Sunday 8/9/20

Good morning!

With mostly sunny skies and a very slight chance of an afternoon shower or storm both today and tomorrow, expect a high around 90 today and 91 tomorrow. The next two nights will be mostly clear, with a low of 67 tonight and 68 tomorrow night. The wind will be west-southwest at 5-10 mph, decreasing to a light west-southwest wind tonight and tomorrow.

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Have a great day!
-Nathan

Friday 8/7/20

Good morning!

With partly sunny skies, expect a high around 81, with a calm wind, turning to the east at 5-10 mph. Tonight will be mostly cloudy and 63, with a chance of showers, and a light east wind.

Saturday will be partly sunny and 81, with a slight chance of showers, and an east wind around 5 mph. Saturday night will be mostly clear and 63, with a calm wind.

weather 2020-08-07.001.jpeg

Have a great day!
-Nathan

Wednesday 8/5/20

Good morning!

In the wake of Isaias, which raced into Canada overnight, we will have mostly sunny skies today, with a high around 88, and a southwest wind of 5-10 mph, with gusts up to 25 mph possible this afternoon and evening. It’s on the humid side right now, with dew points just shy of 70, but dew points will drop into the 50s to low 60s by this evening.

Tonight will be mostly clear and 62, with a west wind of 5-10 mph, calming to a light wind late. Thursday will be mostly sunny and 83, with a west-northwest wind of 5-10 mph that will bring in even drier air, with dew points in the upper 40s to mid 50s. Thursday night will be mostly clear and 62, with a light northwest wind, turning north late. Dewpoints will be back into the 60s Friday as the wind shifts to the east.

A quick word on Isaias… I’d say we got lucky as far as damage and power outages, since Lowell and Dracut both had only a small handful of customers without power, while at one point yesterday evening, over 215,000 people in Massachusetts had no power (including over 10 percent of both Billerica and Chelmsford). As far as the tornado threat goes, 13 tornado warnings were issued for portions of the six New England states yesterday, including two not far to our west in the Fitchburg area.

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Have a great day!
-Nathan

Tuesday 8/4/20 – TS Isaias Update #3

Good morning! This update will focus on Tropical Storm Isaias as it begins to make its presence felt in the region. The rain forecast has changed significantly since yesterday.

Tropical Storm Isaias – Tuesday Morning Update:
TROPICAL STORM WARNING IN EFFECT for Dracut.
The warning also includes all of MA/CT/RI/NH, all of the Maine coast, and all of interior western Maine. 
A Tropical Storm Watch also is in effect for the rest of Maine.

Hazards: Strong winds are the main hazard here in eastern Massachusetts, with brief heavy rain and a few tornadoes also possible.

Winds: Southeast wind 5-15 mph during the day today, gusting up to 25 mph;, turning south-southeast at 25-35 mph with gusts up to 55 mph this evening and early overnight, then turning southwest 5-15 mph during the later overnight hours. Note that there is at least some potential that sustained winds could exceed 40 mph, hence the issuance of the Tropical Storm Warning from the National Weather Service. Regardless of whether we reach the official tropical storm criteria in terms of sustained winds, frequent tropical storm force gusts are likely for a few hours this evening and early overnight.

Rainfall: Up to 1″ possible for the Dracut area as well as most locations in eastern New England. 1-3″ possible in western New England. New York State gets more rain. Just like with Tropical Storm Fay, we get hosed out of a decent rainfall right before the storm. Oh well, at least this means no flooding issues are expected in our area. Some brief heavy rain is still likely at times though, especially this evening.

Impacts: Scattered power outages are likely, along with some wind damage to trees and other outdoor objects. Unsecured outdoor objects will likely be blown around at times. Given the south-southeast wind direction during the strongest wind gusts, there is at least a limited potential for widespread significant damage from wind levels that would cause far less damage during the Nor’easters that we are used to. The October 29-30, 2017 wind and rain storm also had a southeasterly wind, and despite peak gusts generally only being in the 50s in our area, that storm produced a tremendous amount of damage in large part due to the wind direction along with the fully leaved trees. I’m not calling for a repeat of that system by any means – just saying that there is at least some chance that we could be in for a surprising amount of damage. Hopefully we end up on the lower side of potential winds and peak gusts, and the chance of that has ticked up a little overnight as Isaias ticked a little further west.

