Irene an extremely dangerous storm surge threat to the mid-Atlantic and New England

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:55 PM GMT on August 25, 2011

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Back in 1938, long before satellites, radar, the hurricane hunters, and the modern weather forecasting system, the great New England hurricane of 1938 roared northwards into Long Island, New York at 60 mph, pushing a storm surge more than 15 feet high to the coast. Hundreds of Americans died in this greatest Northeast U.S. hurricane on record, the only Category 3 storm to hit the Northeast since the 1800s. Since 1938, there have been a number of significant hurricanes in the Northeast--the Great Atlantic hurricane of 1944, Hazel of 1954, Diane of 1955, Donna of 1960, Gloria of 1985, Bob of 1991, and Floyd of 1999--but none of these were as formidable as the great 1938 storm. Today, we have a hurricane over the Bahamas--Hurricane Irene--that threatens to be the Northeast's most dangerous storm since the 1938 hurricane. We've all been watching the computer models, which have been steadily moving their forecast tracks for Irene more to the east--first into Florida, then Georgia, then South Carolina, then North Carolina, then offshore of North Carolina--and it seemed that this storm would do what so many many storms have done in the past, brush the Outer Banks of North Carolina, then head out to sea. Irene will not do that. Irene will likely hit Eastern North Carolina, but the storm is going northwards after that, and may deliver an extremely destructive blow to the mid-Atlantic and New England states. I am most concerned about the storm surge danger to North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and the rest of the New England coast. Irene is capable of inundating portions of the coast under 10 - 15 feet of water, to the highest storm surge depths ever recorded. I strongly recommend that all residents of the mid-Atlantic and New England coast familiarize themselves with their storm surge risk. The best source of that information is the National Hurricane Center's Interactive Storm Surge Risk Map, which allows one to pick a particular Category hurricane and zoom in to see the height above ground level a worst-case storm surge may go. If you prefer static images, use wunderground's Storm Surge Inundation Maps. If these tools indicate you may be at risk, consult your local or state emergency management office to determine if you are in a hurricane evacuation zone. Mass evacuations of low-lying areas along the entire coast of New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia are at least 50% likely to be ordered by Saturday. The threat to the coasts of New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine is less certain, but evacuations may be ordered in those states, as well. Irene is an extremely dangerous storm for an area that has no experience with hurricanes, and I strongly urge you to evacuate from the coast if an evacuation is ordered by local officials. My area of greatest concern is the coast from Ocean City, Maryland, to Atlantic City, New Jersey. It is possible that this stretch of coast will receive a direct hit from a slow-moving Category 2 hurricane hitting during the highest tide of the month, bringing a 10 - 15 foot storm surge.


Figure 1. The scene in Nassau in the Bahamas at daybreak today. Image credit: Wunderblogger Mike Theiss.

Irene a Category 3 over the Bahamas, headed northwest
Hurricane Irene tore through the Bahama Islands overnight, bringing hurricane-force winds, torrential rains, and storm surge flooding to Crooked Island, Long Island, Rum Cay, and Cat Island, which all took a terrific pounding. Eleuthera and Abaco Island will receive the full force of Irene's eyewall today, but the eyewall will miss capital of Nassau. Winds there were sustained at 41 mph, gusting to 66 mph so far this morning, and I expect these winds will rise to 50 - 55 mph later today. Wunderblogger MIke Theiss is in Nassau, and will be sending live updates through the day today. Winds on Grand Bahama Island in Freeport will rise above tropical storm force late Thursday morning, and increase to a peak of 45 - 55 mph late Thursday afternoon. Grand Bahama will also miss the brunt of the storm. Irene is visible on Miami long-range radar, and the outer bands of the hurricane are bringing rain to Southeast Florida this morning.

Irene is currently undergoing an eyewall replacement cycle, where the inner eyewall collapses, and a new outer eyewall forms from a spiral band. During this process, the hurricane may weaken slightly, and it may take the rest of today for a new eyewall to fully form. Satellite imagery shows a lopsided pattern to Irene, with less cloud cover on the storm's southwest side. This is due to upper level winds from the southwest creating about 10 - 20 knots of wind shear along the storm's southwest side. We can hope that the shear will be strong enough to inject some dry air into the core of Irene and significantly weaken it today, but I put the odds of that happening at only 10%. The most likely scenario is that Irene will complete its eyewall replacement cycle later today or on Friday, then begin intensifying again. Wind shear is expected to stay moderate, 10 - 20 knots, for the next three days, ocean temperatures are a very warm 29°C, and Irene has an upper-level high pressure system on top of it, to aid upper-level outflow. None of our intensity forecast models show Irene growing to Category 4 strength, though the last 4 runs of the ECMWF global model--our best model for forecasting track--have intensified Irene to a Category 4 hurricane with a 912 - 920 mb pressure as it crosses over Eastern North Carolina.

