U.S. vulnerability to sea level rise

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:04 PM GMT on June 23, 2009

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In the last century, sea level rose 5 - 6 inches (13 - 15 cm) more than the global average of 7 inches (18 cm) along the U.S. Mid-Atlantic and Gulf Coasts, because coastal lands there are sinking. Over 50% of the U.S. coastline is vulnerable or highly vulnerable to sea level rise, according to the Coastal Vulnerability Index (CVI) developed by the United States Geological Survey (USGS). In the U.S., relative sea level rise (the combined effects of global sea level rise plus the fact the land is sinking) is highest along the Mississippi River Delta in Louisiana, where relative sea level rises of 3.2 ft (.98 meters) have been observed during the 20th century. This is one of the highest relative sea level rises in the world. According to the NOAA Tides and Currents sea level rise interactive tool, the U.S. tide gauges that have shown the highest rates of sea level rise over the past century are at Grand Island, LA (1.8 ft rise since 1947), Galveston, TX (1.1 ft since 1957), and Chesapeake Bay, VA (0.6 feet since 1975). Alaska and some areas along the Pacific Northwest coast are at low risk of sea level rise, because the relative sea level is actually falling at present. Land in these regions is rising as it recovers from removal of the weight of the great ice sheets that covered much of North America during the last Ice Age. For example, relative sea level at Kodiak Island, Alaska has fallen by 1.1 feet since 1975, despite the fact global sea level has been increasing.


Figure 1. Twentieth century annual relative sea-level rise rates in mm/year along the U.S. coast. The higher rates for Louisiana (9.85 millimeters [mm] per year, about 3.3 ft/century) and the mid-Atlantic region (1.75 to 4.42 mm per year, 0.6 - 1.4 ft/century) are due to land subsidence. Sea level is stable or dropping relative to the land in the Pacific Northwest, as indicated by the negative values, where the land is tectonically active or rebounding upward in response to the melting of ice sheets since the last Ice Age. Image credit: Coastal Sensitivity to Sea-Level Rise: A Focus on the Mid-Atlantic Region (data from Zervas, 2001).

U.S. Coastal Vulnerability
The Coastal Vulnerability Index (CVI) takes into account six factors:

1) The geology of the coast. Barrier islands, river deltas, and marshes are the most vulnerable to erosion and sea level rise, while steep, rocky cliff shores are the least. Sheltered bays like Galveston Bay and Tampa Bay are less vulnerable than the exposed coasts. (Note, however, that hurricane storm surges are typically higher in sheltered bays, at least for slow-moving storms).

2) How steep the land near the coast is. Gently sloping lands are the most vulnerable. In the Gulf Coast region, the slope variable has the highest risk ranking along the Louisiana coast, the Texas coast north of Corpus Christi, and the southwest Florida coast.

3) The local rate of sea level rise. The sea level is rising faster along the western Gulf of Mexico than the eastern Gulf. The highest rates of sea-level rise in the Gulf of Mexico (and in the United States) are in the Mississippi delta region (10 mm/yr, or 1 inch/2.5 years).

4) The amount of shoreline erosion going on. Most of the U.S. coast is moderately or severely eroding, and very few areas are gaining (Figure 2).

5) The mean tidal range. Shores that have a large difference between low and high tide are less likely to get a significant storm tide--the height above mean sea level of the sum of the storm surge plus the tide. For example, in a region like Maine, which has a 12 ft range between low and high tide, a storm having a 9 ft storm surge will have a storm tide below local high tide for a quarter of a tidal cycle. Shores with a very narrow tidal range (e.g., the 2 ft tidal range common along the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast) will get a storm tide of 8 - 10 feet with the 9 ft storm surge in the above example. Shorelines with a narrow tidal range always get high storm tides regardless of when the storm surge hits.

6) How high the waves at shore are. Obviously, shores that experience higher wave heights are at greater risk. In the Gulf of Mexico, wave energy is highest along sections of the Texas coast and on the southern tip of the Mississippi delta.

