NHC increases hurricane forecast lead times

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:27 PM GMT on January 05, 2010

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The National Hurricane Center (NHC) announced today that beginning with the 2010 hurricane season, their hurricane and tropical storm watches and warnings for the U.S. coast will be extended in time by an additional 12 hours. Warnings will now be issued 36 hours in advance instead of 24 hours, and watches will be issued 48 hours in advance, instead of 36 hours. The increase in lead time for watches and warnings has been made possible by the tremendous improvement in hurricane track forecasts, which have improved by over 50% in the past twenty years (Figure 1). "With increases in population and infrastructure along vulnerable U.S. coastlines, emergency managers need more lead time in order to make life-saving decisions regarding evacuations", said Bill Read, director of NOAA's National Hurricane Center, in today's press release.


Figure 1. Average track errors for NHC Atlantic tropical storm and hurricane forecasts issued between 1990 - 2008. Track errors have improved by over 50% in the past 20 years. Image credit: National Hurricane Center.

Commentary
NHC has been debating for a number of years how best to "invest" the gains accrued from the steady improvement in hurricane track forecasts. One obvious savings from these better hurricane forecasts has come from the reduced evacuation costs. When a hurricane warning is issued 24 hours before the expected arrival of hurricane-force winds at the coast, it costs approximately $1 million to evacuate each mile of U.S. coast warned (Aberson et al., 2006). This number will be higher for more densely populated areas of the coast, such as Miami, and may be a factor of six lower for the North Carolina coast (Whitehead, 2003). According to a 2007 presentation at the 61st Interdepartmental Hurricane Conference, the length of coast warned decreased significantly in the past decade. During the decade of the 1990s, the average length of a hurricane warning was 455 miles, but that fell to just 335 miles between 2000 - 2006. Thus, an average of 120 fewer miles of coast were warned, at an average savings of $120 million per hurricane warning issuance. During this period, 17 storms requiring 25 hurricane warnings occurred. If the costs of coastal evacuations are indeed $1 million per mile, the improved hurricane forecasts between 2000 - 2006 resulted in savings of $3 billion compared to what the forecasts of the 1990s would have cost.

However, the new increased lead times for hurricane watches and warnings will lead to an increase in the length of coast warned, due to the higher uncertainties in hurricane tracks at longer forecast lead times. Between 2004 - 2008, approximately 25% of the coast that was placed under a hurricane warning actually received hurricane force winds; this percentage was 20% for areas placed under a hurricane watch. These percentages will decline with the new increased watch and warning lead times, costing money in unnecessary evacuations, and leading to increased complacency in the warned population due to too much "crying wolf".

Balanced against these increased costs is the potential disastrous loss of life should a hurricane hit an unprepared, heavily populated shoreline. With the U.S. population continuing to increase rapidly in coastal regions, the time needed to evacuate vulnerable populated regions is increasing. For example, evacuation times for the major urban areas of Texas are 28 - 34 hours for a major hurricane. Though the costs of overwarning the coast is significant, the savings in both human lives and dollars from increased warning times should outweigh these costs. In the 2002 book, Hurricane: Coping With Disaster, Dr. Hugh Willoughby, former director of the Hurricane Research Division of NOAA's Atlantic Oceanographic and Marine Laboratory, analyzed hurricane death statistics. In 1950, about 70 U.S. residents died per year in hurricanes. In the 50 years since, the coastal population expanded by a factor of 3.2, so if we were managing the hurricane problem the way we did in 1950, we would be losing about 220 people a year. The long-term average is still about twenty per year, not including the deaths due to the levee failures during Katrina. That means we're preventing about 200 deaths per year compared with 1950. How much are these saved lives worth? A life, is, of course, priceless, but in the cold world of economics, the value of life-saving scientific research and government regulations is estimated using statistics of what people are willing to pay to avoid certain risks, and what extra money employers pay their workers to take on additional risks. This data comes primarily from payroll statistics, but opinion surveys also play a role. In 2004, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) valued an American life at $8 million. EPA cut the value of a life by 8% that year, and a further 3% in May 2008, making the economic value of a life $6.9 million in today's dollars. The Department of Transportation gives a lower figure of a life as being worth $5.8 million. Using this number implies a savings of about $1.2 billion per year for the 200 lives saved per year by better hurricane warnings and evacuations. Today's decision by NHC to increase warning times should continue this trend of saving lives, which will also provide considerable monetary benefit. Despite the increased costs and dangers of "crying wolf" too often due to overwarning the coast, I believe that the double value of saving lives--for both the intrinsic and monetary value of a human life--makes NHC's move of increasing warning and watch times the right call.

