Don Slater

Remnants Of Ana To Bring Rain Overnight

May 11th, 2015 at 1:47 am by under Uncategorized, Weather

I’m writing this from home, so I don’t have access to the better graphics available at work. But I do feel that I should weigh in before this dying storm moves through. The remnant winds of Ana are around 30 mph…and are likely to continue to diminish through the night. 15 to 25 mph winds are possible through the region through tomorrow. Rain should begin to be a little more steady after midnight and continue off and on through early Monday.

Here’s a radar picture (NWS) from about 12:30 A.M.:

Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 12.57.46 AM

The center of the storm is located just to the northeast of Fayetteville, N.C. in this radar shot. I don’t want you to notice the center so much in this picture (hard to see, anyway!), but I do want you to note that the most concentrated area of rain is to the southeast of where the storm’s center is located. As the storm continues north-northeastward overnight and early Monday, that heavier area of rain is likely to continue northeastward through eastern North Carolina. Here’s another screen shot from the National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center:

Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 1.14.19 AMIt’s a small screen-shot, but it’s easy to see that the heaviest concentration of rain (purple) is over eastern North Carolina. There could be as much as 2″ to 4″ of rain there. In the Hampton Roads area, look for .50″ over the Peninsula…with .50″ to 1.5″ over the South Side cities. The heavier amounts for the South Side will fall over southern sections of Chesapeake and especially Virginia Beach.

One more picture here. I’ve taken the above radar picture and added a circle at the location of the storm’s center. Arrows very generally define the wind direction. Remember that this is a low pressure system…a veritable whirlpool of air spinning inward toward its center. Hopefully, this will give you some idea of wind flow as the storm passes overhead. Winds are likely to be in the 15 to 25 mph range…not likely to be dangerous from the remnants of Ana.

RADAR_HIGHLIGHTEDOne last thing. The storm had 65 mph winds for quite a while before it made landfall near Myrtle Beach. That means that some residual wave action is likely to be active for another day for especially the Outer Banks. Beach erosion (road damage?) and rip currents are extremely likely for the Outer Banks. Farther north, wave action is not likely to be as significant. However, rip currents are still quite likely for Virginia’s beaches.

That’s it! Ana has behaved pretty much as we expected…and will likely continue to diminish in intensity as it moves through into the day Monday.

Convective Outlooks

March 26th, 2015 at 11:06 pm by under Weather

NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center is the agency that issues all Severe Thunderstorm and Tornado Watches. And they also issue something called “convective outlooks”. This time of year, these are issued almost daily. The SPC has recently updated its convective outlooks by providing a bit more detail. Basically, it creates more of a visual bulls-eye identifying the expected trouble areas.

Here’s an example:proposed_PWO

Yes, Some Rain…But Still A Beautiful Day

March 25th, 2015 at 10:38 pm by under Weather

We’re likely to see a breezy, warm day for Thursday. There is a chance for some rain, but it’s not likely that it’ll dominate the day. Look for showers and even a thunderstorm or two between around noon and 3:00 PM. Here’s how it might look by around noon tomorrow:

Future Trak

There is a very marginal chance that a thunderstorm or two could produce some strong, gusty winds. So do watch out for that and do watch Jeremy on Thursday morning and at noon. He’ll show you any stronger thunderstorms moving into the region.

Future Trak2

A Quiet Thunderstorm Year…That’s Likely To Change

March 23rd, 2015 at 10:35 pm by under Weather

It’s been an unusually quiet spring for severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. Here’s an article which explains w quiet it has been…and how all that is going to change in the next few days.

Here’s a graphic showing the severe thunderstorm threat for Wednesday from NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center:

day2otlk_1730And here’s the outlook for Thursday:


The Cool-down Has Begun

March 17th, 2015 at 10:58 pm by under Weather

The temperature drop has begun in earnest this evening. After a high of 82 this afternoon, the 10:00 PM temperature has dropped 27 degrees.

By dawn, expect temperatures to bottom out at around 35 to 40. Afternoon Highs are likely to be between 47 and 53 degrees.