Figure 2. Shoreline change around the United States based on surveys over the past century. All 30 coastal states are experiencing overall erosion due to natural processes (e.g., storms, sea-level rise) and human activity. If the shoreline is uncolored, no data was available. Image credit: USGS, 1985, and taken from Coastal Sensitivity to Sea-Level Rise: A Focus on the Mid-Atlantic Region).

The Coastal Vulnerability Index (CVI) web page gives detailed maps of each section of the U.S. coast, along with specific reasons why each portion of the coast was assigned the ranking it got. A brief summary:

The Gulf Coast
The Gulf Coast has 55% of its length in the "very high" or "high" vulnerability range. Fully 41% of the coast falls in the "very high" range, far more than the 28% in that category along the Pacific coast and 23% along the Atlantic coast. The region around New Orleans is the most vulnerable region of the entire U.S. coast. The Florida Panhandle, as well as the West Florida coast, are at low to moderate risk because the land is not sinking much, wave heights are lower, and the slope of the land is relatively steep near the coast. The Texas coast is considered to be at a high to very high risk because of the relatively high mean wave height, sinking land, and shallow coastal slope.

The East Coast
The East Coast has 50% of its length in the "very high" or "high" vulnerability range. The highest vulnerability areas are typically high-energy coastlines where the regional coastal slope is low and where the major landform type is a barrier island. A significant exception to this is found in the lower Chesapeake Bay. Here, the low coastal slope, vulnerable landform type (salt marsh) and high rate of relative sea-level rise combine for a high CVI value. The coastline of northern New England, particularly Maine, shows a relatively low vulnerability to future sea-level rise. This is primarily due to the steep coastal slopes and rocky shoreline characteristic of the region, as well as the large tidal range.

The Pacific Coast
The Pacific Coast has 50% of its length in the "very high" or "high" vulnerability range. Areas of very high vulnerability include the San Francisco - Monterey Bay coast and in southern California from San Luis Obispo to San Diego, where the coast is most highly populated. The highest vulnerability areas are typically lower-lying beach areas. The low risk, least vulnerable areas generally occur at rocky headlands along cliffed coasts where the coastal slope is steep, relative sea-level is falling, tide range is large, and wave energy is lower. Examples of these areas are the northern coast of Washington, Monterey, and Cape Mendocino, California.


Figure 3. The Coast Vulnerability Index (CVI) for the U.S.

References
Coastal Sensitivity to Sea-Level Rise: A Focus on the Mid-Atlantic Region.

National Assessment of Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise: Preliminary Results for the U.S. Gulf of Mexico Coast (USGS, 2000).

Jeff Masters

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626. IKE
vortfix....This blog has been banned by WunderBlogAdmin. .....again.
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Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 171 Comments: 53835
Good Morning...

Well seems NAM is hinting towards some organized disturbance starting to take shape towards this weekend. Yes... NAM is not used for TC development... but I've noticed on past season that it has successfully forecasted begining stages of cyclogenesis in the Carib. We shall see if this little disturb area disappears on this 12Z run. NOGAPS has a weak system entering the SE GOM and GFS backed down from a more organized disturb area into a more like a "moisture surge" area heading into the SE GOM. Finally, but not least... seems CMC has been behaving this season and not spining up systems like there's no tomorrow, which is good for a change since it needs to become more reliable. :)
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623. IKE
AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BIRMINGHAM AL
618 AM CDT WED JUN 24 2009

.UPDATE...AVIATION DISCUSSION.

&&

.DISCUSSION...

