Playing Out Sandy's Strike
Posted by Pete Bouchard
Late this afternoon, on a group conference call with Louis Uccellini, the director of the National Center for Environmental Prediction, and James Franklin, branch chief of the National Hurricane Center, I was struck by the confidence they showed with
1) Sandy's landfall in the United States
2) The time of landfall (Monday Night)
In a time of uncertainty, it was nice to know we're confident - and can prepare - for those outcomes. Dr. Uccellini was about 90% certain of a landfall in the Northeast Monday Night.
So the time to prepare is now. Although you may hear reports that Sandy has weakened to a tropical storm - clearly a possibility in the days and hours ahead, this is only temporary. As the jetstream hooks into Sandy on Monday, it will enfuse her with massive amounts of energy, resulting in a reintensification of the storm - to possibily a nor'easter of record, in fact.
That's significant because as the storm drops from hurricane to tropical storm, its ability to pile up water and churn the ocean decreases. However, with a restrengthening, that ability is renewed. Moreover, if Sandy decides to loop farther offshore, the greater her chances of striking New England.
Lots of things to consider in the long range. That's why it's important to be vigilant, but not panicked.
Prepare for scattered power outages, a long duration storm (from Monday through Tuesday night), 2-5 inches of rain (possible river flooding as a result) and coastal flooding and beach erosion.
These matters are not to be taken lightly, but with a track over New England looking LESS likely, we are not looking at an epic, devastating storm.