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Florence was a serious storm, make no mistake about it. However, if you look at the parameters of the system, it generally under-performed in all areas if you take an average message that the bulk of media was sending in the days leading up to it. While I agree that it is always better to prepare for the worst, it was also clear from a meteorological perspective that some of the things being talked about were simply not going to take place. Are we going to treat every hurricane now like it’s coming in as the “worst ever”? This is not going to work. It will add to complacency. While there were (and still are in some cases) areas that received very serious flooding due to rainfall, many other areas pretty much guaranteed to did not, and this will result in ignorance come the next storm, which will lead to trouble should things be serious in those very areas where the forecast is not taken seriously. But once again, we saw a whole lot of dramatics and a lot of lost realism. There were some good forecasts made out there, such as the storm weakening to a low end category 2 or high end category 1 before landfall, but also reminding the receivers of the forecast to not focus on just the category, or the top winds, because there were other aspects of the storm that were quite serious. Again, the quest for ratings has resulted in a failure to educate. One of most disturbing examples that I witnessed during this event was a well-known reporter for a well-known cable network basically faking or over-dramatizing the impact of the wind during a live report, standing as if it was difficult to keep their balance in the tremendous onslaught coming into their face. Only problem is, the wind was at their back, and the footing maneuvers will never be nominated for an Oscar. And I didn’t even have to mention the 2 people casually strolling by just feet behind the reporter, without much difficulty whatsoever. Oops. Again, make no mistake that Florence was a serious storm, but in the big picture, Florence was no Hugo, was no Andrew, was no Hazel, was no Katrina, was no Harvey, etc. Let’s label things as they are. Florence, was simply Florence. My best wishes for all impacted for as quick and complete a recovery as is possible.
DAYS 1-5 (SEPTEMBER 17-21)
One more nice day to start the new week, and then we’ll be dealing with the remains of Florence in the form of heavy rain on Tuesday as they track right across southern New England, loaded with tropical moisture. Flooding may be an issue as this system passes, but there will not be any significant wind issues. Behind it will come a shot of drier and somewhat cooler air during the middle of the week before a quick warm-up follows just ahead of a cold front at the end of the week. Forecast details…
TODAY: Patchy fog early otherwise clouds break for sun. Highs 75-80 coast, 80-85 interior. Wind light SW with coastal sea breezes.
TONIGHT: Clouding over. Showers arriving after midnight. Humid. Lows 63-69. Wind light SW.
TUESDAY: Overcast with widespread showers, becoming heavy at times. Chance of thunderstorms especially from early afternoon to evening. Humid. Highs 70-77. Wind SW to variable 5-15 MPH.
TUESDAY NIGHT: Cloudy with showers diminishing. Areas of fog. Humid. Lows 58-64. Wind N up to 10 MPH.
WEDNESDAY: Gradual clearing. Drying out. Highs 67-74. Wind N 5-15 MPH.
THURSDAY: Sun and passing clouds. Lows in the 50s. Highs in the 60s.
FRIDAY: Variably cloudy. Risk of showers at night. Lows from the upper 50s to lower 60s. Highs in the 70s.
DAYS 6-10 (SEPTEMBER 22-26)
High pressure builds in with mainly fair weather over the weekend of September 22-23, but it may start and end with lots of clouds. A disturbance in the area brings clouds and a possible shower September 24 then mostly fair weather for the end of this period. Temperatures near to above normal.
DAYS 11-15 (SEPTEMBER 27-OCTOBER 1)
Some wet weather early in the period followed by a shot of somewhat cooler air toward the final days of the month or the very start of October. Low confidence forecast at this point.