A Halloween Tropical Troublemaker!

I’m sure a few of you have heard about the possibility of a Blockbuster East Coast Storm/Hurricane. Well, it’s a bit too early to get excited or hyped up about this scenario, but know that it is not impossible. The culprit here. . .newly named Tropical Storm Sandy. Sandy doesn’t sound like a threatening name to me, but if some of the models are correct. . .look out!

Infrared satellite image with the current positions of TS Sandy and TD #19 by the National Hurricane Center.

I’m not going to include multiple maps for this upcoming situation as it’s too early yet. I did include the current infrared satellite image with the current positions of Tropical Storm Sandy and Tropical Depression #19 courtesy of the National Hurricane Center. TD19 will stay far from land, although may flirt with hurricane strength at some point during its lifetime. TS Sandy is bound to cause major headaches for forecasters and Emergency Managers as we wait to see how it interacts with an approaching trough from Canada. This trough will have some very cold air for this time of year, so there is plenty of energy on the table, but what will happen?

As you can see, I drew three main track philosophies on the map above that represents today’s model solutions. Starting with the arrow that turns right south of Bermuda, that would be the GFS forecast which means nothing for the East Coast and Bermuda would have to be on guard. This possibility is not off the table yet, but I’m a bit skeptical as this model is notorious for recurving storms too fast. The middle arrow is from the European model and would bring a very strong storm, possibly hurricane into New England. This is a bit more likely, but historically, has never happened before. . .to my knowledge. The third track that bends to the left is down-right scary (from the Canadian, Japanese, and earlier runs of the European and GFS) as that would be a very high impact East Coast event. Although I think that is just as unlikely at this point as the recurve towards Bermuda, there is history on Sandy’s side. I included a couple historical tracks below for your amusement.

A map of the “Gale of 78” courtesy of David M. Roth and High D. Cobb III from a paper they wrote in 2000.
Track of Hurricane Hazel (1954) courtesy of Unisys Weather.

As you can see, it has happened before. . . I will have more on this situation as it develops (doesn’t develop) over the next few days.

Thanks for reading!

One thought on “A Halloween Tropical Troublemaker!

  1. thanks for the update!!! We are headed to delaware on Thursday and we were coming home sunday or monday. please let me know your thoughts. My mom is also leaving florida to come to DE ( leaving fla sat to be in de late sunday or leaving fla sunday and coming into de late monday)

    I am afraid she is going to hit bad weather, she will not listen to me but she will listen to you..

    hugs deb

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