References
Whitehead, J.C., 2003: "One million dollars per mile? The opportunity costs of Hurricane evacuation", Ocean and Coastal Management 46, 1069.

I'll have a new post on Thursday or Friday.

Jeff Masters

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If it did snow in Central/South Florida, with all the crazy drivers we have FHP would be working overtime.
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Quoting CaneWarning:
I just saw this article about the "Frozen Gore" statue and thought I'd share.

As one of my friends asked me the other night, "Where is global warming when we need it?"

Link


Packed up and disappeared.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/earthnews/3326813/Global-warming-sceptics-buoyed-by-record-cold.ht ml
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could b possible.. we will c ;)
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Ive lived here for 14 years in central Florida, this is the most brutal cold Ive ever seen, we've had highs in the 40's for 3 days straight, and 3 nights at or below freezing, the windchill was down to 15 this morning. Its so shocking I haven't been doing much other than sleeping, and im very athletic lol.

This cold has been starting to wear on me as rare and exciting as it is. But a chance of snow is totally different story. Considering the way things have been,if it will ever snow as I live here, this pattern this weekend is the best bet...

Im not even sure what I'll think if it actually snows here haha.


Its been so cold for so many days... Im still trying to detirmine if its real yet! lol
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983. IKE
AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE ST LOUIS MO
356 PM CST WED JAN 6 2010

.DISCUSSION...
/352 PM CST WED JAN 6 2010/

WINTER STORM IS TAKING SHAPE PRETTY MUCH AS EXPECTED BY THE EARLIER
SHIFTS. UPCOMING FORECASTS AND STATEMENTS WILL CONTINUE A HEAVY
EMPHASIS ON THE TWO STAGES OF THIS STORM SYSTEM...FIRST THE
SNOW...FOLLOWED BY THE EFFECTS OF THE STRONG WINDS ASSOCIATED WITH
THE ARCTIC AIRMASS.

IT CERTAINLY APPEARS THAT THE BULK OF THE SNOW FOR OUR CWA WILL
OCCUR TONIGHT AS THE DEEP UVV ASSOCIATED WITH THE UPPER LOW PUSHES
THROUGH THE AREA. HIGHEST QPF SHOULD BE ASSOCIATED WITH STRONGEST
LIFT...WHICH SHOULD OCCUR ROUGHLY ALONG THE I-70 CORRIDOR ALA
FORCING/POSITION OF THE LEFT FRONT QUADRANT OF THE 300 MPH JET.
ALTHOUGH WARM ADVECTION APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN A VERY MINOR PLAYER
SO FAR...S WIND AHEAD OF THE ARCTIC AMS HAVE BEEN ALLOWING FOR A
SUBTLE INCREASE IN MOISTURE...SO AM WONDERING IF THIS EVENINGS
SNOWFALLS BTWN COU AND STL COULD BE A BIT HIGHER/MORE INTENSE THAN
WHAT WE HAVE SEEN SO FAR THIS AFTERNOON OVER W CNTRL MO. USING
THESE PARAMETERS...MOST INTENSE SNOWFAL SHOULD WIND DOWN OVER W
PARTS OF THE CWA AFTER MIDNIGHT TONIGHT...AND OVER FAR E SECTIONS
OF THE FA THURSDAY MORNING...AND HAVE ATTEMPTED TO REFLECT THIS IN
6 HOURLY POP/QPF/SNOW GRIDS.

CERTAINLY APPEARS THAT SOME MEASURABLE SNOW WILL BE LINGERING OVER
THE AREA LATE THURSDAY MORNING AND INTO THE AFTERNOON. BOTH GFS AND
NAM ARE FORECASTING A BIT OF MOISTURE TO WRAP AROUND THE SYSTEM FROM
N INTO W IL DURING THE DAY...BUT ANY ADDITIONAL ACCUMULATIONS SHOULD
BE RATHER MINOR AS THIS DOES NOT APPEAR TO BE A TYPICAL MID LVL
TROWEL/DEF ZONE TYPE SETUP.

