Hurricane Sandy remains a Category 2, continues on its track toward the East Coast

By: Angela Fritz , 9:48 PM GMT on October 25, 2012

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Hurricane Sandy is tracking north through the Bahamas this afternoon as a Category 2 hurricane. Maximum wind speeds in the hurricane are 105 mph, with a minimum central pressure of 963 mb. Sandy's center is moving through the eastern Bahamas, about 100 miles southeast of Nassau. The hurricane's eye is still not apparent on satellite nor was it clear in the data from today's Hurricane Hunter mission. Gusts in Nassau have reached 39 mph so far today as the hurricane approaches from the south. Buoys west of Nassau have been recording surface winds up to 39 mph, as well. On Abaco Island, just over an inch of rain has fallen today, and almost an inch of rain has fallen in Miami, where rain started last night.

Sandy's appearance on satellite is a bit ragged this afternoon as it approaches very high wind shear (40-50 knots). The hurricane is obviously already undergoing structural changes this afternoon, caused in part by an upper level low over western Cuba. This low is prohibiting Sandy's outflow on the west side, and as a result, the storm appears asymmetrical with a large area of outflow and circulation to the north, and only a tail of circulation on the southeast of the hurricane. Visually, Sandy is a huge storm. Based on clouds alone, Sandy stretches from Jacksonville, Florida, east to Bermuda, and south to the southern Caribbean Sea. Sandy's radius of outer closed isobar is 350 miles, though tropical storm-force winds only extend around 200 miles from the center.


Figure 1. High resolution MODIS visible satellite imagery of Hurricane Sandy early this morning.

Forecast For Hurricane Sandy
As Sandy moves north, it will grow larger and the hurricane's energy will spread out even more, which will lead to a slight decrease in maximum wind speed. Models agree on this steady decrease in intensity over the next few days, though beyond that, the intensity forecast is still in question since Sandy could begin to gain non-tropical energy as it transitions into a non-tropical storm. The track through Saturday evening remains well understood by the models: Sandy will move north with a slight turn to the west before being yanked north-northeast again by the approaching mid-latitude trough. It's at this point in the forecast that the models diverge, though all but the HWRF are forecasting the unfortunate turn back to the west and into the Northeast U.S. Furthest south along the East Coast is the ECMWF, which forecasts a turn into Maryland/North Carolina on Monday. The GFS forecast is a bit further north than the ECMWF, pushing Sandy onshore near Long Island late Tuesday night. However, this represents a large shift south from earlier GFS runs, and puts the Mid-Atlantic into play more than it was in earlier forecasts. The forecast from the National Hurricane Center appears to be a compromise between the ECMWF and the GFS. The Center is forecasting Sandy to approach the New Jersey coast on Tuesday afternoon.

There are many questions surrounding this hurricane and its forecast, but I find it important to convey that Sandy's impacts will be widespread, no matter the location of "landfall." Risk to the Mid-Atlantic seems higher this afternoon, and as Jeff noted in his morning blog, Sandy will be a very large and possibly non-tropical storm as it approaches the coast, with gale-force winds extending up to 300 miles from its center. This increases the probability of storm surge extending far from the center of the storm, which, combined with the timing of a full moon tide, is a big concern, along with freshwater and river flooding from heavy, extended periods of rain.

Angela


Figure 2. Today's "extra" 18Z (2pm EDT) weather balloon launched from the Peachtree City office of the National Weather Service. The National Weather Service is launching extra weather balloons all over the country to improve the quality of forecasts as Sandy approaches. Thanks to NWS Meteorologist Alex Gibbs for snapping this shot just before launch!

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Quoting LargoFl:
yes she huge alright,scary thing is, she is supposed to expand even more as she goes up the coast


As long as she does not become the typhoon tip of the Atlantic!
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Quoting washingtonian115:
I for one sure as hell angry that a storm by the name of...Sandy(says with clutched teeth) will possibly be affected me.Some people making it sound like day after tomorrow.I guess my area should be preparing for 20 feet of snow.
dunno about snow, but flooding and days without power surely might happen, and by the looks of the current models she might still be a hurricane all the way up to virginia
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36883
Quoting Dakster:


What the heck is that by SW Florida?