A few tornadoes are possible to even likely in southern New England, with the chance being much for Isaias than most other landfalling tropical cyclones given impressive helicity dynamics and interaction with a jet (which is why we may see some of those very strong gusts to begin with). Any locations that see a tornado would obviously be prone : much higher end wind damage; a few severe storms could also produce some enhanced straight line wind damage. Those threats are very much hit or miss, though. The best chance for a tornado is west of Worcester, but tornadoes are a threat anywhere today. There’s already been a tornado warning issued in western Massachusetts and another one in southwest New Hampshire.

Timing: Showers at times throughout the day today, with the most frequent showers likely in the evening. Wind picks up during the later stages of the evening hours (after 5 pm), with the strongest winds through midnight. Any rain should be over by around midnight, and winds back off significantly after midnight as Isaias pulls away. This gives way to what looks to be a beautiful Wednesday.

Temperatures: high 85 today. Low 70 tonight.

Wednesday forecast: High 88. Mostly sunny, with a very, very low risk of an isolated thunderstorm in the afternoon; I would expect dry conditions all day in most places. Southwest wind 5-10 mph. Low 62 Wednesday night; mostly clear with a light west wind.

NHC 8 AM Forecast Path/Summary Graphic; Dracut Two Day Forecast:
weather 2020-08-04.001.jpeg

weather 2020-08-04.002

Have a great day!
-Nathan

Monday 8/3/20 PM Update – TROPICAL STORM WARNING IN EFFECT: Hurricane Isaias Update #2

Good evening! This update will focus on what has (for the moment) strengthened into Hurricane Isaias as it makes landfall in the Carolinas. The forecast hasn’t changed a whole ton this morning – just some tweaks.

Hurricane Isaias – Monday Evening Update:
TROPICAL STORM WARNING IN EFFECT for Dracut.
The warning also includes all of MA/CT/RI, southern and 
central NH, and coastal western Maine. A Tropical Storm Watch also is in effect for northern NH and the rest of Maine.

Hazards: Strong winds and heavy rain are the primary hazards. Isolated severe thunderstorms are possible Tuesday evening and early overnight, with a few isolated tornadoes the main threat in addition to enhanced wind gusts.

Winds: Southeast wind 5-10 mph during the day Tuesday, turning south-southeast at 25-35 mph with gusts up to 55 mph Tuesday evening and early overnight, then turning south-southwest 10-20 mph during the later overnight hours, gusting up to 30 mph. Note that there is at least some potential that sustained winds could exceed 40 mph, hence the issuance of the Tropical Storm Warning from the National Weather Service – the first time the Dracut area has been under a warning since Hurricane Irene in 2011. (This same historical stat applied to the tropical storm watch from this morning.) Regardless of whether we reach the official tropical storm criteria in terms of sustained winds, frequent tropical storm force gusts are likely for a time Tuesday evening and early overnight.

Rainfall: Anywhere from 0.75″ to 2″ of rain is most likely in the Dracut area, though I would lean toward the lower end of that range. The heaviest and steadiest rain (over 3″) will stay in far western New England into New York state, but minor flooding problems are still possible locally.

Impacts: Scattered power outages are likely, along with some wind damage to trees and other outdoor objects. Unsecured outdoor objects will likely be blown around at times. Given the south-southeast wind direction during the strongest wind gusts, there is at least some potential for significant damage from wind levels that cause less damage during the Nor’easters that we are used to. The October 29-30, 2017 wind and rain storm also had a southeasterly wind, and despite gusts generally only being in the 50s in our area, that storm produced a tremendous amount of damage in large part due to the wind direction along with the fully leaved trees.

A few isolated tornadoes are possible in southern New England, with the chance being a little higher for Isaias than most other landfalling tropical cyclones given impressive dynamics. Any locations that see a tornado would obviously be prone to much higher end wind damage; a few severe storms could also produce some enhanced straight line wind damage. Those threats are very much hit or miss, though.

Heavy rain may cause localized minor flooding issues; significant flooding problems are unlikely in our area of New England.

