08.31.13

GWC Slideshow–August 31, 2013–Trip to Yankee Stadium

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Slideshows at 11:38 pm by gmachos

Here is a slideshow taken from photos taken of my trip to Yankee Stadium. Skies went back and forth between clouds and sun all day on this day. Conditions were warmer, but most of all, it was very humid. The air was almost tropical in nature. At the GWC Wx Station in South Plainfield, the high temperature was 86 degrees while the dew point was just under 77 for a heat index of 96. No storms though and the Yankees won 2-0 over the Orioles.

08.30.13

Severe Weather Outlook for Saturday

Posted in GWC News, GWC Severe Weather Report at 11:15 am by gmachos

Thunderstorms Likely on Saturday and Possible for Balance of Labor Day Weekend

As the unofficial end of summer is upon us, many are getting away to celebrate the holiday weekend across the United States. Here in the Northeast though, Friday looks to be the best day of the weekend. Starting on Saturday, the weather will begin to go downhill as an upper level low approaches from the Upper Midwest.

The Storm Prediction Center indicates that there were be a lot of available energy in the atmosphere on Saturday, but there won’t be a great deal of instability and wind shear to fuel severe storms with high wind and hail. The Weather Channel indicates that there will be an 80 percent chance of rain on Saturday and a 60 percent chance on both Sunday and Monday.

While much of the Midwest and Great Plains is still baking in the heat from the grip of a strong dome of high pressure, the Northeast has laid on the periphery of that high. Conditions have been warm and muggy with temperatures in the upper 70s to low 80s along with dew points in the low 70s. So far on Friday, the temperature in Northwestern Middlesex County has been hovering in the mid 70s, but dew points are still in the upper 60s to near 70.

The muggy weather will provide the energy to create the possibility of storms this weekend. Will the stormy weather hold off for Saturday afternoon’s game between the Yankees and Orioles at Yankee Stadium? The forecast from the National Weather Service office in Upton, New York is calling for a 30 percent chance of thunderstorms during the afternoon and evening. The probability will increase to 50 percent for Sunday. The chance of storms is expected to linger even into Tuesday.

08.29.13

GWC Slideshow–August 22, 2013–Caught in a Downpour

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Slideshows at 10:55 pm by gmachos

Here is a slideshow from photos taken of a downpour last week in downtown South Plainfield. On this day, nearly an inch of rainfall fell at GWC from several waves of thunderstorms and showers. So far in August 2013, there has been over 4.5 inches of rain here in town.

GWC Slideshow–August 29, 2013–Trip to New York City

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Slideshows at 10:47 pm by gmachos

Here is a slideshow from photos taken during GWC’s trip to New York City on the seastreak from Conners Highlands in Monmouth County on August 29, 2013. It was a great weather day for a sightseeing trip to New York City via the Seastreak from Conners Highlands near Sandy Hook. The day got off to a cloudy start, but gradually cleared out just in time for the trip. Conditions were still a bit muggy, but there was plenty of wind to make things comfortable. This slideshow contains photos of the Verrazano Bridge, New York Harbor, Statue of Liberty, Freedom Tower, Empire State Building, Brooklyn Bridge, Manhattan Bridge, Williamsburg Bridge, and the Queensboro Bridge, and plays to the tunes of Billy Joel’s New York State of Mind, and Frank Sinatra’s New York, New York.

GWC Weather Footage–August 29, 2013–Trip to New York City

Posted in General, GWC News, YouTube Videos at 8:38 pm by gmachos

It was a great weather day for a sightseeing trip to New York City via the Seastreak from Conners Highlands near Sandy Hook. The day got off to a cloudy start, but gradually cleared out just in time for the trip. Conditions were still a bit muggy, but there was plenty of wind to make things comfortable. The video contains footage of the Verrazano Bridge, New York Harbor, Statue of Liberty, Freedom Tower, Empire State Building, Brooklyn Bridge, Manhattan Bridge, Williamsburg Bridge, and the Queensboro Bridge.

08.27.13

Watching the Eastern Atlantic

Posted in Storm Preparation, Tracking the Tropics at 11:00 pm by gmachos

Couple Waves in Eastern Atlantic Could Become Trouble Spots Later in the Week

The Atlantic wound down again with Fernand dissipating over Mexico on Monday afternoon. We are still looking for our first hurricane of the season. There have only been six depressions and six named storms with many of the storms being modest at best, and none have really impacted the United States. Keep in mind though that we didn’t get our first hurricane of the 2011 season until Hurricane Irene developed towards the end of August that year, and we all know how that turned out.

