The Next "Bomb Cyclone" Is Set To Detonate Off The East Coast

“A strong area of low pressure will track off the New England coast Friday, leading to a potpourri of sensible weather impacts across the Northeast. A persistent east-northeast flow will lead to coastal flooding along east-facing shores of New England and the Mid-Atlantic, some of which could be moderate to major intensity particularly in New England.

This storm will strengthen rapidly, so much so that it may reach “bomb” criteria (24mb/24 hours). As this occurs, a variety of precipitation types are expected along with gusty, potentially damaging winds over a large area. Heavy snow is expected across the Catskills, Southern Tier of New York, and higher elevations of central and southern New England. Combined with strong winds, the heavy wet snow may lead to power outages. Meanwhile, heavy flooding rains are expected along the New England and Mid-Atlantic coasts, where some may see 2-5 inches of rain on top of coastal flooding risks,” said Ed Vallee, head meteorologist at Vallee Weather Consulting LLC.

The North East is preparing for its most severe storm since early January’s “bomb cyclone,” with coastal flooding, damaging winds, wet snow, and heavy rains expected, said Vallee Weather Consulting LLC.

Bloomberg‘s forecast of Winter Storm Riley will progress up the East Coast Friday, putting tens of millions of people and some $468 billion of real estate at risk of dangerous weather.

Bloomberg states this Nor’easter, similar to the one in early January, could reach bombogenesis — or achieve “bomb cyclone” status – by dropping 24-millibars of atmospheric pressure in 24-hours.

“The latest storm is being strengthened not only by the sharp gradient of warm and cold air but also record warm spots in the Atlantic. The same thing happened in January, when a winter storm underwent a process known as bombogenesis, with its central pressure — a measure of a its power — dropping 21 millibars in six hours.

Patrick Burke, a senior branch forecaster for the U.S. Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland said, “several storms this winter have caused more flooding than usual due to slightly different tracks, sharper differences between cold and warm air masses and because there’s more moisture in the atmosphere.”

“This week’s looming system could become a ‘bomb cyclone’ on Friday,” added Burke.

Meteorologist Steven DiMartino, the operator of NY NJ PA Weather, details the timing and severity of the storm with expected impacts for March 01 through March 03 on the East Coat:

An area of low pressure developing over the Mid Mississippi River Valley will approach the region today with increasing clouds through this morning and showers developing this afternoon. Winds will be from the east at 5 to 15 mph. Temperatures will rise into the upper 40’s to lower 50’s on the coast and mid to upper 50’s for the rest of the region.

The area of low pressure will track towards Lake Erie tonight as a warm front lifts towards the region. Periods of rain can be expected, heavy at times. Winds will be from the east at 15 to 25 mph. Temperatures will fall through the 50’s and into the 40’s along the coast and 30’s over the interior.

The area of low pressure will redevelop off the New Jersey coast tomorrow morning and rapidly intensify. Intense rainfall is expected tomorrow morning through tomorrow afternoon along the coast. As cold air builds into the region, the rain will mix with and change over to a very wet snow by tomorrow morning over higher elevations and eventually along the coast by tomorrow evening. Winds will back from the northeast to northwest at 20 to 40 mph with gusts over 60 mph at times. Poor visibility, wind damage, power outages, and major coastal flooding can be expected. Temperatures will fall through the 40’s and into the mid to upper 30’s along the coast while over the interior temperatures will fall from the upper 30’s to lower 40’s into the lower to mid 30’s.

The low-pressure system will exit tomorrow night through Saturday morning with lingering rain and snow showers through the early morning hours. Skies will clear from west to east on Saturday afternoon. Winds will be from the northwest at 15 to 30 mph with gusts over 40 mph. Temperatures will range from the lower to mid 30’s for lows and lower to mid 40’s for highs. See expected impacts below.

High pressure will be in place for Sunday on through Tuesday with clear skies to scattered cloud cover. Temperatures on Sunday will range from the lower to mid 30’s for lows and mid to upper 40’s for highs. Temperatures on Monday will range from the mid to upper 20’s for lows and mid to upper 40’s for highs. Temperatures on Tuesday will range from the mid to upper 20’s for lows and mid to upper 40’s for highs.

An area of low pressure will produce periods of rain on Wednesday. Temperatures will range from the upper 30’s to lower 40’s for lows and upper 40’s to lower 50’s for highs.”

The Weather Channel estimates the total snow and rain amounts for the East Coast storm:

  • The heaviest snowfall amounts are expected to be in parts of western and central New York into far northern Pennsylvania, particularly in higher terrain, where a swath of 8 to 12 inches is likely.

  • Higher elevations such as the hills south of Buffalo, the Catskills and Poconos could see well over a foot of snow.

  • Some snowfall totals around 6 inches are also possible in parts of southeast Lower Michigan, including the Detroit metro area.

  • Rainfall totals of 1 to 2 inches are expected along the I-95 corridor.

  • However, as mentioned earlier, a changeover to heavy, wet snow is a possibility mainly in southern New England. Snowfall totals in this area are highly uncertain, ranging from 6 inches or more to little or no snow.

  • As shown earlier in the high wind section, the combination of heavy, wet snow and/or high winds will likely lead to widespread power outages and downed trees, tree limbs in these areas.

“Forecast wind gusts (knots) from the GFS 00z Friday-Saturday…note the development of winds around 50-knots over DC — which heads into the Atlantic. Meanwhile, New England takes a body blow from the extreme winds around the center of Low Pressure,” said Ryan Maue, Meteorologist and Chief Scientist @weatherdotus.

“Tomorrow is going to be one of the most wild weather days in the Northeast of 2018. Damaging winds, coastal flooding, multiple precipitation type transitions, heavy snow, flooding rain,” exclaimed Ed Vallee, head meteorologist at Vallee Weather Consulting LLC.

Major flooding concerns in Maine

“Of much more concern & is much more likely right now is the coastal flood threat from southern New England to the Mid-Atlantic States. Major to historic coastal flooding expected in many areas. This storm needs to be taken extremely seriously!!,” warned another meteorologist.

Even the Chief Meteorologist for Royal Caribbean International said one of its vessels “is planning turnaround Saturday in Baltimore” because of the intensity of the storm.

Another meteorologist provides 57 illustrations detailing the major storm — expected to hit the North East by Friday.