OF COURSE...BY MIDDAY THURSDAY MANY LOCATIONS MAY NOT BE ABLE TO
TELL THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE FALLING SNOW AND BLOWING/DRIFTING
SNOW. BEEN WATCHING THE SURGE OF THE ARCTIC AIRMASS OVER THE PLAINS
THIS AFTERNOON...AND IT CERTAINLY APPEARS THAT IT WILL BE ROARING
THROUGH OUR AREA LATER TONIGHT AND ON THURSDAY AS IT HEADS TOWARDS
DISNEYLAND. THE BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW THREAT FOR OUR AREA WILL
BE SOMEWHAT ATYPICAL FOR US...AS THESE CONDITIONS ARE MORE COMMON
FOR UPPER MIDWEST AND N PLAINS. ULTIMATELY...HOW BAD IT GETS WILL
DEPEND UPON THE CHARACTER OF THE SNOW TONIGHT AND EARLY
THURSDAY...AND HOW HIGH THE WINDS GET. A FEW KNOT DIFFERENCE IN
SPEEDS CAN MAKE A HUGE DIFFERENCE ON HOW MUCH BLOWING AND DRIFTING
OCCURS.

SUMMING UP...CURRENT HEADLINES FOR THIS STORM STILL LOOK QUITE
GOOD. WE WILL PROBABLY HAVE TO CONVERT OVER TO WIND CHILL HEADLINES
AS THE STORM LOOSENS ITS GRIP AND THE ARCTIC AIR TAKES HOLD...BUT
FOR NOW PLACING EMPHASIS ON THE EFFECTS OF THE STORM IS BY FAR THE
MOST IMPORTANT HIGHLIGHT ATTM.

ARCTIC AIRMASS WILL GRIP THE AREA FRIDAY-SATURDAY...WITH A GRADUAL
MODERATION IN TEMPS OCCURRING NEXT WEEK. GIVEN THE AMS HEADING
OUR WAY TRIED TO TREND THE FORECAST VERY COLD...IT MAY NOT BE
ENOUGH BUT THIS SHOULD CERTAINLY BE THE RIGHT DIRECTION.

TRUETT

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Local News here in ORL talking about snow showers possible. If that type of chatter continues and GFS and other models don't back out then we'll be looking for an interesting weekend.
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981. IKE
Saw this on the Jackson, Mississippi weather page...

01/05/2010 1200 PM

Jackson, Hinds County.

Extreme cold e20 f, reported by broadcast media.


*** 1 fatal *** report of fatality due to
hypothermia... elderly man found in unheated house.
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From Melbourne NWS Discussion:

WOULD BE REMISS IF I DIDN`T MENTION THE POSSIBILITY OF SOME LIGHT MIXED PRECIP BEHIND THE INTIAL FRONTAL SURGE...GUIDANCE CONTINUE TO SPIT OUT SOME PRECIP OUT OF THE MID LEVELS AS THE 0C H85 LINE SHIFTS SWD INTO THE NRN/CTRL CWA (BREVARD/OSCEOLA COUNTIES NWD)
SOUNDINGS INDICATE THAT ANY FROZEN P-TYPE COULD FALL AS SOME LIGHT SNOWFLAKES/GRAUPEL OR SLEET.
Complete Discussion
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I really like these maps, but wish it would snow for us in Florida though.. it could, just got to keep checking up with the models and any updates.. everyone be safe!
Member Since: August 15, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 2133
Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
I just think it is amazing for the GFS to depict snow falling in the Gainesville/Ocala/Orlando area for 18 hours.

I think it would be a really wet snow, big flakes to look at but not sticking...
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Quoting BahaHurican:
When they do catch these guys, they should give them a get out of jail free card - a fake one!

Sheesh......


People like that need to be punished severely.
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting TampaFLUSA:

Wow, you think it will accumulate?

