<![CDATA[NBC 10 Philadelphia - Philadelphia Weather News and Coverage]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/weather/stories http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/NBC10_40x125.png NBC 10 Philadelphia http://www.nbcphiladelphia.comen-usWed, 07 Dec 2016 21:10:24 -0500Wed, 07 Dec 2016 21:10:24 -0500NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Today's Forecast]]> Wed, 07 Dec 2016 07:55:10 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/185*120/Glenn_schwartz_sheena_parveen_1.jpg

Rain has ended, but we'll see lingering clouds, light fog and misty conditons this morning. Clouds will start to break up this afternoon.

We are still on track for an arctic blast late Thursday, leading to January-like cold for Friday and the weekend. Wind gusts to 30 mph Friday will give us wind chills in the teens and 20s.

It will turn briefly milder Monday ahead of another cold front, with showers expected. Then it gets cold again, especially starting Wednesday. Very cold air will move in for Thursday and Friday of next week.

Wed: Clouds and misty morning, some sunshine this afternoon. High 50.

Thu: Clouds & sun, breezy. High 46

Fri: Very windy and much colder. High 39

Sat: Mostly sunny and very cold. High 37

Sun: Mostly cloudy and cold. High 39

Mon: Showers likely. High 50

Tue: Partly sunny. High 48


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<![CDATA[List of School Delays in Our Area ]]> Sun, 04 Dec 2016 15:28:06 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/school+bus+snow.jpg
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<![CDATA[Tracking an Arctic Blast for the Weekend]]> Wed, 07 Dec 2016 15:00:50 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/cold+weather+second.jpg

While the weather stories the past few days have been about rounds of unsettled weather including rain and wintry mix for some moving across The Delaware Valley, we now turn our attention to a POLAR PUSH of frigid air sweeping in by late Thursday and thwarting overnight lows in the 20s.

We’ve been hovering close to or slightly above normal with our daily temps, but now expect our high temps to be about 10 to 15 degrees below normal. Overnight lows will also be below the norm of 33 (Philly) by the end of the week.

The images below depict a deepening blue gradient denoting the colder air moving in and then pretty much staying there through Monday. However, we won’t be done with the cold of course (Meteorological Winter has just started!) and I’m already tracking an ARCTIC BLAST by the end of the following week.


Our weather will be dominated by a high pressure system for the most part through Sunday, although we could get some low-level moisture creeping into The Lehigh Valley and Pennsylvania suburbs, with a northwest wind influence. That means we could get some lake effect snow, with the strength of the low over Canada and strong northwest winds. With that said, winds will shift from Thursday westerlies to Friday gusty northwesterlies. I expect the winds to kick up by Thursday afternoon; however, it isn’t until the colder air and northwest shift takes hold that most of us will notice the polar push.

A look at the wind profile below of the last run of NAM (12Z) highlights Thursday’s west wind shifting to WNW wind by Thursday night then a NW wind by Friday morning. Of course, that means wind chill indices or “feels-like temperatures” are absolutely going to be compromised, making it feel like temps are colder than they actually are.



Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[Sign Up for School Closing Alerts]]> Wed, 09 Nov 2016 15:18:10 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/219*120/schoolbussnow.jpg Be alerted as soon as you or your child's school closes.
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<![CDATA[Snow Means Big Business for Poconos]]> Wed, 07 Dec 2016 06:45:37 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Snow+Poconos_21724130.jpg Snow fell in the Poconos while rain fell in the Philadelphia area Tuesday night. NBC10's Brandon Hudson explains why the winter weather is good news for the Poconos.

Photo Credit: NBC10 ]]>
<![CDATA[Glenn's Blog: Rain Then an Arctic Blast]]> Wed, 07 Dec 2016 00:50:26 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/PolarVortex-AP_968687082427.jpg

[[405094966, C]]

FIRST CAME THE RAIN

There was a lot of rain in the Southern U.S. and much of it came our way. The rain hit us Tuesday afternoon and night. It was a nice, solid, soaking rain-just the type to help ease the drought. But it also wasn't heavy enough to cause a flood threat. 

Here’s the radar showing the big rain area (zoom out to find it).

And here’s what one of our computer models showe for 8pm Tuesday (around the peak of the event):

[[404854145, C,624,372]]

The yellow and reddish colors represent heavier rain and there was a brief period of downpours. 

The area in blue is snow, and you’ll notice some of it is dark blue. That represents heavy snow, but it’s mostly confined to the northern part of PA. So, the Poconos saw accumulating snow. Just a bit farther south, and at lower elevations, it was about all rain. 

THE ARCTIC BLAST

I first had the dramatic drop in temperatures in my forecast from last Tuesday, Nov. 29th. That was Day 10 of our 10-Day forecast. The next day, I had a forecast high of only 39 degrees for Friday, Dec. 9th-a full 10 degrees below normal. See, we can sometimes be precise in a forecast even TEN days in advance. That’s why we are the only ones to do a 10-day forecast every day. 

Here is what the Arctic air mass looked like Monday night. The coldest air moved down into Montana from western Canada, with temperatures near zero:

[[404854215, C,624,396]]

By the time the arctic air gets here on Friday, it won’t be as severe. Here are the temperatures predicted by one model for first thing Saturday morning:

[[404854335, C,624,372]]

Those are low temperatures in the 20s. But the wind at the time will probably make it feel like the teens. That’s quite a change from our mild November. 

The unseasonably cold weather should last through the weekend, but it won’t be long-lasting….this time. Here’s the forecast from the “Best of the Best” that I’ve described in the past: Ensembles of the European model (the model is run 51 times, and the results averaged):

[[404854575, C,624,396]]

Those blue and purple colors represent temperatures way below normal on December 15th. It sure looks like December is going to turn out to be a much different type of month than November.



Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[Wintry Mix Causes Road Problems In Lehigh Valley]]> Mon, 05 Dec 2016 07:08:25 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000018226475_1200x675_824819267540.jpg Some snow fell Monday morning in the Lehigh Valley leading to some crashes on the roads.]]> <![CDATA[Wintry Mix Causes Wet Monday Morning Commute ]]> Mon, 05 Dec 2016 06:31:58 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/pete+kane+snow+17th+spring+garden+CCP+philly.jpg

UPDATE: The wet weather moved out of the area toward daybreak.


The NBC10 Weather Team issued a First Alert for a wet commute Monday morning, with the potential for rain and snow mixing across portions of the region.

 

[[404685686, C]]

A system forced moisture into the region late Sunday night that will last into early Monday morning. This moisture will come at the low temperature point of Monday, early morning. As a result, some neighborhoods will see the rain turn over to snow briefly, mostly points north and west of Philadelphia and the immediate suburbs.

[[404661556, C]]

The moisture initially moved in just past midnight along the western edge of the area. It fell as rain initially, because temperatures had not slipped to their low points quite yet.

[[404617336, C]]

The rain will continue to progress to the east through the early a.m. hours of Monday. At the same time, temperatures will continue to fall to the low 40s to the low 30s and in some areas north of Philadelphia, below freezing. As a result, the rain snow line will cross into the region and some neighborhoods will experience a changeover in precipitation type. The counties most likely to see this in our region are Lehigh, Berks, Montgomery, Bucks and Chester. In Montgomery, Bucks and Chester counties, the northern portions are more likely to see flakes falling. The wintry mix shouldn’t accumulate in those counties, aside from the Lehigh Valley north to the Poconos. A light accumulation of up to an inch is possible there.

Through Philadelphia, New Jersey and Delaware rain is expected. The rain should be primarily light to moderate. Nonetheless, the timing of the system will create slick road conditions across the board which may adversely affect the Monday morning commute. Additionally, if temperatures fall slightly lower than expected, a few flakes may be able to mix into Philadelphia. Models are in good agreement that the rain/snow line will fall just north of Philadelphia. However, slight shifts to the system could allow for Philadelphia to see a brief lived flurry. This scenario isn’t likely, though.

[[404618066, C]]

By 8 a.m., most of the rain and snow flurries will begin moving out of the region. Some lingering snow may fall near the Poconos and Lehigh Valley into the later morning. Elsewhere, conditions will begin to gradually dry out.

[[404618136, C]]

As the work week progresses, there will be several more systems bringing rain potential to the region. The biggest concern, however, will be a blast of arctic air to slope across the entire forecasting area Friday through Saturday. The bitterly cold pattern will bring windy conditions and high temperatures only in the mid to upper 30s. More on that in the days to come with your NBC10 First Alert Neighborhood forecast.

