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Tag Archive: Weather Nerd


Update From the Weather Nerd

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  ” If my reading of the Battery Park tidal gauges (charts here and here ; raw data here ) is correct … and if my understanding is right that a water level ( i.e. , the red line
on the charts) higher than 10 to 10.5 feet would cause a major flooding event in New York City that would inundate the subways
and swamp low-lying areas of the city … it appears to me that, unless the storm surge ( i.e. , the green line on the charts) slows down from its current pace of increasing
approximately 1 foot per hour, a
significant New York City flooding event will begin sometime in the 5:00 to 6:00 PM hour local time, probably closer to 5:30 or 5:40 PM, but in any event well before the 9:00 PM high tide (and thus,
presumably, continuing unabated for several hours). “

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The Board Is Set; The Pieces Are Moving

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” Hurricane Sandy’s barometric pressure dropped from 960 millibars at 5am EDT to 951mb at 8am, and new convection is appearing around the center. The lessening of wind shear, and the influence of the warm Gulf Stream waters underneath Sandy, are having the expected effect: deepening of the low pressure at the storm’s core. Meanwhile, the wind field continues to expand, to historic proportions. Sandy is now the largest hurricane in Atlantic history, with its tropical storm-force winds having a diameter of more than 1,000 miles! “

Today is the Day to Prepare

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” Hurricane Sandy was briefly downgraded overnight to a tropical storm, then was re-classified as a hurricane this morning when a reconnaissance airplane found hurricane-force winds. It continues to look ugly on satellite, and might be re-downgraded to a tropical storm later today. Again, none of this matters. This temporary weakening trend was and is expected. It doesn’t (yet) suggest that the models are wrong, or that Sandy will underperform its forecasts (as Irene and Isaac did). That might happen — there’s always the possibility that models are wrong — but we have NO EVIDENCE to suggest that yet. As Bryan Norcross wrote yesterday, “Either every model is wrong or this is serious as a heart attack.”

Please read Norcross’s whole excellent post from last night, and understand that — distracting noise about downgrades and “hybridization” aside —Sandy remains a deadly serious threat, including to hyper-vulnerable New York City. “