Valerie? Now that would be something.
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Quoting HurrikanEB:
Based on the NHC's forecast track at the moment, New York City could be in for an interesting event as far as flooding goes. With Irene, the storm passed directly over the city, so the onshore winds were aimed more at Long Island. If sandy does track into northern new jersey, not only would the onshore winds be perfectly oriented to pump water up the hudson river, but the storm motion would also favor a surge in that direction.
we may be witnessing weather history right now and the coming next few days
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36883
Quoting air360:
Funny how everyone seems to now be depressed and sad that the winds are dropping. I know that's now how they mean it but that's how it comes across haha
I for one sure as hell angry that a storm by the name of...Sandy(says with clutched teeth) will possibly be affected me.Some people making it sound like day after tomorrow.I guess my area should be preparing for 20 feet of snow.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 16409
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36883
Member Since: May 23, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 4392
Based on the NHC's forecast track at the moment, New York City could be in for an interesting event as far as flooding goes. With Irene, the storm passed directly over the city, so the onshore winds were aimed more at Long Island. If sandy does track into northern new jersey, not only would the onshore winds be perfectly oriented to pump water up the hudson river, but the storm motion would also favor a surge in that direction.
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Quoting NorEasterGal:


Not liking that she is so huge.
yes she huge alright,scary thing is, she is supposed to expand even more as she goes up the coast
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36883
Quoting LargoFl:


Not liking that she is so huge.
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Quoting wxchaser97:

True...but it is only one pass and things can change.


I would be stunned if there was much more wind intensification of Sandy.
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Funny how everyone seems to now be depressed and sad that the winds are dropping. I know that's now how they mean it but that's how it comes across haha
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I wouldn't be surprised if winds did decrease with Sandy..she's starting to look like Leslie's lost twin.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 16409
Nam at 21 hours.......
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36883
Quoting AllStar17:


Right...but they have made a pass through the center.

True...but it is only one pass and things can change.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

True. Then again, they've barely even investigated the storm.


Right...but they have made a pass through the center.
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Quoting AllStar17:
Wind data from the NOAA plane not overly impressive with Sandy.

True. Then again, they've barely even investigated the storm.
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Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36883
8pm advisory should lower the winds.
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Nam might not have been far off..right hand corner...
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36883
Wind data from the NOAA plane not overly impressive with Sandy.
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The 18z GFS has a low impacting Florida before it becomes TS Valerie off the SE coastline. Once again, if Sandy and Tony were not enough, I would like to remind everybody that hurricane season is not over. Even after the season is over there is always the chance of a storm.
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Quoting NorEasterGal:


Please come up here to PA during a Nor'Easter. It may be nothing special to you, but we have lost homes, lives and have been flooded out.
Ohhh yeah silly me so sorry should have been more specific about me referring to my area(D.C southern/central M.D and northern V.A)
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 16409
Might be some coastal flooding .................
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36883
FLOOD ADVISORY
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN JUAN PR
643 PM AST THU OCT 25 2012

PRC013-017-019-039-043-054-073-091-101-107-133-14 1-145-149-260145-
/O.NEW.TJSJ.FA.Y.0405.121025T2243Z-121026T0145Z/
/00000.N.ER.000000T0000Z.000000T0000Z.000000T0000 Z.OO/
BARCELONETA PR-BARRANQUITAS PR-CIALES PR-COAMO PR-FLORIDA PR-
JAYUYA PR-MANATI PR-MOROVIS PR-OROCOVIS PR-SANTA ISABEL PR-UTUADO PR-
VEGA BAJA PR-VILLALBA PR-ARECIBO PR-
643 PM AST THU OCT 25 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN SAN JUAN HAS ISSUED AN

* URBAN AND SMALL STREAM FLOOD ADVISORY
FOR THE FOLLOWING MUNICIPALITIES...