[[404618196, C]]



Photo Credit: Pete Kane
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<![CDATA[Blue Cross RiverRink Tree Lighting Forecast]]> Fri, 02 Dec 2016 12:05:08 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000018200524_1200x675_822958147691.jpg NBC10 First Alert Weather meteorologist Erika Martin has your forecast for NBC10’s holiday tree lighting at the Blue Cross RiverRink's Winterfest Friday night.]]> <![CDATA[Waiting for Winter? Here it Comes]]> Fri, 02 Dec 2016 10:13:29 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/AP_369943160022.jpg

MILD NOVEMBER: NO RELATION TO DECEMBER

It’s been yet another amazingly warm month across the country, especially to our west. November in Philadelphia has been about 2 ½ degrees above normal, but parts of the Plains are up to 12 degrees above normal! Here’s the map that shows it:

[[404100136, C,540,709]]

It’s also been unseasonably mild in Canada. So how does any really cold air get down into the Lower 48? 

It has been exceptionally cold in Alaska, with Fairbanks just reaching 30 degrees below zero. That’s a rare feat in recent decades. Now we need to monitor that area to see what happens to that super-cold air. 

Look at the purple areas at the top left of the current map below. That’s the extreme cold. Most of Canada is in the red or pink colors-WAAAY above normal temperatures.

[[404100376, C]]

Now look what happens over the next week. The map below is valid for next Friday, December 9th.

[[404100566, C]]

The purple and dark blue cold air now covers almost all of the U.S.! And the unseasonably mild air in Canada has disappeared. It just shows how quickly weather patterns can change at this time of year. A mild November has no relation to what December will bring. 

HOW DOES THAT HUGE CHANGE HAPPEN?

This is what the upper-air pattern is expected to look like next Friday, according to the European model (the world’s best overall).

[[404100666, C]]

Not only is there an area of very low pressure centered over the Great Lakes, but a big area of high pressure is in Canada. This is part of the blocking patterns we’ve been talking about when predicting a colder winter this year. 

The December chill won’t necessarily last all month, but the pattern is sure looking more like a much colder and wetter one than November. 



Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[The Future of Climate Change Policy ]]> Tue, 29 Nov 2016 18:21:09 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Climate-Change-Generic.jpg

WHAT CHANGES ARE ON THE WAY?

In case you haven’t heard, there was a fairly big election a few weeks ago. And the results are likely to impact future U.S. government attitudes and actions regarding climate change. I’ve broken the “climate functions” as:

1. Monitoring

2. Modeling

3. Research

4. Communications

If there was only one government agency that handled climate change, the questions about what will happen in the future would be relatively simple. The complication is that there are THIRTEEN U.S. government agencies that deal with climate change in some way:

Department of Agriculture

Department of Commerce

Department of Defense

Department of Energy

Department of Health & Human Services

Department of the Interior

Department of State

Department of Transportation

Environmental Protection Agency

NASA

National Science Foundation

Smithsonian Institution

U.S. Agency for International Development

I never even heard of that last one. There is some overlap in the functions of the different agencies, but not as much as you might think. So, how is a new administration going to be able to make big and fast changes in how the government views and deals with climate change?

USGCRP HANDLES IT ALL

All of the above agencies participate in the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP). They are supposed to coordinate on the role each agency plays. For example, here are some topics different agencies focus on:

Department of Agriculture-farming, food security, drought tolerance, forests

Department of Interior-climate and land use, impact on fish & wildlife

Department of Defense-changes in Arctic, impact of sea level rise on installations and plans, stress on vulnerable nation states, disaster response.

You get some idea of how climate change can lead to such a diverse area of issues. It could take years (or more) to fully reorganize such a complex mission. Some of the agencies most involved in climate change are:

NOAA (Department of Commerce)

This is the outfit I worked for many decades ago. The National Weather Service is part of NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). And NOAA is part of the Department of Commerce, although it never made sense to me (or my co-workers). Yes, accurate weather forecasts can help local, national, and international business. But that wasn’t the reason President Nixon placed the newly formed NOAA where he did. Even President Obama commented on the absurdity in 2012:

“…apparently, it had something to do with President Nixon being unhappy with his Interior Secretary for criticizing him about the Vietnam was. And so he decided not to put NOAA in what would have been a more sensible place.”

Even the NOAA website mentions “The logic of Secretary Stans' recommendation, possibly combined with some political tensions between the White House and Interior Secretary Hickel, lead [Ed. led] to a decision in favor of Commerce”

So, the NWS was supposed to be in the Department of Interior in the first place. Why does this matter? Because the Cabinet Secretary in charge gets a BIG say in how the departments under him or her operate. And this includes how the money is allocated.

The new Secretary of Commerce can change the NOAA’s emphasis on climate studies compared with the forecast and warning aspects of the NWS.

NOAA’S FUTURE

NOAA deals with climate in different ways. Their Climate Prediction Center is involved in areas more in the “short-term” climate area, such as El Nino, seasonal forecasting, and even forecasts as short as 6-10 days out. There’s a big difference between monitoring and forecasting the next El Nino and forecasting how much the earth will warm in the coming decades.

NOAA has an award-winning website www.climate.gov that has beautiful and easy to understand maps related to climate change. Here are a couple of examples:

[[403643956, C]]

[[403643636, C]]

The black line shows the average of many different simulations of global temperature in the 20th century compared to average from 1971-1999, and the colored lines show projected temperature changes in the 21st century for three possible emissions scenarios. The shaded areas around each line indicate the statistical spread (one standard deviation) provided by individual model runs.

Those images are simple and obvious evidence of the past temperature trends and how future temperature rises will be determined by future fossil fuel emissions.

Other NOAA divisions that at least partly deal with climate issues are:

1. National Ocean Service (NOS)

2. National Environmental Satellite Data & Information Service (NESDIS)

3. Ocean & Atmospheric Research (OAR)

NASA

Everyone knows NASA’s role in space exploration. It has been one of the most popular government agencies for decades. But that’s not all they do. I counted 18 different centers and facilities in their organizational chart (plus Headquarters). There are two that deal with climate in a big way:

Goddard Space Flight Center (“Earth, the solar system, and Universe observations”) and Goddard Institute for Space Studies (“Broad study of global climate change”)

The GISS is the most critical one for decisions on the future. Not only does the GISS have a highly respected global temperature record (one of three main ones in the world). The other thing is that the Director is Dr. Gavin Schmidt, an outspoken and highly published scientist who is well known throughout the climate world.

[[403643266, C]]

The Last Three Octobers Are the Warmest Octobers On Record- Posted Nov. 15, 2016

Those types of headlines and graphics get worldwide publicity. And there are many members of Congress who are not happy that the “space agency” has being doing research of our home planet. And they are not happy that Dr. Schmidt has been so outspoken against any attempt to limit NASA’s future role in climate study.

So, will some (or all) of NASA’s climate change mission be redirected to NOAA? Will Dr. Schmidt be able to continue as Director of a major governmental agency? Will funding for climate change research be increased or decreased? Will scientists who do not accept the consensus of climate change (caused mostly by human activity) be put in charge of some of the above agencies?

There are so many questions about how the new administration will deal with climate change that it may take several blogs to explore it adequately. Stay tuned.

Glenn “Hurricane” Schwartz - Chief Meteorologist NBC10 Philadelphia


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<![CDATA[Lincoln Drive Flooding]]> Thu, 01 Dec 2016 09:15:07 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000018179216_1200x675_821793859784.jpg The rain caused Lincoln Drive to flood in Philadelphia’s Wissahickon section Wednesday.]]> <![CDATA[Heavy Rain to Cause Travel Issues in Our Area ]]> Tue, 29 Nov 2016 01:22:49 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Generic+Rain+Generic+Umbrella+Generic+Rainy.jpg

First, a First Alert

The NBC10 First Alert Weather Team has issued a FIRST ALERT for Tuesday and Wednesday. Here’s why:

  1. Many hours of rain-affecting multiple rush hours
  2. The first rain following a dry spell results in more accidents
  3. Wet leaves make roads even more slippery

We’re not expecting widespread flooding, or anything close to it. But travel problems due to weather are often the reasons we issue First Alerts. We issue First Alerts to let you know, as far ahead as possible, that significant weather-related problems are coming. It can be for later the same day, the next day, or even several days ahead. It’s to give you a "heads up."

The Irony of It All

Parts of our area are in a moderate drought-others in a severe drought. So we need the rain. But as indicated above, the rain is likely to cause problems-hence, the irony.

Irony is defined as (among other things): "Something that has a different or opposite result from what is expected."

Here’s an appropriate example of irony from www.literarydevices.net. It’s a poem "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" by Samuel Coleridge:

"Water, water, everywhere
And all the boards did shrink;
Water, water, everywhere,
Nor any drop to drink."

So, we warn people about all the rain we’re going to get and the problems it will cause, but...

It’s really a good thing. [[403413236, L, 400, 300]]

A 1-2 Punch

It will not rain continuously from Tuesday morning through Wednesday night, but there will be a LOT of hours of rain during that period. There should be a lull later Tuesday night into early Wednesday. Our NBC10 First Alert Weather Live Interactive Radar already shows two separate systems, unusually close to each other.

Here’s how the NAM model looks for 11am Tuesday: [[403413506, R, 410, 309]]

The second system should move in late Wednesday, perhaps for the p.m. rush and into the evening. That’s when thunderstorms with downpours are possible.