Track forecast for Irene
The models have edged their tracks westwards in the last cycle of runs, and there are no longer any models suggesting that Irene will miss hitting the U.S. The threat to eastern North Carolina has increased, with several of our top models now suggesting a landfall slightly west of the Outer Banks is likely, near Morehead City. After making landfall on the North Carolina coast Saturday afternoon or evening, Irene is likely to continue almost due north, bringing hurricane conditions to the entire mid-Atlantic coast, from North Carolina to Long Island, New York. This makes for a difficult forecast, since a slight change in Irene's track will make a huge difference in where hurricane conditions will be felt. If Irene stays inland over eastern North Carolina, like the ECMWF and GFDL models are predicting, this will knock down the storm's strength enough so that it may no longer be a hurricane once it reaches New Jersey. On the other hand, if Irene grazes the Outer Banks and continues northwards into New Jersey, like the GFS model is predicting, this could easily be a Category 2 hurricane for New Jersey and Category 1 hurricane for New York City. A more easterly track into Long Island would likely mean a Category 2 landfall there.

Category 2 landfalls may not sound that significant, since Hurricane Bob of 1991 made landfall over Rhode Island as a Category 2, and did only $1.5 billion in damage (1991 dollars), killing 17. But Irene is a far larger and more dangerous storm than Bob. The latest wind analysis from NOAA/HRD puts Irene's storm surge danger at 4.8 on a scale of 0 to 6, equivalent to a borderline Category 3 or 4 hurricane's storm surge. Bob had a much lower surge potential, due to its smaller size, and the fact it was moving at 32 mph when it hit land. Irene will be moving much slower, near 18 mph, which will give it more time to pile up a big storm surge. The slower motion also means Irene's surge will last longer, and be more likely to be around during high tide. Sunday is a new moon, and tides will be at their highest levels of the month during Sunday night's high tide cycle. Tides at The Battery in New York City (Figure 3) will be a full foot higher than they were during the middle of August. Irene will expand in size as it heads north, and we should expect its storm surge to be one full Saffir-Simpson Category higher than the winds would suggest.


Figure 2. Predicted tides for the south shore of New York City's Manhattan Island at The Battery for Sunday, August 28 and Monday, August 29. High tide is near 8pm EDT Sunday night. Tidal range between low and high tide is 6 feet on Sunday, the highest range so far this month. A storm surge of 10 feet would thus be 10 feet above Mean Lower Low Water (MLLW, the lowest tide of the year), but 16 feet over this mark if it came at high tide. Image credit: NOAA Tides and Currents.

Irene's storm surge potentially extremely dangerous for the mid-Atlantic coast
Irene's large size, slow motion, arrival at high tide, and Category 3 strength at landfall in North Carolina will likely drive a storm surge of 8 - 10 feet into the heads of bays in Pamlico Sound, and 3 - 6 feet in Albemarle Sound. As the storm progresses northwards, potential storm surge heights grow due to the shape of the coast and depth of the ocean, though the storm will be weakening. If Irene is a Category 1 storm as it crosses into Virginia, it can send a storm surge of 4 - 8 feet into Chesapeake Bay and Norfolk. I give a 50% chance that the surge from Irene in those locations will exceed the record surges observed in 2003 during Hurricane Isabel. The region I am most concerned about, though, is the stretch of coast running from southern Maryland to Central New Jersey, including Delaware and the cities of Ocean City and Atlantic City. A Category 1 hurricane can bring a storm surge of 5 - 9 feet here. Irene's large size, slow movement, and arrival at the highest tide of the month could easily bring a surge one Category higher than the storm's winds might suggest, resulting in a Category 2 type inundation along the coast, near 10 - 15 feet. This portion of the coast has no hurricane experience, and loss of life could be heavy if evacuation orders are not heeded. I give a 30% chance that the storm surge from Irene will bring water depths in excess of 10 feet to the coasts of Maryland, Delaware, and New Jersey.


