The European model simulation of the East Coast storm Thursday evening to Sunday evening. (PivotalWeather.com) A significant fall storm can…
A significant fall storm can be formed along the east coast at the end of the week as a cold front combines with the rest of Category 5 Hurricane Willa, forecast to meet Mexico’s west coast Tuesday. The storm can generate heavy rain, mountain snow and the coast, strong winds and high seas.
The biggest risk of disturbing weather will be in Mid-Atlantic and Northeast over the weekend. It is too early to project exactly how this storm will develop and where it will be the hardest hit. There is also the chance that it is controlled more in the ocean, minimizing the effects.
The storm is still five to six days left, but computer models have shown a pattern favorable to East Coast Storms in late October for more than a week.
Like all East Coast storms, the exact track will determine where the heaviest precipitation occurs and which places can see snow. There is also uncertainty in the storm’s strength, which will have major consequences for how much precipitation falls and what type and if strong wind and flooding will be a threat along the coast.
But models indicate that this storm has the potential to be formidable. It will be developed because the remains of Willa, currently located in the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean near the west coast of Mexico, are drawn northeast from Mexico to the Gulf of Mexico a week. A new storm system will be formed along an old paved front and trace from the North Gulf Coast through Southeast Asia Thursday and Friday.
Willa residues – when they enter the Gulf of Mexico – will not resemble the monster storm in their current state and will be much weaker. Over the Gulf of Mexico it is not excluded that the residue circulation tries to regenerate into a tropical device, but models do not predict this at the moment.
Willa residues are likely to produce significant precipitation over central Texas, which has recently had severe floods on Wednesday. The rain is likely to spread on Thursday and Friday over some of the areas affected by Hurricane Michael, including Florida Panhandle and Georgia.
As the storm system develops and traces along the northern Gulf Coast towards the Mid Atlantic and northeastern models, the rainfall predicts about one to four inches. This may suffice to cause floods, especially in areas that have had significant rain in recent weeks, but widespread problems are less likely. The storm system will move fast enough to prevent a more serious flood threat.
The storm system is not expected to get significant strength until it reaches the East Coast on Friday or Friday night when it begins to interact with a cold front.
The timing and location of this merger will have significant consequences for the storm track and how big this storm will be along the east coast. If the merger takes place earlier and closer to the coast, the storm is more likely to reach the coast with significant rain, snow and wind. But if it happens later and further offshore, it can mean more of a blinking stroke.
The simulations of the European Modeling System (see below) hold about half the storm near the Mid Atlantic and Northeast coast and the other half takes more on the ocean.
The US modeling system, which is not shown, shows a similar range of opportunities as the European, but leans a bit more towards an out-of-sea solution.
If the storm hugs the coast and becomes a power plant, widespread rainforests along the interstate 95 corridor can reach one to three inches. And it would probably pull down cold air.
The primary (operational) simulation of the European model predicts highs at only 40 to 45 degrees in Washington and Baltimore on Saturday when it is possible to rain a lot. In this scenario, heights above 2,000 feet in the appalachians could see accumulating snow. Gale-force winds and heavy surf are likely to extinguish the coast, resulting in some erosion and coastal flow.
Further north, to New England, the effects of the storm were likely to meet Sunday, and the availability of cooler air would also allow snow
But again there is a wide range of possibilities as to how this storm is ultimately developing, and that is too early to nail down specific.
Regardless of exactly how this storm develops and traces, it is unlikely that chilly air will probably follow in its wake up sunday to the beginning of next week through the Mid Atlantic and Northeast.