Historic Nor'easter poised to slam Boston and the Northeast U.S.

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:43 PM GMT on February 07, 2013

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A potentially historic Nor'easter is brewing for the Northeast U.S., where blizzard watches are up for much of eastern Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. The storm, dubbed "Nemo" by the Weather Channel, is expected to bring heavy snows of 1 - 2 feet, coastal wind gusts over hurricane force, and moderate to major coastal flooding. During the peak of the storm, Friday night into Saturday morning, snowfall rates of 2 - 3" per hour can be expected. These intense bursts of snow may be accompanied by lightning and thunder. The cites of Boston, Hartford, Providence, Portland, and Burlington are all likely to get more than a foot of snow, and two feet of snow will probably fall along a swath from the western suburbs of Boston to Southwest Maine. With the Nor'easter generating these heavy snows expected to bomb out with a central pressure of 972 - 976 mb, the rapid flow of air around this low pressure center will generate ferocious sustained winds near 50 mph at the coast, with wind gusts in excess of hurricane force--74 mph. The combination of heavy snow and high winds will make travel extremely dangerous or impossible, with near-zero visibility in white-out conditions. Total snowfall from the storm is likely to rank in the top ten for Boston since weather observations began at Logan Airport in 1936. According to NWS, here are the top snowstorms since 1936 for Logan Airport:

1. February 17-18, 2003 27.5"
2. February 6-7, 1978 27.1"
3. February 24-27, 1969 26.3"
4. March 31-April 1, 1997 25.4"
5. January 22-24, 1945 22.8"
6. January 22-23, 2005 22.5"
7. January 20-21, 1978 21.4"
8. March 3-5, 1960 19.8"
9. February 16-17, 1958 19.4"
10. February 8-10, 1994 18.7"
11. January 7-8, 1996 18.2"
11. December 20-22, 1975 18.2"
11. December 26-27, 2010 18.2"


Figure 1. Predicted wind speeds in knots at 7 am EST Saturday, February 9, 2013, from the 00Z February 7, 2013 run of the European (ECMWF) model. The model is predicting sustained winds of 50 knots (57.5 mph) will affect Cape Cod and Nantucket Island, Massachusetts. Multiply by 1.15 to convert knots to mph.

Serious coastal flooding expected in Massachusetts
The high winds from the storm will drive a damaging storm surge of 2 - 4' along the coast of Eastern Massachusetts Friday night and Saturday morning. Of particular concern is the flooding that will occur during the Saturday morning high tide cycle, as that is the time of the new moon, which will bring the highest tide of the month. The ocean's height in Boston varies naturally by about ten feet between low tide and high tide, so it matters greatly when the storm surge arrives, relative to the tidal cycle. Thus we speak of the "storm tide"--how how the water gets above the high tide mark, due to the combination of the storm surge and the tide. During Hurricane Sandy, on October 29, 2012, a potentially very damaging storm surge of 4.57' hit Boston, but arrived near low tide, so the water level during the peak surge did not rise above the normal high tide mark. As of noon EST on February 7, 2013, the latest storm surge forecast from the GFS model is calling for a storm tide of about 3.4' above high tide (MHHW, Mean Higher High Water) on Saturday morning, which would cause only minor flooding in Boston. This would be the 10th highest water level on record in Boston since tide gauge records began in 1921. According to former NHC storm surge expert Mike Lowry, who now works for TWC, the official top 5 storm tides at the Boston tide gauge, relative to MHHW, are:

1. 4.82' - February 7, 1978 (Blizzard of 1978)
2. 3.92' - January 2, 1987
3. 3.86' - October 30, 1991 (Perfect Storm)
4. 3.76' - January 28, 1979
5. 3.75' - December 12, 1992

More serious flooding is expected in Cape Cod Bay to the southeast of Boston, where the northeast winds from the storm will pile up a higher storm surge. A storm surge of 3 - 4' is predicted from Scituate to Sandwich Harbor Saturday morning. The surge will be accompanied by battering waves 20' feet high, and major flooding and coastal erosion is expected. Major coastal flooding is also expected on the east end of Nantucket Island.


Figure 2. Coastal flooding hazards during the high tide cycle on Saturday morning, February 9, 2013, as predicted at 12 pm EDT Thursday, February 7, 2013, by the NWS Boston.

