Big Chill-down Tonight – Next Week… Hurricane Sandy Thoughts… Friday Update – 5:45pm
October 26, 2012 Leave a comment
Good Monday afternoon to you! Our forecast is looking great this evening for the local High School football games, but a stray shower or two is possible. Temperatures will continue mild through the early evening hours, but cold air will gradually spread in from the west. As of 5pm, the cold front was located just to the west of Tuscaloosa and Jasper and is slowly moving east. A breezy northwest wind will take over tonight, as the cold front moves through our area. I will note that Columbus is in the upper 50s and Oxford is in the lower 40s. The cold air is coming and there’s no stopping it’s eastward progression.
The Homecoming festivities happening on UA Campus in Tuscaloosa is looking good tonight, with temperatures reaching 70 at 7pm and upper 50s at 10pm. Temperatures will continue to fall fast late tonight, with lows reaching the 40s before daybreak. Clouds will also thicken up a bit tonight and much of Saturday. We can expect a partly to mostly cloudy sky through the day on Saturday. Winds will really gust high through the day, with 30 to 35mph gusts at times. Highs will struggle to reach 60 degrees tomorrow afternoon, with some spots staying in the 50s all day. The homecoming parade tomorrow afternoon is looking chilly and windy. Conditions will remain dry on Saturday. A gradual decrease in clouds can be expected tomorrow evening and tomorrow night.
Temperatures will drop rapidly tomorrow evening for the Alabama football game. If you’re going to the Bama/MSU game, take the thick jacket with you. Low 50s will be the temperature starting off the game, with upper 40s at the end of the game. Winds will force wind chill values into the upper 30s after halftime.
Our weather will remain cool for a while; in-fact, the entire weekend and much of next week will feature below average temperatures. Lows will approaching freezing temperatures both Sunday night and Monday night. As winds go calm Monday night, widespread frost is likely. Skies will remain mostly sunny for most of next week, as a surface high hangs out over the southeast. Look for cold night and cool days through Thursday.
Here’s an update on Hurricane Sandy I posted around noon today. The information is all valid this evening as well.
Now, onto the Tropical Mess… You’ve probably heard lots of buzz about Hurricane Sandy in the news and online over the past several days. Model data started showing this event about a week ago. Model data continues to show a northeast Disaster happening, and you can clearly see the setup on the map above. 1st, you have hurricane Sandy over the northwest Bahamas, lifting north. Sandy is becoming a large storm as it gradually becomes extra-tropical. Meanwhile, west of the storm a very deep central US trough is developing and moving east. The trough will become negatively tilted and absorb Hurricane Sandy into the trough.
This is a unique setup for sure; in-fact, I’ve heard it described as “The More Perfect Storm.” For our friends in the northeast, this is a disaster in the happening. I can’t recall a setup like this in recorded history. Typically, storms turn out to sea with an advancing trough, but the dynamics involved with this trough will actually help to strengthen the hurricane and turn it into the coast of the mid-Atlantic or northeast. The Perfect Storm of 1991 never reached the coast, but was close enough to cause significant damage and coastal flooding. Sandy will move inland somewhere between Chesapeake Bay and Boston. This is not going to be just a hurricane, but a monster thanks to a hurricane/wicked trough/strong high pressure nearby.
Winds with Hurricane Sandy are at 75 mph as of the 5pm advisory. So, Hurricane Irene was stronger than that when it impacted the east coast last year, but Irene was in a weakening stage as it moved up the east coast, and the damaging wind core was pretty small. Also, the storm moved up the coast fast, so flooding and storm surge didn’t have a chance to become a major issue. With Hurricane Sandy, it will not move up the coast, but it will turn directly into the coast and move inland. The storm will be moving much more slowly, and it’s approach to the east coast will allow for a massive storm surge, beach erosion, wind damage, flooding process to occur. Sandy will also become a huge storm and affect a much larger area than Irene of last year.
As cold air gets pulled into Sandy, a major snow storm is expected to occur along the central Appalachian Mountains with the risk of 2 feet in the higher elevations. Blizzard conditions may become likely in that area as well. Look for significant travel issues, power outages, flooding and wind damage across much of the northeast. Some may be without power for over 1 week. Storm surge may threaten major coastal cities. Weather conditions will start going downhill on Sunday, with dangerous conditions on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday across the northeast. We will be watching this storm with high interest over the next few days. This storm will likely go down in history and will rival some of the most dangerous and damaging northeast storms in history. This is a big threat to life and property.
In Alabama, we’ll notice the cold and windy conditions on the back side of Sandy. Impacts here will be very minor…
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