Friday, September 26, 2008

Hello and Thank you, Sunny Days!











In this case I'm not referring to the weather, but to a group of great kids I spoke to in Garner at Sunny Days Daycare earlier this month. We talked about Tropical weather and our busy bees got right into learning about weather safety which included a game of " When thunder roars, go indoors!" Christy Avery, the Daycare director, shared some pictures of our visit.




Our students that day made some adorable drawings that I wanted to share with you .








The sun has returned for our Friday afternoon in some areas, but we're expecting the area of low pressure that came onshore Thursday night to still influence our weather somewhat over the beginning of our weekend. It is expected to dissipate as it makes a move north and east toward the Mid-Atlantic, so we'll have intermittent clouds with a chance of passing showers Saturday, less of a chance on Sunday with partly sunny skies and a little bit of a warm-up.

Next week expect a cold front to sweep through our area about mid-week which will bring some showers once again and perhaps another cool spell by next weekend!

Storm Pictures from Carolina Beach

Here's a look at storm photos taken Thursday by a News 14 Carolina viewer at Carolina Beach. You can submit your storm photos to us by e-mailing weather@news14.com.












Thursday, September 25, 2008

Coastal Low -- Early Thursday Morning Update

Here's the latest update early this morning from the National Hurricane Center...

SPECIAL TROPICAL DISTURBANCE STATEMENT
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
435 AM EDT THU SEP 25 2008

A WELL-DEFINED EXTRATROPICAL LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM CENTERED ABOUT 225 MILES SOUTHEAST OF THE SOUTH CAROLINA-NORTH CAROLINA BORDER IS MOVING WEST-NORTHWESTWARD AT 5 TO 10 MPH. SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS ARE GRADUALLY BECOMING BETTER ORGANIZED AND THIS SYSTEM COULD DEVELOP INTO A SUBTROPICAL OR TROPICAL CYCLONE BEFORE THE SYSTEM MOVES INLAND ALONG THE ALONG THE SOUTHEASTERN U.S. COAST ON FRIDAY. REGARDLESS OF WHETHER OR NOT THIS SYSTEM BECOMES A SUBTROPICAL OR TROPICAL CYCLONE... STRONG WINDS...COASTAL FLOODING...HIGH SURF...AND DANGEROUS RIP CURRENTS WILL CONTINUE ALONG PORTIONS OF THE SOUTHEASTERN AND MID-ATLANTIC U.S. COASTAL REGIONS DURING THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS. OUTER RAIN BANDS CONTINUE TO SPREAD ONSHORE THE NORTH CAROLINA COAST THIS MORNING...AND BUOY AND SHIP REPORTS INDICATE WINDS IN EXCESS OF 50 MPH ARE OCCURRING MORE THAN 100 MILES FORM THE CENTER. AN AIR FORCE RESERVE UNIT RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT SCHEDULED TO INVESTIGATE THE SYSTEM LATER THIS MORNING WILL PROVIDE BETTER INFORMATION ON ITS STRUCTURE AND INTENSITY. INTERESTS ALONG THE U.S. EAST COAST FROM THE CAROLINAS NORTHWARD TO MID-ATLANTIC REGION SHOULD CLOSELY MONITOR STATEMENTS FROM THEIR LOCAL NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FORECAST OFFICES... AND ALSO HIGH SEAS FORECASTS ISSUED BY THE OCEAN PREDICTION CENTER IN WASHINGTON D.C. FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AND WARNINGS.

ANOTHER LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM OF TROPICAL ORIGIN CENTERED ABOUT 180 MILES EAST-NORTHEAST OF THE TURKS AND CAICOS ISLANDS IS MOVING NORTHWARD AT AROUND 10 MPH. SATELLITE IMAGERY INDICATES THUNDERSTORM ACTIVITY HAS CONTINUED TO INCREASE AND BECOME A LITTLE BETTER ORGANIZED THIS MORNING. UPPER-LEVEL WINDS ARE EXPECTED TO GRADUALLY BECOME A LITTLE MORE CONDUCIVE FOR A TROPICAL DEPRESSION OR A TROPICAL STORM TO DEVELOP DURING THE NEXT DAY OR SO. REPORTS FROM NEARBY SHIPS INDICATE SUSTAINED WINDS OF 30 TO 35 MPH NORTH OF THE CENTER. A NOAA RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT IS CURRENTLY ENROUTE TO PROVIDE A BETTER ESTIMATE OF THE LOCATION AND INTENSITY OF THE LOW. AS THIS WEATHER SYSTEM MOVES FARTHER NORTH TODAY...THE THREAT FOR HEAVY RAINFALL AND ASSOCIATED FLOODS AND MUD SLIDES OVER HISPANIOLA...PUERTO RICO...AND THE VIRGIN ISLANDS WILL GRADUALLY SUBSIDE.