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http://www.wunderground.com/winter-storm/nemo-2013.asp

Jeff Masters

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XX/XX/XXL
WINTER STORM WARNING BLIZZARD WATCH
HIGH WIND ADV HEAVY SNOW WARNING
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Winter Storm #1 (Nemo):



Winter Storm #2:



Winter Storm #3:



Winter Storm #4:



Welcome back, Winter.
The other 3 winterstorm would probably be Orko,Q,and Rocky if I am correct.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting uncwhurricane85:


so most of the models are predecting 15-20 inches for NYC now?
yes, a major winter storm for nyc and surround area's..long island can expect up to 15 inches..that might be expanded early tomorrow.
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36905
Quoting TomTaylor:
Latest Snow Forecasts


ECMWF (16km resolution)



NAM Hires Nest (4km resolution)



Canadian Regional (10km resolution)



GFS (35km resolution)



so most of the models are predecting 15-20 inches for NYC now?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Winter Storm #4 please. Thank you.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
blizzard warning now.....................URGENT - WINTER WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TAUNTON MA
605 PM EST THU FEB 7 2013

...A POTENTIAL HISTORIC WINTER STORM AND BLIZZARD IS EXPECTED TO
DROP AROUND 2 FEET OF SNOW FRIDAY INTO SATURDAY...

MAZ005>007-012>023-RIZ001>008-080715-
/O.CON.KBOX.BZ.W.0001.130208T1100Z-130209T1800Z/
CENTRAL MIDDLESEX MA-WESTERN ESSEX MA-EASTERN ESSEX MA-
SOUTHERN WORCESTER MA-WESTERN NORFOLK MA-SOUTHEAST MIDDLESEX MA-
SUFFOLK MA-EASTERN NORFOLK MA-NORTHERN BRISTOL MA-
WESTERN PLYMOUTH MA-EASTERN PLYMOUTH MA-SOUTHERN BRISTOL MA-
SOUTHERN PLYMOUTH MA-BARNSTABLE MA-DUKES MA-
NORTHWEST PROVIDENCE RI-SOUTHEAST PROVIDENCE RI-WESTERN KENT RI-
EASTERN KENT RI-BRISTOL RI-WASHINGTON RI-NEWPORT RI-
BLOCK ISLAND RI-
INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...FRAMINGHAM...LOWELL...LAWRENCE...
GLOUCESTER...MILFORD...WORCESTER...FOXBORO...NORW OOD...
CAMBRIDGE...BOSTON...QUINCY...TAUNTON...BROCKTON. ..PLYMOUTH...
FALL RIVER...NEW BEDFORD...MATTAPOISETT...CHATHAM...FALMOUTH...
PROVINCETOWN...VINEYARD HAVEN...FOSTER...SMITHFIELD...
PROVIDENCE...WEST GREENWICH...WARWICK...BRISTOL...NARRAGANSETT...
WESTERLY...NEWPORT...BLOCK ISLAND
605 PM EST THU FEB 7 2013

...BLIZZARD WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 6 AM FRIDAY TO 1 PM
EST SATURDAY...

* LOCATIONS...EASTERN AND SOUTHEASTERN MASSACHUSETTS...INCLUDING
BOSTON AND BOSTON METRO AREA...ALL OF RHODE ISLAND INCLUDING
BLOCK ISLAND.

* HAZARD TYPES...HEAVY SNOW...BLOWING AND DRIFTING AT TIMES...
QUARTER MILE VISIBILITIES...AND WINDS GUSTING NEAR 60 MPH.

* ACCUMULATIONS...SNOW ACCUMULATION OF 18 TO 24 INCHES.

* TIMING...LIGHT SNOW WILL DEVELOP BY FRIDAY MORNING...BECOMING
HEAVY LATE IN THE DAY INTO THE EVENING COMMUTE. THE HEAVIEST OF
SNOWFALL...ESPECIALLY FOCUSED ALONG THE I-95 CORRIDOR...WILL
FALL FRIDAY NIGHT INTO SATURDAY.

* IMPACTS...BLIZZARD CONDITIONS AND DANGEROUS TRAVEL. WHITE OUT
CONDITIONS ARE ANTICIPATED AS ROADS BECOME SNOW COVERED BY THE
FRIDAY EVENING COMMUTE. STRONG NORTH-NORTHEAST WINDS ARE
ANTICIPATED WITH GUSTS UP TO AROUND 60 MPH...RESULTING IN
BLOWING AND DRIFTING OF SNOW. DAMAGE TO TREES AND STRUCTURES
ALONG WITH SCATTERED POWER OUTAGES ARE ANTICIPATED.