A Warm Rain

November has been rather mild, and it’s going to end unseasonably mild. Warm air will surge up from the south both Tuesday and Wednesday, with temperatures reaching the 60s both days. In fact, some parts of our area could hit 70 degrees Wednesday (the average high for this time of year is only 52).



Photo Credit: NBC10
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<![CDATA[Glenn's Blog: Rain on Thanksgiving?]]> Wed, 23 Nov 2016 16:19:42 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/202*120/GHS+14+TDay+AM.JPG

Pretty Nice Overall

Yes, there are chances of rain on Thanksgiving, but most of the holiday weekend looks dry and rather comfortable. Of course, any rain on Thanksgiving could be important, considering the parade and last-minute travel. So let’s start with that...[[402286326, C]]

Thanksgiving Day

First of all, it won’t be nearly as cold Thursday morning as it was Wednesday morning (many places were in the 20s). It will be a cloudy day, and there is a chance of some showers moving through. The details are the tricky part.

Various computer models show the remnants of the impressive rain area to our west (widen out the picture on our interactive radar): [[273571721, C]]

Some of that moisture will be moving into our area Thanksgiving Day. But here’s a great example of “be careful what you’re looking at” -- it could make you think the rain threat is higher than it actually is...

First is the map from one model for 4 p.m. when you look for the “radar” images: [[402733946, C, 512,386]]

That looks pretty wet, doesn’t it? And this is a “high resolution” version of that model, so it should see the detail well. But is it actually saying that it’s going to be really wet? We’re looking at radar here, not the actual weather. Sometimes the rain that radar sees up in the clouds doesn’t reach the ground. So we need to look at the “accumulated rain” to see how much this model suggests will reach the ground: [[402734616, C, 512,386]]

Now, we see the map barely get a color. That suggests only very light rain would be expected by 4 p.m. in the Philadelphia area, and virtually none in New Jersey. Look at the top map again to see what a difference there is!

Other computer models don’t even show any rain at all. And no models show widespread or heavy rain. You can bring an umbrella just in case, but there’s no need to cancel outdoor plans at this point. Temperatures may be a bit below the “normal” of 54 degrees in the afternoon due to clouds. But there will be very little wind, so it won’t feel very cold.

Black Friday

Most computer models now keep us dry, with rain chances at or below 20 percent in all areas. Clouds will once again keep temperatures down a bit, but even a little sunshine could let us reach the mid-50s. It’ll be another day with very little wind. [[280969812, C]]

Rest of the Weekend

Both Saturday and Sunday will feature a lot of sunshine with temperatures near or a little below normal for this time of year. It should be a good bit windier Sunday, with 15-25 mph winds.


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<![CDATA[Glenn's Thanksgiving Travel Guide ]]> Tue, 22 Nov 2016 23:07:51 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-452281685.jpg

GUSTY WINDS CONTINUED TUESDAY
Here are the peak wind gusts in parts of our area Monday (from NWS)
***********************PEAK WIND GUST***********************

LOCATION             MAX WIND     TIME/DATE   COMMENTS
                        GUST            OF
                         MPH    MEASUREMENT

DELAWARE

...NEW CASTLE COUNTY...
   NEW CASTLE COUNTY AI    46   315 PM 11/21  ASOS

NEW JERSEY

...CAPE MAY COUNTY...
   19 SSE PORT NORRIS      49  1236 AM 11/21  NOS-NWLON

...GLOUCESTER COUNTY...
   12 E ELMER              47   110 PM 11/21  NJ-MESONET

...MIDDLESEX COUNTY...
   3 WSW TOTTENVILLE       46  1239 AM 11/21  WXFLOW

...MONMOUTH COUNTY...
   KEYPORT                 53   101 AM 11/21  TRAINED SPOTTER
   7 N LONG BRANCH         52  1240 AM 11/21  WXFLOW
   8 SE HUGUENOT           50  1246 AM 11/21  CWOP

...SUSSEX COUNTY...
   HIGH POINT              60   240 PM 11/21  NJWXNET

PENNSYLVANIA

...BERKS COUNTY...
   READING REGIONAL AIR    49   303 AM 11/21  ASOS

...CHESTER COUNTY...
   4 ESE COCHRANVILLE      50  1135 AM 11/21  DEOS

...MONROE COUNTY...
   POCONO MOUNTAINS MUN    52   142 AM 11/21  ASOS

...MONTGOMERY COUNTY...
   3 SSW SCHWENKSVILLE     52   230 PM 11/21  CWOP

...PHILADELPHIA COUNTY...
   NORTHEAST PHILADELPH    51   140 PM 11/21  ASOS

Officially, our peak gust at Phila. International Airport was 47 mph. Harrisburg, PA had a gust of 54 mph Monday afternoon.

Tuesday was also a windy day, but gusts reached 35 mph-not quite as much as Monday.

THE LAKE-EFFECT SNOW MACHINE GETS TURNED ON

Lake-effect snows are most spectacular both early and late in the season, when the lakes are unfrozen and relatively warm. They are warmer in November than in spring, so this is the time of year when they can get snow measured in FEET. The radar shows the direction of the wind….

And if the wind direction doesn’t change, that same narrow band of heavy precipitation stays in the same area.

The bottom line for travel: DON’T DRIVE UP I-81 FROM PENNSYLVANIA INTO NEW YORK STATE! It’s like a blizzard up there!

HOLIDAY TRAVEL OUTSIDE THE LAKE-EFFECT AREAS
Those traveling between Tuesday and Thanksgiving Day will be pretty lucky. A weak weather system will be moving eastward across the area, but it should be warm enough for rain showers (not snow) from Chicago through Cleveland through Pittsburgh. And much of New England will be dry through Wednesday.

Here is a computer forecast map for Wednesday afternoon:

[[402515655, C]]

On Thanksgiving Day, some of the moisture moving from Chicago will be moving into New England, bringing the chance of at least some light snow.

Here’s the map for Thursday afternoon:

[[402515735, C]]

The blue area is light snow, and the light green area is light rain. This model tends to overdo the precipitation, so I only expect some spotty light showers in our area.

By Friday, this system is gone, and dry weather returns:

[[402515905, C]]

Stay tuned for more as the first big holiday weekend of the season nears.



Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Bill's Blog: Rain on Thanksgiving?]]> Tue, 22 Nov 2016 13:18:40 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/BH+Thurs+Noon.png

Gusty winds are back for one more day Tuesday, just enough wind to keep it chilly all day long. The winds are coming to us courtesy of a deep area of low pressure located to the north slowly pulling away.[[402286326, C]]

As the low moves away, winds will decrease, making for a much quieter and somewhat milder day Wednesday. [[402257836, C]]

Tuesday, the wind chill readings will likely stay in the 30s while afternoon temperatures peak in the upper 40s. Even though it continues to be colder than normal, at least it is dry and expected to stay dry for the travel days leading up to Thanksgiving Day. [[402258146, C]]

However, the First Alert hour-by-hour futurecast, shows a storm system moving through the Midwest Wednesday evening, That system will impact our region on Thanksgiving. [[402258216, C]]

Light showers will be moving in from the west during the day on Thanksgiving. In spite of the showers, temperatures will be climbing into the 50s, ensuring that it will only be rain during the day.

The scattered rain showers should be moving out later in the day on Thursday, but don't put your umbrella away just yet, the First Alert 10 day forecast has yet another round of showers swinging through later Friday before we dry out for the rest of the holiday weekend. [[402258286, C]]



Photo Credit: NBC10
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<![CDATA[Your Thanksgiving Weather Outlook]]> Wed, 23 Nov 2016 14:58:21 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/218*120/GHS+Midday+Wed+Rain.JPG The NBC10 First Alert Weather Team is tracking a system that could bring some Thanksgiving rain.

Photo Credit: NBC10]]>
<![CDATA[First Alert: Light Snow and Strong Winds Hit Region ]]> Mon, 21 Nov 2016 00:18:40 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Wintry-Mix-Article-New-Lead.jpg

A First Alert is in effect for our region due to much colder temperatures, high winds, and in some areas, a rain/snow wintry mix. All of these changes rolled into the tri-state area Saturday night and continued into Sunday.

[[402089706, C]]

Saturday began comfortably with well above average high temperatures in the mid to upper 60s.  From the west, a strong system with a large cold began to move in Saturday night, bringing big changes to the forecast.

Beginning around 6 p.m., spotty showers moved over the western edge of our viewing area. The showers progressed east and south as the night carried on.

By 8 p.m., showers began in Philadelphia, stretching through New Jersey. A rain/snow wintry mix also began falling in areas north and west of Philadelphia, including Berks, Lehigh, Upper Bucks and Upper Montgomery counties. Light snow was also spotted in the Poconos.