$$
FORECASTER STEWART

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Afternoon Update

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Coastal Low

Our weather through the rest of the week will be impacted by low pressure that is strengthening off the Carolina coast today. Already, our winds are picking up and look for windy conditions to continue into Thursday. Along the coast, gusts to 40 or 45mph will be possible this afternoon. Inland toward Raleigh and Fayetteville gusts to 30 to 35mph will be possible.

The low is developing along a stationary front and does not currently have tropical characteristics. However, as the low interacts with warm ocean waters off our coast, the National Hurricane Center now says there is some potential that the system could gain some tropical characteristics.


If that happens, the storm would become a subtropical storm or a tropical storm and would be named. Regardless of whether the storm is named or not, the impact to eastern and central North Carolina will be the same -- rainy and windy weather for Thursday. It will likely be cool as well as temperatures will not make it out of the low to mid 60s around the Triangle and the mid to upper 60s in the Sandhills. Coastal North Carolina will likely be warmer with temperatures in the 70s.

Heavy rains and strong winds may cause a few problems with some downed trees or powerlines especially closer to the coast where the winds will be the strongest. Coastal flooding and beach erosion may be an issue as well especially along the Crystal Coast and Outer Banks.

Follow the storm with the latest information by tuning in to our Weather on the Ones updates only on News 14 Carolina.

Friday, September 19, 2008

While we've passed the peak of hurricane season, its always a good time to plan

With help from the ASPCA: Disaster Planning For Pets: Do You Know What To Pack?

North Carolina has had an easier year of it as far as tropical storms go, at least as compared to those along the Gulf coast and Midwest. News 14 Carolina Meteorologist Lee Ringer had an earlier post about the passing of the peak of our 2008 hurricane season. It is always a good time to plan, whether it be for tropical weather evacuations, severe local storms or even winter weather.

As we have pets in my family, I am always concerned about protecting them when weather is a factor (especially since I may be working during the weather and they're at home!)
I love the ASPCA website, as there are always great tips for pet care. While this evacuation list for pets focuses more on dogs and cats, talk to your veterinarian about how this can be better augmented to fit the needs of your unique pet. Some of these things can be placed in a container for long-term storage and some can be obtained in a pinch. If you regularly travel with your pet, you may have these things set to go already!

The ASPCA would like to offer the following list of essential items to pack for your animal companions in advance, should you be faced with evacuation:
Pet first-aid kit and guide book
3 to 7 days' worth of canned (pop-top) or dry food
Disposable litter trays (aluminum roasting pans are perfect)
Litter or paper toweling
Liquid dish soap and disinfectant
Disposable garbage bags for clean-up
Dishes for food and water
Extra harness and leash
Photocopies of medical records
Waterproof container with a two-week supply of any medicine your pet requires
Bottled water—at least seven days' worth for each person and pet
Traveling bag, crate or sturdy carrier, ideally one for each pet
Flashlight
Blanket
Recent photos of your pet(s)
Especially for cats: Pillowcase or EvackSack, toys, scoopable litter
Especially for dogs: Long leash and yard stake, toys and chew toys, a week's worth of cage liner

for more information, here's the ASPCA website link:
http://www.aspca.org/site/PageServer?pagename=sitemap

Have a great weekend!
Pati Darak,
Meteorologist, News 14 Carolina

Past the Peak of Hurricane Season

Now that we are in the second half of September, we are past what is the traditional peak in the Atlantic hurricane season. However, that doesn't mean we can breath a sigh of relief just yet. Hurricanes can still impact North Carolina during the fall months. One of the worst hurricanes in North Carolina history, Hurricane Hazel, made landfall on October 15, 1954. Hazel produced wind gusts of 90mph in the Triangle.