Figure 3. The height above ground that a mid-strength Category 2 hurricane with 100 mph winds would push a storm surge along the Maryland, Delaware, and New Jersey coasts in a worst-case scenario. The image was generated using the primary computer model used by the National Hurricane Center (NHC) to forecast storm surge--the Sea, Lake, and Overland Surge from Hurricanes (SLOSH) model. The accuracy of the SLOSH model is advertised as plus or minus 20%. This "Maximum Water Depth" image shows the water depth at each grid cell of the SLOSH domain. Thus, if you are inland at an elevation of ten feet above mean sea level, and the combined storm surge and tide (the "storm tide") is fifteen feet at your location, the water depth image will show five feet of inundation. This Maximum of the "Maximum Envelope of Waters" (MOM) image was generated for high tide and is a composite of the maximum storm surge found for dozens of individual runs of different Category 2 storms with different tracks. Thus, no single storm will be able to cause the level of flooding depicted in this SLOSH storm surge image. Consult our Storm Surge Inundation Maps page for more storm surge images of the mid-Atlantic coast.


Figure 4. The height above ground that a mid-strength Category 2 hurricane with 100 mph winds would push a storm surge along the New Jersey coast in a worst-case scenario. Water depths could reach 6 - 8 feet above ground level in Ocean City and Atlantic City, and up to 16 feet along less populated sections of the coast.

Irene's storm surge may flood New York City's subway system
The floodwalls protecting Manhattan are only five feet above mean sea level. During the December 12, 1992 Nor'easter, powerful winds from the 990 mb storm drove an 8-foot storm surge into the Battery Park on the south end of Manhattan. The ocean poured over the city's seawall for several hours, flooding the NYC subway and the Port Authority Trans-Hudson Corporation (PATH) train systems in Hoboken New Jersey. FDR Drive in lower Manhattan was flooded with 4 feet of water, which stranded more than 50 cars and required scuba divers to rescue some of the drivers. Mass transit between New Jersey and New York was down for ten days, and the storm did hundreds of millions in damage to the city. Tropical Storm Floyd of 1999 generated a storm surge just over 3 feet at the Battery, but the surge came at low tide, and did not flood Manhattan. The highest water level recorded at the Battery in the past century came in September 1960 during Hurricane Donna, which brought a storm surge of 8.36 feet to the Battery and flooded lower Manhattan to West and Cortland Streets. However, the highest storm surge on record in New York City occurred during the September 3, 1821 hurricane, the only hurricane ever to make a direct hit on the city. The water rose 13 feet in just one hour at the Battery, and flooded lower Manhattan as far north as Canal Street, an area that now has the nation's financial center. The total surge is unknown from this greatest New York City hurricane, which was probably a Category 2 storm with 110 mph winds. NOAA's SLOSH model predicts that a mid-strength Category 2 hurricane with 100-mph winds could drive a 15 - 20 foot storm surge to Manhattan, Queens, Kings, and up the Hudson River. JFK airport could be swamped, southern Manhattan would flood north to Canal Street, and a surge traveling westwards down Long Island Sound might breach the sea walls that protect La Guardia Airport. Many of the power plants that supply the city with electricity might be knocked out, or their docks to supply them with fuel destroyed. The more likely case of a Category 1 hurricane hitting at high tide would still be plenty dangerous, with waters reaching 8 - 12 feet above ground level in Lower Manhattan. Given the spread in the models, I predict a 20% chance that New York City will experience a storm surge in excess of 8 feet that will over-top the flood walls in Manhattan and flood the subway system. This would most likely occur near 8 pm Sunday night, when high tide will occur and Irene should be near its point of closest approach. Such a storm surge could occur even if Irene weakens to a tropical storm on its closest approach to New York City.


Figure 5. The height above ground that a mid-strength Category 2 hurricane with 100 mph winds would push a storm surge in a worst-case scenario in New York City.


Figure 6. Flooded runways at New York's La Guardia Airport after the November 25, 1950 Nor'easter breached the dikes guarding the airport. Sustained easterly winds of up to 62 mph hit the airport, pushing a large storm surge up Long Island Sound. The storm's central pressure bottomed out at 978 mb. Image credit: Queens Borough Public Library, Long Island Division.

The rest of New England
The entire New England coast is at high danger of receiving its highest storm surge in the past 50 years from Irene, though the exact locations of most danger remain unclear. If North Carolina takes a bullet for us and reduces Irene below hurricane strength before the storm reaches New England, the surge will probably not cause major destruction. But if Irene misses North Carolina and arrives along the New England coast as a hurricane, the storm surge is likely to cause significant damage. I urge everyone along the coast to familiarize themselves with their storm surge risk and be prepared to evacuate should an evacuation order be issued.