Very little snow stuck in the Lehigh Valley as the ground was too warm. However, the wintry weather, combined with the cooler temps and high winds was a shock for many to step into following the much warmer than average temperatures we have been seeing.

A Wind Advisory was in effect for the area until midnight Monday. Winds gained strength early evening Saturday. Around 3400 PECO customers in the area were without power at one point due to wind damage. Overnight winds gusted up to 40 miles per hour.

The winds continued to gust to 40-50 miles per hour Sunday. The Philadelphia Marathon was very cold and windy. As a result, wind chill temperatures made it feel much colder than it truly was on Sunday. Sunday morning temperatures felt like they were in the low 20s around Philadelphia.

The wind uprooted a tree which fell on a green Ford Focus on Henry Avenue in Philadelphia Sunday morning, trapping the driver inside. The driver was eventually rescued and taken to Einstein Hospital. A ground stop was also put in effect for flights departing to Philly International Airport due to the high winds.

For the Lehigh Valley and portions of the suburbs, temperatures felt like they were in the upper teens. Sunday high temperatures were in the mid to upper 40s, feeling like only 30-35 degrees due to high winds.

Temperatures will remain chilly Monday and Tuesday as well, with windy weather forecast through Monday.



Photo Credit: Greg Zambaras/twitter.com/skier6666]]>
<![CDATA[Wintry Mix Falls in Parts of Region ]]> Sat, 19 Nov 2016 22:53:11 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Saturday-Snow-Lead-Image.jpg A wintry mix of rain and snow fell in parts of the region Saturday night as temperatures plunged and winds picked up. Check out these viewer photos.

Photo Credit: Twitter.com/skier6666]]>
<![CDATA[NBC10 Severe Winter Weather Week: Coming to a Mall Near You]]> Fri, 18 Nov 2016 14:47:06 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WXWeek_FS_All1.jpg

Come out and meet the NBC10 First Alert Weather team during NBC10 Severe Winter Weather Week!

Monday through Friday, Nov. 14 - Nov. 18, 2016, the most trusted weather team in the region will be at a different StormReady® mall each day with StormRanger10.

NBC10 Chief Meteorologist Glenn Hurricane Schwartz and meteorologists Krystal Kiel and Erika Martin want to help you prepare for winter with NBC10's weather tools and expertise. You can also tour StormRanger10, the only X-Band, dual polarized, mobile Doppler radar in the region. [[400844271, C]]

We've partnered with Simon Malls to host Severe Winter Weather Week. Their malls have earned a StormReady® designation from the National Weather Service. That means key workers have gone through hazardous weather training are equipped to handle all types of severe and potentially life-threatening weather situations. [[401118785, C]]

So come out and take a tour of StormRanger10, take home some NBC10 swag AND be there for the big moment Thursday when Glenn reveals his 20th Long-Range Winter Forecast! [[401504385, C]]

Here's our schedule:

Monday, November 14
11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Oxford Valley Mall [directions]
2300 East Lincoln Highway
Langhore, Pa., 19047

Tuesday, November 15
11 a.m. to 5 p.m. [[401300905, C]]
Philadelphia Mills [directions]
1455 Franklin Mills Circle
Philadelphia, Pa., 19154

Wednesday, November 16
11 a.m. to 5 p.m. [[401513675, C]]
Gloucester Premium Outlets [directions]
100 Premium Outlets Drive
Blackwood, N.J., 08012

Thursday, November 17
11 a.m. to 5 p.m. [[401708335, C]]
Lehigh Valley Mall [directions]
250 Lehigh Valley Mall
Whitehall, Pa. 18052

Friday, November 18
11 a.m. to 5 p.m. [[401903715, C]]
Philadelphia Premium Outlets [directions]
18 West Lightcap Road
Limerick, Pa., 19464



Photo Credit: NBC10]]>
<![CDATA[StormRanger10 Tracking Severe Weather This Winter]]> Fri, 18 Nov 2016 14:37:36 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000018007637_1200x675_812409923916.jpg NBC10’s Erika Martin introduces some of the equipment that NBC10 will be using to keep you safe during the winter season and discusses anticipation for severe winter weather. And talks to people at the Philadelphia Premium Outlets in Limerick, Pennsylvania.]]> <![CDATA['Hurricane' Explains NBC10's 'Neighborhood Weather']]> Fri, 18 Nov 2016 11:22:57 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/10-Day-Outlook.jpg

WHAT IT IS
The area covered by NBC10 goes from the Lehigh Valley to southern Delaware-from Western Chester County to the Jersey Shore. That’s a huge area, which often sees huge differences in weather at any one time. I’ve seen temperature differences of more than 30 degrees. There actually was a snowstorm that ranged from 2” to 50” (yes, in the SAME storm!). It has been impossible for TV stations to show that complete picture on a day-to-day and hour-to-hour basis. Now we can.

“MY, HAVE THINGS CHANGED!”
When I started doing TV weather around 1980, there were only a few airports in the region that provided hourly reports. Weather satellites only gave us fuzzy pictures a couple of times a day. Computer models were primitive, at best. Forecasts had value to only about THREE days out. Anyone attempting a 5-day forecast back then couldn’t do better than guessing (no, we don’t do that now).

Now, everything in weather forecasting has changed. We have live reports of current weather for a couple of hundred locations in our area. Weather satellites have such high resolution that we can clearly see a single thunderstorm from about 22,000 feet up, with minute-by-minute pictures that get put into smooth time-lapses.  The surface and satellite data is now entered into some of the fastest computers in the world. As a result, computer models have gotten better and better, and more and more detailed in recent years.

Don’t you think it’s about time that we shared that increased information with you?

NBC10’S FIRST ALERT NEIGHBORHOOD WEATHER
We now have so much information at our disposal that frankly it’s hard to narrow down what to show in any single weathercast. So now we can show drastically different types of current and forecast weather every time you see us. We might show The Shore one time, the Lehigh Valley the next, then Delaware, etc. And boy, do we have current weather to show you! How about 40 towns in Delaware alone? We can show the effect of the sea breeze in great detail. This tremendous increase in current data comes mainly from our new exclusive partnership with Weather Underground, a highly respected company that has been at the cutting edge since the internet was started! The partnership allows us to find out and display current weather conditions anywhere in the world… from Pennsylvania to Paris, Delaware to Delhi.

How about forecasts? We now can make individual forecasts for dozens of neighborhoods in the area. We can show the same spot hour-by-hour, or show a forecast for NINE different locations on the same graphic. We have 5-day forecasts, and now even a 10 day forecast (more on that later). And no longer is there just a 7-day forecast for Philadelphia-there’s one for each part of our area, and it’s scrolled CONTINUOUSLY on the bottom of the screen during each weathercast.  

We realize these are big changes, and it will take some time to get used to what may feel like a barrage of information. But we feel that our viewers will gradually get used to it, and appreciate seeing current and forecast conditions for their neighborhood. Ever heard of a TV forecast for Byberry, Haddonfield, Linwood, Dover, Mt. Airy, Newtown, Easton, and more? We have them for you.

Plus, you can get these same forecasts on NBC10.com and the NBC10 Weather App.

A TEN DAY FORECAST? ARE YOU KIDDING?
No, we’re not kidding, and we do not do it just to be first, or to have something to promote. As I mentioned earlier, the science of weather forecasting has come a long way in recent decades. NBC10 was the first to debut a 7-day forecast in 2002. When we did it, we tested it privately for a year to prove we could do it, having some accuracy (in science, it’s known as “skill”) all the way out to day 7. Of course, we’re more accurate for day 3 overall than day 7, and you should keep that in mind.

Now, computer models and detailed data have improved enough to support a 10-day forecast. Our “skill” out to day 10 is about as good as it was to day 7 was when we introduced the 7-day forecast. We don’t claim we’re going to nail it to the exact degree, but you can be pretty confident day 10 will be  within 5 degrees of our forecast, one way or the other. Our sister NBC Owned TV stations have also done independent research that showed similar skill out to 10 days. You can ignore it if you want, but it’ll be out there if you’re interested.

THESE ARE DIFFERENT THAN YOUR COMPUTER OR PHONE FORECAST APPS
It’s not commonly known, but that “zip code forecast” you might get on your phone likely comes straight from a computer, with NO human forecaster involved. While computer models are good, they have flaws, including “biases” to be either too cold or too warm regularly. If a human was involved, they could figure that out and adjust for it. But no company has the manpower to make separate forecasts for hundreds of zip codes in our area. This is why many of your phone apps were so bad (until now).

What we do is take the computer outputs and adjust them as needed. This, in itself takes us hours every day to do. But we think it’s worth it. I want to go on TV and tell you that this is MY forecast, not something straight out of a computer model that may be way off because some bad data got entered into it.

We have been working on creating this new and true Neighborhood Weather for months, and have been eager to put it on-air. But we wanted to get the “bugs” out first. This effort has been led by our new, brilliant weather producer, David Parkinson, with input from me, Sheena, and Bill along the way.

