Tandem tropical storms will keep weather forecasters busy for days to come.
The most immediate interest relates to the slow-evolving and still weak Tropical Storm Roke. This storm has wobbled between depression and storm status since early in the week over open seas south of Japan. Movement has been toward the north and west, allowing Roke to begin approaching the Ryukyu Islands of Japan.
Drifting mostly westward, the tropical storm could reach Okinawa by Saturday, and it is likely to loiter in the area of Okinawa and the neighboring Ryukyu Islands into next week. Some strengthening is forecast to take place, so highest winds will rise from the 40-mph clip that was estimated for Roke as of Thursday.
Some forecast tools accessed by AccuWeather.com show Roke strengthening near the Ryukyus before approaching southern Japan by the middle of next week. In a worst case scenario, Roke could make landfall in southern Japan as a typhoon or strong tropical storm, unleashing flooding rain and damaging wind.
Another tropical storm, dubbed Sonca, has taken shape much farther to the east of Roke. Tropical Storm Sonca, like Roke, is weak as tropical storms go, having been reckoned to hold 40-mph sustained winds on Thursday.
The center of Sonca was still about 1,250 miles southeast of Tokyo, Japan; however, the storm is forecast to accelerate toward the northwest Friday and Saturday. Sonca could reach within a few hundred miles of Tokyo before the end of the week, then it should veer away to the northeast, never directly impacting the Japanese mainland.
A winter storm stretching across the Midwest and Northeast will hit Detroit this weekend.
Another winter storm is on the way for the mid-Mississippi Valley, but areas hit hard by the recent ice storm will be spared the worst.
After a cold and cloudy Friday, Saturday will kick off a snowy weekend for Cleveland.
Heavy snow and travel disruptions will spread from a large part of the Midwest Friday night to the Northeast during Saturday.
A storm will move in Saturday and spread snow across the area first thing in the morning. Expect slippery travel.
A storm will move in Saturday and spread snow across northeastern Pennsylvania and the I-80/I-81 corridors first thing in the morning.
Los Angeles, CA (1878)
Los Angeles 30 degrees "considered" lowest ever in December there.
Set two records; greatest 24 hour storm; 17.0"; greatest single storm total 39.6" for city (13th-14th).
Netarts, OR (2001)
80 mph wind gust.