Links
For those of you wanting to know your odds of receiving hurricane force or tropical storm force winds, I recommend the NHC wind probability product.

Wunderground has detailed storm surge maps for the U.S. coast.

The National Hurricane Center's Interactive Storm Surge RIsk Map, which allows one to pick a particular Category hurricane and zoom in, is a good source of storm surge risk information.

Wunderblogger Mike Theiss is in Nassau, and will be sending live updates through the day today.

Landstrike is an entertaining fictional account of a Category 4 hurricane hitting New York City.

Elsewhere in the tropics
Tropical Depression Ten in the far Eastern Atlantic will not be a threat to any land areas over the next seven days, and will probably move too far north to ever be a threat to land.

Portlight mobilizes for Irene
The Bahamas have been hit hard by Irene, and unfortunately, it appears that the Northeast U.S. may have its share of hurricane victims before Irene finally dissipates. My favorite disaster relief charity, Portlight.org, is mobilizing to help, and is sending out their relief trailer and crew to the likely U.S. landfall point. Check out this blog to see what they're up to; donations are always needed.

Jeff Masters

Irene in the Dominican Republic (DRHT)
Flooding caused by Heavy Rains from Irene making the Rivers Rise and flooding nearby communities.
Irene in the Dominican Republic
Irene in the Dominican Republic (DRHT)
Flooding of the River Nigua in the Dominican Republic and people that were forced to leave their homes behind.
Irene in the Dominican Republic
Hurricane Irene (LRandyB)
The sun peeking over the top of the eyewall
Hurricane Irene
Hurricane Irene (LRandyB)
By the fourth pass, Irene had a pretty well developed eyewall
Hurricane Irene

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Quoting Nocanesplz:
Have they started evacuations for Hampton Roads yet? Thats gonna be a difficult process if it happens. So many people live there.


No mandatory evacs yet. Voluntary evacuations in Sandbridge begin at noon tomorrow. The 5pm update may get us a Hurricane Watch, who knows...trusting the NHC/NWS to get the local officials into high gear...
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Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:
Updated Hurricane Local Statement for IRENE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CHARLESTON SC


ugh
Member Since: August 13, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10492
Quoting Seastep:


We agree then. I've been here since 2004 and am well aware of who to take advice from and who not to. :)

And, really, it is more opinion and getting a different perspective or something I may not be taking into consideration.


Also, if you're in the bar at least you know you're not talking to a 13-year old! :)

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The footage from the ISS is freaking AMAZING. Irene is a behemoth.
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1191. Vero1
Nice shots form space!!!!!!
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Live streaming video of Irene from the International Space Station on NASA TV now.
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Quoting VieraChris:


Guess I should leave work early! :)


NWS Melbourne just issued a Special Weather Statement, likely to produce wind gusts of 45 to 55 mph
Member Since: March 19, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1147
1188. Seastep
Quoting BobinTampa:


it depends. At the local bar, if the guy is wearing a "Joe's Plumbing" shirt at least you know he's a plumber. Here you don't.

there are people on this blog who I would take advice from. but I've been here for years. Anyone new to the blog wouldn't know that.


We agree then. I've been here since 2004 and am well aware of who to take advice from and who not to. :)

And, really, it is more opinion and getting a different perspective or something I may not be taking into consideration.
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Quoting rwdobson:


Just depends on how patient you can be about getting back. Chances of your return trip going as scheduled are quite slim.


I would check with the airlines, information might be limited but your return home is in their hands.
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Well, Irene is moving about west of due north.
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1185. ncstorm
Quoting ncstorm:

it amazes me sometimes of people's lack of commonsense..

Dozen rescued at Wrightsville Beach as rip currents build



I fix the link..
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 16225
Folks here in the Norfolk area should not compare this storm to Isabel. Isabel travelled roughly up Interstate 95 as a tropical storm. Winds in Hampton Roads were strongest from the southeast and east. This caused the highest surge flooding on the SOUTH AND EAST FACING creeks along the eastern side of the Bay (Deep Creek on the James River, Chisman Creek in York County, Mobjack Bay in Gloucester), etc. The Elizabeth River and Lynnhaven River did not experience the same level of surge during Isabel.

