Record Low & Winter Storm


westatlantic-radar-2015-02-06-0013
Bermuda Weather Service Radar Imagery just after mid-night Friday morning. Light to moderate rain over the island with heavier showers passing nearby to the south. All this inclement weather ahead of a cold front.

After a relatively weak cold front passed early Friday morning, temperatures remained well below normal through Friday and Saturday – the high of 70ºF being observed before the front passed in the pre-dawn hours of Friday. Post-frontal showers and patchy rain helped cool the air in the area letting temperatures fall into the low 50s. The airport set a daily record low for February 7th when it hit 51.8F in the morning, this beats the previous record for the date, 52.0F, set in 1988. The average record low for February is 49F, so yesterday’s record low was “easy” to break as it typically requires colder air to set a record this time of year. Some unofficial weather stations recorded slightly lower temperatures yesterday morning, and then cooled off a bit more last night in between showers.

Regardless, this is just a part of yet another wave of unsettled weather with cooler air making its way across the western Atlantic to Bermuda – as has been the theme for the start to this February. There is potential for another blast of cold air to end next week:

Sunday:

08Feb201512z Local Surface Analysis
Bermuda Weather Service Local Surface analysis at 8am this morning showing high pressure nearby to the west-southwest of Bermuda.

A ridge of high pressure settles to the south of Bermuda. Winds back northwesterly and remain light in the afternoon. Winds continue backing, becoming westerly by late evening and southwesterly with an increase to moderate by late night. An isolated shower remains in the early afternoon, but dry  and partly to mostly cloudy skies prevail by late afternoon. Slight recovery in temperatures with temperatures approaching the low end of normal.

Monday:

High pressure shifts slightly, re-settling to the southeast of Bermuda. Winds back slightly from southwest to south through the day, remaining moderate. Continued mostly fair weather with partly to mostly cloudy skies through the day. However, some showers enter the area from the south late at night as a weak trough moves in around the western edge of the ridge to our southeast. Another day with slow recovery in temperatures – reaching levels much closer to normal.

Tuesday:

10 Feb 2015 Forecast Analysis
Forecast analysis for Feb 10th, showing low pressure forming to the southwest of Bermuda and high pressure retreating to the east. Drawn over Google maps. Low pressure =  red ‘L’, High pressure = blue ‘H’, cold front = blue flagged line, Stationary front = red and blue, scalloped and flagged line.

High pressure slides off to the east of Bermuda and low pressure begins forming and organizing to the southwest of the island. Winds continue southerly/south-southwesterly moderate, increasing to strong by early evening. Winds then veer slightly, becoming southwesterly late at night as low pressure approaches from the southwest. Mostly cloudy skies give way to widespread shower and thunderstorm activity entering the area, starting early evening. Heavy rain possible with rainfall totals 0.50″ – 1.00″. Temperatures creep above normal with a notable increase in humidity through the day.

Wednesday:

11 Feb 2015 Forecast Analysis
Forecast analysis for Feb 11th,  showing low tracking north of Bermuda with bent-back warm front to the west of the island. Drawn over Google Maps. Low pressure = red ‘L’, cold front = blue flagged line, warm front = red scalloped line.

Cold front associated with Tuesday’s heavy rain crosses Bermuda early in the morning, low pressure associated with the front then passes over or to the north of the island in the afternoon bringing a bent-back warm front across the island. Southwesterly winds briefly drop off  and veer northwesterly as low pressure passes. Northwesterly winds quickly increase to gale force behind the bent-back warm front with gusts to storm force possible. Northwesterly winds decrease to near-gale force by late night. Widespread showers and thunderstorms clear out to the east early in the morning. Isolated showers, some heavy, linger in the area as the low passes nearby in the morning, followed by patchy rain then showers in the afternoon as the bent-back warm front crosses. Steady, above normal temperatures and high humidity for much of the morning, decreasing temperature and humidity through the afternoon with temperatures falling below normal by late night. NOTE: This low hasn’t formed yet, therefore slight changes to the forecast are likely as Wednesday approaches and these changes could have dramatic impacts on the forecast conditions in either direction. The low on Wednesday might require Gale Warnings or Storm Warnings depending on these adjustments.

Recall: Gale Warning – issued when sustained winds of 34-47kts are expected to impact the marine area within 36hours.

Storm Warning – issued when sustained winds of 48kts or greater are expected to impact the marine area within 36hours.

Thursday:

12 Feb 2015 Forecast Analysis
Forecast analysis for Feb 12th, showing one low pressure tracking into the north Atlantic, weak high pressure building over the southwest Atlantic, and a new cold front exiting the Eastern US. Drawn over Google Maps. Low pressure = red ‘L’, High pressure = blue ‘H’, cold front = blue flagged line, and warm front = red scalloped line.

A weak transient ridge moves in as a powerful low pressure exits to the northeast. Northwesterly winds continue to abate, decreasing and backing from near-gale force early in the early morning, to strong and westerly by early afternoon, finally to moderate and southwesterly by late night as the ridge passes to the east and another cold front approaches from the west. Mainly dry weather, possibly some lingering light showers early in the morning. Mostly cloudy skies may turn overcast at times. Below normal temperatures and comfortable humidity through most of the day start to recover late in the evening with southwesterly winds.

As always: Follow official forecast, observation, and warning updates by the Bermuda Weather Service. The forecast above is from me and is thus unofficial.

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