With that in mind, we take a look around the Atlantic tropics tonight. First, we’ll take a look at our most immediate concern, which is an area of disturbed weather off the coast of South Florida. The disturbance is a product of an upper level low along with a weak surface trough. As of right now, this area has the best chance of development, and that is not saying much. Pressures are still high in this area, which means that you don’t have enough rising air to create the type of thunderstorm development essential for tropical formation. No significant development is expected with this disturbance over the next 48 hours to 5 days.

Moving further to the east, we find that there are a couple areas of possible trouble on the horizon. There are two tropical waves in the Eastern Atlantic. One is several hundred miles to the west-southwest of the Cape Verde Islands while the other has just moved off the coast of Africa. Both of these waves currently have a low probability of developing over the next 48 hours, but their probabilities increase as we head further along in the week. Wave number one has a 30 percent chance of development over the next five days while wave number two has a 20 percent chance.

As we approach the Labor Day holiday and the end of meteorological summer, we also enter the peak of the Atlantic Hurricane Season with the classic Cape Verde storms more and more a possibility. The statistical peak of the Atlantic season falls on September 10th. So, despite the somewhat sluggish start to the season here in the Atlantic, nobody along the United States coastline from Maine to Texas is off the hook yet. There is still a lot of season left to produce just that one storm like Hurricane Andrew (1992), Hurricane Floyd (1999), Hurricane Katrina (2005), and Hurricane Sandy (2012). Hurricane season usually ends on November 30th.

Severe Weather Outlook for Wednesday

Posted in GWC News, GWC Severe Weather Report at 10:28 pm by gmachos

Isolated Strong To Severe Storms Possible; Widespread Outbreak Not Likely

Earlier this week, I had reported on the increased possibility of strong to severe thunderstorms starting on Monday night, and lasting into Wednesday. So far, there hasn’t been much of a severe threat this week. There were cloudy skies on Monday, and some morning rain on Tuesday that brought a tenth of an inch to South Plainfield, but nothing like the heavy rain that was originally forecast.

Things could change tomorrow though as as a disturbance will combine with an approaching cold front to bring some rain and isolated strong to severe storms. The latest outlook from the Storm Prediction Center indicates that areas from the Ohio Valley to the Mid-Atlantic could see isolated clusters of thunderstorms develop with damaging winds and heavy rain. As of this time though, no widespread severe weather is expected. Indications are that there will not be enough wind shear, and instability to produce a larger severe outbreak.

Looking at the current weather map of the United States, a large dome of high pressure continues to sit over the middle of the country, and that is providing hot conditions from South Texas to Northern Wisconsin, South Dakota, and Southeastern Montana. Temperatures throughout this region have been running from the low 90s to above 100 degrees. Factor in the dew points that have been running between the mid 60s and mid 70s, and you have oppressive conditions with heat index values topping out well over 100 degrees. Right now (10:28 PM EDT), heat index values are still running between the mid 80s to mid 90s throughout much of the Midwest and Great Plains.

With the strong dome of high pressure entrenched in the country’s mid-section, you have what forecasters call a ring of fire pattern running around the high. On the northern periphery of the high, places such as Wisconsin and the Lower Peninsula of Michigan are under Severe Weather watches thanks to thunderstorms that have fired up in those portions of the U.S. The SPC has put those areas under a slight risk for severe storms tonight. The ring of fire pattern that has developed has in the past been a breeding ground for of derechos or powerful line of storms.

Temperatures are expected to rise into the mid to upper 80s on both Wednesday and Thursday across New Jersey. Right now, the local forecast from the National Weather Service office in Mount Holly, New Jersey is calling for a 30 percent chance of storms on Wednesday and Wednesday night with a 20 percent chance on Thursday.

08.25.13

Fernand Forms In Gulf

Posted in Storm Track, Commentary, Storm Facts, Tracking the Tropics at 11:47 pm by gmachos

Sixth Named Storm of 2013 Atlantic Season Develops in Bay of Campeche Region of Gulf

The tropics are trying to fire up again in the Atlantic. A disturbance that developed in the Northwestern Caribbean late last week, moved through the Yucatan, and gradually became better organized. The National Hurricane Center with its Hurricane Hunter aircraft in the region, began to notice the development, and reclassified the disturbance as Tropical Depression Six late Sunday afternoon, and a few hours later, Fernand emerged.

