Any more storms in our future? (2-12-13)
As soon as the New England Blizzard headed out to sea last Saturday, we started to see signs that another storm had the potential to form along the coast this upcoming weekend (Feb 16/17) In fact, one of our models was showing a storm bringing a heavy snowfall to all of the Northeast.Fast forward to today and things aren’t as cut and dry. Our two most reliable models, the European and GFS models, have weaker areas of low pressure forming well out to sea in the Atlantic Ocean.
While both of these solutions would be cold for us here in central New York to end the weekend, there probably wouldn’t be much in the way of snow for us. If anything fell, it would have to be in the form of lake effect.The Canadian model, however,shows a more ominous solution for this Sunday with a deep low heading up the Appalachian mountains.
That is quite a bit different from the other two models! This would bring snow changing to rain here in central New York. However, this computer model is lower on the pecking order than the European or GFS models in terms of reliability so we tend to put less stock in its solutions. As of Tuesday afternoon we are calling it an ‘outlier’ So the chances for another East Coast storm this weekend have decreased based on trends from the last few days. While the chances are lower, we aren’t going to completely write off the idea just yet. The disturbance that will help spin up low pressure off the coast this weekend is still out over the Pacific Ocean where we don’t get as much data. Once it comes ashore in British Columbia over the next day or so, we'll be able to measure its location and strength better. If the models were out to lunch with that information while that disturbance was over the Pacific we could see a sudden change in the path of the storm in future model runs. IF that is going to happen, it would start to show up on the computer runs on Wednesday.In other news, NOAA has already come out with a ranking of the Blizzard over the past weekend. It is a system they use to objectively compare different snowstorms and their impacts. They look at not only the amount of snow that falls but also the amount of real estate covered by snow and the population impacted by snow. While it was a memorable storm (and for some spots record-breaking) it is officially ranked as a ‘3’ on a scale of 1 to 5
.It ended up so low on the scale because it essentially bypassed the large metropolitan areas of Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, DC. while giving New York City a glancing blow. Click here if you want to see a ranking of other Northeast snowstorms. One thing Dave Longley and I noticed is that they may have under-represented the area of 30”+ snowfall in Connecticut so perhaps this map will be revised.
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