WEAK SURFACE BOUNDARY SITTING SQUARELY ACROSS THE CWA HAS BEEN
CLEARLY IDENTIFIED OVER THE PAST SEVERAL HOURS...USING ANALYSIS OF
SURFACE EQUIVALENT POTENTIAL TEMPERATURE...ALTHOUGH THERE ARE SOME
WEAKER REFLECTIONS ARE IN THE 1MB MSL PRESSURE FIELDS AND 0.5F
SURFACE DEWPOINT ANALYSES. THIS BOUNDARY...SOME MAY REFER TO IT AS
A BACKDOOR COLD FRONT BUT I WON`T BE SO BOLD...WILL CONTINUE TO
SLIDE SOUTH AND WEST THROUGH TODAY PROVIDING NECESSARY LIFT FOR
AFTERNOON AND EVENING CONVECTION. THE CONVECTION COULD PERSIST
THROUGH PORTIONS OF THE OVERNIGHT AS SEEN WITH ISOLATED STORMS
OVER THE PAST FEW HOURS AND MORE PERSISTENT STORMS JUST TO OUR
WEST. HOWEVER...THERE IS NOT A LOT OF UPPER SUPPORT FOR ANY
CONVECTION THAT MAY FIRE LATER TODAY AS THE SEEMINGLY WEAK 500
SHORT WAVE HAS MOVED FURTHER SOUTH...FOLLOWING THE HEIGHT LINES.
TEMPERATURES AND DEWPOINTS WILL MILDLY RESPOND AS THE BOUNDARY
SLOWLY DRIFTS SOUTH INTRODUCING LOWER DEWPOINTS TO SEVERAL
LOCATIONS...GENERALLY NORTH OF I20...AS WE ALREADY SEEING MIDDLE
TO LOWER 60S IN SOME OF THESE AREAS...AND EVEN UPPER 50S IF ONE
CAN BELIEVE IN NORTHERN GA.

INTERESTINGLY...THE GFS AND EURO ARE STILL PERSISTENT IN
INTRODUCING WELCOMED CHANGES TO OUR WEATHER PATTERN OVER THE SHORT
AND LONG TERMS. AS EARLY AS FRIDAY...A DECENT UPPER TROUGH WILL
PUSH THROUGH THE AREA...MOST LIKELY BRINGING THE THREAT OF
ORGANIZED CONVECTION...ALTHOUGH GUIDANCE SEEMS A BIT HESITANT IN
SHOWING MUCH IN THE WAY OF PRECIP...LEAVING IT WHERE THERE ARE BETTER
FORCING MECHS ACROSS THE CAROLINAS AND MID ATLANTIC. WE SEEM TO BE
IN THE LEFTOVERS SECTION...BUT ANY UPPER REFLECTION IN THE MIDDLE
OF SUMMER WILL BRING THE THREAT OF SCATTERED TO WIDESPREAD
CONVECTION. HAVEN`T REALLY PUT UP LARGER POP FORECASTS AT THIS
POINT...AS I AM STILL WANTING TO PLAY THE WAIT AND SEE GAME AS THE
MODELS HAVE REALLY STRUGGLED OVER THE PAST SEVERAL WEEKS.

A SECOND SHORT WAVE AND SURFACE BOUNDARY WILL FOLLOW THE FIRST ONE
AROUND THE MONDAY TIMEFRAME. MUCH OF THE SAME WILL BE TRUE WITH
REGARDS TO ORGANIZED CONVECTION...AND WITH THE MONDAY SYSTEM BOTH
THE EURO AND GFS ARE A BIT MORE AGGRESSIVE WITH THE CONVECTION ON
MONDAY AFTERNOON...SO WE`LL CERTAINLY HAVE TO KEEP AN EYE ON
CHANGES TO PERHAPS INTRODUCE A SEVERE OUTLOOK. UNBELIEVABLY ALL
MODELS ARE HINTING THAT THIS SECONDARY FRONT WILL CLEAR THE AREA
ENTIRELY LEAVING US WITH WARM...YET MILD TEMPS AND MUCH COOLER
DEWPOINTS...IN FACT...THE GFS WAS SHOWING MIDDLE 50S! FOR A GOOD
PORTION OF NEXT WEEK
...WOW...WHAT A CHANGE THAT WOULD BE FOR THE
1ST OF JULY. WON`T GET CRAZY YET...BUT SHOULD BE INTERESTING TO
SEE HOW IT DEVELOPS.
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Yep, I like to think I'm reputable ;-) LOL -- Rob @ Crown Weather.
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620. IKE
Quoting Acemmett90:

but what about palm beach


If you're talking about West Palm Beach, Melbourne radar picks it up....