Located in the Bay of Campeche region of the Gulf of Mexico, Tropical Storm Fernand is only several miles off the coast of Veracruz, or approximately 140 miles to the Southeast of Tuxpan. Maximum sustained winds are currently 50 miles per hour with gusts in excess of 60 miles per hour. Minimum central pressure in Fernand is at 1001 millibars, or 29.56 inches of Hg. Tropical storm winds extend some 35 miles from the center of circulation. Wind gusts in Veracruz Harbor topped out at 72 miles per hour as of the most recent report. Rain will eventually be the key factor with this storm. Rainfall amounts across Mexican provinces in the storm’s immediate path are expected to range between 4 and 8 inches with isolated amounts of up to 12 inches.

The storm is moving slowly to the West at 9 miles per hour. A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for the Gulf Coast of Mexico from Veracruz northward to Barra de Natula. The latest forecast discussion from the NHC indicates that conditions are still favorable in the vicinity of the storm for further strengthening before it makes landfall. The recent reports from the area around Veracruz, and infared satellite imagery showing a burst of convection provided the basis for the NHC’s upgrade in the storm’s strength to 50 mile per hour winds. Once the storm comes ashore though, it will gradually wind down after being cut off from its energy source of warm ocean water. The forecast calls for Fernand to weaken to a minimal tropical storm in 12 hours, and dissipate within 24 hours.

With the formation of Fernand, there have now been six depressions and six named storms in the Atlantic. However, none of them have yet to become hurricanes. So far, only two named storms have formed during the month of August. Eight named storms developed during the month of August last year, and climatologically speaking, the month is usually more active than what we’ve seen so far this season. Things could be changing though. The African pipeline continues to produce storms moving into the Atlantic. As a matter of fact, a wave just moved off the West African coast, and has a 30 percent chance of becoming a tropical cyclone within the next several days. Behind the wave, is another potent thunderstorm complex in West Africa.

Thursday’s Thunderstorms Bring About Nice Weekend Weather

Posted in GWC News at 11:09 pm by gmachos

Heat and Humidity Set To Return This Week As Well As Severe Weather

On Thursday afternoon, I got caught in a torrential downpour at Monument Park in downtown South Plainfield. You saw that in both the time lapse video and storm footage that I posted here in the blog. The videos only captured one round of the storms that pushed through town that day. There were three waves of showers and storms that moved through on Thursday. Total rainfall amount was just under an inch. The heaviest rain came during the afternoon storm that I captured on camera.

These storms were part of a storm system that moved through first from the south and then from the west. While the storms produced heavy rain and a Flood Advisory in parts of New Jersey, it did manage to usher in some changes to the weather. Prior to the arrival of the storms on Thursday, the heat and humidity had been on the increase. Temperatures rose into the upper 80s to near 90 on both Tuesday and Wednesday. Dew points climbed up into the low 70s as well to produce heat index values in the low 90s. It was perhaps the warmest weather so far in the month of August around the Garden State.

As a matter of fact, the last 90 degree day this summer in South Plainfield was on July 20th before severe storms rolled through the area. August 2013 has been the coolest month of August in three years. Following the passage of the cold front on the tail end of our storm system, temperatures and humidity levels dropped to more comfortable values for the weekend. Over the past three days, temperatures ranged from 79 to 82 degrees with minimum dew points ranging from 51 to 54 degrees. Skies were sunny with plenty of blue skies, and very little in the way of clouds. The only cloudiness was in the form of high cirrus clouds.

The heat and humidity will be creeping back into our weather picture as we start the new week. A persistent heat wave has built up in the midsection of the United States, and that will be moving east toward our region. As a result, temperatures will be rising into the mid to upper 80s starting on Monday and throughout the balance of the week. The periphery of the ridge of high pressure in the Midwest will be positioned just right for storms to come barreling through from the Great Lakes beginning on Monday night and lasting through Wednesday. Some of these storms could be severe.

Looking ahead to the unofficial end of summer, the Labor Day Weekend, the long range forecasts are indicating the heat and humidity to continue, and we could be looking at 90 degree weather for the holiday.

08.24.13

GWC Time Lapse–August 22, 2013–Double Downpour

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Time Lapse at 12:47 am by gmachos

Here is a time lapse video of weather conditions at Greg’s Weather Center in South Plainfield on August 22, 2013. On this day, nearly an inch of rain fell at GWC thanks to a couple rounds of downpours. With this latest rainfall, nearly four and a half inches of rain has fallen at GWC this August. Over the last three years, almost 25 inches of rain has fallen during the month of August at GWC.

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