We’re excited about the chance to lead the Philadelphia TV market in a new way that reflects the current state of the science. We’ve been doing that since the mid-90s with the cutting-edge Earthwatch computer system. And we will continue to look for ways to bring you the latest technology (and not just fancy graphics) for years to come. Science always evolves and improves. Sometimes it takes a while to get used to. But new technology often is. And it’s often worth it.

Going forward, we’re going to continue to make a lot of investments in weather at NBC10 because we know how important it is to have an accurate, meaningful and specific forecast for you and your family. Technology will continue to get better and better, and we’re excited to share the future with you.



Photo Credit: NBC10.com ]]>
<![CDATA['Hurricane' Schwartz Fans Ready for Winter Weather]]> Thu, 17 Nov 2016 14:14:19 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000017988931_1200x675_811437123513.jpg NBC10’s Erika Martin gets reactions from people anticipating winter weather during NBC10's Severe Winter Weather Week stop in the Lehigh Valley.]]> <![CDATA[Hurricane's 20th-Annual Long-Range Winter Forecast]]> Fri, 18 Nov 2016 11:22:04 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/185*120/Glenn+Schawartz+Bowtie.JPG

HAS IT REALLY BEEN 20 YEARS?

People have always wanted to get an idea what the coming winter will look like. Meteorologists had been unwilling to even make an educated guess, since there wasn’t any accepted science to help us. The public had to turn to the incredibly unreliable Old Farmer’s Almanac (proven to be worse than flipping a coin), or rely on myths like looking at acorns and wooly caterpillars.

It all changed in 1997, when we saw the Tropical Pacific warm up like never before. There had been some recent studies correlating strong El Niño’s with certain weather patterns the following winter. So I simply said: “Expect an unusually mild winter with very little snow.” And that’s what happened. Then people wanted a forecast every year, and with more and more detail as we learned more about factors influencing our winters.

HOW WAS THE FORECAST LAST YEAR?

Glad you asked. This has turned into something weird, in that some people only seem to care about the amount of seasonal snow predicted. But I’ve tried to tackle monthly temperatures and snow, along with expected highlights of the coming winter.

Here are some of the quotes from my forecast a year ago:

”Few days with snow”

”Most of our snow in only a couple of storms”

”Snow melts quickly”

”Record warmth”

Those things happened, although we got most of our snow from only ONE storm. That gave us 22.4” out of our seasonal total of 27.2”, which was above “normal”. I had predicted above normal snow: 30-38” total.

We ended up with our warmest December ever recorded, BY FAR. It was more than 13 degrees above normal-an incredible number! And we set record high temperatures on EIGHT separate days in December 2015.

WHAT’S DIFFERENT THIS YEAR? FIRST: THE PACIFIC

Last year, a near record El Nino was raging-very much like 1997. All that orange and red in the Tropical Pacific represented a WAAAY warmer than normal ocean (see below). Along with other factors, this helped lead to our very warm winter, few snow days, and one giant snowstorm.

Now, the Tropical Pacific looks dramatically different (see below). The blue area represents ocean temperatures below normal-called La Nina. It’s only classified as a “weak” La Nina at the moment.

In a La Nina influenced winter, there tends to be fewer and weaker Nor’easters. That lowers the chances of huge snowstorms. Winters don’t tend to be extra warm, as they can with strong El Nino’s. So with this change alone, I expect more snow days and an overall colder winter than last year.

STRONG EL NINO TO A LA NINA: WHAT’S THE TENDENCY?

Next, we need to look back to other years that featured this rather rare combination of a strong El Nino evolving into a La Nina for the next winter. Our tax dollars help make that easy, courtesy of NOAA’s Earth System Research Lab.

Here are the weather maps for the “composite years” (or “analogs”):

The best way to look at overall global weather patterns is to look high up in the atmosphere. Meteorologists focus on an area close to 20,000 ft. up (known as 500mb). Look at the composite pattern over North America. That purple area is waaay below normal pressures, and waaay above normal pressures are found in the upper right-over Greenland.

An experienced meteorologist can spend one second looking at this map before the eyebrows go up. That anomaly over Greenland represents a classic “negative NAO”, or –NAO (North Atlantic Oscillation). And the large region of high pressures over the Arctic represent a classic “negative AO” or –AO (Arctic Oscillation). Both the –AO and –NAO have often been connected to cold and snowy patterns around here.

While I don’t expect the whole winter to have a –AO pattern, that has been the trend throughout the fall. But so far, the super cold air has been on the other side of the world-near Siberia. There are suggestions that the coldest air will work its way around to Alaska and then to Canada and the Plains in the next month.

The map below shows what the analogs to the strong El Nino to La Nina patterns have been like: lots of cold in Alaska and Canada (where it happens to be unusually warm this month). This does NOT show super cold air dominating our part of the country, but suggests there will be enough cold air eventually to lead to several snow threats. Let’s see if that big shift happens this winter.

IT’S NOT ALL ABOUT THE PACIFIC

Of course, there are many other factors in play each year. A few trends over recent years may be leading to our snowier winters of late. In the past 8 years, we’ve had our two snowiest winters ever recorded, and 2 of the 3 biggest snowstorms ever recorded in Philadelphia. If the earth is warming, why would this happen?

1. Ice is melting in Arctic at record levels. Some years are exceptions, but the trend is clearly down, as shown in a typical map below (this trend has happened in summer, too). Some have theorized that:

The increased melt leads to more open ocean

Which absorbs more heat than ice and warms the arctic

Which leads to more patterns of –AO

Which favor colder and snowier periods

2. More October snow has been falling on the other side of the world-especially in Eurasia. Studies have shown that years with more snow in October there are associated with snowier winters for us. Seven of the past 8 years have seen well above normal snow in Eurasia. This October was the snowiest of them all.

3. Warmer oceans off the East Coast in recent years have led to more moisture in the air. The water vapor has increased as a result. This allows any given storm to produce more precipitation. And when the air is cold enough for snow, it can mean more snowfall. Here are the current ocean anomalies in the Atlantic. That’s a lot of unusually warm water off our coast!

There are several more things I look at-things called the EPO, PDO, QBO, and AMO, but I’ve already gone on too long. Needless to say, I have factored them into the forecast.

First, some highlights

*overall colder and snowier

*no monster snowstorms (more than 15”)

*sharp change from warm Nov. to cold December

*January-snowiest month

*February-mildest month (compared to normal)

*Winter return in March

THE SPECIFICS- for Philadelphia

SNOWTEMPS
DEC4"-2 (below normal)
JAN14"near normal
FEB8"+2
MAR6"-2
TOTAL28-36"-2

As for other cities in our area, here are my estimated seasonal snow forecasts:

Allentown44" (11" above normal)
Downingtown36" (8" above)
Wilmington26" (7" above)
Atlantic City17" (near normal)
Millville15" (2" above)
Poconos75" (6" above)



Photo Credit: Sara Smith
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Wintry Mix Possible for Parts of Area This Weekend ]]> Thu, 17 Nov 2016 00:23:10 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/wintry+mix1.jpg

We’re keeping a close eye on the weekend forecast! A blast of cold air will arrive by Saturday night and Sunday, and at the same time our next weather system approaches. This could mean rain and rain/snow showers for part of the area. This does not look like a big event, but certainly would be our first taste of winter precip for some!

Saturday: Mostly sunny to partly cloudy, high 65

Saturday night: Rain showers move in for most of the area, low around 38. Areas in the Lehigh Valley could get cold enough Saturday night to support a wintry mix.

Sunday: Temperatures will only reach the upper 40s, scattered showers. Lehigh Valley and Poconos could still see a wintry mix, or snow showers in higher elevations. Best chances look to be early Sunday.

Sunday night: Temperatures drop to around freezing. Most precip will have cleared out, but we can’t rule out a few lingering showers.

As the wintry mix moves in to part of the area this weekend, visibility may drop for a time.

Stay with the NBC10 First Alert Weather team for the latest updates.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Severe Winter Weather Week in NJ]]> Wed, 16 Nov 2016 14:11:02 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000017970364_1200x675_810458179671.jpg Erika Martin and the NBC10 First Alert Weather crew are out at the Gloucester Premium Outlets with Storm Ranger 10 for another day of Winter Weather Week! If you can't make it out to say hello today, the team will be at the Lehigh Valley Mall on Thursday.]]> <![CDATA[NBC10 Weather Team Stops in Gloucester for Severe Winter Weather Week]]> Wed, 16 Nov 2016 14:08:00 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000017970629_1200x675_810476611975.jpg There is nothing but love for NBC10 Meteorologist Glenn 'Hurricane' Schwartz at Severe Winter Weather Week! Stop by the Gloucester Premium Outlets to say hi to the First Alert Weather Team and get a look at StormRanger10.]]> <![CDATA[NBC10 Weather App a Must Have for Winter]]> Wed, 16 Nov 2016 13:00:58 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000017970335_1200x675_810426435972.jpg You can download the NBC10 Weather App and have the NBC10 First Alert Weather forecast for your current location at all times.]]> <![CDATA[StormRanger10: A 1-of-a-Kind Weather Tool]]> Wed, 16 Nov 2016 14:11:57 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/260*120/StormRanger+Thumbnail.JPG

When it comes to tracking and forecasting winter weather, the technology and experience of the First Alert Weather Team leads the way. Our experienced team of Meteorologists utilizes the most cutting-edge technology available in the industry, both inside the studio and out here in the field, to provide you the viewer with the most reliable and accurate neighborhood forecast. 

