A strong nor’easter that’s been upgraded to a "winter storm" is forecast to wallop the already battered Shore and the Philadelphia region starting this afternoon into evening, bringing 50 m.p.h. winds and up to four inches of snow.
|Cape May NJ Winter Storm predicted for November 7 -8|
The timing isn't good, with parts of New Jersey and New York still working to recover from the high winds and record storm surges of Hurricane Sandy, which struck Oct. 29. More than 300,000 homes and businesses were still without power this morning from New Jersey's Ocean County to densely populated North Jersey.
The Shore will likely see rain, with snow falling inland along the I-95 corridor, according to Jim Hayes, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Mount Holly.
“The barrier islands will get rain and winds of 60 m.p.h.,” Hayes said. “So any recovery effort will be hampered by the fact that they are going to get really strong winds in southern Ocean, Atlantic and into Cape May Counties. They could see an inch or two of rain, but it won’t be that big of a problem.”
Hayes explained that the nor'easter will not create tidal surges anywhere near the ones created by Sandy.
“This is an intense nor’easter - don’t get me wrong,” he added. "... We will see additional erosion. Anything made vulnerable by Sandy will be left open today."
The storm shouldn't “be anywhere near the magnitude of Sandy … but we’re taking it seriously,” said Bill Gee, of the Ocean County Emergency Management Office, and a deputy fire marshall. It’s likely, he said, that no one will be allowed to enter the barrier islands, such as Long Beach Island, which were devastated by Sandy. Towns were being evacuated in low-lying areas. And officials are watching Mantoloking where the ocean flowed into the bay and washed out the main bridge connecting to the mainland.
Protective dunes were also wiped out in many areas, and workers have been busy erecting berms up and down the shoreline. The new storm should only be impacted by one high tide, and not multiple high tides as with Sandy, Gee said.
As of early this morning, the nor'easter was in North Carolina and making its way up the coast. It was forecast to strike New Jersey this afternoon and into the evening. Rain will fall this morning, but the storm will drag in colder air, dropping temperatures to just above freezing by early evening.
Snow is expected to then start to fall. However, on a positive note, the ground is still warm because it’s early November. So snow should not lay for long on roads. Rather, it will likely accumulate on grass and cars. Hayes said it’s tricky to call how much snow will fall, but he believes it will be about three to four inches in the Philadelphia-South Jersey area.
The storm will linger into Thursday before moving onto New England.
For more information on the storm visit google public alerts
Frank Kummer, Breaking News Desk
POSTED: Wednesday, November 7, 2012, 6:18 AM