Local Forecast Details, Hurricane Sandy Disaster Update – 12:20pm Friday Update
October 26, 2012 Leave a comment
Good Friday morning to you! We’re about to deal with some big changes over the next 24 hours, as cold air takes over Alabama. As of lunch on this Friday, our weather is very nice across the area. Skies are partly to mostly sunny with temperatures in the 70s to low 80s area-wide. Check out the temperature map above; this is as of noon. At this time, the cold front was positioned from Nashville to Columbus to Jackson. Ahead of the front, temperatures are mild. Behind the front, it gets a lot colder.
Temperatures are in the upper 40s across northwest Mississippi. While the front is a slow mover, the leading edge of the cold air will start to reach northwest Alabama during the mid afternoon hours and I-20 after dark. Temperatures will rapidly drop after 10pm along I-20/59. Many spots will wake up to temperatures in the upper 40s early Saturday morning.
If you have plans outdoors at the local high school football games tonight, there’s a small chance of a passing shower or sprinkle, but many stadiums will stay dry. Temperatures will reach the upper 60s at the 7pm kickoff along and south of I-20/59. I expect temperatures to fall into the 50s during the local high school football games. If your game is northwest of I-20/59, temperatures will start off in the 50s at the 7pm kickoff and reach the low 50s to end the games.
The pep-rally in Tuscaloosa tonight will feature fairly nice conditions, with temperatures in the 60s during the events. There is a low chance of a passing shower, so it may be a good idea to take the umbrella just to be safe. Saturday will feature a chilly and windy day for homecoming. Temperatures will struggle to reach 60 degrees for highs and for the Parade. We can expect a drop into the low 50s for the 7:30pm kickoff of the Alabama football game. Temperatures will fall into the 40s to end the game at Bryant-Denny. Winds will gust to 30mph at times on Saturday and Sunday.
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 80 mph as of the 11am 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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