Thats a Big IF, if u know what i mean.. for us southerns, you have to believe it when u c it b/c anything can change.. and its hard to predict if it will or not at this time.. we will c how far south the L will develop.. anything can happen though.. ;)
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Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
And 6 hours after THAT! more accumulation:

Wow, you think it will accumulate?
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Member Since: August 15, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 2133
Yippe. Miami NWS

TO PUT IT BLUNTLY...THE WEATHER ACROSS SOUTH FLORIDA FROM FRIDAY
NIGHT THROUGH EARLY SUNDAY MORNING SHOULD BE MISERABLE...AS
MODELS CONTINUE TO INDICATE AN ACTIVE SUBTROPICAL JET RESULTING IN
WIDESPREAD CLOUD COVER AND SHOWER ACTIVITY...WITH COLD AND
BLUSTERY CONDITIONS AT THE SURFACE...AS A SIBERIAN SURFACE HIGH
DROPS SOUTHWARD ACROSS THE CENTRAL PLAINS. THERE IS THE POTENTIAL
FOR HIGH TEMPERATURES ON SATURDAY TO BE SIGNIFICANTLY COOLER THAN
EVEN MEX GUIDANCE SUGGESTS...AND MAY NOT MAKE IT OUT OF THE 40S IN
SOME AREAS. ALTHOUGH UNCERTAINTY PRECLUDES ADDING MIXED
PRECIPITATION TO THE FORECAST AT THIS TIME...THERE IS ALSO A
REMOTE CHANCE THAT SOME SLEET OR ICE PELLETS MAY MIX WITH RAIN IN
THE LAKE OKEECHOBEE AREA ON SATURDAY/SATURDAY NIGHT. REGARDLESS...
A VERY COLD AIR MASS WILL CONTINUE TO SPREAD ACROSS THE AREA ON
SATURDAY NIGHT...WITH RAIN CHANCES AND CLOUD COVER GRADUALLY
DIMINISHING FROM NORTH TO SOUTH. THERE IS AN ELEVATED POTENTIAL
FOR FREEZING TEMPERATURES ON SATURDAY NIGHT...BUT THIS WILL BE
DEPENDENT ON HOW QUICKLY CLOUDS DEPART. THE GFS/ECMWF AGREE THAT A
SECONDARY MID-LEVEL VORT MAX MOVING AROUND BASE OF DEEP UPPER
TROUGH OVER EASTERN NORTH AMERICA WILL MOVE ACROSS THE PENINSULA
ON SUNDAY...AND INDUCE SURFACE CYCLOGENESIS OVER THE ATLANTIC
WATERS EAST OF THE PENINSULA. THIS WILL ALLOW BRISK NORTHWEST
WINDS TO INCREASE EVEN FURTHER...WITH COLD TEMPERATURES EXPECTED
THROUGH THE DAY ON SUNDAY...AND AN EVEN HIGHER FREEZE POTENTIAL ON
SUNDAY NIGHT/MONDAY MORNING. A GRADUAL WARMING TREND IS STILL
EXPECTED FROM MONDAY-WEDNESDAY.
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Re: post #956...this post may give an inaccurate perception...

To clarify: We were not one of the nonprofits to receive one of the bogus checks...

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From the Miami NWS Discussion:

TO PUT IT BLUNTLY...THE WEATHER ACROSS SOUTH FLORIDA FROM FRIDAY NIGHT THROUGH EARLY SUNDAY MORNING SHOULD BE MISERABLE...

THERE IS ALSO A REMOTE CHANCE THAT SOME SLEET OR ICE PELLETS MAY MIX WITH RAIN IN THE LAKE OKEECHOBEE AREA ON SATURDAY/SATURDAY NIGHT...

Entire Discussion
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hmmm..
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Quoting GBguy88:
They just changed the forecast for Pensacola on Thursday night...went from a 50% chance of snow to being all rain with a slight chance of sleet. I think this will be a big non-event for the panhandle...


Big surprise there! Thats how it aways works out down here. Wouldn't it be something if they get it in central part of the state?
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Quoting AwakeInMaryland:


OH NO, SAY IT AIN'T SO...
Good thing I'm not allowed to make threats/use bad language on the WU blogs...

Salvation Army left short of cash by fake SC check
By BRUCE SMITH, Associated Press Writer Bruce Smith, Associated Press Writer 39 mins ago

CHARLESTON, S.C. – The Salvation Army thought it had received a grand gift ahead of Christmas — a $25,000 check. But the donation turned out to be an expensive hoax that may force the charity to cut back on winter assistance for the needy.

Investigators said Wednesday that more than a dozen Charleston-area charities received fake checks before Christmas purporting to be gifts from a genuine local company.
When they do catch these guys, they should give them a get out of jail free card - a fake one!

