Northeast flooding continues; Hong Hong breathing easier

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:12 PM GMT on May 16, 2006

Major flooding continues across New Hampshire, southwest Maine, and northeast Massachussetts today, where an additional 1-3 inches of rain has fallen in the past day and another inch is expected today. The culprit "cut off low"--a large low pressure system that got separated from the jet stream--is drifting slowly northeastward, and is expected to leave the area tonight, bringing an end to the heavy rains and the worst of the flooding. However, an active jet stream pattern over the next seven days will continue to bring occasional rain to the area, and area rivers--which are generally five to eight feet above flood stage--will be slow to fall. By next Tuesday, the GFS model is indicating that a more summer-like weather pattern may emerge, with the jet stream retreating northwards and warmer, dryer air moving in.

Figure 1. Rainfall amounts for New England estimated by radar, ending at 10am EDT Monday May 16.

Typhoon Chanchu
The season's first typhoon has continued to weaken, and was a Category 3 storm with 125 mph sustained winds at 8am EDT this morning. Chanchu (which means "pearl" in Chinese), is expected to continue to weaken over the next day due to dry air, cooler ocean temperatures in its path, and interaction with land. The typhoon is expected to spare Hong Kong a direct hit, and come ashore over the Guangdong province on China's eastern coast on Wednesday as a Category 2 storm. This is a far cry from last Friday's intensity forecast, which projected that Chanchu would strike as a Category 5 supertyphoon! Chanchu is yet another example of our poor ability to make accurate long-range hurricane intensity forecasts.

Chanchu delivered a serious blow to the Philippines over the weekend, killing at least 37 and leaving thousands homeless.

Figure 2. Typhoon Chanchu at 5:30 am EDT Tuesday, with 125 mph sustained winds.

My next blog will be Wednesday, when I'll talk more about air pollution, plus the Northeast flooding and Typhoon Chanchu.

Jeff Masters

Flooding of the North River in Lee NH (SiriusleeNH)
Normally this river is about 10 feet below the bridge. The pavement across the bridge is about half eroded, the bridge will probably need replacing.
Flooding of the North River in Lee NH
Serious Flooding in Chester (FromChester)
This was taken along Hanson Rd in Chester near the Raymond line. Who knows how deep it is here, but I'm assuming no one will be driving through here for awhile.
Serious Flooding in Chester

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

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183. snowboy
2:39 PM GMT on May 17, 2006
It looks downright blobby - in his blog weatherguy03 is suggesting (and I concur) that we keep an eye on this area over the next few days as the front washes out and maybe starts to come north again.
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182. Wombats
12:59 PM GMT on May 17, 2006
Looks interesting weather.. Time will tell if it will develop.
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181. aquak9
8:43 AM EDT on May 17, 2006
rxse7en, that was gross.
Humorous, but gross. :)
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180. Weather456
8:40 AM AST on May 17, 2006
take a look south west Caribbean sea
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179. Weather456
8:39 AM AST on May 17, 2006
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178. desertdisaster
12:04 PM GMT on May 17, 2006
Good day People...

Chanchu is still there...but...

Makani turning to visit Hawaii...

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177. rxse7en
7:35 AM EDT on May 17, 2006
Stay away from these plants.
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176. swatkins
11:23 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
All right I got one right! My wife will be so proud of me :)

There was a Century Plant in a cactus garden on a side street where I grew up.. About once every 7 years it grew the tall stock and bloomed... I was always watching for it :)
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175. Inyo
8:03 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
Century plant is a neat plant, a similar plant is the agave that tequila is made out of.. and other similar plants include yucca and joshua trees.

everyone likes to yell at stormtop.. but i cant help but wonder why anyone takes him seriously in the first place. he's the new cyclome buster, or maybe they are the same person.

We had some tiny cumulus buildups over the mountains today.. one of them tried to bolt and do something but it got nailed by dry air or something and fell apart before the top could freeze. Looks like nevada had some good storms though, I wish i could have seen them.
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174. ForecasterColby
5:58 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
It was the century plant. Weird.
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173. sayhuh
10:00 PM CST on May 16, 2006
Praises Mother Nature for sparing humanity. Curses Mother Nature for the colossal fizz-out.
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170. taco2me61
3:47 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
Your Killing me David.....LOL You change your name as much as I change woman...LOL

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168. taco2me61
3:33 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
Yes it does sound like that it is a Century Plant and the one that I saw here in Mobile was as tall as 21 feet... But I thought it was ugly but each there own...

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167. swatkins
2:35 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
I think it's a Century Plant...
Here's a link,
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166. sayhuh
8:11 PM CST on May 16, 2006
Michael, I have to watch you ongoing now to see how much more data you find with directory look forward to the finds...
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165. louastu
2:18 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
Is this the plant you are talking about Colby?

Titan Arum
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163. ForecasterColby
2:13 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
Hurriphon, as a Florida resident, I have to agree. Florida is hardly ugly, but I spent some time in Chicago and the great lakes area, and it's just stunning.

By the way, does anyone know of a plant that looks like a big (roughly hemispheric, 5 ft radius) cactus bush that suddenly grows a 10-12 foot asparagus-looking stalk out of it? 'Cause my neighbor has one. Weird.
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162. louastu
1:48 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
Wow, that is a lot of id's.
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161. louastu
1:39 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
Posted By: MichaelSTL at 8:29 PM CDT on May 16, 2006.
Sometimes, they don't even issue warnings when penny sized hail is possible (they issue a Special Weather Statement, but no warnings); possibly this is because it is only a marginal threat.