Storm Ranger is the latest - and certainly the greatest addition to NBC10’s ability to bring you the best in weather coverage. Storm Ranger is a MOBILE doppler radar unit, which utilizes a technology called dual polarization radar or 'dual-pol' radar for short. Why is that important? Well it’s our ability to transport the ENTIRE mobile radar system to where the weather is affecting us that makes Storm Ranger so important...and unique to NBC10. 

Radar itself has been around since World War II, and was originally used to detect planes in the sky. Forecasting weather was an accidental discovery with radar, but we have since perfected its use, and the latest evolution in radar technology is the X-band, dual pol, Storm Ranger platform-exclusive to NBC 10. 

The significance of Dual-pol radar is that it is able to not just detect precipitation itself in the sky, but it also gives us several other types of scan products such as the type of precip, the total amount in a given area over time and the speed of winds in the storm. These are all CRITICAL for providing you with the most accurate and reliable local (neighborhood) reports and hour-by-hour forecasts you expect from us at NBC10. 

So how does it work? Simply put, Storm Ranger’s radar dish sends out microwaves in a horizontal and vertical direction into the atmosphere, and works similar to the way an MRI does when scanning organs and other structures inside the human body, only Storm Ranger is scanning the sky! Just like an MRI of your body, the scans are processed by very powerful computers, giving us these amazing, accurate, real-time images you see on your TV screen or mobile device. 

The National Weather Service has an array of 160 radar sites around the country. These sites work together to provide a network of coverage, and in the Philadelphia area the NWS sites local to us are in Mount Holly, NJ Dover, DE and Sterling, VA. 

However-The real advantage of Storm Ranger is that we can position it in the 'gaps' between these radar sites, as distance from the radar and changes in elevation reduce the fixed radar sites ability to see that last few hundred of sky closest to the surface. When it comes to winter weather in particular that can be all the difference between who sees rain, who sees ice and who sees snow! Storm Ranger is a durable and complete broadcasting platform, with it’s own mini-studio cabin and uses state-of-the-art broadcast technology to beam all of this great information back to the studio. With long range diesel motor chassis, and a ten-year expected life before maintenance, Storm Ranger can be counted on for bringing you the best local storm coverage in our area for years to come.



Photo Credit: NBC10
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Hurricane's Blog: I Hate Weather Apps (Except Ours)]]> Wed, 16 Nov 2016 13:05:04 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/195*120/NBC10+App+Weather+App.JPG

Take a look back at NBC10 First Alert Weather chief meteorologist Glenn "Hurricane" Schwartz came to love the NBC10 App for neighborhood weather.

NO, IT’S NOT BECAUSE I’M JEALOUS

Here’s a trade secret: Most meteorologists hate most weather apps. They are the incredibly popular and wildly misused forecasts that make meteorologists seem less accurate than they really are. Rather than explain it myself, I’ll let one of the nation’s most respected TV meteorologists, Dan Satterfield do it in his great blog.

(It’s better for him to make specific accusations than for me to do it-I have a history with one of the companies mentioned. He also uses a phrase that’s perfect for the subject, but one I couldn’t get past the censors). [[401296855, C]]

THE PROBLEM WITH (MOST) WEATHER APPS

No matter how much computer models improve, human forecasters can still “beat” them. The numbers that come out of various computer models are called “guidance” in our business. The top synonym for “guidance” in the dictionary is “advice”. It’s not the final word. It is a piece of advice to forecasters: “this is what the_____model suggests as the high temperature”, for example. 

Different models will give different “advice”. No model is perfect. Almost all models have some sort of bias: consistently too warm or cold, too fast or slow with fronts, over-developing storms, etc. Then it’s up to the forecaster to take that all into account and make a decision. Statistics show that human forecasters can “beat” the computer models at all forecast periods (tomorrow, next weekend, etc.). So, as Dan said in his blog, you are not getting the best forecast possible when you check out most apps. 

And will those apps get better? Probably not much, if at all. Who’s there to monitor those thousands of forecasts? If a particular weather model is used for the app, it will make the same mistakes OVER & OVER. The main U.S. model, the GFS, has had a bias of being too cold the farther you go out in time. It also takes a current extreme weather pattern and forces the numbers to get closer to average after about 5 days. All the time! And it’s been making the same type of mistakes for more than 20 years! 

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a way to get around the idea that your possibly favorite forecast was straight out of a computer? There is! And we have it! 

THE NBC10 APP

OK, so what’s so different with our app? I’m happy to tell you, especially because it is so much work to do what we want to do. Like other apps, we get detailed, automated forecasts for all parts of our area via our weather partner, The Weather Company (formerly WSI Corporation). Those forecasts are known as “default” forecasts. If we’re too busy with tornado warnings, for example, the automated forecasts will go out to nbc10.com and our app. But that happens less than 1% of the time. 

On a normal day, we write down the “default” forecast from The Weather Company for Philadelphia. We also write down the forecasts from other computer models, including the most accurate in the world overall, the European. We have exclusive rights for some of the data from the European that shows what their “advice” is for the high and low temperatures and precipitation chances for each day. Then, based on an understanding of each model’s biases, and with many years of forecast experience, we change the “default” numbers to our own. We go out to 10 days. That forecast goes immediately into nbc10.com and our app. 

That’s for Philadelphia. That is not where it ends-it’s just the beginning. We then make similar adjustments to FIVE other forecast areas: PA suburbs, Lehigh Valley & Berks, inland New Jersey, the Jersey Shore, and Delaware. Below is a map of our forecast breakdowns, so you know which area you live in (or travel to). 

[[382765411, C]]

So, now we have in effect made 45 forecasts: 10 days for Philadelphia, and 7 days for 5 different areas. 10+35=45. But we’re not done. If we want to truly call it a “Neighborhood Forecast”, we have to go into more detail. We then chose 3 different neighborhoods from each area. 3x6=18

Our simple math is: 45+18=63 

Yes, we do make 63 separate forecasts EVERY DAY. We try to figure in the effect of sea breezes, fronts that only affect parts of our area, the “urban heat island effect” of Philadelphia, the cooler, sandy soils in New Jersey, the effect of east winds on the higher elevations North and West of Philadelphia, etc. Sometimes a couple of degrees will mean the difference between rain and snow, and those differences will show up in our Neighborhood Forecasts. There are times when the forecast numbers will be close, but other days (especially in winter) where you’ll see 20-30 degree spreads across our region. Of course, our forecasts won’t be right all the time. We can’t be perfect-but we can be the best. And we strive for that every day. 

This process takes hours, and a lot of concentration while the phones are ringing, promos are taped, and on-air graphics made. The web people are asking for a blog on the coming storm. The producers want to know whether the weather is important enough to be the lead story. The promo people want us to tape something for the 4pm news. Reporters want to know if lightning will affect their live shots, and we often check any scripts of weather-related stories for accuracy. 

We can’t make those forecasts earlier in the day. We have to wait for the latest computer model data. So, for example, the period from 2-4 p.m. is constant, detailed, high-pressure work. 

We could just sit back and let the computer models and default forecasts take over, and then go on TV implying that we’re giving you our own forecasts. But, now that we have the technology to deliver detailed Neighborhood Forecasts, we will not settle for anything but our best effort. And you shouldn’t settle for it in other Weather Apps, either. 



Photo Credit: NBC10
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[NBC10 Team Meeting Viewers at Philadelphia Mills]]> Tue, 15 Nov 2016 14:15:53 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000017950649_1200x675_809412163558.jpg Severe Winter Weather Week continues in Northeast Philly Tuesday as the NBC10 Morning News crew joined the First Alert Weather Team at Philadelphia Mills.]]> <![CDATA[Severe Winter Weather Week Goes to Philadelphia Mills]]> Tue, 15 Nov 2016 13:43:23 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000017950265_1200x675_809391171758.jpg The First Alert Weather team along with Tracy Davidson and Vai Sikahema are at Philadelphia Mills Mall as part as Severe Winter Weather Week.]]> <![CDATA[NBC10's Severe Winter Weather Week Begins ]]> Tue, 15 Nov 2016 14:42:47 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/236*120/NBC10+Severe+Winter+Weather+Week.JPG

NBC10’s First Alert Weather Team is visiting five area malls over the five days. Why? To promote Severe Winter Weather Week, a week where the team plans to inform our community how we forecast during rough weather, what should be done to stay safe, and what to expect this winter.

