Blizzard Breaks Uneventful Winter Weather Trend
3-6" of more snow is expected by the weekend
By M.L.Baron Correspondent
WEST ISLAND - It?s been over 2 years since the area was hit by a major snow storm with accumulations that can be compared to last weekend?s blizzard. On January 12, 2011, 22 inches of snow fell in Acushnet and 19" inches in Fairhaven followed by a virtually snow-less winter last year.
Snow totals varied across the region with the highest depths measuring 40" in Hamden, Conn. to 21.5" in Acushnet. NSTAR crews were out in force restoring power to over 18,000 customers in the New Bedford area alone. Evacuation centers were opened but had only a few takers. SkyWarn weather spotters across the Northeast reported in their observations to The National Weather Service throughout the blizzard.
The Weather Channel Causes Friction with The National Weather Service
Will we remember this storm as the Blizzard of 2013 or ?NEMO?? The National Weather Service still remains rather tepid in acknowledging named storms other than tropical storms and hurricanes. The Weather Channel now owned by Comcast devised this idea some theorize as a marketing strategy to get more viewers to tune in. This approach in programming during the winter doldrums could be more attractive to advertisers with much needed revenue. NBC, also owned by Comcast appears to be the only media outlet aggressively referring to named winter storms including ?Nemo? for the 2013 Blizzard.
However other media outlets such as MTV, Twitter and Verizon have joined in the fad of what could be considered one of the ?one-hit wonders? of 2013. Bizarre names (much to the annoyance of The National Weather Service) remaining on the 2013 winter storm list include: ORKO - PLATO - Q - ROCKY - SATURN - TRITON - UKKO - VIRGIL - WALDA - XERXES - YOGI - ZEUS. Some of these names so flippantly contrived are even rejected by spell checkers on the average PC.
Here are some numbers for the Blizzard of 2013:
Storm data log recorded at the West Island Weather Station for this blizzard event on 2/09/2013:
The Barometer bottomed out at 29.34 at 12:40AM / High Wind Gust 67MPH NE est Town Beach 1:00AM / High Temp 30.4F at 12:00 AM / Low temp 15.3F at 11:50PM/ Snow 11.5" with drifts over 4FT.
Comments: Wind shift into the SW at 2:00PM / Temperature rose to 32F at 330PM on 2/10.
Power out 2/08 at 710PM - restored at 2/10 -5PM.
Several large branches / wires down along with some trees. Large shrubs / wires weighted down by heavy snow and ice accretion.
No significant structural damage observed. The Causeway was passable at all times.
Island recent storm damage comparison: Tropical Storm Sandy Oct 29-30, Nor?easter Nov 7-8, 2013. Tropical Storm Irene Aug 28, 2011.
Forecasters predict milder temperatures with the possibility of measurable snow by the weekend followed by more unsettled weather over the next few weeks.
There are 33 days left of winter until the first day of Spring which arrives March 20th at 7:02 AM.