Superstorm Will Hit East Coast ... Impacts To Kentuckiana?
I have been talking about the East Coast Superstorm for many days and at the end of the day on Monday this historic storm will be getting ready to move inland. The 1993 "Storm Of The Century" is one of the benchmarks to which all superstorms will be measured and it had a minimum pressure of 960 mb. The lower the pressure, the more intense the storm. With that in mind, lets look at the latest data...
Right now Sandy is turning extratropical. That means a warm core system that has it's origins in the tropics is turning into a cold core system that is traditionally found in the mid latitudes where we live. This transition normally means you will see very large wind fields on the system. Right now Sandy has 75 mph winds with gusts to 90 mph.
The lastest GFS brings this superstorm on shore near central New Jersey around 7 pm on Monday. The pressure is quite frankly historic at 949. Since the storm is at 950 mb, it is very realistic to think the storm will come on shore in the 940s. Since lower pressure indicates strength of storm, it is fair to say this storm is stronger than "The Perfect Storm" in 1991 and the "Storm Of The Century" in 1993.
Simply put, this is going to be a historic storm. The size of the storm is amazing and it is still growing. The hurricane force winds have a diameter of 350 miles and the tropical storm force sustained winds have a diameter of 1040 miles! This storm could produce tropical storm force sustained winds in Florida and Massachusetts simultaneously!
The cold side of this storm is amazing too. Snowfall totals over 2" are possible in West Virginia!!! Here is a list of the impacts per the NHC...
STORM SURGE...THE COMBINATION OF AN EXTREMELY DANGEROUS STORM SURGE AND THE TIDE WILL CAUSE NORMALLY DRY AREAS NEAR THE COAST TO BE FLOODED BY RISING WATERS.
THE WATER COULD REACH THE FOLLOWING DEPTHS ABOVE GROUND IF THE PEAK SURGE OCCURS AT THE TIME OF HIGH TIDE...NC NORTH OF SURF CITY INCLUDING PAMLICO/ALBEMARLE SOUNDS...4 TO 6 FT SE VA AND DELMARVA INCLUDING LOWER CHESAPEAKE BAY...2 TO 4 FT UPPER AND MIDDLE CHESAPEAKE BAY...1 TO 3 FT LONG ISLAND SOUND...RARITAN BAY...AND NEW YORK HARBOR...6 TO 11 FT ELSEWHERE FROM OCEAN CITY MD TO THE CT/RI BORDER...4 TO 8 FT CT/RI BORDER TO THE SOUTH SHORE OF CAPE COD INCLUDING BUZZARDS BAY AND NARRAGANSETT BAY...3 TO 6 FT CAPE COD TO THE MA/NH BORDER INCLUDING CAPE COD BAY...2 TO 4 FT MA/NH BORDER TO THE U. S./CANADA BORDER...1 TO 3 FT SURGE-RELATED FLOODING DEPENDS ON THE RELATIVE TIMING OF THE SURGE AND THE TIDAL CYCLE...AND CAN VARY GREATLY OVER SHORT DISTANCES.
GIVEN THE LARGE WIND FIELD ASSOCIATED WITH SANDY...ELEVATED WATER LEVELS COULD SPAN MULTIPLE TIDE CYCLES RESULTING IN REPEATED AND EXTENDED PERIODS OF COASTAL AND BAYSIDE FLOODING. IN ADDITION... ELEVATED WATERS COULD OCCUR FAR REMOVED FROM THE CENTER OF SANDY. FURTHERMORE...THESE CONDITIONS WILL OCCUR REGARDLESS OF WHETHER SANDY IS A TROPICAL OR POST-TROPICAL CYCLONE. FOR INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO YOUR AREA...PLEASE SEE PRODUCTS ISSUED BY YOUR LOCAL NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE OFFICE.
RAINFALL...RAINFALL TOTALS OF 3 TO 6 INCHES ARE EXPECTED OVER FAR NORTHEASTERN NORTH CAROLINA WITH ISOLATED MAXIMUM TOTALS OF 8 INCHES POSSIBLE. RAINFALL AMOUNTS OF 4 TO 8 INCHES ARE EXPECTED OVER PORTIONS OF THE MID ATLANTIC STATES...INCLUDING THE DELMARVA PENINSULA...WITH ISOLATED MAXIMUM AMOUNTS OF 12 INCHES POSSIBLE. RAINFALL AMOUNTS OF 1 TO 3 INCHES WITH ISOLATED MAXIMUM AMOUNTS OF 5 INCHES ARE POSSIBLE FROM THE SOUTHERN TIER OF NEW YORK STATE NORTHEASTWARD THROUGH NEW ENGLAND.
SNOWFALL...SNOW ACCUMULATIONS OF 2 TO 3 FEET ARE EXPECTED IN THE MOUNTAINS OF WEST VIRGINIA...WITH LOCALLY HIGHER TOTALS TONIGHT THROUGH TUESDAY NIGHT. SNOWFALL OF 1 TO 2 FEET IS EXPECTED IN THE MOUNTAINS OF SOUTHWESTERN VIRGINIA TO THE KENTUCKY BORDER... WITH 12 TO 18 INCHES OF SNOW POSSIBLE IN THE MOUNTAINS NEAR THE NORTH CAROLINA/TENNESSEE BORDER AND IN THE MOUNTAINS OF WESTERN MARYLAND. SURF...DANGEROUS SURF CONDITIONS WILL CONTINUE FROM FLORIDA THROUGH THE MID-ATLANTIC STATES FOR THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS AND SPREAD INTO THE NORTHEASTERN STATES LATER TODAY.
While a couple of showers are possible on Halloween, I think the winds will be the greatest impact here. Monday we will see winds pick up into the 20 - 25 mph range and gust to 40 mph. On Tuesday, the winds will be strong all day at 20 - 30 mph and I would not be surprised to see gusts to 50 in the NE part of our area. The NWS is anticipating these strong winds with a Wind Advisory in the northeast part of our area but I think you would justify expanding that toward Louisville.
I know people will ask about snow chances, so I want to say the northeast part of our area could pick up rain or snow showers early Tuesday. Most of the data suggests eastern KY to West Virginia will be the big "winners" in the snowfall category. AdvanceTrak does show a few snow flakes mixing in with rain showers, but notice east of our area is most likely to have the better temperature profile for that.
This superstorm is nothing less than a historic event. The east coast will have widespread power outages, tree damage, and a dangerous storm surge along the coast near NYC. The impact to New York City could be extensive. Power outages for days and major distruptions to transit. This will be a storm we remember for many years.
In our area, winds are the primary concern from Monday afternoon through late Tuesday. Winds will gust to 40 mph in most of our area, but may go as high as 50 mph in the northeast part of the area. With cold temperatures, we are looking at a very winter-like early part of the week.
If you ever have any questions, please drop by my facebook for a great discussion on this storm! Just follow the link below to my facebook page and click "LIKE"!