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Clwstmchas,
My boss was in meteorology while in the navy several years back. Also, his son is a hurricane hunter in MS. He monitors and recommends Crown Weather for information. I get the email updates everyday. I really like Rob Lightbrown.
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617. IKE
Use the Key West,FL. radar....it picks up Miami.
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Quoting stoormfury:
weather 456
should this system develop it move along the southern periphery of the high pressure which is a bit south at this time. this could be a threat to the islands. hurricane Abby did hit the central winward islands on the 12th july 1960











Yea I notice, the high really kept it south as it does not pass 13-14N. But I don't really mention steering until I have a low level disturbance but ur right.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
weather 456
should this system develop it move along the southern periphery of the high pressure which is a bit south at this time. this could be a threat to the islands. hurricane Abby did hit the central winward islands on the 12th july 1960









Member Since: August 22, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 2681
morning
the tropics look rather quiet this morning. the wind shear that was very hostile the last few days ,is showing signs of weakening. the shear tendency map is showing that a more conducive environment is beginning to established itself in the tropical atlantic.the area of disturbed weather in the eastern Gomex continues to show an area o\f disorganised showers which eventually will go inland over mexico.
what is of concern is the Gfs consistently calling for some form of tropical system developing in the far eastern atlantic in seven days time. both the NOGAPS and the ECMWF showing stong 850 mb vorticity in the same area. this area has to be monitored as condition is expected to be conducive especially as the TUTT moves east out of the area. although the area is not climatologically favourable for this time of year it has happenedin the past with hurricane Bertha . quite interesting and w will have to see if the GFS continues with this consistency and if other models latch on to this scenario
Member Since: August 22, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 2681
Good Morning;

Hurricane Andres Left At Least One Dead; Early Start to Cape Verde Season?

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
610. viman
WOW -- How about 81 degrees with 82% humidty at 6:40am... It's gonna be one hellofa day. Off to work -- everyone have a blessed day and stay safe.
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Message Date: Jun 23 2009 17:51:03
THE KAMX 88D WILL BE OUT OF SERVICE THROUGH AT LEAST WEDNESDAY MORNING DUE TO A
POWER SUPPLY FAILURE. A REPLACEMENT PART IS ENROUTE AND WILL HOPEFULLY ARRIVE TO
MORROW.


What a day for Miami radar to be on the fritz!
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607. IKE
6Z NAM puts a tropical storm in the NW Caribbean sea at 84 hours.
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606. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
India Meteorological Department
Tropical Cyclone Warning Number EIGHT
WELL MARKED LOW PRESSURE AREA, FORMER DEPRESSION ARB01-2009
8:30 AM IST June 24 2009
==================================

Subject: Depression weakened into a well marked low pressure area over Saurashtra & Kutch.

At 3:00 AM UTC, Depression ARB01-2009 over Saurashtra & Kutch weakened and lays as a well marked low pressure area over Saurashtra & Kutch and neighbourhood.

This is the final tropical cyclone advisory on this system.
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605. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
India Meteorological Department
Tropical Cyclone Warning Number SEVEN
DEPRESSION ARB01-2009
5:30 AM IST June 24 2009
==================================

Subject: Depression over Saurashtra & Kutch.

At 0:00 AM UTC, Depression ARB01-2009 over over Saurashtra & Kutch near Diu moved northwestward and lays centered over Saurashtra & Kutch, or about 100 kms east of Porbandar.

