Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Looking into the weekend unsettled weather will return to our area, it will be warmer and more humid with scattered showers and thunderstorms. Meanwhile Tropical Storm Katia is meandering across the open waters of the Atlantic. The storm is forecast to become a hurricane today but it will not threaten any land through the foreseeable future. Forecasters will also be watching an area of disturbed weather near Cuba for potential development as it drifts into the Gulf of Mexico this weekend.
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
It will be weeks before we can assess the true cost of damages from hurricane Irene, but it will be in the billions with 40 deaths so far. Just in Canada alone damage to trees, power lines, infrastructure, crops and homes will be in the tens of millions.
Those who hinted on Sunday that Irene was a bust need to take a much closer look at what this storm did. The storm affected such a large swath of eastern North America, wiping some towns off the map and leaving marks on others that will never never be erased. Do not underestimate the far reaching effects of this storm. I don't exaggerate when it comes to weather, I never have, I just report facts. I have been tracking storms since Hurricane David in 1979, and this one stands up there with the worst of them. All to often we get hung up on category strength, the bottom line is these storms are packed with moisture and energy, and that energy needs to be unleashed somewhere. Vermont and New York are facing some of there worst flooding in 100 years. The rivers are receding this morning, but it will take months for the cleanup. Power is still out to millions of homes, including 28,000 in Quebec. My power was out for 20 hours, we lost food but compared to others we feel very fortunate. Several homes in the metro area had damage from fallen trees and flooding, especially southeast of Montreal. The region on the south shore of the city recorded winds close to 100km/h along with 125mm of rain.
Tranquil weather is upon us today and for the rest of the week with just a few showers and maybe a rumble of thunder this afternoon. Of note; tropical storm Katia has developed in the open waters of the eastern Atlantic with 40mph winds, a reminder to us that we are entering the peak portion of the hurricane season. Katia replaced the name Katrina which was retired 6 years ago yesterday after devastating the Gulf Coast and New Orleans.
Monday, August 29, 2011
Above top: Hydro Quebec was kept busy yesterday on L'Ile Perrot as trees toppled power lines resulting in thousands without power. Bottom: North Carolina highway 12 through Rodanthe on Hatteras Island. I feel just terrible for these Outer Banks communities I love so much.
Hurricane Irene will go down as a multi-billion dollar storm after she slammed the east coast this weekend from the North Carolina to Quebec resulting in 21 fatalities including one each in Vermont and Quebec. The storm produced record flash flooding up and down the coast but especially in Vermont where this may be the worst storm on record. Most rivers, streams and lakes were turned into massive torrents yesterday after 200mm of rain fell in about 12 hours. The same is true in upstate New York, the Adirondacks and Catskills where some communities have become isolated by flooding, and several rescues have taken place.
Irene is a rather disorganized, windy area of showers this morning over Atlantic Canada. In 2 days the storm managed to wipe out my vacation playground of Hatteras Island, tearing Highway 12 to shreds in numerous places, far worse than Hurricane Isabel in 2003, as well as damaging properties and infrastructure. The storm than marched into New England and flooded out most of central and southern Vermont, including Main Street in Waterbury (above) where I was two weekends ago. Finally the storm lashed southern Quebec with all her remaining energy dumping between 60-165mm of rain on the province, 58mm at my home. Irene also produced strong winds up to 110km/h in Quebec City and 90km/h in Montreal, that toppled trees onto power lines. My home has been without power for over 15 hours now. Hydro was by at about 1am this morning, but the damage to the line and transformer is quite significant and they needed daylight and likely a chainsaw to work on it.
