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    Elliot Abrams

    Springlike for the Weekend

    By Elliot Abrams, AccuWeather chief meteorologist
    1/09/2013, 4:35:04 AM

    Wednesday 8 a.m.

    A piece of good news that's been making the rounds: We have gone a record 198 days without a tornado fatality. Bad news: the next severe weather season lies ahead.

    The steering currents aloft will be southwesterly over the Northeast from Friday through early next week. That alone doesn't guarantee warmth, but it does appear that on Sunday, it will be in the 50s at Foxboro, Mass., when the Patriots take on the Texans.

    Cold air will be advancing slowly through the Great Lakes region later in the weekend, but this first pulse of chill looks like it will be very slow to reach the East Coast. This opens the door to the idea that a series of low pressure areas moving northeastward along the frontal zone could deliver several rounds of rain. As each low pressure area goes by, some colder air will advance southeastward behind it. If one of these low pressure areas happens to visit your location just after the cold air arrives, you may see the warm spell end with snow or ice. We won't know the particulars until we get closer to the critical time.

    The set of maps below are spaghetti plots, which are used to illustrate similarities and differences in multiple runs of the same computer model. The most recognizable panel shows spaghetti itself. To its right is a map showing the ensemble of solutions for the upper air flow (500 mb) next Monday. While the lines do not follow identical paths, they all show southwesterly flow in the East. Not a single contour breaks out and crosses the Southeast. That's why it appears the coming mild spell can last past Sunday. In the lower left corner, we find the set of "answers" for late next week. There are two primary trends. One shows a trough in the Mississippi Valley. This could suggest snow for the Appalachians and maybe over toward the coast. The other mode shows a west to northwest flow from the Dakotas to Pennsylvania and New York, suggesting chilly and dry conditions. In the lower right box, we see a map for early the following week. The flow lines here are in all different directions, with some line intersecting each other at 90-degree angles. This is so disorganized it could be called an insult to Italian food!


    The views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of AccuWeather, Inc. or AccuWeather.com


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    Elliot Abrams