Hurricane Sandy Update

Tyler Durden's picture

Still unsure if to laugh off Sandy, memories of the overblown New York City panic over Irene still fresh, or if to sandbag the basement and first two floors of your house? Here is the latest on the storm courtesy of Jeff Masters' Wunderground blog, which at last check had the following characteristics: Wind: 75 MPH — Location: 29.0N -76.0W — Movement: NNE. In other words, slowly but surely approaching New York, with landfall still expected sometime Tuesday morning. One thing is certain: there will be at least some "boost" to Q4 GDP as a result of the quite a few broken windows, even as all domestic companies line up to blame Sandy for continuing to miss the top line and increasingly, their EPS numbers, some time in January.

First, some maps via Weather Underground:


5 Day Forecast
Surface Wind
Computer Model Forecasts:
Ensamble Models
Sandy remains a hurricane, slowly leaving the Bahamas

Reuters reports that the death toll from Sandy in the Caribbean is now up to 41 people as Hurricane Sandy continues its track toward the U.S. East Coast this afternoon, slowly leaving the Bahamas. States of Emergency have been declared in North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and New York. The hurricane is just barely still a Category 1 with surface winds of 75 mph and a minimum central pressure of 971 mb. Ocean buoys off the coasts of Florida and the Carolinas are recording sustained winds of around 45 mph this afternoon, with gusts steadily increasing and now up to 60 mph. Sandy's rainfall, which is limited to the north and northeast parts of the storm, is reaching eastern Florida, though most of it is staying offshore.

Satellite loops show an asymmetric Sandy, with almost all of the thunderstorm activity on its north side. The hurricane still has a very clear center of surface circulation which you can see on visible and infrared loops. Though the hurricane is leaving the influence of an upper level low pressure area over western Cuba, water vapor imagery shows a large area of dry air being pulled into the storm from the south, which is leading to the lack of thunderstorm activity and contributing to the weakening that Sandy is experiencing right now. The hurricane's tropical storm-force winds now extend 240 miles from the center, and could grow to 400 miles from the center by the time it reaches the East Coast.

Figure 1. Visible/infrared satellite image of Sandy as it leaves the Bahamas this afternoon. The mid-latitude trough, which Sandy will interact with over the next few days, is seen approaching from the northwest. The cold front associated with this trough is draped from upstate New York south to Louisiana, and appears as a line of clouds draped across the Midwest and South in this image.

Forecast For Hurricane Sandy

As a tropical cyclone approaches land, the worst storm surge is almost always where the winds are blowing from ocean to shore, where the wind pushes the water toward and onto the shore. In the case of Sandy's potential track, this region is on the north side of the center. In this morning's GFS scenario, Sandy's center passes over eastern Long Island, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. This would result in the highest surge north of New York City: Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and possibly Maine. The ECMWF forecast from this morning is a bit further to the south. It's suggesting Sandy's center will meet land in New Jersey. This scenario opens up New York City, Long Island, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and southern coastal Mass. to the largest surge. In general, the places that will avoid the largest storm surge are those that are south of where the center of the storm makes landfall. The National Hurricane Center's forecast is similar to the ECMWF, but most importantly, its forecast is also to not focus on the exact point of landfall because of the size of the storm, and that widespread impact is expected.

The Mid-Atlantic and Northeast coasts should be prepared for a storm surge no matter their exact location. A large portion of the coast will feel the impact of up to 60 mph winds and heavy rain. According to the most recent H*Wind analysis from the Hurricane Research Division is that storm surge has a destructive potential of 4.8 out of 6.0, which is a slight increase from previous analyses. Wind damage potential is holding steady around 2.3 out of 6.0. NOAA's HPC is forecasting rainfall totals of 5 to 10 inches in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast, and possibly more in coastal locations close to the core of the storm. Widespread power outages from Maine south to Virginia are likely, due to the combination of long-lived gale-force winds, leaves on trees, and rain that will moisten the soil and possibly increase the chances of falling trees. Snow in the Appalachians is also possible as the intense moisture meets the cold air being pulled south by the mid-latitude trough.

Figure 2. Departure of sea surface temperature from average for the Atlantic shows a large area of unusually warm waters up to 9°F above average off the U.S. mid-Atlantic coast.

