Andrea Continues Up East Coast, Past Boston

By , Expert Senior Meteorologist
June 08, 2013; 2:24 AM
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Andrea will continue to move northward up the New England Coast on Saturday with locally heavy rain, brief gusty winds and a flooding risk.

As of 4:00 a.m. EDT Saturday, maximum sustained winds with Andrea were around 45 mph. The storm was located about 35 miles west to southwest of the eastern top of Long Island, N.Y. Around 5:45 p.m. EDT Thursday, Andrea made landfall along Florida's Big Bend.

Andrea will continue up the coast and into Atlantic Canada on Saturday after dropping up to 4 inches of rain across parts of the mid-Atlantic on Friday. Drenching rain will lead to urban flooding concerns into the first part of the weekend.

Andrea retained tropical storm status into Friday afternoon as it crossed through the Carolinas before being recategorized as a tropical rainstorm around 5 p.m. EDT.

Travel delays from blinding tropical downpours, poor drainage area flooding and locally gusty thunderstorms are possible. A brief period of stiff winds will sweep northward with the strongest winds to the south and east of the center of circulation.

Coastal Rain, Urban Flooding

The rain from Andrea will precede the center of circulation by 12 hours or more.

Disruptive downpours can occur early in the day around Boston, Mass. and Portland, Maine, and all day in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.

Indications are that most locations in this swath will be in for a 1- to 2-inch rainfall, but locally heavier amounts are possible, especially at locations closer to the coastline.

Coastal Wind, Above-Normal Tides

A brief (approximately six-hour) period of gusty onshore winds along the coast will make for locally rough surf and strong rip currents. Bathers should exercise caution on Friday and Saturday as the system approaches then swings by.

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A water rise causing significant coastal flooding is not expected, due to the increasing forward speed and relatively weak nature of the tropical part of the system.

However, higher astronomical tides occur during high tide cycles near and just before the new moon, which is midday on Saturday. Brief, minor flooding around the time of high tide is possible later on Saturday into Sunday morning. Water levels can be as high as 2 feet above published levels.

Appalachian Rain, Flooding Concerns

Another component of the rain will be from a storm system moving in from the Midwest. This rain is preceding Andrea's rain by a day or more, but will linger somewhat in Andrea's wake.

The combination of Andrea's moisture and the presence of the Midwest system will allow for a few showers to linger in the Northeast on Saturday as Andrea moves up the coast and into Atlantic Canada.

Widespread flooding of streams and major river flooding are not expected, due to the quick forward motion of both systems.

Strong Thunderstorms

Finally, the combination of the tropical part and non-tropical part of the storms can lead to locally heavy thunderstorms, of which a handful could be severe at the local level. These thunderstorms will not become severe as they did when Andrea was in Florida and produced multiple tornadoes.

Incidents of power outages and property damage would be very sporadic and should be relatively minor. However, since forecasting the exact location of individual thunderstorms is nearly impossible days in advance, there is the risk of a heavy thunderstorm hitting a major population center with more widespread consequences.

Heavy rain and locally gusty winds and thunderstorms will focus over Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Newfoundland later Saturday and Saturday night, as both the Midwest and Gulf systems merge into one.

On a positive note for lawn, garden and agricultural interests, the combination of the two storms will bring a dose of rain to many areas. Recent sunshine, low humidity and breezes have dried out the topsoil leaving shallow root vegetation in need of moisture.

The bulk of the rain will leave the mid-Atlantic by Saturday morning and New England by Saturday afternoon and will allow most outdoor activities to resume for the balance of the weekend.

There is a risk of spotty showers in the area during the early evening for the Belmont Stakes on Long Island, N.Y.

However, a disturbance producing thunderstorms around Texas and Louisiana Thursday evening can bring a round of thundery downpours to part of the mid-Atlantic Saturday afternoon and evening.

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