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Storm Update

11:43 AM, Feb 9, 2013   |    comments
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It is crazy in the weather office right now but I'm going to give you a quick update on what's going on with this blizzard.

Thumping snow along the coast: Heavy bands of snow continue to push in from the Gulf of Maine from southeast to northwest. Some of these bands have been known to drop snowfall at a rate of 3" an hour, which is almost as hard as it CAN snow. Moisture is plentiful from the center of the low pressure system east of Cape Cod so it's really just a matter of pushing these bands onshore as extremely heavy snow and then the bands gradually "snowing themselves out" as they head into the foothills and mountains.

This low pressure system is a monster: The rapid strengthening of the coastal storm late last night/early this morning was remarkable. As the low strengthened it extended it's "reach" to the northwest.

Ending Time: The key with this storm is that it won't weaken over us...we have to wait for it to move out. (You notice there's no "dry slot"? Almost every major Nor'easter has a dry slot that weakens the bands of precipitation. Not this one.) It has already begun pin wheeling east-northeast away from us, but it's occurring very slowly so the heavy snow won't let up until very late morning to early afternoon. Clearing times roughly: 1-2 PM over southern Maine and western Maine, 4-5 PM Midcoast and central Maine, 6-7 PM over Downeast.

Winds: Wind gusts have been in the 40-55 MPH range so far and that should be the max as the storm made its closest pass late last night. Still gusts up to 50 MPH will continue through the morning with gusts down to around 40 MPH by the afternoon. There are power outages but it's not as bad as you'd think so far because the snow is relatively light and fluffy so it's not sticking to trees or power lines.

Flooding: We are still watching an astronomically high tide at 10 AM over southern coastal Maine. Moderate flooding looks likely at this point as waves crash over the top of flood stage.

Here are a list of snowfall totals (in no particular order):

Gorham-32.9"

Portland-29.3"

Gray-21.4"    

Kennebunk-26.0"

Hampton, NH- 24.0"

Lewiston-23.5"    

Augusta-19.5"

Oxford-20.2"

Union-22.0"

Machias-18.0"

Ellsworth-12.0"

Plymouth-12.0"

Kingbury-10.0"

*Don't be surprised to see these increase. Most of these are from around 8am so we're just waiting on updates then we will get the latest totals to you.

Sunday is actually a pleasant day with mostly sunny skies and temperatures in the upper 20s to low 30s. Good day for some cleanup.

Ok back into the fray...be safe and avoid traveling. (I NEVER say that because it's so cliche and demeaning...but seriously, it's pretty rough out there).

Twitter: @KeithCarsonWCSH

 

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