Sheesh......
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22563
They just changed the forecast for Pensacola on Thursday night...went from a 50% chance of snow to being all rain with a slight chance of sleet. I think this will be a big non-event for the panhandle...
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Quoting IKE:
I don't think I've ever seen a low listed on a satellite map at 1023 mb's...click "NCEP Fronts" on map...


That is a pretty Hi Low. Check out the SST also along the coast line, changes fast.
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Quoting presslord:
Portlight info, 411, update, scoop...
Link


OH NO, SAY IT AIN'T SO...
Good thing I'm not allowed to make threats/use bad language on the WU blogs...

Salvation Army left short of cash by fake SC check
By BRUCE SMITH, Associated Press Writer Bruce Smith, Associated Press Writer 39 mins ago

CHARLESTON, S.C. – The Salvation Army thought it had received a grand gift ahead of Christmas — a $25,000 check. But the donation turned out to be an expensive hoax that may force the charity to cut back on winter assistance for the needy.

Investigators said Wednesday that more than a dozen Charleston-area charities received fake checks before Christmas purporting to be gifts from a genuine local company.
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 32 Comments: 1918
Afternoon, everybody.

Quoting WPBHurricane05:
I would have loved to see how the models would have handled the 77 Florida snow event.
Maybe somebody could run it as a "back-forecast" type scenario? It would be interesting, I agree, to see what models would have come up with.....
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22563
Quoting weatherman874:


Pat whats your opinion on the winter precip? Im telling the fam..I think theres going to be alot of ice on the roads with all the rain that will fall causing lots of accidents but im unsure about if any snow..?


787
fxus64 klix 062114
afdlix


Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service New Orleans la
314 PM CST Wednesday Jan 6 2010


Short term...
the clear skies of today will be short-lived this evening as warm
air advection stratus invades from the west...current leading edge
near kaex-klft line. Arctic front at 3 PM nosing into the Texas/OK
Panhandle with 1049mb high center north of Calgary Canada. Spline
of Cold Ridge along the Continental Divide and nudging east into
the High Plains this afternoon. Extensive snow pack down to the
Ozarks will allow for little or no modification of the airmass as
it progresses to the Gulf Coast. Front still expected to arrive
into SW MS by early afternoon Thursday and advance rapidly through
the MS coast and lower la parishes by late Thursday afternoon.
Models still indicate bulk of moisture Flushing out prior to
temperatures becoming cold enough to support winter type
precipitation of any consequence. There may be a brief period...a
few minutes or so...of transition late Thursday afternoon...
generally after 4 PM for southwest MS counties...and adjacent
Florida parishes just before precipitation ends. Duration and
window of opportunity appears small and short-lived but worthy of
maintaining mention for aesthetic reasons. Thereafter...the
concerns shift to bitter cold temperatures and wind chills in
coming nights. Black ice issues are also plausible for early
morning commute Friday morning on area low elevation water
crossings mainly in rural low volume traffic areas. Black ice
usually evaporates rather quickly once sun light hits it and
traffic increases. Caution should be stressed for anyone
travelling in the pre-dawn hours on rural highways during this
cold spell. 24/rr
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PROBABILISTIC HEAVY SNOW AND ICING DISCUSSION


DAY 1...

BEST MOISTURE CONVERGENCE ALONG THE FRONT IS EXPECTED
ACROSS NORTH CENTRAL MS...WITH LOW-LEVEL MOISTURE AND WEAK
OVERRUNNING PRECIPITATION DEVELOPING ALONG THE FRONT FROM THE
FLORIDA PANHANDLE INTO THE CAROLINAS ON THURSDAY NIGHT. LIGHT SNOW
AND FREEZING MIST/DRIZZLE POSSIBLE ALONG THE GULF COAST AS THE
LEADING EDGE OF THE ARCTIC AIRMASS MOVES OFFSHORE AND WEAK SHOWERS
DEVELOPING OFFSHORE BRUSH THE COAST FROM THE MS DELTA TO THE BIG
BEND OF FLORIDA.


DAY 3...