* WINDS...NORTHEAST 30 TO 40 MPH WITH GUSTS UP TO 65 MPH.

* VISIBILITIES...ONE QUARTER MILE OR LESS AT TIMES.

* TEMPERATURES...IN THE UPPER 20S.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A BLIZZARD WARNING IS ISSUED WHEN SUSTAINED WINDS OR FREQUENT
GUSTS OVER 35 MPH ARE EXPECTED WITH CONSIDERABLE FALLING AND/OR
BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW. VISIBILITIES WILL BECOME POOR WITH
WHITEOUT CONDITIONS AT TIMES. THOSE VENTURING OUTDOORS MAY
BECOME LOST OR DISORIENTED...SO PERSONS IN THE WARNING AREA ARE
ADVISED TO STAY INDOORS.

&&

$$
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36905
Quoting TomTaylor:
Latest Snow Forecasts


ECMWF (16km resolution)



NAM Hires Nest (4km resolution)



Canadian Regional (10km resolution)



GFS (35km resolution)


Interesting to note what a low outlier the GFS is for the NE. It's been really, really bad on this storm. On the other end of the scale, so has the NAM, as convective feedback issues have caused it to provide ridiculously high amounts, up to 60" on some runs, although its starting to come back to reality. The Euro has been the way to go for sure. We're starting to get out of the range of the global models.
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 82 Comments: 7614
Never heard Michael Phelps (again, storm chaser) talk like this before:

"There are thousands, possibly millions of people across the globe who are no longer living because they made a wrong choice or decision regarding extreme weather. "Oh, it's just another hurricane, I think I'll head over to that party at the Richelieu Apartments". Hope you and 22 others in Pass Christian, MS had fun, and sorry you left this world way too soon. "We get tornado warnings all the time and nothing ever happens", said the man walking his dog at the Golden Spur mobile home park in Andover, KS. The dog survived, he and a dozen others did not. The mother of a family vacationing in Indonesia says to her four kids, "Wow, look how the water in the ocean has went down, let's go find some sea shells". They were all swept a mile inland and drown when a massive Tsunami struck minutes later. Please, don't you be the one saying on Friday night, "These idiot weather people don't know what they are talking about, we get snow all the time up here. I'm going out as I always do, and I'll be just fine." Whether you believe me, or anyone else is not my concern. My only concern is getting the message out and hoping folks have the sense to heed the warnings and follow the friendly advice. Ultimately, you are on your own in those final moments, and you are the one who makes the choice or decision that will dictate your mortality in extreme weather. Make the right one."
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36905
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36905
Quoting TomTaylor:
Latest Snow Forecasts


ECMWF (16km resolution)



NAM Hires Nest (4km resolution)



Canadian Regional (10km resolution)



GFS (35km resolution)


I'm liking the Euro and GFS, around 5-7".
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7927
Quoting icmoore:
The winds have really been pounding in off the Gulf in Madeira Beach..I have not heard the old air handler bang around in the attic since Debby.
getting some good rains here..along with plenty of Lightning and Thunder..cable went out on me
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36905
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Winter Storm #1 (Nemo):



Winter Storm #2:



Winter Storm #3:



Winter Storm #4:



Welcome back, Winter.

I'll take Winter Storm 4 please
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Latest Snow Forecasts


ECMWF (16km resolution)



NAM Hires Nest (4km resolution)



Canadian Regional (10km resolution)



GFS (35km resolution)

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting PensacolaDoug:
Ooooo... I'm getting all tingly watching this one.
That's the sign of real weather weenie don't cha know.


Goose bumps here. Not kidding.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Tazmanian:
storm con for new York city has now been upgrade from 7 too 9


When converted from TWC to reality that pretty much equals a 5 out of 10.

But in this case I have a feeling TWC is closer to reality than usual.
Member Since: November 17, 2010 Posts: 11 Comments: 527
Barracuda
Member Since: February 29, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 5685
storm con for new York city has now been upgrade from 7 too 9
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 114728
Quoting tinkahbell:
I feel so cheated! No snow. Damn it!


