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Saturday, October 27, 2012

Record Coastal Flooding Forecast As Sandy Nears


The National Weather Service will not issue any hurricane warnings for Sandy.  Don't let your guard down. The storm may not officially be "tropical" by landfall Tuesday morning, but it will be every bit as powerful.  I worry this will only cause confusion. But it’s not my call to make. 
Flood Watches have been issued Inland, Coastal Flood Warnings &
High Surf Advisories for the shoreline. 
Sandy is likely to remain at or near hurricane strength during the next day or so before interacting with a strong trough and cold front moving into the eastern United States. As that happens the storm will actually strengthen (which is not something that normally happens).

A few showers could sneak in Sunday night.  Conditions deteriorate on Monday with the heaviest rain and strongest winds Monday night into Tuesday morning. Gusty winds continue through Wednesday morning. Showers linger off and on into Thursday.  So this is a long duration event!


Storm surge is the abnormal rise of water due to a storm. Storm tide is the water level rise due to storm surge plus astronomical tides. The forecast storm tide for Sandy is higher than Irene and forecast to exceed record levels!  Please follow evacuation orders if they are issued.

Bridgeport Storm tide for Irene: 12.08’, 4.44’ storm surge
Bridgeport forecast for Sandy: 14.18’, 6.88’ storm surge

New London Storm tide for Irene: 6.55’, 3.49’ storm surge
New London forecast for Sandy:8.11, 2.45’ storm surge

5-8 foot waves are possible for eastern facing portions of Long Island Sound.  Minor coastal flooding is possible with the evening high tide on Sunday. Widespread moderate flooding is likely on Monday morning.  And major coastal flooding is possible Monday night with the high tide cycle. Moderate to major coastal flooding will continue through Tuesday afternoon.

Winds will howl out of the northeast sustained 35-45 mph with gusts to 60 mph. Hurricane force wind gusts ~74 mph can’t be ruled out.  It all depends on where the center of Sandy tracks.  If Sandy nudges north, the stronger winds will follow.

Peak wind gusts during Irene were 58 mph in Bridgeport.  Inland, 44 mph in Windsor Locks.  That doesn’t sound impressive.  But those winds were enough to cause over 700,000 power outages!  No matter what track this storm takes, the large wind field could bring a similar number of outages.


Right now the National Hurricane Center track takes Sandy across the southern tip of New Jersey on Tuesday morning. The strongest winds will be to the north and west of the storm’s track, the heaviest rain will be to the southwest of the storm’s center. 

1"-3" of rain is expected with the storm with up to 4" in spots. I don’t think inland flooding will be a major issue like it was during Irene.  At least not here in New England.  The heaviest rain will stay to our southwest.  But as rain from northern New England flows downstream, some flooding is possible

Dan Amarante will be on FOX tonight with an update after the baseball game.  Geoff Fox and I will be starting team coverage on Sunday.  Be safe and stay up to date on the forecast as much as possible!


Anonymous said...

Good concise info - thanks!

Anonymous said...

rach quick question: why is the nhc/noaa sticking so hard with the south jersey landfall? gfs euro seem alot more north and all these weather "geeks" on fb have a nyc landfall, what do they see so firmly?

John M West said...

Hey Rachel,

You have been so much more accurate than many others.. good luck -- stay safe and warm with Rambo and the doggie... be chatting..:) <3

John W