Assuming the current NHC track (and not the even more westerly model tracks of this afternoon *UGH*), the highest winds will be out of the east and northeast bringing the highest surge into the lower bay where it was relatively lower during Isabel. Also strongest winds will noot be blowing over land but rather over open water making the wind damage effects greater at the oceanfront and Shore Drive beaches.

Folks, this is not Isabel and comparing it to Isabel is like comparing a Cessna to a F/A-18.
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1183. Grothar
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Have they started evacuations for Hampton Roads yet? Thats gonna be a difficult process if it happens. So many people live there.
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Hey Ya'll.
Just want to say that I find it very disturbing that folks up north seem to not be too concerned about IRENE. That's too bad; this is not a joke, neither is it a drill. I posted on my FB for all my friends to contact their friends, etc., to pass the word. Stay safe. Don't be stupid. Sure - it's a frickin' inconvenience to have to gear up for this kind of stuff but I'd rather be safe than sorry. Been thru too many of these suckers to be anything else other than safe. And thanks to all ya'll out there keeping the great info coming. Appreciate ya!
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1180. RickWPB
A pretty good sized feeder band is getting ready to come ashore FL east coast (Martin, PB county).

Link
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Updated Hurricane Local Statement for IRENE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CHARLESTON SC
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 15 Comments: 11347
1178. Zaphod
From Sat pics it sure looks like the eye is trying to form up and clear again.
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When do the 2PM EST models for Irene get updated on WU? I do not have all the links to other sites?
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Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:
I am ok here on Provo, this is my first trip out from house, no power or phone at home.
Irene was the worst hurricane I've been through. Only damage at my house was loss of some shingles. I am at pharmacy using wifi, I fried the charging cube for this iPad, with surge from generator, so I will not post much, even if I get wifi.


Glad you're good...heard anythng from Baha?
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1174. TPaul
Quoting dfwWxDude:
@1044. TPaul
Yep, now all you arm-chair quarterbacks / 2nd-guesser's, who criticize how New Orleans LA. handled Katrina evac's, can tell everyone how to handle Irene! For Katrina, they evac'd 80+% of the residents in two days, starting a day late! Most of the rest did not want to leave. How are you going to do that on Long Island? And when do you decide? Hindsight is SO 20/20.
@1049. SCwannabe
Yep drove past 100's of those FEMA trailers in S. LA parked in a huge lot, 2 weeks ago. They are a little moldy, guess they better air them out before they haul them up there. ;)

Most folks should leave anyway, not fun living in a house for weeks with no Electricity in the summer time, even if your life is not at risk. Family in Baton Rouge did that after Hugo. Glad I talked my 80 year mom into staying with us in DFW. They stayed until it looked like Rita was going to make her way up here.

For the record, I said 3 days before Katrina came ashore in NO that it was going to devastate the city and the loss of life would be high and that they needed to evacuate the city starting that day.  There have been many times on here I have seen a lot of wishcasting about big storms and you can tell its just that, wishcasting.  I pray I am wrong, because if I am not, there are a lot people alive today, that are not going to be Monday, and that leaves me with a sense of guilt because it seems all too obvious what this storm is going to do.  
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Quoting 1Banana:
Despite the threat of the oncoming hurricane, deputy principal press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters that Obama has no plans at this time to cut his vacation short, either to avoid the effects of the storm or devote his time to managing emergency response. Obama and his family are scheduled to end their Martha%u2019s Vineyard vacation on Saturday, August 27.


Duh, fine example of hurricane preparedness...not!
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NWS Taunton MA has a good forecast discussion of the possible impacts in there region today.


.LONG TERM /SATURDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/...
***HURRICANE IRENE WILL LIKELY HAVE A SIGNIFICANT IMPACT ACROSS
SOUTHERN NEW ENGLAND THIS WEEKEND BUT THE TRACK AND EXACT HAZARDS
REMAIN HIGHLY UNCERTAIN***

POTENTIAL IMPACTS...

1) HIGH SURF AND DANGEROUS RIP CURRENTS ARRIVE WELL AHEAD OF IRENE

2) HEAVY RAIN AND POTENTIAL INLAND FLOODING - ESPECIALLY
ON THE WEST SIDE OF THE STORM

3) DAMAGING WINDS - ESPECIALLY ON THE EAST SIDE OF THE STORM

4) LARGE AND POTENTIAL DESTRUCTIVE STORM SURGE/COASTAL FLOODING
ALONG THE SOUTH COAST

5) A FEW WEAK TORNADOES ARE POSSIBLE ON THE NORTH AND NORTHEAST SIDE
OF IRENE.