Meteorologist Jeff Orrock with the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Raleigh sent us an e-mail this week with more information on tropical activity in the fall months in North Carolina. Here's a map Jeff provided with all of the storms that have impacted our state in October and November from 1852 through 2007:


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

9 Years Ago: Hurricane Floyd

Nine years ago today North Carolina Hurricane Floyd made landfall along the North Carolina coast devastating much of the eastern part of the state with flooding rains. Take a look back at the storm through this link from the National Weather Service Office in Raleigh --
http://www4.ncsu.edu/~nwsfo/storage/cases/19990915/

Monday, September 08, 2008

Tropical Storm Hanna Recap


Photo from Emerald Isle Saturday morning after Hanna's landfall. Photo taken by News 14 Carolina viewer Richard Parrott.
Hanna is now in the history books for North Carolina leaving some inland flooding problems and a some downed trees and powerlines.
The storm's center came inland around 3:20am near the North Carolina/South Carolina border. While the storm's strongest winds were concentrated right around the center of the storm, Hanna's heaviest rains fell ahead and to the west of the storm. Flooding was reported around the Triangle and Sandhills region of North Carolina.


Radar estimated rainfall from the Raleigh NEXRAD Doppler radar. Image from the National Weather Service Office in Raleigh.
Radar estimated rainfall from the Wilmington NEXRAD Doppler radar. Image from the National Weather Service Office in Wilmington.

The two above images of Doppler radar estimated rainfall give a good idea for what locations saw the most rain. Here are some storm rainfall totals reported from around the region:

  • Southern Pines: 6.68"
  • Raeford: 6.29"
  • Fort Bragg: 6.19"
  • Laurinburg: 5.74"
  • Red Springs: 5.50"
  • Durham: 5.33"
  • Morrisville (RDU): 5.19"
  • Apex: 5.17"
  • Cary: 5.05"
  • Chapel Hill: 4.96"
  • Raleigh (NCSU): 4.77"
  • Fayetteville: 4.62"
  • Lumberton: 4.60"
  • Smithfield: 4.59"
  • Clayton: 4.55"
  • Whiteville: 4.30"
  • Goldboro: 3.80"
  • Elizabethtown: 3.30"
  • Louisburg: 3.27"
  • Wilson: 2.63"
  • Wilmington: 2.33"
  • Surf City: 2.17"
  • Leland: 1.87"
  • Wrightsville Beach: 1.74"
Flooding near Durham. Photo submitted by Wendell Hull.
Hummingbird fighting Hanna's rain and winds. Photo taken by Liz Trombley near Wade and Fayetteville in Cumberland County.
Hanna's winds also caused a few problems across the area as shown by these viewer photos:

Tree down in Parkton in Robeson County. Photo submitted by Maureen Harrison.

Tree down on Booker Creek Apartments near Chapel Hill. Photo from News 14 Carolina viewer.

Here's a look at some peak wind gusts from late Friday night and early Saturday morning:
  • Wrightsville Beach: 72mph
  • Wilmington: 54mph
  • Goldsboro: 52mph
  • Pope Air Force Base: 45mph
  • Lumberton: 45mph
  • Fort Bragg: 44mph
  • Chapel Hill: 43mph
  • Fayetteville: 40mph
  • Laurinburg: 40mph
  • Southern Pines: 26mph

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Hanna Inland


Tropical Storm Hanna came inland just after 3am Saturday morning along the NC/SC border. The storm's heaviest rains area falling along the the storm center's track and just to the west of that track. That is producing flooding rains in some parts of the Triangle and Sandhills.
The rain should taper off by midday with some clearing expected this afternoon.
Stay tuned to News 14 Carolina and Weather on the Ones for the latest.
Send your weather reports, rainfall totals, and pictures to weather@news14.com.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Hanna Update -- Friday Midday

The 11am Hanna advisory from the National Hurricane Center is shown above. The track has shifted a little to the west favoring the storm's center to cross land just after midnight along the South Carolina Grand Strand. However, we may still see a landfall along the southeast North Carolina coast.

The storm is maintaining its tropical storm strength. We still cannnot rule out some slight strengthening to a minimal category 1 hurricane just before landfall.

Rain bans from hanna are already moving on land. We've already had a few tornado warnings for coastal counties. There could be more to come through the afternoon.

