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ON THE GREEN: STORMY WEEKEND POSSIBLE

wind-speed-probabilities-090216-500x397-4792354A wind speed probability forecast issued by the National Hurricane center at 2 a.m. Friday. (Click to enlarge.)

stormwatch-220x211-6985905A category-one hurricane named Hermine was downgraded to a tropical storm after making landfall in Florida early Friday, and is now expected to travel northeast along the Eastern Seaboard according to the National Weather Service.

But with “quite a bit of uncertainty” in the storm’s track afterward, the impact on the Greater Red Bank Green’s Labor Day weekend is unclear.

The weekend kicks off Friday with sunny skies and temperatures peaking in the low 80s before giving way to some cloudiness that will persist through the weekend, possibly bringing heavy rain starting Saturday afternoon, according to the forecast.

Tropical storm conditions could arrive Sunday, depending on Hermine’s track, according to a detailed “hurricane local statement” issued early Friday morning. Sunday’s outlook also stood at a 40-percent chance of rain, but if it comes, it could again be drenching, with up to three-quarters of an inch possible, according to the weather service. And another half inch could fall that night, it said.

The chance of precipitation Monday stood at 30 percent, according to the outlook.

Throughout the weekend, rip currents are expected to be a continuing threat.

Here’s a discussion of hazards and the weather service’s confidence that they’ll be present:

Rip Currents: High Confidence. A moderate to high risk for the formation of dangerous rip currents will continue through at least Labor Day, and may continue into Tuesday. As is always the case, people at the beach should enter the water only if life guards are present. Most rip current deaths occur on beaches when and where no life guards are on duty. Beach erosion is also possible.

Tidal Flooding: High Confidence. Minor tidal flooding is likely beginning with the Saturday evening high tide cycle and continuing through the Sunday night high tide cycle, possibly continuing into Monday. Moderate tidal flooding is possible with the Sunday high tide cycles. Given multiple rounds of tidal flooding, water in the back bays will have a hard time draining between tidal cycles which could lead to prolonged flooding in these locations.

Strong Winds: Moderate confidence. There is a chance of tropical storm force winds (sustained winds of 39 mph or greater) for much of the region. The highest chance is along the Delaware Beaches and the Southern New Jersey Shore. Even with an off shore track, gusts of 30 to 35 mph are expected along the coast.

Heavy rain: Moderate Confidence. There is expected to be a sharp cutoff in the heavy rain dependent on the track of Hermine (a track further off the coast lessens the threat for heavy rain). At this point, the highest risk of heavy rain is along the coast and coastal plains. The primary flooding hazard will be street and flash flooding. The recent dry weather will lessen but not eliminate the risk of river and stream flooding.

Here’s a more detailed situation overview issued at 12:30 a.m. Friday:

HERMINE IS A CATEGORY ONE HURRICANE LOCATED NEAR THE FLORIDA
PANHANDLE AND MOVING NORTH-NORTHEAST. IT IS EXPECTED TO MAKE
LANDFALL LATE TONIGHT IN NORTHWEST FLORIDA AND WEAKEN BEFORE
ACCELERATING NORTHEASTWARD AS A TROPICAL STORM. IT WILL THEN MOVE
OVER THE EASTERN CAROLINAS FRIDAY INTO SATURDAY MORNING. HERMINE IS
THEN FORECAST TO CONTINUE NORTHEAST OFF THE MID-ATLANTIC COAST, BUT
WILL LIKELY SLOW DOWN OR POSSIBLY EVEN STALL OFFSHORE LATER ON
SUNDAY INTO EARLY NEXT WEEK.

A TROPICAL STORM WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR PORTIONS OF THE MID-
ATLANTIC COAST INCLUDING SOUTHERN DELAWARE AND COASTAL NEW JERSEY
FROM CAPE MAY TO SANDY HOOK. THIS WATCH ALSO INCLUDES COASTAL
WATERS AND THE LOWER DELAWARE BAY. SUSTAINED TROPICAL STORM FORCE
WINDS ARE POSSIBLE OVER IMMEDIATE COASTAL AREAS INCLUDING COASTAL
WATERS AND THE LOWER BAY. TROPICAL STORM FORCE GUSTS MAY OCCUR
FARTHER INLAND, ESPECIALLY IF THE STORM TAKES A TRACK CLOSER TO
THE COAST.