Let’s begin by explaining why we’re visiting area malls. Aside from the fact that it’s a great location to meet everyone out in their neighborhoods, the malls NBC10 is visiting are all designated as Weather Ready Ambassadors. That’s a titled doled out to locations across the country that are prepared for dangerous weather, and have a dedication to ensuring safety to anyone affected at the location. It’s a title given out by the National Weather Service.

“All of our security guards have grab and go bags that they are able to grab in the case of any kind of emergency,” said Philadelphia Premium Outlets Marketing Director Kate Johnson.

All of the malls under the Simon Property Group umbrella, including the Philadelphia Premium Outlets, are part of the Weather Ready Nation. The initiative, which is ran by the National Weather Service, allows any type of organization, or individual, to join. They must simply be committed to planning safety routines and following the forecast to remain informed and prepared for all weather events.

“The weather service is trying to get more involved in making sure that people are not only getting weather information but are actually prepared to take action based on that information,” Joe Miketta, Warning Coordination Meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Mt. Holly, said. [[400844271, C]]

When Simon Malls decided to join the nation, they reached out the National Weather Service for help preparing their employees.

“It was largely an online training course that our management team went through and our security team as well. So, it told us what to do in events such as tornadoes, severe snow storms which obviously we’re going to be dealing with this winter perhaps, and other types of severe weather that could be coming through,” Johnson said.

As a result of the training, Johnson said Simon malls developed different plans for different locations.

“We are going through an ongoing training process of scheduling training drills and evacuation drills for different types of emergencies that will be worked on with all the different store managers and the employment teams at all of the stores here at the Premium Outlets,” Johnson explained.

For an outdoor mall, Johnson told NBC10 they use “Exit Hallways” or hallways that commonly hold the restrooms, as part of their safety zones.

“There’s no glass, so they’re safe to go to in case of tornadoes, hurricanes, that type of thing.”

Johnson said the malls are each stocked with various emergency supplies as well to keep employees and customers safe.

“It involves evacuation cards, flashlights, first aide kits, things like that that they would need,” she said.

If you are interested in joining the Weather Ready Nation, visit this link.

One of the suggestions to help you remain a successful ambassador? Miketta said each ambassador needs a trusted weather source to keep you updated on the latest forecast. Good news! NBC10 tailors the forecast neighborhood by neighborhood every day and posts those updates to the NBC10 website, app, and on air shows. [[287977901, C]]



Photo Credit: NBC10]]>
<![CDATA[Supermoom Glows Bright]]> Mon, 14 Nov 2016 08:52:56 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000017927282_1200x675_808262211640.jpg The “supermoon” was out and in full force overnight in the Philadelphia region. It’s the brightest moon in generations.]]> <![CDATA[Fall Foliage in Philly Area]]> Sat, 12 Nov 2016 09:38:33 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/DelawareCofall2.jpg

Photo Credit: Jeremy Haas, SkyForce10]]>
<![CDATA['Supermoons' Coming to a Sky Near You]]> Mon, 14 Nov 2016 01:05:01 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Super+Moon_21470501.jpg

So, What's a Supermoon?

All moons are not created equal. Well, actually they are-they just don’t look equal. Since the moon does not orbit the earth in a circle, there are times when it’s actually closer to us than others. It’s called an “elliptical orbit”, and at its closest path (“perigee”), is about 30,000 miles closer than at the farthest point (“apogee”). Since the moon will obviously look bigger when it’s closer to us, it is known as a “Supermoon”. The moon will appear to be about 14% bigger and 30% brighter than when it is at the farthest point. 

Exactly When is This Happening?

Actually, we already had a “Supermoon” last month. In case you missed it, there are two more: November 14 and December 13. Those are the next two full moons, and if there are no clouds, it should be quite noticeable. Of course, the moon on the 13th and 15th won’t look that much different-it’s a gradual thing. The moon rises at 5:20pm on November 14th, so the appearance should be amazing. It already appears to be bigger when it’s near the horizon, so it will look gigantic while low in the sky right during the PM rush! It should look just about as spectacular on December 13th.

How Rare is This?

In case it’s cloudy (or you miss them somehow), the “Supermoon” of this size will happen again. But you’ll have to wait awhile. It comes in 2034! 

For a more detailed explanation and animations, click here.

]]>
<![CDATA[StormRanger10: Delivering You Accurate Weather Forecasts]]> Fri, 02 Sep 2016 15:16:52 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/stormrangerrain.jpg

NBC10’s exclusive StormRanger10 mobile radar truck is a one-of-a-kind vehicle that has a live, high-powered Doppler Radar that enables StormRanger10 to get out ahead of a storm. StormRanger10 can track storms wherever they are with a higher degree of accuracy and with more detail than ever before.

From increased visibility in the heart of a storm to the ability to alert people in real time that a tornado has touched down because it can detect actual debris on the ground, StormRanger10 is the latest addition to NBC10’s expanding weather arsenal designed to keep you and your family safe when severe weather strikes.

"This radar technology and mobile configuration is a first for any TV station or network of stations in the U.S," said Richard Stedronsky, a meteorologist and director of strategic business development and partnerships at Enterprise Electronics Corporation. "NBC-Telemundo is the first to deploy this fleet of mobile doppler radars in the nation."

"We are boosting our weather forecasting capabilities by building, from scratch, the first-of-its-kind fleet of mobile weather radars in the country because we know how important weather is to our viewers," said Valari Staab, President, NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations. "All of our stations will have access to this groundbreaking weather technology so they can deliver even more lifesaving weather information to their communities."

Glenn's Blog: Why StormRanger10 is so important »

So what makes StormRanger10 so unique in delivering you the most accurate forecast?

When severe weather approaches, NBC10 now has the ability to dispatch StormRanger10 to wherever the storm is going to strike. Using X-band, dual-polarization Doppler radar, StormRanger10 can provide our meteorologists with more detailed observations than any normal fixed radar can provide, giving them — and you — a hyperlocal look at the storm.

See StormRanger10 radar in action here »

"When you start to get over 100 miles away from the radar, the radar beam from a fixed radar is too high in the atmosphere to see lower weather phenomena,” said Stedronsky, whose company provides the new radar system in StormRanger10. "But that’s where severe weather takes place -- in the lowest parts of the atmosphere. With StormRanger, you can take your viewers to the weather and gather information that a traditional fixed radar could be missing.”

StormRanger10's radar, which has a maximum range of about 100 miles, will update about once every 60 seconds. These updates mean you'll be up-to-the-minute when tracking how and when the weather will impact you in your crucial locations such as your home and where you currently are. Our app users will receive push alerts when StormRanger10 is activated, allowing them to get a closer -- and more accurate -- look at the weather in their neighborhoods.

By driving StormRanger10 close to actual storms, NBC10 will be able to give a detailed look that TV stations never have been able to do before. Fixed radars may miss certain weather events due to terrain or blockages due to buildings in a downtown area. But StormRanger10 can fill in those gaps in coverage, and in turn provide a more complete picture of what is happening now and what those immediately in the crosshairs of a severe storm can expect.

Mobility is StormRanger10’s big advantage over fixed radar during severe thunderstorms. By positioning StormRanger10 wherever severe storms are about to strike, meteorologists will get a better idea of how the storms are forming, how severe they are and where and how fast they’re moving.

"This advanced look that you’ll get from a StormRanger means you’re giving more accurate and timely information to a viewer,” Stedronsky said.

Get accurate 10-day and hourly forecasts here »

In addition to radar, StormRanger10 has two cameras to give you an up-close look at conditions - one on the dashboard, and one pointed at a reporter riding in the vehicle.

“The information you're going to get on a local level is going to be unprecedented,” said Tom Jennings, president of Accelerated Media Technologies, which did the customization required to integrate the radar system into StormRanger10. “You’re going to get such high-resolution weather telemetry out of these trucks that you’ll know exactly what the weather’s doing in your neighborhood, not just theoretically what it’s doing across your state or county."

See how you can view StormRanger10 online »

Stedronsky says the key to it all is having full control of a mobile radar unit that can be sent to any storm, at any time.

“That’s going to be huge for protecting people and assets and saving lives,” Stedronsky said.

NBC10 is committed to bringing you the most accurate weather information possible, and StormRanger10 is just the latest investment we’re making into weather-related technologies to do just that. StormRanger10 is here to serve your community, and ensure that NBC10 First Alert Weather is your most-trusted source when severe storms strike.


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<![CDATA[Sheena Parveen Leaving Philly for NBC Washington]]> Thu, 06 Oct 2016 05:57:29 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Sheena+Parveen+2016.jpg

NBC10 First Alert Weather meteorologist Sheena Parveen is leaving Philly but not the NBC family.

Sheena is moving to NBC10's sister station WRC-TV/NBC4 Washington.

