Monday, December 20, 2010

Weather to the MAX: Northeast Blizzard of 1978

The Northeast Blizzard of 1978 occurred between February 6-7th. Boston received 27 inches of snow, while Providence Rhode Island got 27.6 inches of snow. The storm took 100 lives. About 4500 were injured, and damage totaled 520 million dollars in 1978 currency-value, but present-day value is 1.75 billion dollars.
The storm formed off South Carolina. Arctic front and cold air mass collided with the storm, which proceeded to race up the coastline.

Weather to the MAX: Chicago Blizzard of 1979.

The Chicago Blizzard of 1979 occurred January 13-14, 1979. It dropped a total of 16 inches on January 13 ALONE. The final total was 19 inches of snow in Chicago. Cars were buried all winter as cold and snow continued with vengeance.

18z Storm Tracks Christmas Storm (NCEP/EMC)

The first image is the GFS model. It has inched farther north from South Arkansas to Central Arkansas. Often, storms will suddenly dive, then slowly come back up. We'll have to see if that happens.

The second image is the Short Range Ensemble Forecast. The three tracks going south are the same model, so don't invest much of anything into that. Same with the Pink tracks. But the Pink and red are combined, 2 different models favoring the north, 1 model with 3 branches favoring south.

Up-To-The-Minute Updates

Reports coming in GFS may be a bit north. Unconfirmed.
Second report of northern track. Precip QPF showing up North.

GFS Dec. 20 18z

18z runs coming out

SREF ensemble forecast split in half. Updates later.

Christmas Storm Analyses

12z Notes

GFS- Takes storm to Arkansas. Heaviest precip in Central IL southward.
UKMET- Staying fairly north
CMC- Taking more northerly track, same as UKMET
NCEP ENSEMBLE: In between all models.
NOGAPS- GFS-like track.
ECMWF- Most southern track.



12z GFS Run (Today's storm)

(ncep nws noaa)

12z NAM Run (Today's storm)


Christmas Storm Dec. 20 UPDATE

Thanks for tuning in for this update. On the Left, there is the 06z precipitation projection for the storm. It shows significant precipitation throughout the Midwest. I believe the dot of heaviest precip should be rain in Missouri.

The image on the left is the GEM's forecast. It depicts the most precip just like the GFS.

The image to the left is the 06z snow projection. They have gone down, but only steadily. Light blue is 10-12'', blue is 8-10'', light red is 12-15''. They have steadily been going down, but I have seen that the storm track has been going down, yet still maintaining the heavy snow in the same area. This increases confidence.

The image to the left is the Japanese model's storm precip. The storm is still too far out to total it all up, but the makings may be similar to the GFS and GEM.

The image to the left here is the GFS forecast for the storm. Obviously, it is south so that it is nearly in Tennessee, which may have limited snow totals in North Illinois where we had focused on.

Image to the left is the HPC's precip forecast. It goes with the GFS and GEM but may not hold all of the precip.
The final image is the NCEP Ensemble for the storm. The red line is the GFS line. The caution zone is Kentucky to Mississippi. However, anything can change at any time.

Summary: The GEM and GFS agree on the precip, along with possibly the HPC. We'll have to see. Main precip still looks like N. IL to Nebraska, Missouri, into the East Coast.