Sandy to feed off near-record warm waters off the mid-Atlantic coast
During September 2012, ocean temperatures off the mid-Atlantic coast in the 5x10° latitude-longitude box between 35 - 40°N, 65 - 75° W were 2.3°F (1.3°C) above average, according to the UK Met Office. This is the 2nd greatest departure from average for ocean temperatures in this region since reliable ocean temperature measurements began over a century ago (all-time record: 2.0°C above average in September 1947.) These unusually warm waters have persisted into October, and will enable Sandy to pull more energy from the ocean than a typical October hurricane. The warm waters will also help increase Sandy's rains, since more water vapor will evaporate into the air from a warm ocean. I expect Sandy will dump the heaviest October rains on record over a large swath of the mid-Atlantic and New England.

Hurricane rains and climate change
Hurricanes are expected to dump 20% more rain in their cores by the year 2100, according to modeling studies (Knutson et al., 2010). This occurs since a warmer atmosphere holds more water vapor, which can then condense into heavier rains. Furthermore, the condensation process releases heat energy (latent heat), which invigorates the storm, making its updrafts stronger and creating even more rain. We may already be seeing an increase in rainfall from hurricanes due to a warmer atmosphere. A 2010 study by Kunkel et al. "Recent increases in U.S. heavy precipitation associated with tropical cyclones", found that although there is no evidence for a long-term increase in North American mainland land-falling tropical cyclones (which include both hurricanes and tropical storms), the number of heavy precipitation events, defined as 1-in-5-year events, more than doubled between 1994 - 2008, compared to the long-term average from 1895 - 2008. As I discussed in a 2011 post "Tropical Storm Lee's flood in Binghamton: was global warming the final straw?", an increase in heavy precipitation events in the 21st Century due to climate change is going to be a big problem for a flood control system designed for the 20th Century's climate.

Figure 3. Time series of the 15-yr running average (plotted at the end point of the 15-yr blocks) of the tropical cyclone Heavy Precipitation Index (red) and the associated 15-yr total of U.S. landfalling hurricanes from Atlantic HURDAT hurricane data base, from 1895 - 2008 (blue). Note the steep rise in heavy precipitation events from tropical cyclones over the past 20 years, which has not been accompanied by a corresponding increase in landfalling hurricanes. Image credit: Kunkel et al., 2010, Geophysical Research Letters.

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Turd Ferguson's picture

Please don't fuck around with this storm. Unlike Irene, this storm will be deepening and strengthening as it moves in. The central barometric pressure is forecast to be the lowest ever recorded in the NE. The fetch of wind will come across almost the entire Atlantic and pile up enormous amounts of water into Jersey, Manhattan and Long Island Sound.

Prepare now.

francis_sawyer's picture

Thanks Turd ~ I loaded up all my gold bars onto the Andrea Gail & headed out to the Flemish Cap to ride it out & do some swordfishing ... I'm sure me & my gold will be fine...

Yen Cross's picture

 It just felt right. 

Cover of Gordon Lightfoot's "Edmonds Fitzgerald" - YouTube

 Awe, and I up-voted you.  You probably have a slight "narcosis", headache from diving too deep, whilst  inspecting your XAU.

Gully Foyle's picture

Yen Cross


32 Down On The Robert Mackenzie Paul Gross

32 down on the Robert MacKenzie

32 men on a Great Lakes boat
Quit the pier at Thunder Bay
28,000 tons of coal
On a cold November day
800 feet and 10 more long
80 feet across
The steel mills of Detroit
Our destination through the frost

At 2 AM on the 2nd
Waves were runnin' up to 40 feet
Winds were blowing 60 miles
Our engines crankin' heat
At 3:13 we took a wave
Our wheelhouse left behind
The radar slipped beneath the waves
And we were runnin' blind

Hear me call across the waves
If I don't come home tonight
I will make it home some day


(Steel boats and iron men)
32 down on the Robert MacKenzie
(Steel boats and iron men)
32 down on the Robert MacKenzie
(Steel boats and iron men)
32 down on the Robert MacKenzie

