Another Hurricane…yeeeeeeah right! I know thats what a lot of people are thinking after Irene. I get it, most of us live in the sheltered world of Manhattan, well expect the unfortunate people who live in Battery Park. Just remember that a lot of people in the suburbs saw a lot of problems, not to mention the devastation in upstate New York and Vermont. However, Sandy is not Irene. Sandy shouldn’t even be possible, and because of that you should take it seriously.
October is crazy month weather wise because the ocean is still warm, but Arctic air can start to make its presence felt, remember Snowoween? October/November usually just gives us a powerful nor’easter. In 1991 it helped gives us the perfect storm, the storm, the book, and then the movie. Similar to 1991 a perfect set of conditions came together to form what will be a super storm that will impact the entire eastern seaboard.
Essentially the atmosphere is clogged up and has created a very powerful block over the the Northern Atlantic Ocean. Arctic air is moving in, and a hurricane just happens to have taken a path into it all. Because of all these conditions, the storm will go from being tropical (a warm core storm) to extra tropical (cold core). With a warmer ocean, a lot of cold air, and the transition of energy/warmth from the hurricane, the storm will rapidly grow in size and intensity. It’s appropriate that this storm will hit somewhere on the Jersey Shore. If only the storm was named Ronnie or Sammy.
The intensity of this storm could be historic for extratropical cyclone purposes. The central pressure could go as low as 943, and will probably be in the 950’s.These types of readings are typically seen in a category II or III hurricanes, and if it goes lower than 955 Sandy would set the mark for lowest barometric pressure ever recorded in the United States from a non tropical system. A blizzard in 1978 that hit the Ohio Valley produced readings similar to this and it produced 80-90 MPH winds with gust over 100. These readings strong winds and storm surge, which will be the biggest threat to the low lying areas. Because of the intensity of this storm, and the massive size we could see a surge of 5-10 feet, oh not to mention the highest tides of the season because of the lunar cycle. A surge of 5 feet plus the wave action would do some damage to Battery Park City because it’s not really land. A surge closer to 10 feet would flood a lot of lower Manhattan.
All of this seems crazy, and after Irene taking it seriously is probably more difficult to do. Sandy isn’t Irene. She is going to hit somewhere on the east coast, and because of the sheer size there will be a lot of rain, winds, and coastal flooding.
The City could see upwards of 8 inches of rain, 80 MPH winds, lower Manhattan, Brighton Beach, and the Rockaways could see significant flooding. The Food Emporium on 49th and 8th (where I used to live) will be the most crowded it will ever have been. Seriously, I think it takes a hurricane for that store to actually do business. If you are in one of the non-evacuation zones of Manhattan/Queens/Brooklyn you should feel lucky. You probably won’t lose power, it’s unlikely that your street will flood (it could though thats a lot of rain), and if you wanted to venture outside you could go to a restaurant that will probably be open. However, for most everyone else this storm will cause a lot of problems, and do damage along the coast.