Will Sandy destroy the entire East Coast? Probably not.
This isn’t the sort of thing you like to read about the weather. From Capital Weather Gang:
Some computer models continue to simulate a crushing storm for early next week near or close to the East Coast. The explosive storm develops as tropical storm (or hurricane) Sandy merges with a powerful cold front charging towards the East Coast late this weekend.
Although a historic storm is a possibility, the storm could deliver just a glancing blow or even miss the East Coast entirely. And for residents of the mid-Atlantic (including Washington, D.C. and points further south), a direct hit is not particularly likely although it cannot be ruled out.
Meet Tropical Storm Sandy.
Hurricane season in the Atlantic runs through November, but the appearance of Sandy still feels pretty late in the year. When you think of a hurricane, you (meaning, I) tend to think of warm and wet. Right now, the East Coast is plenty wet, but not very warm. So the prospect of a weekend hurricane, even tropical storm is … off-putting.
Much less one that could possibly be “historic.” The Weather Gang notes the language used by the developers of the European model, already in handy all-caps format:
TROPICAL SANDY INTO THE MID-LEVEL PIVOT POINT OF THE POLAR JET IN THE VICINITY OF LONG ISLAND EARLY NEXT TUESDAY, THE DYNAMIC TRANSFER RESULTING IN A MINIMUM PRESSURE OF AT LEAST 932MB. THEREIN LIES THE STORM’S MENACE- A POWERHOUSE CAPABLE OF WHIPPING THE ATLANTIC INTO A FRENZY AND CHURNING UP DANGEROUS TIDES. OF PARTICULAR NOTE IS THE COINCIDENCE OF THE FULL MOON ON SUNDAY, OFTEN A SIGNIFICANT FACTOR IN HISTORICAL EVENTS.
Even the moon is out to destroy us. Super.
As the storm hits Jamaica and heads north to brush past Florida, there’s reason to be sanguine. Weather.com has the path moving away from the East Coast (as in the animation above). There’s a good chance that the Canadians are right, and Washington and New York won’t see a drop from Sandy. We may emerge from this hurricane season unscathed.
Oh. Did we mention Tropical Storm Tony?
Update: Did we say “tropical storm?” Well, now it’s a hurricane. BRB, panicking.