Tuesday, April 26, 2016

At It Again: Snow In New England, Severe In Plains, Texas Floods

A snowy web cam view of Interstate 89 in Berlin,
Vermont this morning  
Seems we can't break from a frustrating, sometimes dangerous weather pattern this spring that has featured repeated bouts of snow in the Northeast.

And worse, lots of severe weather in the middle and south of the country. And we're at it again today.

Let's break it down.


Late season snow was streaking this morning through central and northern New York, and parts of Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine as a pretty vigorous little storm rides east along a stalled front.

The air north of this front is pretty darn cold for this time of year, so snow is breaking out.

This isn't the latest or heaviest spring snow ever. We've had substantial snowstorms in May in this neck of the woods. But it is frustrating for people who enjoy spring.

The snow will come down pretty hard at times in higher elevations north of Albany, New York, in central and southern Vermont, parts of New Hampshire and maybe Maine.

Above 1,000 feet elevation in Vermont, the National Weather Service is forecasting accumulations of one to three inches, with local amounts to four inches. In the valleys, there will even be a slushy coating on grassy surfaces.

It was snowing in low elevation Burlington, Vermont at 8 a.m. with a slushy bit of snow on everybody's lawn.

It doesn't look like there will be too much of anything near the Canadian border, because that area is closer to the dry, chilly polar air drifting south into New England.

South of the stalled weather front, it's much warmer, and the storm's energy might set off a few severe thunderstorms in the Mid-Atlantic states.

But the real dangerous storms are going to be in the middle of the country.


As mentioned yesterday, all the parameters are set for a nasty outbreak of severe storms and tornadoes in the central and southern Plains.

NOAA's Storm Prediction Center still says they fear several tornadoes, a few of which could be really, really strong and long lasting, in Kansas, Oklahoma, and maybe Nebraska and northern Texas.

Violent updrafts with the supercell thunderstorms could easily also create ginormous hailstones. Really bad ones, the size of softballs and grapefruit.
Areas in dark green, yellow, and especially orange
and red face the risk of severe thunderstorms
and tornadoes today.  

Obviously we  hope everybody stays safe out there.

I also hope storm chasers, both the professional ones and the adventure seeking yahoos who don't know what they're doing, stay safe and don't get caught in the unpredictable path of a strong tornado or get caught out there in the giant hail.

By the way, being in a car is not a safe place in either a tornado or a bad hailstorm.

Repeated bouts of severe storms and possible tornadoes are likely in various parts of the southern Plains and Mississippi Valley and maybe into the southeastern United States each of the next several days.

Which leads us to our next problem.


All those bad thunderstorms repeated breaking out in the southern Plains and lower Mississippi Valley will lead to even more flooding.
Areas in red and especially orange could face
enough rain to cause flooding over the next
week or so.  

There have been repeated floods in places like Texas and Louisiana this year and we've got another round coming.

The bulls eye once again seems to be northeastern Texas, and areas around Louisiana, Arkansas and maybe southeastern Oklahoma.

Over the next week, four to as much as nine inches of rain could come down on the already sodden landscape in this region. Which means more destructive floods are likely.

Flooding could extend northeast into Illinois and northwest into Nebraska as repeated storms over the next several days could drop a lot of rain there, too.

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