Summer-like warmth, rain chances and Tropical Depression #16 - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Technical Discussion

Summer-like warmth, rain chances and Tropical Depression #16

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HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -

AFTERNOON UPDATE...

Today will be warmer than yesterday as we flirt with 80 this afternoon inland, lower to mid-70s can be expected along the shoreline.  A weakening front moves through CT tonight, with it some clouds and just a slight chance for an isolated shower (much of the state remains dry, it not all of it).  Tomorrow, clouds will clear and temperatures will likely be a couple degrees warmer than today.

We’ll end the week with a chance for showers and cooler weather with highs in the lower 70s.  For the weekend, Saturday will be primarily dry but feature more clouds than sun.  Then Sunday, into Columbus Day, we’ll have to monitor the progress of what is now Tropical Depression #16, soon to become Nate.  While initially in the southwestern Caribbean, the system is forecast to move north and eventually into the Gulf of Mexico... by Saturday night into early Sunday, those with interests from New Orleans through the Florida panhandle should monitor the situation closely.  By early next week, remnant moisture from the system could work up in our direction …timing is off on the models, so it may factor into our weather a bit later (Tuesday, as opposed to Monday).

Meteorologist Mark Dixon 

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WARMER TODAY AND TOMORROW….

A warm-up will begin today!  Temperatures will reach the 70s during the afternoon and we’ll even have a shot at 80 degrees over interior portions of the state.  The morning fog will burn off and we can look forward to mostly sunny skies for the rest of the day.

A cold front will move into Southern New England tonight.  However, it will be moisture starved by the time it reaches Connecticut.  That means there will only be a slight chance for a shower.  Plus, it is going to be a very mild night for early October with low temperatures close to 60 degrees.

The front will have little impact on tomorrow's temperatures.  We are still forecasting an unseasonably warm day with highs around or just over 80 degrees!  The front will likely stall just to the south of New England and once again it won’t have much moisture to work with.  Therefore, the risk of a shower tomorrow is minimal.  Overall, it will be a pretty nice day with partly sunny skies at the very least.

FRIDAY…

The stalled front will be the focal point for scattered showers, but it should be just that, scattered in nature due to an area of weak high pressure in Southern New England.  So most of the day will be dry.  Sky conditions will likely range from partly cloudy to mostly cloudy.  There should be enough cloud cover to limit high temperatures to the lower 70s.

THE COLUMBUS DAY WEEKEND…

Warm, humid air will surge northward into Connecticut over the weekend.  A few showers are possible Saturday morning then the sky will become partly sunny.  Temperatures will rise into the 70s as the air turns more humid as the day progresses.  A southerly breeze will pick up during the afternoon as a warm front moves off to the north of Connecticut.

Sunday will be warm and humid with highs near 80 degrees over interior portions of the state.  A weak cold front will be in the vicinity and that means there will be a chance for a shower, perhaps even a thunderstorm.  However, most of the day will be dry and sky conditions will vary from partly to mostly cloudy.

The forecast for Monday, Columbus Day, is very complicated.  A lot depends on the progress of a tropical system that is expected to strike the Gulf Coast over the regular weekend.  This system could be a tropical storm or hurricane when it strikes the Gulf Coast.  The storm will weaken rapidly over land, but tropical moisture from this system will move northward and it could reach New England by Monday.  If that happens, we could have a period of heavy rain.  At this point we are not sure where the heaviest rain will fall, but this bears watching.  We really need some rain, but we don’t want too much all at once.  Abundant cloud cover and rain should limit highs to the 70s as the air remains humid.

TUESDAY…

One of our trusted models, the GFS, has tropical moisture moving into Southern New England on Monday, but the European Model is slower and has the rain moving through Tuesday and Tuesday night.  We will keep you updated!

YESTERDAY IN HISTORY: THE WINDSOR LOCKS TORNADO…

It was October 3rd in 1979, when a powerful F4 tornado touched down in Northern Connecticut.  The tornado touched down around 3pm in the Poquonock section of Windsor, then it traveled northward roughly along Route 75 through Windsor Locks on the eastern side of Bradley International Airport.  Along the path, 75 homes were damaged, 65 of which were destroyed.  38 businesses were damaged or destroyed, including the Bradley Air Museum.  At least 30 vintage aircraft were damaged or destroyed.  In all, the tornado caused more than $400 million in property damage.  It also claimed 3 lives and 500 people were injured. 

This was one of the worst tornadoes in Connecticut history.  It struck without warning and in the month of October, which is a very unusual time of year for such a powerful storm.  Exactly 1 week later, on October 10th, Windsor Locks received 1.7” of snow, the earliest measurable snowfall on record.  That was quite a week in Connecticut weather history!

Chief Meteorologist Bruce DePrest with Scot Haney

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