GENERAL DISCUSSION ON IRENE...
THERE IS STILL TREMENDOUS SPREAD ON THE TIMING AND TRACK OF IRENE
AMONGST THE MODELS AND ENSEMBLES. THIS CERTAINLY CAN BE EXPECTED AS
POTENTIAL LANDFALL IN OUR REGION IS STILL MORE THAN 72-84 HOURS
OUT. AT THIS TIME RANGE...THE MODELS CAN STILL MAKE SIGNIFICANT
ADJUSTMENTS ON THE TIMING/TRACK AND INTENSITY AND CERTAINLY FLIP
FLOP.

CONSENSUS OF THE 00Z MODELS HAVE CERTAINLY PUSHED THE TRACK TO THE
WEST. THIS IS PARTICULARLY TRUE FOR THE LATEST ECMWF WHICH NOW HAS
THE CENTER NEAR PHILADELPHIA AT 00Z MONDAY. ON THE OTHER
EXTREME...THE 00Z CANADIAN MODEL HAS THE CENTER PASSING NEAR THE
CAPE/ISLANDS. OVERALL...THE MODEL CONSENSUS HAS TAKEN A JUMP WEST
AT 00Z...SHOWING LANDFALL NEAR CONNECTICUT/LONG ISLAND.
HOWEVER...THERE IS STILL A SMALLER CLUSTERING ACROSS FAR SOUTHEAST
MA/CAPE/ISLANDS INDICATING THE CONTINUED UNCERTAINTY.

HURRICANE IRENE WILL LIKELY HAVE A SIGNIFICANT IMPACT ACROSS
SOUTHERN ENGLAND SUNDAY AND SUNDAY NIGHT. IRENE HAS THE POTENTIAL
TO PRODUCE SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE IN SEVERAL FORMS. IF THE 00Z MODEL
CONSENSUS HOLDS AND A GOOD PORTION OF OUR REGION ENDS UP ON THE
EASTERN SIDE OF THIS STORM...SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE ACROSS THE REGION IS
LIKELY. THIS FROM VERY STRONG SOUTHERLY WINDS AND A LARGE/
POTENTIALLY DESTRUCTIVE STORM SURGE ACROSS PORTIONS OF THE SOUTH
COAST. HOWEVER...IF THE MODELS TREND EVEN FURTHER WEST LIKE THE 00Z
ECMWF AND HAVE LANDFALL WEST OF SOUTHERN NEW ENGLAND THE WORST WOULD
BE SOUTHWEST OF OUR REGION. WE STILL WOULD LIKELY HAVE A PERIOD
STRONG DAMAGING SOUTHERLY WINDS/COASTAL FLOODING...BUT OUR REGION
WOULD BE SPARED THE WORST. IF THE MODELS WERE TO TREND TO THE
EASTERN MOST SOLUTIONS LIKE THE 00Z GGEM...HEAVY RAIN AND INLAND
FLOODING WOULD BE THE BIGGEST CONCERNS WITH THE STRONGEST
WINDS/SIGNIFICANT COASTAL FLOOD THREAT MAINLY ACROSS OUR FAR
SOUTHEAST SECTIONS.
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Quoting TheMom:
Thanks if it was Tigger it would have bit me ;-) THANK YOU


snicker snicker snort snort
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Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:
I am ok here on Provo, this is my first trip out from house, no power or phone at home.
Irene was the worst hurricane I've been through. Only damage at my house was loss of some shingles. I am at pharmacy using wifi, I fried the charging cube for this iPad, with surge from generator, so I will not post much, even if I get wifi.
and you went through Ike correct? Wow, Irene is pretty serious... glad you are alright and your home is not damaged badly (if I'm reading correctly). I wish I can help, man...
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Quoting 1Banana:
Despite the threat of the oncoming hurricane, deputy principal press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters that Obama has no plans at this time to cut his vacation short, either to avoid the effects of the storm or devote his time to managing emergency response. Obama and his family are scheduled to end their Martha’s Vineyard vacation on Saturday, August 27.


And this surprises anyone?
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Quoting barefootjacket:
If you have a gas grill remember to get the propane tank filled. If your power and gas are off, you can use the grill to boil water, cook food from your thawing freezer, and in a pinch provide some outside light.


