[LincolnTalk] Fwd: Situational Awareness Statement #3 - Long Duration Winter Storm Sunday through Tuesday

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[LincolnTalk] Fwd: Situational Awareness Statement #3 - Long Duration Winter Storm Sunday through Tuesday

Bob Antia

This mornings update on the storm. 

-Bob Antis


Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency


MASSACHUSETTS EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY

SITUATIONAL AWARENESS STATEMENT #3

Date: December 1, 2019

Time: 8:00 AM

 

Re: Long Duration Winter Storm Today through Tuesday

 

Updates are highlighted in blue.

 

Situation Overview

The National Weather Service (NWS) is forecasting a high impact winter storm beginning this later this afternoon into Tuesday. Today into early Monday the snow will begin in western MA between 2- 3 PM; central MA between 3- 4 PM; and eastern MA between 4- 6 PM. Snow will become heavy at times (1"/hour) shortly after onset and will continue in the late afternoon and evening hours. As warmer air intrudes aloft, precipitation changes to sleet, then to a sleet/snow mix in northern MA, and to plain rain in southeast MA for the overnight hours. By daybreak Monday, snow/sleet accumulations of 6-8" possible in western and northern MA with approximately 4-6" in Springfield and interior Essex County, with 2-5" elsewhere, except less than an inch on Cape Cod/Islands and near the immediate coast in southeast MA.  

 

Early in the morning on Monday, rain will be occurring in much of eastern MA, with a mixed bag elsewhere.  However, everything will change back to snow from west to east. The changeover will reach as far east as northeast MA, and central MA by early to mid afternoon.  It will reach eastern MA (except Cape Cod/Islands) by mid afternoon or late evening. The snow will likely continue into early Tuesday morning.  Less snow is expected than what occurred on the front end Sunday, but there still could be several inches in some locations.  This may be dependent on where localized bands of heavier snow set up. 

 

Storm Total Accumulations

The NWS is expecting a widespread 8 to 12 inches over much of interior MA with as much as a foot possible in the higher Worcester hills and 12 to 17 inches in the east slopes of the Berkshires.  Amounts drop off rapidly as one heads southeast, with 3 to 5 inches in Plymouth and less than an inch on Cape Cod and the Islands.

 

Confidence 

  • Confidence is highest in the warning areas of western and northern MA, where greater than 6" of snow in a 12 hour period or 8" in a 24 hour period is likely.  
  • NWS lowest confidence is in southeast sections, particularly along the I-95 corridor. This could be a situation in which there is a sharp snowfall gradient within the city of Boston,  with only a slushy inch or two at the immediate coast to warning criteria amounts in western Suffolk County.

Potential Hazards and Impacts

 

Heavy Snow

  • Hazard travel conditions on all surfaces, treated or untreated; avoid travel if possible.
  • The snow will be very moisture-laden.  This could make for compact snow but it will be heavy to shovel.

 

Light Freezing Rain
Locally hazardous travel conditions on untreated bridges, overpasses, and/or secondary roads. 

 

Wind Gusts

  • Wind gusts will increase to 25-40 mph along the south coast late Sunday night.
  • Monday into Tuesday, winds will gust to 35-45 mph along coastal areas, with the highest gusts over Cape Ann, outer Cape Cod, and the coastal waters off eastern MA.
  • Loose objects may become airborne; isolated tree damage.

 

Storm Surge

Storm surges of up to 2 feet are expected, but due to low astronomical tides, only splashover is expected for east coastal MA, including Cape Cod Bay and Nantucket (with northeast winds).  Some pockets of minor coastal flooding cannot be ruled out.

 

Watches, Advisories, and Warnings

  • Winter Storm Warning now includes Western Hampden, Western Hampshire, all of Franklin, northern Worcester, and northern/central Middlesex counties in MA.  
  • Winter Weather Advisory now includes Norfolk, eastern Hampden, eastern Hampshire, southern Worcester, Suffolk, southeast Middlesex, and Essex counties in MA. 
  • Gale Warning now in effect for all coastal waters from this afternoon through Monday afternoon/night.         

NWS Graphics

 

 

 

 

State Operations

The State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) at MEMA Headquarters in Framingham is currently operating at Level 1 (Steady State Monitoring). In response to the approaching winter storm, the SEOC will activate at 4 PM today to Level 2 (Partial Activation). The following state agencies will be activated at the SEOC. 

  • MA Department of Public Utilities (ESF 12)
  • MA State Police  (ESF 13)
  • MA Department of Transportation (ESF 1)
  • MA Department of Conservation and Recreation (ESF 3)

 

MEMA will circulate Spot Reports once the SEOC is activated this afternoon. 

 

Utilities and Winter Storm Preparation

The following is a brief summary of the Electric Distribution Companies plans and preparations for the approaching winter storm:

 

Eversource:

  • Doubling its staffing this afternoon in the MetroWest and Western MA areas;
  • Declaring a Type 4 ERP as of 5am on Monday;
  • Opening the Springfield and Southboro EOCs at that time; 
  • Secured approximately 45 external crews;
  • Two of the crews will arrive in Martha’s Vineyard today; and
  • First Incident Management Team call at 11am today and will continue to monitor the forecast and adjust plans as needed.    

 

National Grid:

  • Classified event as a Type 4;
  • Planning to open the Worcester and North Andover Storm rooms  this afternoon;
  • Will adjust plan for opening additional storm rooms in other areas as the forecast is refined; and
  • Working to secure additional resources.

 

Unitil:

  • Secured additional resources in anticipation of this event;
  • Scheduled another call with weather forecaster for this afternoon; and
  • Planning to open System EOC Monday morning through the duration of the event.

 

Preparedness and Safety Information

http://www.mass.gov/index.php/service-details/power-outage-safety-tips

  • For winter storm safety tips:

https://www.mass.gov/info-details/winter-storm-safety-tips

  • Flood safety tips:

http://www.mass.gov/index.php/service-details/flood-safety-tips

 

Stay Informed

  • For additional information and updated forecasts, see www.weather.gov/boston (National Weather Service Norton) and www.weather.gov/albany (National Weather Service Albany)
  • Utilize MEMA’s real-time power outage viewer to stay informed about current power outages in your community and region, and across the state, including information from utility companies about restoration times: http://mema.mapsonline.net/public.html

 

Online Resources
Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency at www.mass.gov/mema
MEMA's Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/MassachusettsEMA
MEMA Twitter: @MassEMA
Federal Emergency Management Agency at www.fema.gov
National Weather Service Boston/ Norton, MA  at www.weather.gov/boston
National Weather Service/Albany, NY at www.weather.gov/albany
National Weather Service Weather Prediction Center: www.wpc.ncep.noaa.gov/

National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center:  www.spc.noaa.gov/
Northeast River Forecast Center: www.weather.gov/nerfc/

National Hurricane Center: www.nhc.noaa.gov

Mass211 at www.mass211.org

 


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