I have so much more information to share but I am going to take a breather now. It was a busy weekend which ended with a 400 km drive to Ontario in the torrential rain and wind yesterday.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
- A Valley Weather post using BlogPress from my iPhone
Hurricane Irene is located this morning on the coast near New York City. The large storm system has winds of 75mph and some slow weakening is forecast today as Irene moves inland over southern New England and up the Connecticut River Valley between Vermont and New Hampshire. Irene will then move into southern Quebec and New Brunswick. Montreal is already feeling the effects of the storm. At 9am we are cloudy with a northeast wind of 39 km/h. Winds are forecast to increase to between 70 and 100km/h today. The storm has been drawing in some dry air and has also experienced some shear. Despite this tropical storm force winds extend outwards nearly 300 miles from the center. Where we may see a break in the forecast is in the rain department. Radar is showing very heavy rain across Vermont extending just into Quebec at this hour. It will continue to nudge towards the St. Lawrence Valley. Heavy rain warnings are in effect for all of southern Quebec and now also include southeast Ontario including Cornwall and Glengarry County. Over 50mm is expected this afternoon into tonight with as much as 100mm locally. However the storm is moving faster now and rainfall amounts may be less, we will have to wait and see.
Saturday, August 27, 2011
Warnings remain in effect up the entire east coast to Maine. Inland tropical storm warnings are in effect for southern New York and New England.
Synopsis for Montreal: Here is a breakdown of what will happen in southern Quebec. Irene has weakened this morning to a category one storm with 90 mph winds. Despite this she remains a big wind and rain maker and will continue to do so into Sunday. Montreal remains on the western edge of the system with a very sharp drop off of weather expected west of the city. That being said it looks like about 50 to 100mm of rain beginning early Sunday and lasting all day from the city east and southeast. Eastern Ontario may only see scattered showers. The rain will be capable of producing flash flooding especially in the Townships and points east. A high wind warning is in effect for Montreal and southern Quebec. The valley will help channel northeast winds into the city with gusts between 50-90km/h throughout Sunday. Winds of that strength are capable of downing power lines and trees. Winds will back to the north late in the day and drop to 50km/h. The strongest winds will be in the St. Lawrence Valley and across the higher elevations of southern Quebec. More updates to follow via twitter.
Heavy Rain Warning : 50-100mm (2-4 inches)
High Wind Warning : Increasing northeast winds to 50km/h tonight and up to 90km/h by Sunday morning.
Friday, August 26, 2011
Here is what you need to know about our weather this weekend. Hurricane Irene this morning is a category 2 storm with 110mph winds located about 350 miles south southwest of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. The storm is moving northward at 14 mph and should reach the Outer Banks by Saturday afternoon. A hurricane warning is in effect from the North Carolina/South Carolina border northward to Sandy Hook, New Jersey. North of Sandy Hook a watch is posted up to Merrimack River, Mass on the New Hampshire border. This watch includes Long Island and Metro New York City. Evacuations are well underway in coastal areas from the Carolinas to the Jersey Shore.
Irene is forecast to move up the coast and come onshore very close to New York City on Sunday. At this time the storm is then forecast to cross interior New England and move into southern Quebec and the Gaspe region. Locally no watches are in effect at this time. Today and Saturday will be partly cloudy with increasing northeast winds late Saturday. Sunday looks very windy in Montreal, gusts over 50km/h quite likely. Rain will develop in the afternoon and become very heavy east of the city. Amounts will range from 25mm over western regions to as much as 200mm well south and east of the city and into the Townships and Vermont. Flooding is likely in Vermont and eastern Quebec with a watch of some sort expected later today or early Saturday.
I will have much more as the day and weekend progresses, either by blogging or via twitter. Please stay safe this weekend.
Thursday, August 25, 2011
Hurricane Warnings are up for the North Carolina coast tonight to Virginia Beach with a Hurricane Watch north of there to Sandy Hook, New Jersey. A state of emergency is in effect for the coastal counties of North Carolina with evacuations ordered in Hyde, Dare and Currituck counties. Tropical storm conditions are expected to overspread the area by late Friday. Evacuations have also been ordered along portions of the coasts of Delaware and Maryland and will likely be extended north into southern New Jersey on Friday. A state of emergency is also in effect for New York City. Large and dangerous Irene is located about 530 miles south southwest of Cape Hatteras with 115mph winds. The storm is forecast to approach the Outer Banks and pass west of the cape on Saturday. Computer models tend to be favouring a more western route for the storm. That spells bad news for North Carolina as well as the northeast. The storm is expected to move into New York and New England on Sunday with heavy flooding rains and powerful winds. Montreal remains on the western edge of the model runs so we will likely see strong northeast winds and rain by Sunday. Most of eastern Quebec and Atlantic Canada can expect tropical storm force winds and heavy rain if Irene remains are her current forecast track.