Timing: The earliest associated rain bands may move in overnight tonight. Rain will occur at times throughout the day Tuesday; rain may be heavy at times, with a chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon, evening, and early overnight. Wind will not likely be a factor until the evening hours; the strongest wind gusts will occur tomorrow evening and early overnight. Rain should be done shortly after midnight. It will remain on the windy side through most of tomorrow overnight, however.

Temperatures: mainly in the 70s. High 81 tomorrow, low 71 tomorrow night.

Uncertainty: slight shifts in the track could dramatically affect the final rain total.

NHC 8 PM Forecast Path; Summary Graphic; Tropical Storm Watches and Warnings:
weather 2020-08-03 TS Warning 2.001.jpeg

211601_5day_cone_no_line_and_wind

I plan to have another full update tomorrow morning. As for realtime updates during Isaias, I had the misfortune of being scheduled to work tomorrow evening and night through 8-9 pm, which doubly stings since I have had Tuesdays off all spring and summer to this point. I can attempt to deliver updates during my shift since hopefully it will be slow, but of course no promises on that one.

Have a great day!
-Nathan

Monday 8/3/20 – Tropical Storm Isaias Update #1 – Tropical Storm Watch in Effect

Good morning! This update will mostly focus on Tropical Storm Isaias.

Today’s Forecast:
Today will be mostly sunny and 91, with a southwest wind of 5-15 mph, turning west late this afternoon and gusting up to 25 mph. Clouds will be on the increase tonight as the earliest rain bands move in late overnight; the low will be 70 with a calm wind.

Tropical Storm Isaias – Monday Morning Update:
TROPICAL STORM WATCH IN EFFECT.

Hazards: Strong winds and heavy rain are the primary hazards. Isolated severe thunderstorms are possible Tuesday evening and early overnight, with damaging wind gusts and isolated tornadoes the main severe weather hazards.

Winds: South wind 5-10 mph during the day Tuesday, turning southeast at 25-35 mph with gusts up to 50 mph Tuesday evening and early overnight (with higher gusts not impossible if a severe thunderstorm forms), then turning southwest 10-20 mph during the later overnight hours, gusting up to 35 mph. Note that there is at least some potential that sustained winds could exceed 40 mph, hence the issuance of the Tropical Storm Watch from the National Weather Service – the first time the Dracut area has been under a tropical weather alert since Hurricane Irene in 2011.

Rainfall: 1 to 2 inches of rain is most likely in the Dracut area. The heaviest and steadiest rain (over 3″) will stay in far western New England into New York state, but minor flooding problems are still possible locally. If Isaias continues trending west, it is not impossible we could end up with less than an inch of rain; if it ticks back east or if we get some particularly heavy downpours, over two inches cannot be ruled out.

Impacts: Scattered power outages are possible, along with some wind damage to trees. due to strong wind gusts. Unsecured outdoor objects may be blown around. Isolated severe thunderstorms could cause swaths of isolated higher end wind damage, though this is unlikely. Heavy rain may cause localized minor flooding issues; significant flooding problems are unlikely in our area of New England.

Timing: The earliest rain bands may move in late overnight tonight. Rain will occur at times throughout the day Tuesday; rain may be heavy at times, with a chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon, evening, and early overnight. Wind will not likely be a factor until the evening hours; the strongest wind gusts will occur tomorrow evening and early overnight. Rain should be done shortly after midnight. It will remain quite windy through most of tomorrow overnight, however.

Temperatures: mainly in the 70s. High 81 tomorrow, low 71 tomorrow night.

Uncertainty: slight shifts in the track could dramatically affect the final rain total.

National Hurricane Center – 5 AM Forecast Path:
092753_5day_cone_no_line_and_wind.png

weather 2020-08-03.001

Rest of the Week / Five Day Forecast:
The rest of the week currently looks to be sunny or mostly sunny. Expect clearing skies Wednesday morning, leading to a beautiful Wednesday with a high around 87. Wednesday night will be 62; Thursday will be 84; Thursday night will be 63; Friday will be 86.

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Have a great day! I am working this evening but will likely put out another full-length post some time this evening.
-Nathan

Saturday 8/1/20 – Tracking Isaias For Tue/Wed

Good morning!
 
With mostly sunny skies, expect a high around 87 today, with a light wind primarily out of the north. Tonight will be mostly clear and 67, with a light south wind.
 