IN PUERTO RICO
BARCELONETA...BARRANQUITAS...CIALES...COAMO...FLOR IDA...
JAYUYA...MANATI...MOROVIS...OROCOVIS...SANTA ISABEL...UTUADO...
VEGA BAJA...VILLALBA AND ARECIBO

* UNTIL 945 PM AST

* AT 640 PM AST...DOPPLER WEATHER RADAR INDICATED SHOWERS AND
ISOLATED INTENSE THUNDERSTORMS...SOME WITH VERY HEAVY RAIN AFFECTING
THESE MUNICIPALITIES. RADAR ESTIMATES AND U.S.G.S. RAIN GAGES
INDICATE THAT 1 TO 2 INCHES OF RAIN HAVE ALREADY FALLEN OVER PARTS
OF THE ADVISORY AREA AND IT CONTINUED TO RAIN. ADDITIONAL RAINFALL
OF AT LEAST 1 INCH IS EXPECTED THROUGH 945 PM.

EXCESSIVE RUNOFF FROM HEAVY RAINFALL WILL CAUSE ELEVATED LEVELS ON
SMALL CREEKS AND STREAMS...AND PONDING OF WATER IN URBAN AREAS...
HIGHWAYS...STREETS AND UNDERPASSES AS WELL AS OTHER POOR DRAINAGE
AREAS AND LOW LYING SPOTS. THE HEAVY RAINS COULD ALSO TRIGGER ROCK
AND MUDSLIDES IN STEEP TERRAIN.

MOST FLOOD DEATHS OCCUR IN AUTOMOBILES. NEVER DRIVE YOUR VEHICLE INTO
AREAS WHERE THE WATER COVERS THE ROADWAY. FLOOD WATERS ARE USUALLY
DEEPER THAN THEY APPEAR. JUST ONE FOOT OF FLOWING WATER IS POWERFUL
ENOUGH TO SWEEP VEHICLES OFF THE ROAD. WHEN ENCOUNTERING FLOODED
ROADS MAKE THE SMART CHOICE...TURN AROUND...DONT DROWN.

&&

LAT...LON 1850 6639 1828 6639 1819 6630 1817 6633
1809 6631 1795 6636 1794 6640 1795 6641
1805 6640 1818 6649 1818 6662 1850 6667
1850 6660 1848 6646 1850 6643

$$

BCS
Member Since: April 29, 2009 Posts: 75 Comments: 14012
Kingston, Jamaica. All schools in Kingston, St Andrew, St Mary, Portland and St Thoma will remain closed tomorrow.
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Thanks Angela for responding, long time lurker, I wondering my self
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Quoting uncwhurricane85:


where is this model/map?


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681 BahaHurican: It looks like the eye is approaching southern Cat Island, and based on the previously forecast motion should be moving along the eastern coast of that island by now...

IF the most recent NHC.Advisory position was correct, H.Sandy had been moving on the western side of CatIsland(CAT) -- overrunning the southwestern tip and the northern island -- and should now be cruising along east of Eleuthera(ELH,GHB,RSD)

The bottom line marks the 6hour path between the 2 most recent ATCF positions
The top line marks the 3hour path between the most recent ATCF position and the most recent NHC.Advisory position

Considering the hurricane's recent travel curvature, I wouldn't be surprised if the next ATCF position shows Sandy's path passing over easternmost Eleuthera.
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Quoting SFLWeatherman:
264HR GFS


What the heck is that by SW Florida?
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Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36883
So just logged in to my local news paper and uhh

