NWS Taunton has issued a Tropical Storm Watch from September 3rd, 2016 11:00 AM until further notice for Dukes County, Nantucket County, Bristol County, Barnstable County and Plymouth County.
MASSACHUSETTS EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
SITUATIONAL AWARENESS STATEMENT #4
DATE: September 3, 2016
TIME: 7:45 AM
SUBJECT: Tropical Storm Hermine
There are no major forecast changes from yesterday afternoon. Hermine will move off the North Carolina coast today and stall south of New England Sunday through Wednesday. There is a possibility that Hermine may temporarily re-strengthen into a hurricane Monday while out over the Atlantic waters off the coast of Maryland and Delaware, but is expected to weaken significantly as it slowly travels north-northwest. The precise track of the tropical storm as it approaches New England is still uncertain, but all of Massachusetts remains in the so-called Cone of Error for this storm.
Forecast and Impacts:
A Tropical Storm Watch is now in effect for the coastal waters south of Block Island, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket. There was consideration earlier this morning of expanding the Tropical Storm Watch to encompass the Rhode Island and Massachusetts south coast. After consultation with the National Hurricane Center it was concluded that there existed too much uncertainty with respect to the timing of Tropical Storm force winds reaching our south coast. It is possible however that a Tropical Storm Watch will be issued for some of our area later today. While the exact impacts Hermine will have on Massachusetts are dependent on the track and strength of the system as it approaches New England, Tropical Storm force winds may reach as far north as southern Rhode Island and Southeast Massachusetts Sunday night into early Monday. Expect a
long duration of high surf, dangerous rip currents, beach erosion and wind gusts to Gale/Tropical Storm force on the southern waters and south coast and Islands. Marine impacts will include a period of strong winds and rain beginning on Sunday afternoon and lasting through Monday.
Given the stress trees are experiencing because of drought conditions, trees may be more vulnerable than we would typically see with these level winds; therefore downed trees and tree limbs are possible. There is low risk for coastal flooding, and riverine flooding is not expected to pose a significant threat due to ongoing drought conditions across much of the Commonwealth. Currently, no watches or warnings are in place for Massachusetts.
National Weather Service has provided the following most likely scenario at this time:
· 30-50 mph wind gusts beginning Sunday afternoon into Monday with the strongest winds occurring overnight along the South Coast and the Cape and Islands
· Up to 1 to 2 inches of rain Sunday into Monday, focused mainly across southeastern New England, with lighter rain continuing possibly into Wednesday
· High surf and dangerous rip current Sunday into Wednesday
· Minor beach erosion
· Marine impacts Sunday into Monday, with easterly wind gusts to 45 knots, and seas building to 15 – 20 feet over southern waters
National Weather Service has provided the following reasonable worst case scenario at this time (if Hermine takes a more northerly track than forecast):
· 50-60 mph wind gusts along the South Coast and the Islands by late Sunday
· 2 to 4 inches of rain
· High surf and dangerous rip currents
· Minor coastal flooding
· Moderate beach erosion
· Marine impacts, with wind gusts to 55 knots, and seas building to 25 feet over southern waters
What we do not know at this time:
· Exactly how far north the edge of the Tropical Storm force winds will reach before Hermine loops back to the Southwest
· How strong Hermine will be when it passes Southeast of New England mid to late week and if we see a second bout of Tropical Storm force wind across Southeast New England.
· What accumulated erosion effects may occur from what looks to be a long duration period of storm surge/high winds.
Please note that significant changes in the forecast are possible.
National Hurricane Center – Hermine Track (updated 5:00 am.)
National Hurricane Center – Tropical Storm Force Wind Speed Probabilities (updated 2:00 am.)
Five-Day Rainfall Forecast
Based on National Weather Service and National Hurricane Center forecasts regarding Tropical Storm Hermine, the Captain of the Port, Southeastern New England, has set Port Condition WHISKEY. While ports in Southeastern New England remain open to all commercial traffic, the following preparatory measure is effective immediately:
Owners, operators or agents of all self-propelled oceangoing vessels over 500 gross tonnage and all barges and their supporting tugs must report their intention to depart or remain in port to Sector Southeastern New England within 24 hours.
The Coast Guard will continue to monitor Tropical Storm Hermine and, if necessary, may implement preventative measures to ensure the safety of mariners, vessels, and waterfront facilities. Possible preventative measures include, but are not limited to, terminating lightering or transfer operations, rescinding permits for marine events, and directing vessel arrivals/departures to/from port.
The State Emergency Operations Center is operating at Level 1 (Steady State Monitoring). MEMA is in close contact with the National Weather Service, and will participate in a conference call with the NWS Saturday afternoon. MEMA conducted a call with Emergency Support Function agencies and organizations Friday afternoon and is preparing to activate the SEOC to a Level 2 (Partial Activation) Sunday evening if conditions warrant to monitor Hermine's progress, provide situational awareness to public safety partners, and coordinate assistance to cities and towns as necessary. MEMA will continue to monitor the progress of Tropical Storm Hermine and will issue an updated Situational Awareness Statement later this afternoon.
A briefing package from the National Weather Service 5:15 a.m. update is attached.
Utilize Massachusetts Alerts to receive emergency notifications and information from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency and the National Weather Service. Massachusetts Alerts is a free app that is available for Android and iPhones. To learn more about Massachusetts Alerts, and for information on how to download the free app onto your smartphone, visit: www.mass.gov/mema/mobileapp.
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
For additional information and resources, visit:
Planning Unit Manager
Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency
400 Worcester Road
Framingham, MA 01702-5399
T: (508) 820-1421
C: (508) 988-0997
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