There is increasing concern along the middle Atlantic and northeast into New England and eastern Canada this morning. The region had heavy rain last week and the potential for serious flooding exists. At this time hurricane conditions will spread across the Outer Banks Saturday, evacuations are underway today. On Sunday the storm will move northeast along the coast and slam into Long Island. The forecast track at this time, subject to change, has Irene moving into New Hampshire and then southern Quebec as a tropical storm. East of the track heavy surge and wave action will affect the coast while along and west of the track heavy rain and strong north and northeast winds are expected. With this track, Montreal would remain on the western edge of the storm with rain and strong winds by Sunday. I will have much more on Irene as the day moves along with the next complete update this evening. All the links on this page are active with information.
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
We have so much weather going on tonight I am not sure where to begin. We will start in Ontario where a cold front has prompted a day long tornado watch for a big portion of central and southern Ontario. After the F-3 Goderich twister last Sunday, Environment Canada appears to be airing on the side of caution with this one, with conditions reasonable for some severe storms and rotation. Heavy rain and dangerous lightning appear to be the main threats with these storms. They are marching across Ontario and should begin to affect southern Quebec after midnight. Some may be strong around Montreal as well with heavy rain and gusty winds.
Meanwhile all eyes are on hurricane Irene tonight as the storm moves slowly across the Bahamas, northwest at 12mph. It is currently moving between Rum Cay and Long Island. The category 3 storm has winds tonight of 120mph and is expected to increase to category 4 on Thursday. The large storm has tropical force winds extending outwards up to 230 miles from the center. I am very concerned for the Outer Banks of North Carolina, a place I like to call my second home. The location and its residents are very special to me. It appears that Irene may move over or very close to the Outer Banks by Saturday with Category 3 force winds, heavy rain and a storm surge. Then we need to look further up the coast into New York and New England as well as Eastern Canada. The Canadian Hurricane Center has issued a special statement for southern Quebec and Atlantic Canada to pay close attention to Irene and expect high winds and heavy rain in a portion of the forecast region by late Sunday and Monday.
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
A moderate earthquake of 5.8 rattled the east coast from Montreal and Toronto south to Florida. The quake occurred at around 2pm close to the small town of Mineral, Virginia about 90 miles northwest of Washington D.C. While others in Montreal told me they felt the swaying for about 30 seconds, I must admit I did not. Office buildings in New York, Boston and other cities were evacuated, as was the White House and Pentagon. Minor injuries were reported with some serious damage scattered throughout the mid-Atlantic with the worst close to the epicentre in Virginia. Scattered power outages were reported and several nuclear plants were placed on alert or taken offline. Train and plane service slowed or stopped immediately after the quake and is slowly returning to normal. The quake was the worst to affect the region in nearly 100 years.
The region is also preparing for what could be a major hurricane by the weekend. Hurricane Irene is centered near the Turks and Caicos Islands this evening with 90mph winds, a little weaker than earlier today but still expected to become a major hurricane over the next 48 hours. Computer guidance has been shifting the track of the storm further east away from Florida with the last several runs and it now looks like the Outer Banks of North Carolina could be a target. Anybody who knows me or reads this blog knows my connection to Hatteras and Ocracoke Islands. I have been vacationing there since 1991 including this past May. The thin, fragile barrier islands look like they could take a direct hit from the storm. Further up the coast residents from Virginia to Nova Scotia are being advised to monitor the storm closely. I will have much more on Irene this week, updating via Valley Weather blog or twitter as often as I can.