A captain name of Phillips
Seekin' shelter from the storm
Turned us south of Bête Grise Bay
By way of Keewenaw point
But the wind was blowing at such a rate
We ended up driftin' north
A wave broke over a knife of rock
Six Fathom Shoal

MacKenzie she was cut in half
The stern she ram the baow
The men were calling metaljunk
Flames burned out of hell
Stern keept runnig on lights of blades
Not one man would be found
Captain's last transmission read
32 men down
32 men down

Hear me call across the waves
If I don't come home tonight
I will make it home someday

(Steel boats and iron men)
32 down on the Robert MacKenzie
(Steel boats and iron men)
32 down on the Robert MacKenzie
(Steel boats and iron men)
32 down on the Robert MacKenzie
Down Down Down Down Down Down Down Down

And they call across the waves
If I don't come home tonight
I will make it home someday

Yes, I call across the waves
If I don't come home tonight
I will make it home some day

TeamDepends's picture

Let's get Clooney out there right now so he can star in the sequel....

Dave Thomas's picture

It's probably nothing, I went all out and boarded up the house for Rita, drinking all that beer was a whole bunch of fun though.

You've probably got more of a chance of dieing from NYPD than a Noreaster.

"Noreaster" got a quaint ring to it, I wish that Peppride farm guy could say it.



TruthInSunshine's picture

Chuck "Fuck Flyover Country & Get To Work Bernank" Schumer (D-NY) has put in a request for immediate emergency funding for his district/constituency (Wall Street/Flush Bankers & TBTF Types) of 250 bln USD of taxpayer funds per each 1/10th of inch of rain or 1/30th of an inch of snow that's now forecast to fall down upon Wall Street.


p.s. - More hyped up shit from Meteorology, Inc. Whenever there's a system like this, the Weather Channel & cable news lame stream networks double their ad rates in the areas where the "storm of the century" is allegedly going to strike. Although I'm oddly attracted to that Jill whatever chick with the nice rack on The Weather Channel. She should lube up and wear a bikini and red high heels for the mandatory llook-at-me-I'm-standing-in-between-two-buildings-to-enhance-the-wind-affect shots that the networks always utilize.

Cathartes Aura's picture

. . . media weather reporting, working as intended. . .

thanks Sir Evelyn!

WmMcK's picture

Man, I love this place! Just one good comment after another.
Please support this site if you feel the same.

petolo's picture

Good idea Francis. Perfect  time to go boating and "lose" some gold.

vast-dom's picture

please don't forget this little variable:

"Normally, when hurricanes approach the East Coast from Sandy’s angle, they are pulled safely out to sea by a semi-permanent low-pressure center near Iceland. This time around, that low pressure isn’t there. In fact, it’s been replaced by a high pressure so intense it only occurs approximately 0.2% of the time on average."

francis_sawyer's picture

Iceland has been low pressure since they told the bankers to take a hike...

skipjack's picture

I junked you for your stupid comment - "pulled safely out to sea"


I've spent too many years on the water to not dislike such ignorance.

Cortez the Killer's picture

You gotta be right one of these times ferguson

dwdollar's picture

It would be nice if it completely destroyed DC or NYC, but I think that's wishful thinking.

realtick's picture

Hey Turd, you know what my cure for boredom is? Goofing on your infantile charts and waking your Turdites up to the possibility that precious metals can go down as well as up for long periods of time.

Instead of showing your hapless followers meaningless charts like this:

why not grow a pair, man up and show them what the monthly chart looks like?

Never mind, I'll do it for you. You'd fuck it up anyway:

Gordon Freeman's picture

Nice to see TF is not seen as the guru here...

realtick's picture

Why anybody would make a guru out of a guy who calls himself "Turd" is a total mystery to me.

UGrev's picture

Looks like a continual, and progressive move upwards to me from BL to TR

Seer's picture

"precious metals can go down as well as up for long periods of time."

Um... what's really fluctuating is fiat, not gold.

Also keep in mind that how things have been isn't necessarily indicative of what we might expect them to be.  We're facing a systemic change, something that neither you , TF or ANYONE can possibly predict the outcome of.