FLORIDA...
RARE ARCTIC SURGE AND WINTER P-TYPE SCENARIO DEVELOPING ON DAY 3
ACROSS FLORIDA WITH ARCTIC BOUNDARY SWEEPING SOUTHWARD ACROSS THE
EASTERN GULF...TO THE KEYS...PER MODEL H85 TEMPS OF O TO M5
CELSIUS. WARRANTS A MENTION AS BRIEF PHASE CHANGE ALONG/JUST
BEHIND THE FRONT...WITH WEAK UP GLIDE RIDING ACROSS THE TOP OF THE
SHALLOW/LEADING EDGE OF THE ARCTIC FRONT. ON FRIDAY NIGHT...STEEP
LAPSE RATES OVER THE WATER WILL ATTEMPT TO MOVE SHALLOW CONVECTION
ONSHORE. WITH COLD AIRMASS IN PLACE...SNOW FLURRIES/SHOWERS ARE
POSSIBLE ACROSS NORTH FLORIDA. SATURDAY...COLD SECTOR SHOWER
ACTIVITY REFORMS OVER THE INLAND AREAS WITH A CONTINUED DEEPENING
OF THE ARCTIC AIRMASS THROUGH SATURDAY NIGHT WITH ISOLATED
AFTERNOON/EVENING RAIN/SNOW SHOWER MIX POSSIBLE DEVELOPING ACROSS
CENTRAL FLORIDA.
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And next week seems to be already on the NWS NOLA Minds as well.


Long term...

hard freeze temperatures and advisory level wind chills below 13
degrees during dark hours will be the main headliners for this
weekend until a slow but steady warming trend onsets during the
day Sunday. Models are hinting at a north Gulf low pressure system
moving along the Louisiana coast middle of next week that may
bring another round of cold rain. Pacific maritime airmasses
appear lined up for long term influences on forecast area latter
part of next week. The European model (ecmwf) shows a very large amplitude low
latitude trough moving into the region next weekend that will need
to be monitored for significant weather impacts...well beyond this
forecast package. 24/rr
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Quoting Bordonaro:


If the Siberian Airmass CROSSED over 10,000 FT mountains on the Continental Divide, which normally does NOT happen, except when you're dealing with a "large Arctic outbreak", and the front was moving at 55 MPH, don't worry, Florida is gonna get it.

Also, please be careful what you ask for, cause you all may get MORE than you really want!


More than we really want? In Florida? Most of us are excited and would be delighted with a blizzard...though we won't get that, just thought I'd add it for dramatic emphasis. I'll be happy with flurries, but still not holding my breath.
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Quoting Patrap:


Busy prepping for the freeze here to come.


Pat whats your opinion on the winter precip? Im telling the fam..I think theres going to be alot of ice on the roads with all the rain that will fall causing lots of accidents but im unsure about if any snow..?
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18 GENS zdp Image Loop
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948. IKE
I don't think I've ever seen a low listed on a satellite map at 1023 mb's...click "NCEP Fronts" on map...
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Quoting RitaEvac:
Patrap must be frozen stiff somewhere, he hasnt been on all day


Busy prepping for the freeze here to come.
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Tracking the front:

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Quoting weatherman874:


Yes, Yes, Yes..artic blast race on down the gulf coast wants a little winter precip!


If the Siberian Airmass CROSSED over 10,000 FT mountains on the Continental Divide, which normally does NOT happen, except when you're dealing with a "large Arctic outbreak", and the front was moving at 55 MPH, don't worry, Florida is gonna get it.

Also, please be careful what you ask for, cause you all may get MORE than you really want!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
944. IKE
AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BIRMINGHAM AL
342 PM CST WED JAN 6 2010

.DISCUSSION...

QUITE A FUN FORECAST FOR THE AREA THIS AFTERNOON IN REGARDS TO THE
IMPENDING WINTER WEATHER ON THURSDAY. AFTER ANOTHER COLD NIGHT IN
STORE FOR THE AREA...BUT NOT QUITE AS COLD AS CLOUD COVER WILL HELP
KEEP THE TEMPERATURES UP INTO THE 20S. CONDITIONS WILL REMAIN DRY
THROUGH THURSDAY MORNING....WITH TEMPERATURES SLOWLY CLIMBING DURING
THE MORNING.