The system is likely to move in a northwesterly direction and weaken gradually
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I assume the system at the bottom right corner is what we're talking about.
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Starting to look more and more like Bertha, GFS predicited Bertha dead on. 2 weeks in advance. If model's start jumping on watch it even closer.
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Ike check out the 6z GFS if it continues....
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Ike you may just get your Invest...
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Lastly, the cell phone makes a great flashlight, as experienced right now. Try it yourself. Powerless

Have a Happy-- E
Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
00z GFS very aggressive now with a Cape Verde system.
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Here ya go with a real live best practice. I have a UPS on the modem and wireless router and with my laptop battery, can have internet access as long as the link is stable and my battery lasts. Ensure you all check that out. It can mean seeing or being blind at the time of need. Even with a desktop, you can grab some time. Outta here on my end, we are past the bad part. Stillwaiting, it is coming toward you with an attitude. Be careful.
Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
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That's not a good sign.

Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
Your turn now Ed...we got ours this morning


It is interesting to hear the flapper on the oven exhaust bangin around in the pipe. Lighting indicates severe and that is what I what I hear. Gotta look at the cloud tops if I can keep connection.
Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
Your turn now Ed...we got ours this morning
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Quoting Ossqss:
Gettin my butt kicked right now. 50+ winds and power out/ UPS works :)

Stillwaiting, comin your way.


TampaMishy.... how you fairing?
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144hrs time off the coast of Africa
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Gettin my butt kicked right now. 50+ winds and power out/ UPS works :)

Stillwaiting, comin your way.

Member Since: June 12, 2005 Posts: 6 Comments: 8186
so much lightning out here tonight it!!!!!!the flashes are over 1 a second,bairly any breaks in between strikes,a severe t-storm warning for srq county may be needed soon,IMO.....but not because of the lightning one of the cells has got a meso sig...
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Wonder if we will have severe weather today?
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thank you hurricane!
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Quoting hurricane2009:
actually Geoffrey it was Hurricane Diana not Hurricane Diane


GOODNIGHT H2009

Lol =)
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'Feria' to hit near Metro Manila tonight

By Alcuin Papa
Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines--Tropical storm “Feria” will hit close to Metro Manila Wednesday night, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said.

According to Pagasa Administrator Prisco Nilo, as of 5 a.m. Wednesday, Feria was spotted 40 kilometers east northeast of Romblon.

“It is very close to Romblon and moving towards Marinduque, Mindoro, and the Batangas area. The center of the storm will pass close to Metro Manila, the shortest distance around 40 kilometers southwest, at around 8 to 10 p.m. tonight,” Nilo said.

He said “Feria” could weaken if it hit land. “But now, the storm is over the sea so it can intensify.”
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‘Feria’ strands 600 in Oriental Mindoro

By Abigail Kwok
INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines — More than 600 passengers remain stranded at the Calapan Port in Oriental Mindoro Wednesday morning due to bad weather caused by typhoon "Feria," police said.

As of 9 a.m., a total of 612 passengers and 150 vehicles are stranded at the port in Calapan City, said Chief Superintendent Luisito Palmera, regional director of the Mindoro-Marinduque-Romblon-Palawan area.

A total of 14 buses, and 136 cargo trucks and private vehicles were stranded as Ro-ro (roll-on, roll-off) ships have been prevented from traveling since Tuesday night.

Local police and the city disaster council have been tasked to provide assistance to stranded passengers, Palmera said.
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555...I stumped the panel...it was retired Hurricane Diane.
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Quoting Tazmanian:
you guys may want to think out takeing this game off the maine blog here soon and on to your own blogs be for the Admin finds out


I think it's perfectly fine....it's weather related....and it's not like there's anything big going on.

If it makes people feel better here's the latest news....Andres downgraded to tropical storm...big surprise...

000
WTPZ32 KNHC 240232
TCPEP2
BULLETIN
TROPICAL STORM ANDRES ADVISORY NUMBER 10
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL EP022009
800 PM PDT TUE JUN 23 2009

...ANDRES WEAKENS TO A TROPICAL STORM...

