The Weekly Weather Take 8/28/2016

Five years ago this morning power went out for many in Southern New England as Tropical Storm Irene moved up the east coast and into New England.  Irene brought devastating floods to Vermont and upstate New York as well as lots of wind damage to Southern New England.  The power would not be restored for 4-5 days for many.  Although Irene was a tropical storm its low central pressure and large wind field created widespread problems.  For me it remains one of the most memorable storms I have ever covered for this blog.

August 20, 2011- Irene forms
August 21, 2011- Irene moves by Puerto Rico and I make my first hurricane map
August 22, 2011- Irene moves by the Dominican Republic without weakening much
August 24, 2011- Irene moves through the Bahama's and a models show flooding rain potential
August 26, 2011- Irene approaches the Carolina coast 
August 27, 2011- Irene begins to move up the coast and Uxbridge floods
August 30, 2011- Irene wrap up 

Irene was my first my first major storm.  I certainly did more "wishcasting" than "forecasting" in terms of final track and wind speed.  I looked for reasons as to why and how the storm could hit New England and I missed out on the fact that Irene would be weaker and further west.  Here is some tree damage on Jon Circle in Whitinsville
Tree/power line damage August 28, 2011 (image Zack Green)
Here is flooding in Vermont from the storm
Flood waters from Tropical Storm Irene on the Ottauquechee River in Quechee, Vermont (image Wikipedia)
More Vermont
CNN Vermont flooding aftermath 
Storm surge damage in East Haven, CT
East Haven, CT storm surge damage (via UConn)
NWS Boston Irene graphic 
Irene shows that a tropical storm can be extremely disruptive to our lives.

Current Tropical Outlook
If you read my last blog you know the tropics are heating up.  There was much speculation about a tropical wave potentially hitting Florida or the Gulf Coast.  Even I said it reminded me of a certain storm from 11 years ago for South Florida.  That was wrong.  I used the name Katrina not for the New Orleans/Mississippi part of the storm but for the South Florida landfall in 2005 in which Tropical Storm Katrina strengthened right before landfall near Miami catching people off guard.  That's the only point I was trying to make but I realize you can't use the K word when forecasting.  It makes people uneasy.

Well the storm never formed which was always a possibility.  But we can't bury it yet- all signs point to something developing in 48-72 hours when the disturbance moves into the Eastern Gulf of Mexico.
NHC Atlantic Tropical Cyclone and Disturbances
But it now appears a new tropical depression off the Carolina coast will get the truly horrid name of Hermine while the Gulf system would be named Ian.  Gaston is a strong category 2 Hurricane making its way out to sea.  Tropical Depression Eight is forecast to move near NC before turning out.  Hopefully we can get some rain from it in Southern New England but it doesn't look likely.
NHC TD Eight track/forecast
Precipitation Outlook
Not much expected this week.
WPC 7 day precipitation forecast 
Not good.  Severe to extreme drought is in effect for over 70% of the commonwealth.
US drought monitor Massachusetts 8/23/2016
Weather links from the last week or so

1)  US Tornadoes takes a look at the "surprise" tornado outbreak from Wednesday.
2)  David Epstein of Boston.com takes a look at the overnight EF-1 tornado in Concord, MA.
3)  USA Today wonders why people didn't pay more attention to the Louisiana floods.
4)  Dr. Marshall Shepherd leads a round table on the tropical wave about to enter the GOM.
5)  Accuweather discusses Typhoon Lionrock as it approaches Japan (best name in the tropical game).
6) The Weather Channel discusses Tropical Storm Madeline and its potential to impact Hawaii.
7) After the earthquake in Italy experts warn about keeping the mafia away from the rebuild.
8) On this years anniversary of Katrina others need help from New Orleans.

I'll talk to you guys during the week!

-Zack Green

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