HAZARDOUS SEAS AND DANGEROUSLY ROUGH SURF CAN BE EXPECTED THIS
WEEKEND AND POSSIBLY INTO MONDAY AND TUESDAY. A MODERATE TO HIGH
RIP CURRENT RISK CAN BE EXPECTED AT THE BEACHES THIS WEEKEND AND
POSSIBLY INTO EARLY NEXT WEEK. MINOR TO MODERATE COASTAL FLOODING
IS POSSIBLE AROUND THE TIMES OF HIGH TIDE FROM LATE SATURDAY
ONWARD. SOME LOCALIZED MAJOR COASTAL FLOODING CAN NOT BE RULED OUT,
ESPECIALLY IN THE BACK BAYS WHERE WATER ACCUMULATES WITH EACH
SUCCESSIVE HIGH TIDE. THIS WILL ULTIMATELY DEPEND ON THE PATH AND
STRENGTH OF THE STORM. TWO OR MORE INCHES OF RAIN ARE POSSIBLE,
ESPECIALLY NEAR THE COAST, WHICH MAY CAUSE FLOODING.

POTENTIAL IMPACTS
—————–

* WIND:
PREPARE FOR HAZARDOUS WIND HAVING POSSIBLE LIMITED IMPACTS ACROSS NEW
JERSEY…DELAWARE…SOUTHEASTERN PENNSYLVANIA AND NORTHEAST
MARYLAND.. POTENTIAL IMPACTS INCLUDE:
– DAMAGE TO PORCHES, AWNINGS, CARPORTS, SHEDS, AND UNANCHORED
MOBILE HOMES IS POSSIBLE. UNSECURED LIGHTWEIGHT OBJECTS COULD
BE BLOWN AROUND.
– MANY LARGE TREE LIMBS MAY BE BROKEN OFF. A FEW TREES COULD BE
SNAPPED OR UPROOTED. SOME FENCES AND ROADWAY SIGNS MAY BE BLOWN
OVER.
– A FEW ROADS COULD BE IMPASSABLE FROM DEBRIS. HAZARDOUS DRIVING
CONDITIONS ARE POSSIBLE ON BRIDGES AND OTHER ELEVATED ROADWAYS.
– SCATTERED POWER AND COMMUNICATIONS OUTAGES ARE POSSIBLE.

* SURGE:
PREPARE FOR LOCALLY HAZARDOUS SURGE HAVING POSSIBLE LIMITED IMPACTS
ACROSS COASTAL LOCATIONS OR AREAS PRONE TO TIDAL FLOODING,
INCLUDING THE BACK BAYS. POTENTIAL IMPACTS IN THIS AREA INCLUDE:
– LOCALIZED INUNDATION IS POSSIBLE WITH STORM SURGE FLOODING
MAINLY ALONG IMMEDIATE SHORELINES AND IN LOW-LYING SPOTS, OR IN
AREAS FARTHER INLAND NEAR WHERE HIGHER SURGE WATERS MOVE ASHORE.
– SECTIONS OF NEAR-SHORE ROADS AND PARKING LOTS COULD BECOME
OVERSPREAD WITH SURGE WATER. DANGEROUS DRIVING CONDITIONS ARE
POSSIBLE IN PLACES WHERE SURGE WATER COVERS THE ROAD.
– MODERATE BEACH EROSION IS EXPECTED. HEAVY SURF ALSO BREACHING
DUNES, MAINLY IN USUALLY VULNERABLE LOCATIONS. STRONG RIP
CURRENTS ARE ANTICIPATED.
– MINOR TO LOCALLY MODERATE DAMAGE TO MARINAS, DOCKS, BOARDWALKS,
AND PIERS IS POSSIBLE. A FEW SMALL CRAFT MAY BE BROKEN AWAY
FROM MOORINGS.

ELSEWHERE ACROSS NEW JERSEY…DELAWARE…SOUTHEASTERN PENNSYLVANIA
AND NORTHEAST MARYLAND., LITTLE TO NO IMPACT IS ANTICIPATED.