Even better. Keep a spare on hand. That way during normal times you never have the ohsh*t moment of running out of gas mid-cooking.
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1165. zawxdsk
I'm sure it's already been seen, but 12Z ECMWF at 72HRS - previous run had it on top of Philadelphia. Looks exactly like the NHC right now.

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Quoting weatherdogg:
I am getting 76.6 from TVCN, not 78. Link


According to that website that is TVCN 2011082512 run data

The data I posted is from 2518Z, the latest.
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 15 Comments: 11347
Quoting aliinmiami:


what if it is a wedding of a close relative?


Just depends on how patient you can be about getting back. Chances of your return trip going as scheduled are quite slim.
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Quoting Seastep:
BobinTampa - There is some advice you cannot get from official sources nor mets.

So this blog is a better place to ask than the guy at the local bar, wouldn't you agree?


it depends. At the local bar, if the guy is wearing a "Joe's Plumbing" shirt at least you know he's a plumber. Here you don't.

there are people on this blog who I would take advice from. but I've been here for years. Anyone new to the blog wouldn't know that.
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Quoting ecflweatherfan:
Looks like a very heavy squall heading toward the ECFL coast at this time, timing... about an hour for northern sections of Brevard to about 20 minutes toward Fort Pierce. Other small showers developing in advance of the squall though.


Guess I should leave work early! :)
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here the new vortex


Product: Air Force Vortex Message (URNT12 KNHC)
Transmitted: 25th day of the month at 19:36Z
Aircraft: Air Force Aircraft (Last 3 digits of the tail number are 306)
Storm Number & Year: 09L in 2011
Storm Name: Irene (flight in the North Atlantic basin)
Mission Number: 21
Observation Number: 11
A. Time of Center Fix: 25th day of the month at 19:17:10Z
B. Center Fix Coordinates: 26°41'N 77°15'W (26.6833N 77.25W)
B. Center Fix Location: 112 miles (180 km) to the N (3°) from Nassau, Bahamas.
C. Minimum Height at Standard Level: 2,676m (8,780ft) at 700mb
D. Estimated (by SFMR or visually) Maximum Surface Wind: 70kts (~ 80.6mph)
E. Location of the Estimated Maximum Surface Wind: 38 nautical miles (44 statute miles) to the NW (305°) of center fix
F. Maximum Flight Level Wind Inbound: From 52° at 73kts (From the NE at ~ 84.0mph)
G. Location of Maximum Flight Level Wind Inbound: 55 nautical miles (63 statute miles) to the NW (307°) of center fix
H. Minimum Sea Level Pressure: 950mb (28.05 inHg)
I. Maximum Flight Level Temp & Pressure Altitude Outside Eye: 10°C (50°F) at a pressure alt. of 3,056m (10,026ft)
J. Maximum Flight Level Temp & Pressure Altitude Inside Eye: 17°C (63°F) at a pressure alt. of 3,045m (9,990ft)
K. Dewpoint Temp (collected at same location as temp inside eye): 5°C (41°F)
K. Sea Surface Temp (collected at same location as temp inside eye): Not Available
L. Eye Character: Open, Open S
M. Eye Shape & Diameter: Circular with a diameter of 30 nautical miles (35 statute miles)
N. Fix Determined By: Penetration, Radar, Wind, Pressure and Temperature
N. Fix Level: 700mb
O. Navigation Fix Accuracy: 0.02 nautical miles
O. Meteorological Accuracy: 1 nautical mile
Remarks Section - Remarks That Were Decoded...
Maximum Flight Level Wind: 92kts (~ 105.9mph) in the northeast quadrant at 18:11:10Z
Maximum Flight Level Wind Outbound: 99kts (~ 113.9mph) in the southeast quadrant at 19:26:30Z
Remarks Section - Additional Remarks...
Clouds below in center, sfc cntr not visible
Max SWS outbound 74kts 19:28:30Z SE Quad
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1159. TheMom
Quoting presslord:


it's in Jeff's blog
Thanks if it was Tigger it would have bit me ;-) THANK YOU
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Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:
I am ok here on Provo, this is my first trip out from house, no power or phone at home.
Irene was the worst hurricane I've been through. Only damage at my house was loss of some shingles. I am at pharmacy using wifi, I fried the charging cube for this iPad, with surge from generator, so I will not post much, even if I get wifi.