Mr. Fix's picture

Good advice, I'm as ready as i'll ever be.

aheady's picture

Hunkerin' down here on Chincoteague Island in Virginia. Nice knowing y'all for the last few years : )

Wynn's picture

northern neck here. rather be here than where you're at. you know, that little tit of land is gonna break off one day. ya'll should then secede, and go with a gold backed currency. :)

happy hunkering

mercenaryomics's picture

Norfolk here, watching the waters rise.  

I just hope Sandy does something cool, like sink NYC.  

WmMcK's picture

Long Gulla Gulla Gold. Who goes first (to silver)?

Cheeky Bitch's picture

Cash is the most important thing to hoard in prep for . If power goes, so do ATMs and credit card readers.

treasurefish's picture

No, it's not bitch.  Guns, water, and gasoline.

scatterbrains's picture

Don't forget your generators..  niggas off the hook on craigslist last night and today. Must have gotten 300+ disperate emails for a small 2200 watt generator I listed. Prices are so good right now I decided to pull all 5 I had stacked in the corner of my barn and sold them all in 3 hours.  One didn't even run an I still got $300 on it.  There are no generators new or used anywhere on the east coast right now.  If you depend on a sump pump to keep your basement dry you might as well start your praying now.

gruden's picture

Not to worry.  Just like they zapped Irene, Sandy will get zapped too.  It will suddenly and mysteriously lose strength before it hits landfall in DC or NYC.  Just like Irene.  These things aren't coincidence, as much as we would like to think.  There's much one can research about such things if one is willing to make the effort.  Then the eyes start to open and things start to make sense - in a very perverse way, of course.

Randall Cabot's picture

Crypto-zionist nutball Alex Jones might be truthful on this one:

aphlaque_duck's picture

"So here we are about 3 or 4 days away from what may be the worst storm for the Northeast since humans populated the area. I'm not kidding, that is a possibility. We know neither how strong this beast will be or exactly who will get the worst of it. Why? Because what is about to happen is unprecedented in the years that human have attempted to understand how the atmosphere works. Hurricanes have merged with colder air as an energetic jet stream interacts before. But perhaps not with the intensity of the factors coming into play this time."

Wile-E-Coyote's picture

In the UK a Turd is slang for a lump of shit.

WakeyWakey's picture

Well Sandy killed a British banker in the Bahama's. Let's hope it likes the taste of banker blood as it heads to Wall St.

ShortTheUS's picture


Think of all the government expenditures that will be required to fix up the East Coast after this and start salivating over the nice inflated GDP it will bring for Q4.

It's a Keynesian's dream come true.


francis_sawyer's picture

You didn't create that storm... HAARP did...

centerline's picture

With a little luck, they will get to try out some new FEMA techniques on the ghetto areas too.

alex_g's picture

Krugman is at the temple, praying his ass off...

lynnybee's picture

super info.  thank you !

greggh99's picture

Damn you Krugman. I would have preferred the aliens.

The big unzip's picture

This is our best chance for "hope and change" this year.

Seize Mars's picture

You guys are nuts. I am going to let it all unfold with no plans to get ready. Then, when I am desperate in the aftermath, I will make a panicked retreat into a public sports arena, where I will literally stand in my own excrement, angrily demanding that someone something!


centerline's picture

Just as long as you promise to break and few windows and grab a nice flatscreen TV along the way to the stadium.  Everyone knows that natural disaster = free shit.

UGrev's picture

$200 nike's.. don't forget the nike's. 

Seer's picture

"Everyone knows that natural disaster = free shit."

Just as all the "prepared" folks (TPTB) know that perpetual wars = free shit.

SilverDOG's picture

If the BS was not so thick, correlation with weather pattern changes, and scientific reasons for would receive additional credit.

But no, more fear laden, false flag, safety and security rammed and flooded onto the masses of tardation. 

Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn.

Believe none of what you hear and half of what you see.

Today, belief 1% of what you see.

99.9% of the law is POSSESSION. Do you possess the delivered info?

I think not.

Nobody For President's picture

Give my regards to Broadway,
Remember me to Herald Square;
Tell all the gang at 42nd Street,
That I will soon be there.
Whisper of how I'm yearning
To mingle with the old time throng;
Give my regards to old Broadway,
And say that I'll be there e'er long.


Pucker up city boys, here comes nature.