Monday, August 22, 2011
Sunday, August 21, 2011
Friday, August 19, 2011
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
ELVIS: Also of note on this date was the death of Elvis at age 42 in 1977. Most people remember where they were when the heard the news, I was on a VIA train. Of course I am going to put a weather spin on this. I was only 11 years old and was traveling with my mother and grandmother to Ottawa for the day. I remember it was unseasonably cool and very rainy in both Ottawa and Montreal. A quick look at the stats showed a high of 18C with rain and fog in both cities, 4.8mm in Montreal and 16.0mm in Ottawa.
**More showers are possible today as an upper level low continues to spin over eastern North America. The heaviest rain yesterday remained over New England and New York. It will be warmer today and the instability could result in a shower or two this afternoon in southern Quebec. Skies will clear for Wednesday with warmer weather, close to 29C.
Monday, August 15, 2011
A record 7.72 inches of rain fell at JFK yesterday flooding roads and basements and knocking out power to thousands in metro New York City. The rain, part of a system that stretched from the middle Atlantic to the northeast, generated slow moving thunderstorms that deluged many areas. The northern edge of the same system produced severe thunderstorms in our region with gusty winds and heavy rain. Trudeau Airport reported just under one inch of rain (22mm) for the 24 hours, I measured about 0.5" (15mm) at my home west of the airport. Heavier rain occurred southwest of Montreal and into eastern Ontario and upstate New York. As the upper level low over Ohio and the coastal system move slowly northeast today, more showers are possible with heavy amounts up to 2 inches (50mm) across the region in the slower moving cells. Radar is showing showers and some thunderstorms over southern Vermont moving north this morning. They should reach southern Quebec by the afternoon. The air mass will remain unstable well into Tuesday before drier air moves in from the northwest lowering dew points and humidity levels. Wednesday and Thursday look sunny and warm at this time.
Sunday, August 14, 2011
Saturday, August 13, 2011
Friday, August 12, 2011
Just how hot a summer has it been this summer? Well here in Montreal, we reached 30C (86F) or better on 9 of 31 days in July. We had 21 of 31 days over 27C (81F) and a record high of nearly 35.7C, the warmest since the heatwave of 1975. Well how about Windsor, Ontario, they recorded the warmest monthly average ever in Canada at 25.8C, by comparison we were an equally warm 23.1C. South of the border the numbers are impressive. Texas has been melting under intense heat and drought for the entire summer. Dallas yesterday ended its streak of consecutive days of 100F or better at 40, just shy of the 1980 record of 42 days. Waco broke its record at 43 days off 100 plus temperatures and Wichita Falls 42 days, both set during the summer of 1980.
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Tuesday, August 09, 2011
**I spoke briefly the other day on the cooler nights and fog as August moves along and September beckons. Last night when I went to bed it was a summery 23C at 11pm. Just 5 hours later Ile Perrot was 16C. That is a drop from 73F to 61F in just 6 hours (more dramatic in Fahrenheit), that my friends is radiational cooling at its best under clear skies and with light winds. That is very fall like for sure, just saying!
Monday, August 08, 2011
While searing heat continues to affect the southern plains and southeast US, a little bit of Autumn is working its way into western Canada. In between humid and unstable air has produced impressive thunderstorms. After a nearly bone dry month of July in my little corner of the province, I measured over 30mm of rain this weekend in thunderstorms. Numerous reports of damage came in from all over the province including Canada's 7th tornado this season, an F-1, with winds up to 150km/h, confirmed in the tiny municipality of Saint-Ludger-de-Milot, 100 kilometres northeast of Chicoutimi. The storm uprooted trees and damaged houses cutting power to over 1600 homes. Storms in Quebec this weekend produced flash flooding southeast of the city where nearly 100mm of rain fell. There were also reports of downed trees and power poles. Meanwhile out west southern Saskatchewan and Alberta were hammered by deadly storms that produced ankle deep hail, strong winds, heavy rain and at least one tornado. Two deaths have been blamed on the storms, one in Saskatchewan and one in Alberta. The hail, reported to be as large as golf balls in places, caused considerable damage to crops with claims nearly doubling in one week. The air is a little more stable this week so look for sunny skies and little threat for severe weather.