I had to go to Colorado to see snow this year. It was fun.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
The winds have really been pounding in off the Gulf in Madeira Beach..I have not heard the old air handler bang around in the attic since Debby.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Ooooo... I'm getting all tingly watching this one.
That's the sign of real weather weenie don't cha know.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I feel so cheated! No snow. Damn it!
Member Since: August 27, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 249
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Both lows headed for the Northeast. Both lows intensifying. Both lows expected to phase to create a historic blizzard.

phasing begins at 2 pm est or there about fri feb 8 2013
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
maybe name all hurricanes with fish names

i like barracuda
You'd have me down down down down on my knees, now wouldn't you
Barracuda
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Looks like 24 in for us in the Berkshires.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Both lows headed for the Northeast. Both lows intensifying. Both lows expected to phase to create a historic blizzard.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
463. VR46L
Current state of play

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Winter Storm #1 (Nemo):



Winter Storm #2:



Winter Storm #3:



Winter Storm #4:



Welcome back, Winter.


yeah all the models show some more big NE snows...timing and location is off though.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Winter Storm #2:



Winter Storm #3:



Winter Storm #4:



Welcome back, Winter.


LONG way out, but I hope the model is right about us getting snow on Feb. 18...
Member Since: August 1, 2011 Posts: 28 Comments: 7902
Winter Storm #1 (Nemo):



Winter Storm #2:



Winter Storm #3:



Winter Storm #4:



Welcome back, Winter.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I'll be so glad to get this crappy noreaster off of me.... drizzly and cold outside....

Y'all in the northeast can have it.
If i won't snow here I dont want it.

I want to bring back the blizzard of 93....a blizzard in Ga and Al again would be awesome.
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458. VR46L
OH MY!!!!

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting skook:
If this was a hurricane... would it be acceptable to call it a fish storm?
maybe name all hurricanes with fish names

i like barracuda
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
Interesting, that lone cell that is leftover from the decayed squall line to the west of Tampa Bay has some super cellular structure to it. If it stays this strong, it will likely lead to a warning. More than likely though, it will weaken first.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Statistics for Boston, MA:

Snowiest day in 2012-2013: January 26 (3.2")
Snowiest day in 2011-2012: January 21 (2.9")
Total snowfall last season: 9.3"
Average snowfall: 45.1"
Last 6"+ snow event: February 1-2, 2011 (10.4")
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
well they say the storm's pressure could get down to 975 mb... I think it can further deepen...
Member Since: April 23, 2011 Posts: 104 Comments: 14871
37 sAccuWeather.com‏@breakingweather

RT @bostonlogan: Logan airport will remain open through the snow storm, but all flights will be cancelled starting Friday.

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Quoting skook:
If this was a hurricane... would it be acceptable to call it a fish storm?

badumtish
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451. skook
If this was a hurricane... would it be acceptable to call it a fish storm?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
NWS Boston‏@NWSBoston

Regional maximum wind gust map for #SNE and surrounding areas.
Link
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Wow, how timely. The new Director of the NWS. The King of winter storms and his book is what drove me to becoming a meteorologist. Good for him !! I'm a big fan !!

Link
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Quoting trHUrrIXC5MMX:
Im reading the weather discussion here while eating a good noodle soup
I'm reading the discussion while doing a lab from AP Physics. I'm learning about the fluids and water pressure :)
Member Since: August 1, 2011 Posts: 28 Comments: 7902
Quoting wxgeek723:
See this is part of the reason people criticize TWC's naming system.

This storm doesn't need a name. Especially a benign one meant for a daring goldfish.

It's going to name itself.
NBCNEWS.com calls it "Snowzilla"!
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NWS Boston‏@NWSBoston

Regional snowfall map for #SNE and surrounding areas.
Link
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I'm calling this storm the Snowtorious B.I.G.
Member Since: November 17, 2010 Posts: 11 Comments: 527
Im reading the weather discussion here while eating a good noodle soup
Member Since: April 23, 2011 Posts: 104 Comments: 14871
Rob Davis‏@RobDavis_Wx

Canadian statistical models are forecasting 32cm of snow for #Toronto! That would be the largest storm of 21st century
Link
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Looks like im going to be getting it bad here in southern new brunswick too ! bring it on
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Quoting wxgeek723:
See this is part of the reason people criticize TWC's naming system.

This storm doesn't need a name. Especially a benign one meant for a daring goldfish.

It's going to name itself.


yeah... why do they turn something kid-fun into a devastating storm...
Member Since: April 23, 2011 Posts: 104 Comments: 14871
See this is part of the reason people criticize TWC's naming system.

This storm doesn't need a name. Especially a benign one meant for a daring goldfish.

It's going to name itself.
Member Since: August 28, 2008 Posts: 79 Comments: 3467
The gov. of RI just explained that the "cold air coming out of Canada is mixing with very moist air coming up from Texas" to create a very big storm.
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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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