Monday, July 25, 2016

Another Round Of Vefmont Storms. Boaters Off The Lakes This Time, Please

A severe thunderstorm approaches St. Albans Bay
on Lake Champlain in July, 2013. If the sky looks like
this, you should have gotten off the lake well before now. 
More thunderstorms are likely this afternoon and evening in Vermont, and most of the rest of the Northeast for that matter.

The zone that's got the highest chance of severe weather is amid the torrid heat wave in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and the Washington DC area.

But up here in Vermont and the rest of the North Country, quite a few of the storms might be strong, and a couple might turn severe.

Let's not have a repeat of the chaos we had Saturday, when many boaters were caught out on lakes and got into trouble

. Lake Champlain was a mess, as the Coast Guard and other public safety agencies were swamped with distress calls from boaters caught in the storm.

Down in Rutland County, a number of boaters got caught out on Lake Bomoseen.

As of early this morning, about 1,700 homes and buildings in Vermont still had no electricity from Saturday's storms.

There's a couple neat videos of Saturday's storms at the bottom of this post.

Today's storms could come through any given area anytime, though chances are slight this morning.

Things will ramp up in the early afternoon, with the highest chances of storms in eastern New York, Vermont and New Hampshire between about 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. The storms will be moving west to east, so New York will probably see the rough weather earliest.

As is usually the case, only a few towns will get hit by severe weather. I don't think today's storms will cause as widespread an issue as Saturday, but then again you never know. Keep an eye to the sky again, please.

For boaters and anyone planning on being outside today, remember these tips so we don't have another mess like Saturday.

--- You know already first thing this morning there's a possibility of storms today. Why not call off your excursion until, say, tomorrow  when it's supposed to be a pleasantly warm and sunny summer day, free of storms?

--- If you insist on go out, remember, you probably have less time than you think to get out of the way of the storms. Be ready to get to a safe harbor and/or a safe building quickly.

----I think people were surprised Saturday by the speed and the direction by which the storms approached.  The storms' forward speed was 50 mph, which is awfully fast, and they came down from the north.

We're used to storms coming from the west, as that is the most frequent direction from which these things come. But they can come from any direction, and even if the are coming from the west, like I think they will today, new storm cells can pop up unexpectedly nearby and surprise you.

If you see a storm off to the north, or south, or east, don't think you're safe. The storm might not miss after all.

--- Always listen to the National Weather Service, via a weather radio, smart phone app or anything else you can get your hands on. Listen to the details of these warnings or weather statements They'll tell you from what direction the stuff is coming, when it will get to you, and what to expect.

But remember, results may vary. The storms highlighted by the National Weather Service could weaken, strengthen or change direction.

---- Avoid complacency. You're saying, "Oh, right. We've had three severe thunderstorm warnings in the past month at my house and nothing bad happend." But bad things happened maybe two miles from your house.

Severe storms are weird. There will be pockets of damage, and a  mile down the road, everything's fine.   The next bad storm could hit you, and hit you hard. You never know.

Here's a time lapse of the storm coming in Saturday along the Lake Champlain shore in Georgia, Vermont:

Here's a video of quarter-sized  hail in Shelburne, Vermont Saturday:

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