And, we’re back

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Summary

We saw numerous showers and storms across the western end of the state on Wednesday and that activity is expected to shift toward us today. Therefore, look for numerous showers and storms today. Those may continue into our evening hours and again on Friday. Any outdoor activities either one of those days should be reconsidered.

There are no indications of widespread severe weather, so at least we don’t have that to worry about too much. I kept an eye on the radar yesterday and didn’t notice many warnings issued at all. Of course, any storm this time of year could always be strong to briefly severe.

By the weekend we should transition back to a hot and humid summer-like pattern, with only isolated afternoon/evening t-storms possible.

Tropics

Things may be about to get active in the tropics. Yesterday, we saw numerous storms develop across the northern Gulf. Nothing is expected to develop into a storm there in the near future, but seeing so much unsettled weather there tells us the atmosphere is primed for anything that could enter the Gulf. We’re watching such a system right now in the Caribbean that is encountering very harsh conditions right now. However, as this system moves into the Gulf within the next week, we could see it become better organized. Anyone with travel plans to the coast over the Labor Day weekend should stay abreast to any forecast changes.

Models are also indicating that we may have several disturbances to watch next week across the Atlantic. This is historically a very active time for the tropics and we have to keep an eye on anything that develops in the Gulf or Atlantic.

Records

Speaking of this being a historically active week for the tropics….

On this day in 2005 the remnants of Katrina brought 40 mph winds and an inch of rain to Crossville. The storm in previous days had devastated parts of the Gulf Coast, including the catastrophic flooding in the New Orleans area due to levee breaks.

The less publicized disaster from Katrina was her impact to the Mississippi Gulf Coast, where the storm made landfall. Fortunately, the worst part of Katrina missed New Orleans. However, because of levee breaks all the media’s attention was drawn to that city. Meanwhile, the Mississippi Gulf Coast lost nearly 300 citizens and was absolutely devastated by a 30-foot storm surge.

Another reason for the lack of media attention to the Mississippi Gulf Coast was because their state’s emergency management agency is one of the best in the nation. Louisiana’s was the worst. Due to an impeccable disaster response plan, the media had little to say about the Mississippi response. Louisiana’s complete failure at the emergency management level led to a wealth of media stories.

When I worked for TEMA, we had to help Louisiana and FEMA with the evacuation of New Orleans for Hurricane Gustav in 2008, a storm that was feared to be as bad as Katrina. Sadly we learned (the hard way!) that little had changed with emergency management plans for Louisiana storms. Thankfully, Gustav was not as bad as Katrina and the city of New Orleans was spared.

On this day in 1839 a hurricane made landfall on the North Carolina coast. That, in itself, is not that unusual. What was very, very unusual was that as the storm moved northward it encountered a very strong late-August cold front. As the weakening hurricane reached New England, the precipitation on the back side of the storm turned to snow, whitening the Catskill Mountains!

Some of you may remember when Hurricane Sandy met up with a cold front, as well. That was the end of October of 2012. I will never forget models (several days out) showing that storm throwing snow all the way west to Crossville.  That obviously didn’t happen but it did snow in the higher elevations of the Smokies with that storm. That’s probably the closest we have ever come to a big October snow event.

Special note: Thank you for your patience in waiting on the blog to resume. I also ask that you continue to remember my family as we deal with my grandmother’s recovery from her nearly life-ending illness. Pictured below is my grandmother on the night of my election, August 2. She suddenly fell ill from hypoxia on August 17th and entered ICU at Crossville. On August 22 we were released from ICU and moved to Cookeville, where better respiratory resources are located. On the night of the 23rd we nearly lost her when something occurred that no one has yet to be able to explain. The episode mimicked a stroke, though there are no signs a stroke occurred. We remain at Cookeville. We stay by her side 24-hours a day, with me staying the nights and other family helping during the day. She is slowly on the mend and we hope and pray we are finished with devastating setbacks.

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You all be sure and have a great day.

 

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