Wherever you are in Time Warner's North Carolina cable system, count on the very latest Hanna information every 10 minutes with Weather on the Ones.

If you have storm reports and pictures to share with us, send an e-mail to weather@news14.com

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Hanna and Ike -- Thursday Morning Update

Hanna is on the move this morning and it not too far away from hurricane status. With Hanna finally beginning its northwest movement additional data available from research aircraft flying into and around Hanna, computer forecast models appear to be coming to a consensus on Hanna's path...
As of the 5am advisory from the National Hurricane Center, Hanna had winds of 70mph... just 5mph away from a hurricane. Hanna may still encounter some wind shear through the day, so a great deal of strengthening is not expected at this time. However, Hanna is expected to become a hurricane later today or tomorrow as it tracks toward the Carolina coast.


The above track from Hanna from the National Hurricane Center still shows the "cone of uncertainty" still covering much of the South Carolina and North Carolina coast. Based on the latest data, it appears Hanna may make landfall near the North Carolina-South Carolina state line give or take 50-70miles around midnight as we head into Saturday morning.

Hanna is expected to track inland over eastern North Carolina. This would bring the heaviest rains and strongest winds along I -95 and to the east. Rainfall totals of 2-4 inches are expected in that region and along the coast with some isolated areas experiencing the heaviest rains. A few tornadoes may be possible as well along the track of the storm and to the east of the track.

Hanna may arrive at high tide along North Carolina's southeastern beaches which will take place at 12:30am Saturday morning.

Today is the day to prepare for what may be to come late Friday into Saturday. Secure lawn furniture, grills, garbage cans, and other loose items that could easily be blown around by Hanna's winds. Have an emergency kit ready just in case and be prepared for extended power outages for areas that experience the strongest winds from Hanna.

Keep in mind there is still some uncertainty to the exact track of Hanna. A slight jog to the east or to the west could change this forecast. Stay with News 14 Carolina for the most updates on Hanna with the latest available every 10 minutes in Weather on the Ones.

By the way, Hanna isn't the only storm to watch. Ike has strengthened into a powerful category 4 hurricane and will track toward the Bahamas by early next week. There are some signs that Ike may then take a northwest turn. It is way to early to speculate on exactly where Ike is headed, but Ike will be the focus for us once we get rid of Hanna.



Have questions about the tropics? Send us an e-mail to weather@news14.com. We'll try to answer your questions here in our weather blog as time allows.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Afternoon Update

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Hanna -- Early Wednesday Morning Update


Hanna is a little weaker this morning compared to early Tuesday morning. That is due to wind shear that has been over the storm since yesterday. The 5am advisory from the National Hurricane Center (NHC) has Hanna drifting to the north at 2mph. We expect that north and eventually a northwestward movement to pick up later today. That will take the storm into an area that is more favorable for development. Hanna is expected to become a hurricane again tomorrow.

The latest forecast track shown above from the NHC has the center of Hanna coming inland late Friday along the South Carolina coast. However, you notice the shaded area or "cone of uncertainty" includes much of the North Carolina coast. Several computer models, shown below in a graphic from Colorado State University, have shifted the track to the east bringing landfall closer to the South Carolina and North Carolina border.
We will likely continue to see some shifts in the forecast track over the coming days. Keep in mind track forecasting and intensity forecasting even a few days out remains very difficult when it comes to tropical systems. You'll want to stay up to date with the very latest information over the next couple of days. Count on News 14 Carolina for the most updates every 10 minutes with Weather on the Ones.

If you have questions about Hanna, you can e-mail us at weather@news14.com. We'll try to answer your questions as time allows here on our blog.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Tropical Update -- Tuesday Morning

Gustav, Hanna, Ike, and soon to be Josephine.... open a spreadsheet, there's a lot to keep track of in the tropics today!


Gustav seen above in a radar grab from earlier this morning continues to weaken, but is still spreading heavy rain over Louisiana and parts of Texas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas.


