.
© 2017 Meteorologist Michael Leiba
DISCUSSION: On October 19th, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released their winter weather outlook for the 2017/2018 winter weather season.
The biggest “wildcard” of these winter weather predictions is a possible La Niña forming for the second year in a row, with a 55% - 65% chance of it setting in before the winter season begins. You may be familiar with the term “El Niño,” which is the opposite of a La Niña. Both are part of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation(ENSO). The ENSO is a naturally occurring phenomenon which results in above or below normal sea surface temperatures, and also varying wet and dry conditions over the course of a few years. La Niña, translating to “the girl” in English, occurs when the water around the equator in the eastern Pacific Ocean is cooler than normal for a number of months. When this happens, the easterly winds along the equator increase. This could be a factor as a result from this past intense hurricane season we just endured. A La Niña typically results in altered weather patterns making the southern half of the United States warmer and drier, with the Northern half of the United Stated seeing cooler and wetter winters. There are other factors to consider when forecasting the winter weather outlook, such as other oscillations in the atmosphere, including the Arctic Oscillation, which can predict how far cold air can be pushed south, and the Madden-Julian Oscillation, which can have an impact on the number of heavy rain events the west coast experiences.
For December through February, NOAA predicts that wetter than average conditions will be favored across the northern part of the United States, from the Northern Rockies to the eastern Great Lakes. For the southern part of the United States, drier than normal conditions are expected to dominate. In terms of temperature, warmer than normal conditions are expected across the southern two-thirds of the country, with parts in eastern Texas/ New Mexico expected to have 50% warmer than normal temperatures. The Northern tip of the country, from Minnesota to the Pacific Northwest are expected to have cooler than normal temperatures. The rest of the country will have an equal chance of above or below normal precipitation and temperatures.
As of right now, NOAA has issued a La Niña watch, meaning conditions through observations and forecast models show those cool temperatures in the eastern Pacific Ocean. Look out for the next update from NOAA on a possible La Niña expected to come out November 9th.
To learn more about North American weather impacts, click here!
©2017 Meteorologist Claudia Pukropski
Margerie Glacier is 21 miles long, 250 feet high and extends 100 feet below sea level. This glacier advances approximately 30 feet per year. The ice in the front is about 75 to 200 years old. Margerie Glacier is one of eight tidewater glaciers in Glacier Bay, Alaska. A tidewater glacier is a valley glacier that flows all the way down to the ocean. Emmanuel de Margerie, a French geologist and geographer, visited the bay in 1913 naming the glacier Margerie. Small bits of ice tend to break off from the glacier known as calving. These glaciers can only be accessed by boat and plane. The image above was taken aboard a cruise ship and we were close enough to hear the thundering sound of ice breaking off from the glacier. The glacier begins on the south slope of Mount Root and flows into the Tarr Inlet. Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve is a protected area of about 3.3 million acres which are a part of a 25-million-acre World Heritage Site. This bay did not exist in 1794 when Captain Vancouver passed by as it was still ice. At the time of the image, seals were present on the ice in the John Hopkins Inlet, which means vessel traffic is prohibited.
Even though eight glaciers are advancing, nearly 95% of all glaciers are receding.
For more interesting facts about North America, click here!
ⓒ 2017 Meteorologist Brandie Cantrell
Pattern Change and Precipitation for Wildfire Stricken California (Credit: Meteorologist Jessica Olsen)
DISCUSSION: A pattern change is on the way this week after experiencing warmer than average temperatures coupled with windier conditions making containment for fires in Northern California difficult. This change will be apparent in the latter part of the week as several factors come together bringing cooler temperatures and some precipitation to the forecast.
Wednesday evening will be the start of this pattern change as a cold front drops from the Pacific Northwest. This frontal boundary will bring cooler temperatures to the region and will push precipitation into the area. With some onshore flow, likely precipitation and snow in higher elevations should be evident. Chances for rain increase Wednesday night into Thursday and Friday. Models are indicating amounts ranging from a tenth of an inch to quarter of an inch in much needed areas affected by the Pocket, Tubbs, Nuns, Patrick, and Atlas fires. For areas south of San Francisco, light rain is expected, virga is also being seen on the radar as of early Wednesday. Onshore flow will bring stratus and increase cloudiness throughout Thursday. By Friday warming is expected to reappear in addition to dry conditions as a ridge makes its way into the area.
For more localized forecasts and changes visit the Global Weather and Climate Center!
© Meteorologist Jessica Olsen
DISCUSSION: As of tonight, the worst impacts from what was previously Hurricane Nate, then Tropical Storm Nate, and now Tropical Depression Nate is being felt across parts of the Ohio Valley and the Mid-Atlantic region. As a result, some additional flooding concerns are being realized for a brief time across states such as Kentucky, Tennessee, and West Virginia. This is a direct result of heavier showers persisting across these states as well as some surrounding areas as the tropical moisture associated with the weakening remnant circulation tied to Nate gradually propagates through these regions. Hence, even at this hour, there still remain to be a few flood warnings in effect across parts of Virginia in light of some heavier embedded showers moving through. Hence, even well-beyond 24 hours after the time of landfall along the central U.S. Gulf Coast, Tropical Depression Nate is still proving to be a flooding threat for millions of people in the path of this weakening tropical low pressure system.
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©2017 Meteorologist Jordan Rabinowitz
DISCUSSION: As of this earlier this evening, Tropical Storm Nate continues to be very disorganized with a substantial amount of convection on the far east side of the circulation. Having said that, the forecast track will most likely have the center of Nate moving north-northwestward with time. This track will bring the center of Nate over the far western Caribbean Sea and then over far eastern sections of the Yucatan Peninsula. After that time, the best future forecast track consensus suggests that Nate will emerge over the central Gulf of Mexico. By that point in time, Nate will be traversing over very warm ocean water across the central Gulf of Mexico by way of the Loop Current. The Loop Current is an oscillating current of particularly warm water in the upper-most part of the central Gulf of Mexico which often allows tropical cyclones (TC) to intensify (give all other factors are conducive for TC intensification) and sometimes rapidly intensify.
After a day or two moving northward across the Gulf of Mexico, the forecast track of Tropical Storm Nate (and possibly at that time Hurricane Nate) will bring this tropical storm towards the central U.S. Gulf Coast which will more than likely induce additional coastal/inland flooding concerns. Therefore, for that reason, many coastal evacuation orders have already been given out ahead of the approach of what may ultimately be Hurricane Nate.
To learn more about other high-impact weather events across North America, be sure to click here!
©2017 Meteorologist Jordan Rabinowitz