That is a possibility. It is also possible that, since hail size is generally estimated by doppler radar, that the combination of rain, and hail smaller than penny size, could cause uncertainty, which might make them issue only an advisory, stating that hail up to penny size is possible.
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159. louastu
1:35 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
I personally don't care how many you make. I just want to know how many you have now.
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156. louastu
1:29 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
How many id's do you have David?
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154. louastu
1:24 AM GMT on May 17, 2006

Severe thunderstorms are defined in the United States as having either tornadoes, gusts at least 58 mph, or hail at least 3/4 inch in diameter.
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153. louastu
1:11 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
I don't think they list winds lower than 55 mph (the minimum wind speed needed to classify a storm as severe).
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151. Hurriphoon
12:12 AM GMT on May 17, 2006
We do need the rain here in Florida and I wish we were getting more. At least with this slow almost drizzle the wateris finding time to soak in the ground before running off. I've been noticing some of the slash pines around here falling over from the brief burst of heavy rain and wind we had last week. After two years of hurricanes I thought most of the weak trees would be down, maybe I'll be proven wrong soon.

Off topic disclaimer: Following is off topic, but I can't just let anyone get away with saying Florida is the prettiest state when it's a fact California has it beat by a wide margin!
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150. StellarCyclone
8:53 PM GMT on May 16, 2006
Just ignore/spam those who are so much into their own ego that they need an Ego Wide Replacement Cycle.
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149. louastu
8:58 PM GMT on May 16, 2006
The sub-tropical storm of 2004 was named Nicole. I don't know why they have it listed as unnamed.

Here is a link to the NHC archive of 2004 storms.
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147. louastu
8:45 PM GMT on May 16, 2006
Wow, there must have been an awesome storm in Nevada yesterday. Look at the wind measurement.

2341 424 WINNEMUCCA HUMBOLDT NV 4097 11773 (LKN)

Is this a record?
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146. TheLuckyTacoBlizzard
1:34 PM PDT on May 16, 2006
oh i see rain rain i hoping for rain for FL waht send them some rain rain rain
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145. franck
8:29 PM GMT on May 16, 2006
No're cool mang. We're just upset because Florida is still pretty dry, and it's the prettiest state!
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144. Randyman
7:51 PM GMT on May 16, 2006
Posted By: STORMTOP at 5:45 PM GMT on May 15, 2006
...i can assure you this will not need to start watching the gulf for real after may 23...THIS HAS BEEN A BULLETIN FROM THE STORMTOPS WEATHER SERVICE.001253

Interesting comment by StormTop because this morning my Houston/Galveston NWS office alludes to an easterly wave in the gulf somewhere around this time...

420 AM CDT TUE MAY 16 2006


I checked the GFS and MRF runs3 and both indicate a tropical wave of sorts in the southern Gulf of Mexico around May 23rd.

StormTop I know you say you don't believe in computer models but are sure you don't occasionally cheat and take a sneak peak at the extended range forecast models... :)

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143. rwdobson
8:05 PM GMT on May 16, 2006
No offense taken....

I have been accused of many things in my life, but never before been accused of being profanity police...if anything my language is usually too salty. You stupid c*&^@#$%^$r....
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142. franck
7:59 PM GMT on May 16, 2006
Oh I'm sorry then. I'm not sure who it was. I'll take a look back and correct it.. No offense.
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141. rwdobson
7:35 PM GMT on May 16, 2006
"Somebody in here last week called me down for 'dammit', I think it was Mr. Dobson...we would have some real toilet mouths in here if it weren't for people like Dobson policing though"

you obviously don't know me then...i have never flagged any post on these blogs for any reason. and i would never flag anything for obscenity. considering that you have absolutely no reason to suspect me, i do wonder why you decided that it was me doing it?

i usually don't swear myself on this board b/c it's not appropriate here, but check out the funkbus board if you think i'm some kind of language-policing prude.

funkbus sports board
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140. TheLuckyTacoBlizzard
12:38 PM PDT on May 16, 2006
ok i hop evere one not mad at me
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139. atmosweather
3:34 PM EDT on May 16, 2006
Don't worry about it David, you did nothing wrong.
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138. TheLuckyTacoBlizzard
12:31 PM PDT on May 16, 2006
i like to say sorry to evere one from last nigtht
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137. weatherguy03
3:19 PM EDT on May 16, 2006
Speaking of the low risk thing. Of course the headline in our local paper today says we will be sparred this year..LOL That is what drives me crazy!!
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136. Alec
3:22 PM EDT on May 16, 2006
yeah pulse....low pressure decided the sea needed more rain than poor FL:(

Have a great afternoon guys:) Gotta go do stuff...
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135. ProgressivePulse
7:19 PM GMT on May 16, 2006
Question for anyone who can answer! Wasn't this front approaching SFL supposed to stall out? And low pressure ride up the stalled front?
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134. FLCrackerGirl
3:12 PM EDT on May 16, 2006
What Was The Nickname Bloggers Had For Bastardi Last Year??

Joe "Head-For-The-Hills" Bastardi??!! LOL

Predict Catastrophic Storms Long Enough,
& Eventually Be Right???
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133. Alec
3:12 PM EDT on May 16, 2006
no didnt see CNN franck, but I dont approve(disagree) of accuweather telling certain regions that are low risk, medium risk...etc..we better ALL be prepared because accuweather has been wrong about these predictions last yr(Bastardi said the mid Atlantic would spell big trouble, but it was the Gulf Coast....they also said to expect 5 or 7 billion worth of damage...sad to say, multiply that by 20...)
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Cat 6 lead authors: WU cofounder Dr. Jeff Masters (right), who flew w/NOAA Hurricane Hunters 1986-1990, & WU meteorologist Bob Henson, @bhensonweather

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