AT 8 PM PDT...0300 UTC...THE HURRICANE WARNING FOR THE SOUTHWESTERN
COAST OF MEXICO HAS BEEN REPLACED WITH A TROPICAL STORM WARNING
FROM MANZANILLO TO CABO CORRIENTES. A TROPICAL STORM WARNING MEANS
THAT TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED SOMEWHERE WITHIN THE
WARNING AREA WITHIN 24 HOURS.

INTERESTS ELSEWHERE ALONG THE SOUTHWESTERN COAST OF MEXICO AND THE
SOUTHERN BAJA PENINSULA SHOULD MONITOR THE PROGRESS OF ANDRES.

FOR STORM INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO YOUR AREA IN THE UNITED
STATES...PLEASE MONITOR PRODUCTS ISSUED BY YOUR NATIONAL
METEOROLOGICAL SERVICE.

AT 800 PM PDT...0300 UTC...THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM ANDRES WAS
LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 19.1 NORTH...LONGITUDE 106.0 WEST OR ABOUT 110
MILES...180 KM...WEST OF MANZANILLO MEXICO AND ABOUT 90 MILES...150
KM...SOUTH-SOUTHWEST OF CABO CORRIENTES MEXICO.

ANDRES IS MOVING TOWARD THE NORTHWEST NEAR 10 MPH...17 KM/HR...AND
THIS MOTION IS EXPECTED TO CONTINUE TONIGHT AND WEDNESDAY...FOLLOWED
BY A GRADUAL TURN TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST BY THURSDAY.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS ARE ESTIMATED TO HAVE DECREASED TO 70 MPH...
110 KM/HR...WITH HIGHER GUSTS. SOME ADDITINONAL WEAKENING IS
FORECAST DURING THE NEXT 24 HOURS.

TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 70 MILES...110 KM
FROM THE CENTER. MANZANILLO MEXICO RECENTLY REPORTED WIND GUSTS TO
40 MPH...64 KM/HR.

ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 990 MB...29.23 INCHES.

ANDRES IS EXPECTED TO PRODUCE TOTAL RAIN ACCUMULATIONS OF 3 TO
6 INCHES OVER PORTIONS OF WEST-CENTRAL MEXICO...WITH POSSIBLE
ISOLATED MAXIMUM AMOUNTS OF 8 INCHES. THESE RAINS COULD PRODUCE
LIFE-THREATENING FLASH FLOODS AND MUDSLIDES.

COASTAL STORM SURGE FLOODING OF 1 TO 3 FEET ABOVE NORMAL TIDE
LEVEL...ALONG WITH LARGE AND DANGEROUS BATTERING WAVES...IS
POSSIBLE IN THE WARNING AREA.

...SUMMARY OF 800 PM PDT INFORMATION...
LOCATION...19.1N 106.0W
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...70 MPH
PRESENT MOVEMENT...NORTHWEST OR 305 DEGREES AT 10 MPH
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...990 MB

AN INTERMEDIATE ADVISORY WILL BE ISSUED BY THE NATIONAL HURRICANE
CENTER AT 1100 PM PDT FOLLOWED BY THE NEXT COMPLETE ADVISORY AT 200
AM PDT.

$$
FORECASTER KIMBERLAIN/BEVEN
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Hailstones hit 2 villages in Parañaque
From Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines
Hailstones the size of corn kernels pelted two barangays in Parañaque City on Tuesday afternoon.

Eduard Blanco, executive assistant to the city mayor, said residents in Barangay Marcelo reported the occurrence at around 2:40 p.m. after a thunderstorm. The rain of hailstones lasted for about two minutes, he added.

Lloyd Palconan, city information officer, said residents in Barangay San Antonio near the city hall also reported seeing hailstones for five minutes.

No one was hurt and no property was reported damaged because of the phenomenon, Palconan said.
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you guys may want to think out takeing this game off the maine blog here soon and on to your own blogs be for the Admin finds out
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Grr hurricane2009 LOL.. Ok, now I'm really going to bed!
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I knew it was easy....

like I said I'm tired too lol.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.