Slow Improvement For The Weekend

February 27th, 2015 at 6:44 pm by under Weather

Sunshine this morning helped improve the streets a bit. Additionally, we’ve had an afternoon breeze which has dried the main roads a little more.

However, the neighborhood roads are still a slushy frozen mess and will freeze hard as temperatures drop to between 16 and 22 by dawn. It’ll actually be a couple of degrees cooler for Saturday. But more sunshine should help melt the roads just a bit more. Sunday looks a bit warmer (near 40) with a stray rain shower or two. Much warmer next week!


Enough To Shut Us Down, But Not The Big One

February 17th, 2015 at 1:19 am by under Uncategorized, Weather

The opportunities for further big snowfall are rapidly dwindling. For most of us, we’ll still see some sleet…changing back over to snow…but the amounts should not add up to too much more than we’ve already gotten.

I have revised the forecast snowfall amounts downward throughout the region for the most part. It is a significant snowfall for our part of the world…certainly enough to close schools, etc. for Tuesday…but for the vast majority of us, I don’t see any significant accumulation added to what we’ve already gotten.

Additionally, the sleet has been knocking down the existing snow cover. There could be an hour or two of light rain over the south side Hampton Roads Cities; that would knock the snow cover down to just a little slush.1889039_1099616370065285_3075772450993985539_o

Waterspout In North Carolina Earlier Today

February 2nd, 2015 at 11:10 pm by under Uncategorized, Weather

Here’s a link to a waterspout today over the Pasquotank River in North Carolina. A big thank you to Justin Creef!

What A Way To Start The Weekend!

January 30th, 2015 at 11:13 pm by under Uncategorized, Weather


Temperatures should continue to plummet overnight, then bottom out at around 20 inland to about 28 at the shores. Winds will continue out of the NW at 15-25 mph within about 20 miles of the Coast & Bay…less wind inland fro9m there.

It’ll be a cold & windy start to our Saturday. The wind should drop off in the afternoon, but the cold air remains! Highs only around 36 to 40.

Sunday looks mostly cloudy and a little warmer with highs around 46 to 50.

Rain Sunday night and Monday. The rain could end as just a little snow on Monday afternoon…Stay tuned on that one!

The Accuracies and Inaccuracies of Forecasting Light Snow

January 27th, 2015 at 11:49 pm by under Uncategorized, Weather

The first picture is my final snowfall prediction from Monday night’s forecast. The second (blue-ish) picture is a radar estimate/depiction of the snow that actually fell; the darker the blue…the heavier the snow.

I spoke about this a couple of times on the air today. I basically talked about the accuracies, but also the shortcomings of snowfall forecasts. The snow forecast for last night and this morning can be considered a pretty good one; We generally got the areas of heaviest snow in the right places. And we didn’t see any big surprises. In other words, no bigger than expected snow amounts. The prediction was for a dusting to two inches for the vast majority of the area (see 1st picture) and that’s pretty much what we got.

The only real tangible mistake on the forecast was that I predicted 2″ to 3″ of snow for much of the Eastern Shore…and that just didn’t happen. To understand my thinking from last night regarding heavier snow for the Eastern Shore, look to that area over the water…in the lower Bay (2nd picture). At the time that the forecast was put together, I was concerned about a heavier slug of snow (2″-3″) for the Eastern Shore. It was close, but no cigar! Only about a half mile west of Cape Charles over the water…but that part of the snowfall forecast was indeed a little off. The Eastern Shore generally got 1″ to 2″ of snow and NOT the 2″ to 3″ that was predicted.

There’s one other thing to note. On the forecast graphic you will note that snow totals are a bit more “broad-brushed” than the reality shown in the second graphic. This reflects the realities of forecasting snow…especially relatively lighter amounts. We simply cannot predict all the smaller details and variabilities that you see on the second graphic. It is simply the “state of the art”.

All in all, though…I was pretty happy with the snow forecast. A big thanks to meteorologists Tiffany Savona and Jeremy Wheeler for their collaboration and hard work. I hope that you were able to make good use of the snow forecast!