Houston, we have a problem.
Spent the day in the car, so missed the morning updates. The afternoon updates are not good.
Hermine could become a big problem for the East Coast later this weekend.
I only got a quick look at the forecasts but will update when I get back later tonight.
Here’s the short story:
1. Hermine is intensifying and will continue to intensify prior to landfall, perhaps to CAT 1 hurricane.
2. The track is now further west (as suggested by yesterday’s ensemble models) with landfall expected near Apalachacola, FL around midnight Thursday night.
3. The extended forecast is still uncertain but is not pretty. The track will remain inland through GA, SC, and NC reaching near Norfolk (ORF) Saturday afternoon. The remainder of the track forecast from the models are wildly variable and highly uncertain but pose a threat to New England on Sunday (see link below)
In the normal circumstances, such a long trip overland would tend to exhaust a tropical storm but Hermine is likely to interact with a disturbance dropping down from Canada late in the weekend (similar in some ways to Sandy). In the parlance, Hermine will “go extratropical” with the energy from the upper level disturbance keeping it alive and kicking. This can make for unusual tracks – like Sandy, it may get pulled back to the west…..or not.
The main threat from Hermine for the Chesapeake will be heavy, heavy rain and a strong E to SE winds at gale to tropical storm force on Saturday.
For New England, there is no clear consensus in the forecast other than that the models have the center finally turning east just south of Long Island/Cape Cod. There is a hint the darn thing might stall at that point raising a big coastal erosion issue from DE up to Cape Cod. Again, highly uncertain but please keep an eye on it.
William Sargent’s latest book, Plum Island; 4,000 Years on a Barrier Beach, available in local bookstores and at http://www.ingram.content.com.
Bill Sargent will be leading a beach walk starting from the Plum Island Point lighthouse Sundays at 2pm. Cost $10.