Sunday will be partly sunny and 89, with a south wind of 5-10 mph, gusting up to 25 mph late in the afternoon and evening. There is a slight chance of a shower or thunderstorm during the evening, but it will most likely stay dry. Sunday night will be mostly cloudy and 72, with a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms, and a south wind of 5-10 mph, turning to the southwest.
 
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Going forward, there is again a slight chance of an afternoon shower or thunderstorm Monday, with a high around 90 along with partly cloudy skies. Clouds will be on the increase Monday night and Tuesday, as what is currently Hurricane Isaias will likely approach the region as a tropical storm. Rain is likely at times Tuesday, Tuesday night, and Wednesday, with a high of 78 Tuesday and 81 Wednesday. The exact timing is not completely clear, but Tuesday afternoon into Wednesday morning is the most likely time for impacts. A period of heavy rain is likely, with the potential for strong winds depending on how things play out.
 
The National Hurricane Center’s cone of uncertainty covers all of New England, and the forecast path as of 2 AM today brings the center in our vicinity. There has been a noticeable westward jog in Isaias’ forecast path in the last 24 hours; if it passes over land in the Carolinas, it may weaken somewhat, but assuming Isaias passes over the waters south of Long Island and south coastal New England, it shouldn’t fall apart. That being said, there is a range of potential scenarios if Isaias continues to trend west, if it trends back to the east, or stays more or less on the current forecast path. I wouldn’t expect anything extreme, but we could be in for some strong winds. Whether those winds would be of tropical storm force is not clear, but it’s tough to accomplish inland – but not impossible, as NHC is currently forecasting that Isaias will retain tropical storm force winds into the New Brunswick and Nova Scotia area. Again, the exact extent of the wind potential (and heavy rain too!) will depend on the exact path. I’ll have more details on this in the coming days; see below the 2 AM advisory map from the NHC as well as my 5 day forecast.
 
weather 2020-08-01.002.jpeg
035129_5day_cone_no_line_and_wind
 
Have a great day!
-Nathan

Friday 7/31/20

Good morning!

With mostly sunny skies today and tomorrow, expect a high around 87 both days, with a light and variable wind both days. Tonight and tomorrow night will be mostly clear, with a low of 64 tonight and 66 tomorrow night, with a calm wind tonight and a light south wind tomorrow night.

weather 2020-07-31.001.jpeg

Going forward, Hurricane Isaias (pronounced ees-ah-EE-ahs) is likely to take a trip up the East Coast this weekend into next week. It is likely that Isaias will have some impact on our region, most likely some time around Tuesday. The exact impact is unclear at this time, but at a minimum some rain is likely. The National Hurricane Center forecast track has Isaias passing right through southeastern Massachusetts as a tropical storm, as does most current guidance, so stay tuned for further updates. While the current pattern is favorable for a storm track right up the east coast, there is still plenty of time for the track to shift away from us. I wouldn’t panic, but be ready for the possibility of a tropical system impacting the area. See below the latest cone from the NHC.

085728_5day_cone_with_line_and_wind

Have a great day!
-Nathan

Wednesday 7/29/20

Good morning!

With mostly sunny skies, expect a high around 91, with a west wind of 5-10 mph. Tonight will be mostly clear and 68, with a light southwest wind.

Thursday will be mostly sunny and 88, with a west wind of 5-10 mph. There is a slight chance of a shower or thunderstorm in the afternoon but mostly dry conditions are likely. Thursday night will be partly cloudy and 65, with a calm wind.

weather 2020-07-29.001

Have a great day!
-Nathan

Tuesday 7/28/20

Good morning!

With partly cloudy skies, and a chance of strong to perhaps severe thunderstorms this afternoon, expect a high around 93, with a west-southwest wind of 5-10 mph. A Heat Advisory is in effect for today due to potential heat index values around 100. The best chance for any storms will be in the late afternoon to early evening, with any possible activity likely wrapping up by the late evening. Storms may produce strong to damaging wind gusts, heavy rain, and frequent lightning. Some hail cannot be ruled out in the strongest storms. Tonight will turn mostly clear, with a low around 67, and a light west-southwest wind.

Wednesday will be mostly sunny and 93, with a southwest wind of 5-10 mph. Wednesday night will be mostly clear and 68, with a southwest wind around 5 mph.

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Have a great day!
-Nathan