* FLOODING RAIN:
PREPARE FOR LOCALLY HAZARDOUS RAINFALL FLOODING HAVING POSSIBLE
LIMITED IMPACTS ACROSS THE COASTAL PLAINS. POTENTIAL
IMPACTS INCLUDE:
– LOCALIZED RAINFALL FLOODING MAY PROMPT A FEW EVACUATIONS.
– RIVERS AND TRIBUTARIES MAY QUICKLY RISE WITH SWIFTER CURRENTS.
SMALL STREAMS, CREEKS, CANALS, AND DITCHES MAY BECOME SWOLLEN
AND OVERFLOW IN SPOTS.
– FLOOD WATERS CAN ENTER A FEW STRUCTURES, ESPECIALLY IN
VULNERABLE SPOTS. RAPID PONDING OF WATER MAY OCCUR AT
UNDERPASSES, LOW-LYING SPOTS, AND POOR DRAINAGE AREAS. SEVERAL
STORM DRAINS AND RETENTION PONDS BECOME NEAR-FULL AND BEGIN TO
OVERFLOW. SOME BRIEF ROAD AND BRIDGE CLOSURES ARE POSSIBLE.

ELSEWHERE ACROSS NEW JERSEY…DELAWARE…SOUTHEASTERN PENNSYLVANIA
AND NORTHEAST MARYLAND., LITTLE TO NO IMPACT IS ANTICIPATED.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS
———————————-

* OTHER PREPAREDNESS INFORMATION:

NOW IS THE TIME TO CHECK YOUR EMERGENCY PLAN AND TAKE NECESSARY
ACTIONS TO SECURE YOUR HOME OR BUSINESS. DELIBERATE EFFORTS SHOULD BE
UNDERWAY TO PROTECT LIFE AND PROPERTY. ENSURE THAT YOUR EMERGENCY
SUPPLIES KIT IS STOCKED AND READY.

WHEN MAKING SAFETY AND PREPAREDNESS DECISIONS, DO NOT FOCUS ON THE
EXACT FORECAST TRACK AS THERE ARE INHERENT FORECAST UNCERTAINTIES
WHICH MUST BE TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT.

IF YOU LIVE IN A PLACE PARTICULARLY VULNERABLE TO FLOODING, SUCH AS
NEAR THE OCEAN, IN A LOW LYING OR POOR DRAINAGE AREA, IN A VALLEY, OR
NEAR AN ALREADY SWOLLEN RIVER, PLAN TO MOVE TO SAFE SHELTER ON HIGHER
GROUND

ALWAYS HEED THE ADVICE OF LOCAL OFFICIALS AND COMPLY WITH ANY ORDERS
THAT ARE ISSUED. DO NOT NEEDLESSLY JEOPARDIZE YOUR LIFE OR THE LIVES
OF OTHERS.

WHEN SECURING YOUR PROPERTY, OUTSIDE PREPARATIONS SHOULD BE CONDUCTED
AS SOON AS POSSIBLE BEFORE CONDITIONS DETERIORATE. THE ONSET OF
STRONG GUSTY WINDS AND HEAVY RAIN CAN CAUSE CERTAIN PREPAREDNESS
ACTIVITIES TO BECOME UNSAFE.

BE SURE TO LET FRIENDS AND OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS KNOW OF YOUR
INTENTIONS AND WHEREABOUTS FOR SURVIVING THE STORM. FOR EMERGENCY
PURPOSES, HAVE SOMEONE LOCATED AWAY FROM THE THREATENED AREA SERVE AS
YOUR POINT OF CONTACT. SHARE VITAL CONTACT INFORMATION WITH OTHERS.
KEEP CELL PHONES HANDY AND WELL CHARGED.

VISITORS TO THE AREA SHOULD BECOME FAMILIAR WITH NEARBY SURROUNDINGS.
IF YOU ARE A VISITOR, KNOW THE NAME OF THE COUNTY IN WHICH YOU ARE
LOCATED AND WHERE IT IS RELATIVE TO CURRENT WATCHES AND WARNINGS. IF
STAYING AT A HOTEL, ASK THE MANAGEMENT STAFF ABOUT THEIR ONSITE
DISASTER PLAN. LISTEN FOR EVACUATION ORDERS, ESPECIALLY PERTAINING TO
AREA VISITORS.

CLOSELY MONITOR NOAA WEATHER RADIO OR OTHER LOCAL NEWS OUTLETS FOR
OFFICIAL STORM INFORMATION. LISTEN FOR POSSIBLE CHANGES TO THE
FORECAST.

* ADDITIONAL SOURCES OF INFORMATION:
– FOR INFORMATION ON APPROPRIATE PREPARATIONS SEE READY.GOV
– FOR INFORMATION ON CREATING AN EMERGENCY PLAN SEE GETAGAMEPLAN.ORG
– FOR ADDITIONAL DISASTER PREPAREDNESS INFORMATION SEE REDCROSS.ORG

Remember: Nothing makes a Red Bank friend happier than to hear "I saw you on Red Bank Green!"
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