AS FOR PRECIPITATION...THE SCENARIO IS QUITE COMPLEX...A LITTLE MORE
THAN WAS ANTICIPATED OVER THE PAST COUPLE OF DAYS. THE GFS HAS
SLOWED DOWN ON ITS TIMING A TAD AND IS A LITTLE CLOSER TO THE OTHER
MODELS. WHERE THE ISSUE LIES IS WHERE DOES THE RAIN-SNOW LINE SET UP
AND WILL THERE BE ANYTHING OTHER RAIN-SNOW.

IN REGARDS TO THE PRESENT FORECAST...WILL BE GOING WITH A BLEND OF
THE NAM AND GFS FOR TIMING AND PRECIPITATION. WILL LIKELY SEE
PRECIPITATION BEGIN IN THE WEST AS EARLY AS 6 AM...BUT CLOSER TO THE
9 AM TIMEFRAME. ONCE THE PRECIPITATION STARTS IT WILL MOVE WEST TO
EAST DURING THE DAY. LOOK FOR MOST OF THE PRECIPITATION TO REMAIN
WEST OF I-65 UNTIL AFTER NOON. BIG QUESTION WILL BE WHAT TYPE OF
PRECIPITATION WILL WE SEE. WILL BE LOOKING FOR SNOW GENERALLY NORTH
OF THE I-20 CORRIDOR AND WEST OF I-65 THROUGH NOON. JUST SOUTH OF
THIS LINE WILL BE A SLEET/SNOW MIXTURE AND THEN SLEET SOUTH OF THAT.
BY 9 AM THE SLEET WILL BE CHANGE OVER TO RAIN AS TEMPERATURES WARM
TO ABOVE FREEZING IN THE SOUTH. AS THE AFTERNOON PROGRESSES THE
RAIN-SNOW LINE WILL DROP FURTHER SOUTH. AS SOUTH OF I-85 WILL SEE
MAINLY RAIN UNTIL AFTER 6PM.

AFTER 6PM THE SNOW WILL CONTINUE TO SHIFT EAST...WITH MOST OF THE
SNOW OUT OF HERE BY MIDNIGHT. FOR MORE SPECIFICS ON THE OVERALL
TIMING PLEASE REFER TO OUR WEBSITE AND GRAPHICS POSTED AS THEY WILL
BE UPDATED AS NEEDED THROUGHOUT THE EVENT.

WE HAVE ISSUED A WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY FOR AREAS ALONG AND NORTH
OF A LIVINGSTON... TO PRATTVILLE...TO AUBURN UNTIL MIDNIGHT
THURSDAY NIGHT. WE MAY HAVE TO EXTEND THIS FURTHER SOUTH IF THE
RAIN SNOW LINE DROPS...BUT THIS IS THE BEST FORECAST FOR AREAS
THAT MAY SEE SNOWFALL GREATER THAN A QUARTER OF AN INCH.

ONCE THE SNOW LEAVES...WE WILL ENTER THE ARCTIC FREEZER ON FRIDAY
MORNING AND NOT COME BACK OUT UNTIL SUNDAY. AS FORECASTED OVER THE
PAST SEVERAL DAYS...MUCH OF CENTRAL ALABAMA WILL NOT REACH THE
FREEZING MARK UNTIL SUNDAY AFTERNOON. PORTIONS OF NORTHERN ALABAMA
MAY NOT SEE THAT MARK UNTIL MONDAY AFTERNOON. SATURDAY MORNING STILL
LOOKS LIKE THE COLDEST OF THIS OUTBREAK.

ANOTHER SYSTEM IS ON THE HORIZON FOR TUESDAY NIGHT THROUGH
WEDNESDAY...BUT WILL GET TO THAT ONE ONCE THIS FIRST SYSTEM EXITS.
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I would have loved to see how the models would have handled the 77 Florida snow event.
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This looks like subpar snowstorm for the SE and even the NE. The most expected here is a dusting to an inch here thats pretty dull considering thats all I got last year. I'm ready for a big classic snow storm like in 2000. The last decent snow fall here was in 2002 and I admit im getting impatient for a big one.
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Quoting Bordonaro:


Too close to call, everyone will have a better idea tomorrow. There will be some frozen precip. Part of "Patience Training"!!


Yes, Yes, Yes..artic blast race on down the gulf coast wants a little winter precip!
Member Since: May 25, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 250
Quoting weatherman874:
sooo how far do yall think the snow will go?


Too close to call, everyone will have a better idea tomorrow. There will be some frozen precip. Part of "Patience Training"!!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785

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About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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