"Our loss is WRC’s gain," said NBC10 vice president of news Anzio Williams. "Sheena has been a great advocate and supporter of our communities and her love for pets made her the perfect ambassador for our Clear the Shelters pet adoption campaign. I’m certain that DC-area viewers will benefit from her energy, enthusiasm and expertise and immediately connect with her."

Sheena joined the NBC10 First Alert Weather Team five years ago and delivered the weather for such major events as Superstorm Sandy and the Blizzard of 2016. She also delivered weather updates for CSN, the Flyers and 76ers.

"I'm excited about this new opportunity and am delighted that I will remain in the NBCUniversal family," Sheena wrote on Facebook. "However, at the same time I am sad to leave the Philadelphia area and our passionate and loyal viewers. I have enjoyed forecasting the weather here for almost 5 years, and helping to keep our viewers (you) safe."

Sheena will make the move to D.C. at the end of the year.



Photo Credit: NBC10
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<![CDATA[Sustainable Approaches to Battling Droughts in Pa., N.J.]]> Fri, 04 Nov 2016 22:42:39 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Glenn+2+copy.jpg

Parts of our region are now officially in a “severe drought" -- and it is expanding to nearby areas. Mercer County, N.J. is in one of those areas while counties to its south are in a “moderate drought." Here is the map:

[[400091391, C,300,500]]

In the past two months, the rainfall shortage in Mercer County is nearly 3 inches, while it's one inch in Burlington County. Farther south in New Jersey, there's actually a rainfall surplus, with Cape May County more than 4 inches above normal.

In Pennsylvania, the entire southeast part of the state has seen well below normal rainfall in the past two months. The biggest shortfalls have been in Carbon, Monroe, Northampton, Bucks, and Montgomery counties. But only Northampton and Bucks are in the “moderate drought” designation so far. The others had more rain during the summer, so they are in better shape -- for now.

The rainfall compared to normal has varied tremendously over the past couple of months. The map below shows that. Look at how wet it has been in Delaware. Sussex County is more than 9 inches wetter than normal. And western Pennsylvania has been very wet as well.

[[400091451, C,300,500]]

The drought worsens farther north, and New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin has signed an administrative order designating a drought warning for 14 counties in northern, central and northern coastal New Jersey.

Administrative order 2016-10, asks for the “full cooperation of every person throughout the state, including every resident, visitor, business, institution, State agency, and political subdivision." All residents, businesses and entities are being asked to help avoid a water emergency and the need for more restrictive measures on water usage. A look at the Drinking-Water-Supply status clearly indicates the varying concern of available drinking water in New Jersey. Reservoir storage for parts of the state is below normal and depleting rapidly.

[[400091591, C,300,500]]

A very important note about the coastal plains is that the geology of the terrain, which includes the underground aquifers, differ in extent and thickness as not to allow an easy flow of water. Therefore, accessing aquifers is not the best option. As Commissioner Martin ordered, conscious use of water and mindfulness of our natural resource is a more sustainable answer.

[[400091661, C,300,500]]

[[400091541, C,300,500]]



Photo Credit: NBC10
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<![CDATA[Daylight Saving Time Ends Sunday, Change Your Clocks Back]]> Sat, 05 Nov 2016 07:36:08 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/daylight-saving-time.jpg

It’s that time of the year when you get an extra hour of sleep. When you go to bed on Saturday night, or early Sunday, don’t forget to turn your clock back an hour - the change takes place at 2 a.m. on Nov. 6. In observance of daylight saving time here are some things you may not have known about this event.

It Has an Impact on Your Health

Switching into and out of daylight savings can disturb people’s sleeping routines, making them more restless at night, according to U.S. News and World Report. However, morning people tend to be less bothered by the changes. Studies have shown that during the first week of daylight saving time a spike in heart attacks takes place. Some experts suggest, according to the report, that the loss of an hour’s rest may make people more vulnerable to an attack. Nonetheless, when people get an extra hour in the fall, the incidents of heart attacks are less than usual.

Don't Trust Your Phone

Don't depend on your phone to automatically switch the time. In 2013, iPhone customers experienced a daylight saving time bug. Some users saw two different times displayed on their calendar app, which was apparently caused by a change that moved daylight saving time back a week in 2007. In 2010 iPhones had another problem in which the phones did not correctly change alarm schedules when daylight saving time ended, causing some European iPhone users to wake up late for work, while Australians were woken up early.

It Has a Founding Father History

The notion of daylight saving time was introduced by none other than one our founding fathers, Benjamin Franklin, according to NASA. The idea was to take advantage of daylight hours by moving the clock backward in the fall and forward in the spring.

Presidents Love Daylight Saving Time Laws

Daylight saving time has been used throughout most of the U.S., Canada and Europe since World War I, but it wasn’t until 1966 that President Lyndon B. Johnson decided to implement a law stating that daylight saving time would begin the last Sunday of April and end on the last Sunday of October every year. (However, some states can opt-out)

In 2005, President George W. Bush extended the daylight saving time for an extra four weeks through an energy bill policy. Since 2007, Daylight Saving Time begins on the second Sunday of March and ends on the first Sunday of November.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Daylight Saving Ends on Sunday, an Extra Hour of Sleep]]> Fri, 04 Nov 2016 11:23:17 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000017788814_1200x675_800923715812.jpg Turn your clocks back an hour on Sunday morning because Daylight Saving Time ends.]]> <![CDATA[Your Trick-or-Treat Forecast]]> Mon, 31 Oct 2016 08:48:25 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/194*120/halloween_generic_jack_o_lantern.jpg

It's the last day of October and we’ve got some beautiful weather ahead for Monday, but tonight it gets chilly in a hurry for Halloween trick-or-treating.

The steady, drying breeze blowing Monday morning, will die down later in the day. Monday evening, the recipe for chilly weather this time of year – very dry air in place and clear skies – will be in place. The sun sets just before 6 o'clock, so expect temperatures to be dropping rapidly. Early in the evening the readings will be in the 40s for our entire Philadelphia area.

The later you stay out trick-or-treating the colder it's going to get. So your younger ghosts and goblins might need an extra layer as they go searching for treats.

Also, with a new moon and no clouds to reflect city lights, it will be very dark by 7 o'clock Monday evening. That’ll make it difficult for drivers to see children, especially those dressed in dark costumes. If ghosts and goblins are going to be out after dark, it’s a good idea to have them carry a flashlight to make them more visible to motorists.

Happy Halloween!



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Powerful Storms, Thunder, Rain Slam Region ]]> Sun, 30 Oct 2016 19:12:14 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Heavy-Rain-Lead-Photo.jpg

Powerful storms with heavy rain, hail and thunder slammed our region Sunday evening causing damage and power outages. Check out these viewer photos of the storm.



Photo Credit: RJ Wheeler ]]>
<![CDATA[Neighborhood Weather Tracks Big Temperature Differences in Our Area]]> Thu, 27 Oct 2016 18:00:11 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Big-Temperature-Differences.jpg NBC10’s Erika Martin shows the major differences in temperatures and precipitation in various areas of our region.]]> <![CDATA[First Flurries?]]> Wed, 26 Oct 2016 20:07:05 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-4596410341.jpg

With a push of cold air and some precip on the way, it looks like we could see the season’s first flurries and maybe even a coating for Mount Pocono! However, while I am a huge fan of snow, my concern regarding the cold air and Delaware Valley bound precip is freezing rain and ice pellets. See the Freezing Rain Advisory issued by NWS Mount Holly [[398791961, C,354,274]]

A quick snapshot at temps on the latest NAM run shows a pretty cold thermal profile, so chances are we could see freezing rain for NE and North Central, PA in the AM. Refer to the legend and area for an idea of temperatures.[[398792321, C,450,600]] [[398792431, C,450,600]] [[398792561, C,450,600]]

I also want to add the threat of steady downpours for Philadelphia, for the afternoon and evening commutes.

-Erika Martín



Photo Credit: AFP/Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Offshore Low Influences Local Weekend Forecast]]> Fri, 21 Oct 2016 13:37:35 -0500 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Generic+Rain+Generic+Umbrella+Generic+Rainy.jpg

Early last week I mentioned the threat of a developing low east of Florida, potentially tracking into the MidAtlantic. Almost as soon as models agreed on the development, a massive cold front was forecasted to develop and beat out the low, essentially keeping it offshore.

The only thing that could have prevented the front from continuing eastward would have been it stalling out... well it did. It has now continued to move on as a cold front, but it timed out a bit slower, allowing moisture from the offshore low to beat out the front and push in some rain from the Southeast, making it to the Jersey Shore.

[[397937761, C]]

The predominant weather maker will be the cold front, but the coastal low will push some rain along the coast. 

[[397938061, C]]

[[397938181, C]]

A quick look at winds, winds will definitely be a factor by Friday afternoon and Saturday. Wind gusts could reach up to 40mph along the shore.

As for temperatures...We drop into the 50's by Saturday!



Photo Credit: NBC10
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