Share

Winter Storm Nemo: Historic Blizzard Pounds New England

Chris Dolce
Published: February 9, 2013

Nemo's Coastal Flood Threat

Background

Boston Tides

Boston Tides

Intense, onshore winds will produce moderate to locally major coastal flooding around high tides Saturday morning. Flooding was reported in Weymouth, Mass., at the time of high tide Friday evening.

(READ FLOOD ALERTS:  MA | NY | CT | NH | ME | NJ | DE)

Background

S. New England Coastal Flood

S. New England Coastal Flood

S. New England Coastal Flood

S. New England Coastal Flood

The areas at greatest risk are north and east-facing shorelines from Boston south into Cape Cod Bay, with tides 3-4' above normal already observed and expected to continue through Saturday morning's high tide!  

According to Michael Lowry, Hurricane Specialist and Storm Surge Expert at The Weather Channel (On Twitter), here are top five storm tide values at the Boston Harbor gauge in the historical record:

  • "Blizzard of '78" (Feb. 6, 1978):  4.82 feet
  • January 2, 1987:  3.92 feet
  • "Perfect Storm" (Oct. 30, 1991):  3.86 feet
  • January 28, 1979:  3.76 feet
  • 1992 Nor'easter (Dec. 12, 1992):  3.75 feet
  • All values are referenced to mean higher high water, i.e., the normal high tide level.

Lowry says a model storm surge forecast for Boston Harbor suggests this storm may produce a peak surge on par with both the 1992 Nor'easter and the January 1979 event, with the greatest threat during Saturday morning's high tide.

Tide levels at Boston were 4.21 feet above normal just after midnight Saturday morning.

(EXPERT BLOG:  Weather Underground's Dr. Jeff Masters)

Suffice to say, significant beach erosion will occur along the entire Mass. coast.  This may include some structural damage, flooding of basements along with numerous roads closed!  Those conditions were observed with Friday's evening high tide.

Significant coastal flooding is also expected Saturday morning along the sound side of Long Island and the "eastern forks", as well as parts of coastal Connecticut and the southern coast of Maine.  Minor to locally moderate coastal flooding is also expected along the Jersey shore and the Delmarva Peninsula.

Major impacts to interstate and air travel are forecasted with this storm. Be sure to check back with us at weather.com and The Weather Channel for the latest on this winter storm.

Follow our meteorologists on Twitter:  Chris Dolce | Jonathan Erdman | Nick Wiltgen

MORE ON WEATHER.COM: VON KARMAN VORTICES

Read more about von Karman vortices at this link.

von Karman Vortices

von Karman Vortices

NASA

Near Guadalupe Island off the coast of Baja California on June 21, 2012.

  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices
  • von Karman Vortices

Featured Blogs

25th Anniversary of Hurricane Hugo Hitting South Carolina

By Dr. Jeff Masters
September 21, 2014

On September 21, 1989, Hurricane Hugo underwent a period of rapid intensification that made it a Category 4 storm with 135 mph winds at landfall at Sullivan's Island, South Carolina at 11:57 pm. It was the strongest hurricane on record to hit South Carolina, and the second strongest hurricane (since reliable records began in 1851) to hit the U.S. East Coast north of Florida.

Incredible Rainstorm in Southern France

By Christopher C. Burt
September 19, 2014

Torrential rainfall Tuesday through Thursday morning (September 16-18) in the Languedoc Region of southern France has resulted in flooding that has killed at least four people with two others still missing. The rainfall rates during the storm were phenomenal.

Live Blog: Tracking Hurricane Arthur as it Approaches North Carolina Coast

By Shaun Tanner
July 3, 2014

This is a live blog set up to provide the latest coverage on Hurricane Arthur as it threatens the North Carolina Coast. Check back often to see what the latest is with Arthur. The most recent updates are at the top.

Tropical Terminology

By Stu Ostro
June 30, 2014

Here is some basic, fundamental terminology related to tropical cyclones. Rather than a comprehensive and/or technical glossary, this represents the essence of the meaning & importance of some key, frequently used terms.

2013-14 - An Interesting Winter From A to Z

By Tom Niziol
May 15, 2014

It was a very interesting winter across a good part of the nation from the Rockies through the Plains to the Northeast. Let's break down the most significant winter storms on a month by month basis.

What the 5th IPCC Assessment Doesn't Include

By Angela Fritz
September 27, 2013

Melting permafrost has the potential to release an additional 1.5 trillion tons of carbon into the atmosphere, and could increase our global average temperature by 1.5°F in addition to our day-to-day human emissions. However, this effect is not included in the IPCC report issued Friday morning, which means the estimates of how Earth's climate will change are likely on the conservative side.