"Based on current information,I think we have strong odds of experiencing major to server impacts to the D.C metro and surrounding regions a lesser blow is still possible"
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 16409
Another AF plane is getting ready to go. Last one had to abort for some reason. Luckily the NOAA plane is out there for us.
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I have been a long time lurker, since I went through Ike in Houston. Now I live in the D.C. area and figured it's time to join the conversation with Sandy threatening the East Coast. Interesting fact: the lowest pressure for a non-tropical low pressure system in the north Atlantic below 40 N was 938mb on Jan 4, 1989 SE of Nantucket. So, even though the ECMWF and GFDL may exaggerate low pressures, it is possible to have a sub-940mb nor'easter.
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264HR GFS
Member Since: May 23, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 4392
I'd say we are getting solid 45-50 mph gusts right now. Likely to increase.
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if located on the north side of the landfalling center the storm surge in jersey would be around 6-8 feet right?
Member Since: August 4, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 50
Anyone have the 18z gdfl they can post?
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Wow! Front came through, at least that front edge of it, main line still to come - 77 to 55 in less than half hour. 60 mi east still in 70s, Spfld (45 mi NW) already 50. Probably had some 50mph gusts too!
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Quoting washingtonian115:
Well I've been impacted by countless nor'easters so this one will be nothing special.if this was december I would be waiting on the snow to come.But since this is still october that event will likely not happen.


Please come up here to PA during a Nor'Easter. It may be nothing special to you, but we have lost homes, lives and have been flooded out.
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149. angelafritz (Admin)
Quoting redux:
and how badly are the models off in terms of the projected pressure? are they off?


Models are likely keeping the pressure on the low side. However, how does a 10-20mb pressure difference affect the impacts of the storm? Not much at this point. Sandy is going to be a very large storm with widespread impacts. Storm surge could be quite large, especially if it coincides with the full moon high tide. gale-force winds could extend 350 miles from the center. The Mid Atlantic and the Northeast should prepare for coastal flooding, inland freshwater flooding, and power outages from minor to moderate wind damage.
Quoting CarolinaHurricanes87:
That map showing 25-30 inches of snow in the WVA/Maryland/PA mountains, a few inches across most of VA all the way to the tidewater, and the warmer part of the storm slamming the mid-atlantic-NE coast..... is amazing to even think about. Not saying this scenario will pan out, but hard to ignore the model consistency. Kind of surreal to see this unfolding


where is this model/map?
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The NOAA vortex message indicates a poorly defined eye with 965mb as the minimum pressure. Wind data is not that impressive.
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Quoting ThatGuyAgain:


Why isn't there? I see plenty of people from cities in Florida all the time.


I'd like to say that there is a third!
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Quoting ThatGuyAgain:


Thanks for the welcome. Anyone else from around the DC area? I think I remember some guy VAWXNerd or something like that before I made an account was from nearby, what happened to him, he hasn't been around in a while...?
He was banned...
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 16409
144. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
India Meteorological Department
Tropical Cyclone Advisory #15
DEEP DEPRESSION, FORMER MURJAN (ARB01-2012)
23:30 PM IST October 25 2012
========================================

At 18:00 PM UTC, Cyclonic Storm Murjan moved westward and crossed Somalia coast near 9.5N between 17:00 - 18:00 PM UTC, today. The cyclone also weakened into a deep depression after it crossed the coast. Deep Depression, Former Murjan now lies near 9.5N 51.0E, overland Somalia. The deep depression will likely move west southwestward and weaken further.

Satellite imagery show associated broken intense convection over the Arabian Sea between 7.0N to 12.0N west of 53.0E and over northern Somalia and adjoining Ethiopia. Convection has split, indicating disorganization and weakening of the cyclone. The current cloud top temperature due to convection is around -50 to -60C.

3 minute sustained winds near the center is 30 knots gusting up to 40 knots. The state of the sea off Somalia coast will be very rough.
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Quoting washingtonian115:
Lol just joking with ya!.Glad to see another one on the blog.To many floridians.


Thanks for the welcome. Anyone else from around the DC area? I think I remember some guy VAWXNerd or something like that before I made an account was from nearby, what happened to him, he hasn't been around in a while...?
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Quoting Grothar:
Sudden blowup of very cold cloud tops in the past hour.



She seems to have sacrificed some of that convective deadweight to the east/southeast to focus on reorganizing her core in the face of increased wind shear... her southwest quad already looks much better than it did a few hours ago. That's what it looks like.
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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.