Closer to home, our attention must turn to Hanna. Early this morning Hanna was a hurricane, but the storm has encountered some wind shear and has weakened to a Tropical Storm. The storm will likely become a hurricane again over the next couple of days. In fact, as the storm accelerates toward the southeast coast later in the week, it is forecast to strengthen to a category 2 hurricane.
Hanna will approach the Carolina coast Friday. It will have to track across the warm waters of the Gulf stream where it could continue to strengthen. It is possible for Hanna to be stronger than a category 2 storm at landfall. Intensity forecast for tropical systems is extremely difficult. Expect changes in the forecast over the coming days. We'll be sure to stay on top of the latest weather data to keep you informed.

The track forecast may shift some as well. The forecast update early this morning from the National Hurricane Center has Hanna coming inland along the South Carolina coast near Charleston. However, all of the North Carolina coast and the Georgia coast remain in the cone of uncertainty.

Even if Hanna come inland along the South Carolina coast, we'll feel a big impact from the storm here in North Carolina. The storm will pick up forward speed at landfall meaning the area of hurricane and tropical storm force winds could make it pretty far inland. The other threat right along the track of the storm and to the east will be the possibility for heavy rains and tornadoes. These weather threats are possible in central and eastern North Carolina Friday, Friday night, and early Saturday morning. The forecast is of course subject to change depending on the exact track and timing of Hanna. Stay with News 14 Carolina for Weather on the Ones updates.

Elsewhere, you'll also want to stay up to date with Tropical Storm Ike that is forecast to become a hurricane later in the week as it tracks to the west.....


and newly formed Tropical Depression #10 that could soon become Tropical Storm Josephine...

Monday, September 01, 2008

Hurricane Hanna

A special advisory from the National Hurricane Center upped Hanna to a Category 1 hurricane on Monday afternoon. Winds are at 75 mph with additional strengthening expected over the next few days.

It's important to monitor the evolving track of this storm. There will be changes to over the next several days and at this point, it won't be until this weekend before we see some direct effects from Hanna.


Gustav, Hanna, and T.D. 9!

Gustav made landfall around 10:30 Monday morning near Cocodrie, Louisiana as a Category 2 storm on the Saffir-Simpson Scale with winds sustained at 110 mph.


Down the road Hanna is expected to become a hurricane and the track on this storm carries it north towards the Georgia, South Carolina boarder by late this week. There's a lot of uncertainty about Hanna's official track and should be monitored closely by everyone in Central and Eastern North Carolina. If the current track should pan out then we would see an increase in heavy rain and the potential for severe weather this weekend.

Not to be out done, a brand new system is being tracked in the open Atlantic and should become Tropical Storm Ike by later today or tonight. The possible track of this storm takes it west and has it becoming a hurricane by later this week as well. This track is also highly likely to change, but anyone on the East Coast of the United States needs to monitor this eventual storm for a strike early to the middle part of next week.

All of this activity is coming together at the apex of the hurricane season for the Atlantic Basin. I wouldn't be surprised to see at least two more storms coming together over the next week or so. Even though they may not pose an immediate threat to the U.S., the 2008 season is proving to be as busy as anticipated.

Gustav and Hanna Update -- Monday Morning

Hurricane Gustav is making landfall this morning as a category 3 storm along the Louisiana coast just southwest of New Orleans.
The storm will likely weaken later this evening as it moves inland over Louisiana. New Orleans will not be the only city feeling the impacts from this storm. Strong winds and heavy rains will also affect Mobile, AL, Biloxi, MS, Baton Rouge, LA, Lafayette, LA, Lake Charles, LA and other surrounding cities.

Gustav is not the only active system to watch in the tropics. Closer to the southeast coast, Tropical Storm Hanna has become a little better organized on satellite this morning. Hanna is drifting to the west very slow. Weak steering currents will keep Hanna on a slow track over the next couple of days. By the middle of the week, high pressure building over Bermuda will help Hanna to accelerate toward the southeast coast by the end of the week.

The latest forecast this morning from the National Hurricane Center brings Hanna inland near the Georgia-South Carolina line as a hurricane Friday. However, with the level of uncertainty that far out in the forecast, the storm could come inland anywhere from Florida to North Carolina.

Below is a graphic of several computer model forecasts for Hanna taken from Colorado State University...


You'll notice there are at least a few models that bring the storm closer to the North Carolina coast. The trends in the models will have to be watched closely over the coming days as a lot can change between now and the end of the week.

Stay tuned to News 14 Carolina for the latest tropical updates at :21 after the hour.