Meanwhile back here in Montreal high pressure will give us a sunny and warm Monday and Tuesday before another frontal boundary returns showers and thunderstorms to the region by Wednesday. Temperatures will be near normal, around 27C (81F) most of the week.
Sunday, August 07, 2011
Saturday, August 06, 2011
A weak frontal boundary and a rather warm (30C) and humid day have triggered a few thunderstorms this evening over extreme southwest Quebec. One cell, that had a warning on it that has since expired, is moving into the Dorion/Ile Perrot region at this hour. There are gusty winds, lots of lightning and some decent rain with this storm. It is moving oddly from south to north and will move onto the West Island of Montreal and Laval in the next hour. More showers and storms are possible overnight an into Sunday as the air mass remains moist and unstable.
Friday, August 05, 2011
Tropical Storm Emily weakened yesterday to a low pressure system near Haiti. The storm is still meandering around the eastern tip of Cuba this morning (see 1 in image). Forecasters say the storm has a 60% chance of redevelopment over the next 24 hours as she moves northwest towards the Bahamas. All warnings are down as of this point. All interests along the southeast US coast should continue to monitor the system. At the very least high surf, rip currents and perhaps some showers may affect the Outer Banks by late Sunday.
Thursday, August 04, 2011
It looks like we are going to settle into a typical August pattern for the next few days. The nights have turned noticeably cooler and the days are staying around 27C. We have clouds this morning as a northeast breeze is producing a maritime layer of air over the St. Lawrence Valley. Temperatures are cooler at 19C. The sunshine has broken out in Ontario and across the Ottawa Valley, so I expect skies to clear here before noon. Friday will be spectacular, before an unsettled weekend with showers Saturday at 29C and Sunday at 23C.
Tropical Storm Emily is located about 40 miles south southwest of Isla Beata, Dominican Republic at 8am. The storm is slowly expected to drift northwest across Haiti today. The main threat remains very heavy rain with 6-12 inches forecast and as much as 20 inches. With 600,000 people still living outdoors after the January 2010 quake, this could be critical with flash floods and mudslides possible. Yesterday Puerto Rico reported flash flooding along many roadways and villages. The storm remains a threat to the Bahamas and perhaps the southeast US this weekend. Emily has 50 mph winds and will weaken slightly today while interacting with Haiti. She is expected to slowly gain strength into the weekend and could reach hurricane strength by Sunday off the Carolina's. There remains lost of uncertainty in the forecast, check the link on the left often for the latest updates from the NHC.
Wednesday, August 03, 2011
There are parts of the country not having very good weather today, but southern Quebec is not one of them. Our spectacular summer moves along with another partly cloudy and dry day with seasonable temperatures around 26C. Into the late week and weekend, heat and humidity will build again with the threat for some showers or thunderstorms by the weekend.
Meanwhile portions of Atlantic Canada will see 25-50mm of rain today from thunderstorms especially Nova Scotia. Looking south it remains sultry from the southwest across Texas and into the southeast and middle Atlantic. More triple digit highs are expected today. Last month over 2500 record highs were broken across the US with even more in Canada including Montreal's 35.6C one of the warmest days ever in this city. It looks like the heat will prevail into August.
A quick update on Tropical Storm Emily. The storm is located about 145 miles from Santo Domingo. Warnings are out for the region with heavy rain being the main threat. Over 10 inches could fall in the Dominican and Haiti. Afterwards the system is expected to reorganize and take a run at the Bahamas before moving offshore of the southeast US coast. There is still a possibility of the storm becoming a hurricane over the weekend and all interests from the Carolina's to Florida should remain on high alert.
Tuesday, August 02, 2011
Tropical Storm Emily : has developed in the Atlantic and is about 265 miles southeast of San Jaun this morning and moving west at 14mph. The storm is poorly organized but could still be a rain producer for Haiti, the Dominican and parts of the Leeward Islands. Winds are around 40mph with some slow strengthening possible. The storm could threaten the Florida east coast by the weekend.