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Will New England feel any effects of Hurricane Ian?

The Boston Globe 9/28/2022 Dave Epstein
People watch sailboats at Sarasota Bay as Hurricane Ian approached on Wednesday. © Sean Rayford People watch sailboats at Sarasota Bay as Hurricane Ian approached on Wednesday.

It’s been a beautiful Wednesday in much of New England and it’s hard to imagine all the destruction across the southwest Florida coastline. In that area, Hurricane Ian, of the strongest storms to ever come onshore in the state, moved inland this afternoon.

Storm surges, wind, and rain have all been significant in that region and there’s no doubt you’re going to continue to see damage video for the next couple of days. This could be one of the costliest storms ever in Florida, running into the billions and billions of dollars of damage. As the storm crosses Florida it will actually reemerge on the Atlantic side and could create some fairly significant issues for the Georgia and South Carolina coast in the coming days.

Since the winds around the storms go counterclockwise, once it’s on the Atlantic side, areas on the left side of the storm which will see a higher storm surge as the wind and wave action move the water towards the west.

For us here in Southern New England, the beautiful weather is going to continue. Temperatures tomorrow and Friday will be very similar to today, generally in the mid-60s as slightly cooler air arrives from Canada. As we head into the weekend, that high-pressure area will keep most of the remnants of the hurricane south of us.

It’s still too early to know whether or not any rainfall gets to Boston. The most likely timeframe would be Saturday night or early Sunday but I think that the South Coast has the highest likelihood of rainfall. Boston itself could remain completely rain free.

With Canadian high pressure draped from the Great Lakes all the way into Maine early next week and the remnants of Ian to the south, there actually will be a bit of a gradient producing an easterly flow into the mid-Atlantic. This could produce a few days of heavy waves and some beach erosion in that area, perhaps north across the south coast of New England.

The topsoil has definitely become more moist over the past few weeks with the increase in rainfall, however officially we are still in a drought and I don’t suspect much in the way of improvement for the next couple of weeks. This is because rainfall does look to be minimal and while this can certainly change, our pattern here in Southern New England continues to be drier than the 30-year average.

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