Glad to hear you're okay and only lost some shingles.
It was looking bad from here.
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1157. jpsb
Quoting RitaEvac:
This aint just another Nor Easter, this is a hurricane from the deep tropics and this is a whole nudda animal all together. She will be bigger up north than she is now, and the NE will be in for a rude awakening, plain and simple

nor'easter is nothing to sneeze at

The Super Storm of March 13, 1993

Weather forecasters called this one: The storm of the Century. Half of the U.S. population (26 States) was affected. In the U.S. 270 people were killed. Over 160 people were rescued by the Coast Guard in the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic. In Canadian Waters a 600 ft cargo ship went down. Property damage amounted to $ 2 billion. Every highway and airport was closed north of Atlanta. Florida was hit by a 12-ft storm surge and on it's path north-east it damaged uncounted beaches, homes and marinas. Right after the storm it turned exceptionally warm. The snow melted rapidly and the floodwaters damaged many more properties.
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Looks like a very heavy squall heading toward the ECFL coast at this time, timing... about an hour for northern sections of Brevard to about 20 minutes toward Fort Pierce. Other small showers developing in advance of the squall though.
Member Since: March 19, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1147
Quoting Levi32:
Open eyewall to the south and steady pressure:

000
URNT12 KNHC 251936
VORTEX DATA MESSAGE AL092011
A. 25/19:17:10Z
B. 26 deg 41 min N
077 deg 15 min W
C. 700 mb 2676 m
D. 70 kt
E. 305 deg 38 nm
F. 052 deg 73 kt
G. 307 deg 55 nm
H. 950 mb
I. 10 C / 3056 m
J. 17 C / 3045 m
K. 5 C / NA
L. Open S
M. C30

N. 12345 / 7
O. 0.02 / 1 nm
P. AF306 2109A IRENE OB 11
MAX FL WIND 92 KT NE QUAD 18:11:10Z
MAX OUTBOUND FL WIND 99 KT SE QUAD 19:26:30Z
Clouds below in center, sfc cntr not visible
Max SWS outbound 74kts 19:28:30Z SE Quad



thats old the new vortex has not come in from the new center fix
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I am getting 76.6 from TVCN, not 78. Link
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Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:
I am ok here on Provo, this is my first trip out from house, no power or phone at home.
Irene was the worst hurricane I've been through. Only damage at my house was loss of some shingles. I am at pharmacy using wifi, I fried the charging cube for this iPad, with surge from generator, so I will not post much, even if I get wifi.


let us know how we can help
Member Since: August 13, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10492
Quoting nash28:


I would seriously re-think discounting the ECMWF. Look at the steering maps. There is a gap for Irene to get through, but not offshore like the models HAD been suggesting. Trough not deep enough to swing her.

Having said that, I am thinking a SC/NC border landfall more and more.


I've had a Hazel vibe for a week now. ughh
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Explanation for the huge wind-pressure differences = size. Alex and Ike had this issue too, 110 mph cyclones when they hit land with pressures in the 940s or so. What a massive hurricane.. wow. And to think, this is only the 1st hurricane of the season and we have months left to go. We're not even at peak.
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Quoting ssmate:

Unless it's a funeral of a close relative. Don't go. Why would you put yourself in that position?


what if it is a wedding of a close relative?
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Live streaming video of Irene from the International Space Station coming up on NASA TV.
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Quoting aliinmiami:
Been a lurker for years - but now have a question. Am supposed to head up from Miami to Maine tomorrow (I know - how ironic, not getting Irene here so heading to where it is) and scheduled to fly home from Boston on Sunday at 3pm - any thoughts on timing for Irene to pass through Boston? Really can't afford to get stuck up there!


If you can't afford to be stuck, I wouldn't go. There is a really good chance that airports will be closed on Sunday, which will disrupt air travel all up and down the east coast.
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The shark swimming in PR is obviously faked:

Link

Now if he had been towing that water skiing squirrel...that woulda rocked!

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Quoting tiggeriffic:


Evacuation advice no, but things to get to be ready...absolutely...there are things i learned from being in Hugo that are NOT on the list of things to do in the Hurricane Guide...LOTS of things... like turning off ice makers because the water may not be safe when the power comes back on and it would contaminate what you do have...things like fill every gap in your freezer with bottles of water to keep it colder...things like turn it down to coldest setting 24 hrs before storm to help keep it colder longer... things like cover the fridge and freezer with blankets after the storm to help insulate them...things like that are NOT in the little pamphlet the give out at the store or anywhere else... but they help...
I always mow the grass before I evacuate. Makes cleaning all of the limbs and leaves in the yard a lot easier.
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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.

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