Archive for February, 2010

Third Major Storm in As Many Weeks

Posted: February 24, 2010 in Archive

The following is the complete Winter Storm Warning text as issued today by the National Weather Service office in Mt. Holly:

= = = = Winter Storm Warning – Bucks (Pennsylvania) = = = =

NEWTON…WASHINGTON…MORRISTOWN…
FLEMINGTON…SOMERVILLE…NEW BRUNSWICK…TRENTON…JIM THORPE…
STROUDSBURG…READING…ALLENTOWN…BETHLEHEM…EASTON…
WEST CHESTER…NORRISTOWN…DOYLESTOWN
316 PM EST WED FEB 24 2010

…WINTER STORM WARNING IN EFFECT FROM MIDNIGHT TONIGHT TO NOON
EST FRIDAY…

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MOUNT HOLLY HAS ISSUED A WINTER
STORM WARNING FOR SNOW…WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM MIDNIGHT TONIGHT TO
NOON EST FRIDAY. THE WINTER STORM WATCH IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT.

A LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM DEVELOPING OFF THE SOUTHEASTERN COAST WILL
INTENSIFY TONIGHT AND MOVE NORTHWARD ALONG THE EASTERN SEABOARD
THROUGH THURSDAY. AS THE LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM REACHES ITS STRONGEST
POINT, IT IS EXPECTED TO MOVE WESTWARD AND BACK ONTO LAND NEAR LONG
ISLAND, NEW YORK ON THURSDAY, AND REMAIN NEARLY STATIONARY THROUGH
FRIDAY.

PRECIPITATION IS EXPECTED TO BEGIN LATER THIS EVENING, AND
COULD START OUT AS EITHER RAIN OR A MIXTURE OF RAIN AND SNOW.
HOWEVER, PRECIPITATION WILL CHANGE OVER TO ALL SNOW OVERNIGHT
TONIGHT AND LAST THROUGH THE EARLY PART OF FRIDAY. THE HEAVIEST
SNOW IS EXPECTED TO BE THURSDAY INTO THURSDAY NIGHT WITH TOTAL
SNOW ACCUMULATIONS RANGING FROM 12 TO 16 INCHES ACROSS THE WARNED
AREA. THIS IS THE TIME WHEN THE STORM WILL BE AT ITS STRONGEST AS
WELL, WHICH WILL LEAD TO STRONG WINDS UP TO 30 MPH. THESE STRONG
WINDS WILL LIKELY LEAD TO BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW, AS WELL AS
SCATTERED POWER OUTAGES.

THE SNOW COULD BE A HEAVY, WET SNOW, SIMILAR TO THE LAST STORM,
WHICH MAY HAVE AN EFFECT OF TREES AND BUILDING OVERHANGS. SHOVELING
SNOW WILL BE DIFFICULT WITH THIS STORM. ANYONE VENTURING OUT TO
SHOVEL SNOW IS ADVISED TO USE CAUTION WHEN SHOVELING SNOW AND TAKE
FREQUENT BREAKS.

A WINTER STORM WARNING MEANS SIGNIFICANT AMOUNTS OF SNOW…
SLEET…AND ICE ARE EXPECTED OR OCCURRING. STRONG WINDS ARE ALSO
POSSIBLE. THIS WILL MAKE TRAVEL VERY HAZARDOUS OR IMPOSSIBLE.

Nockamixon EMA urges all residents and businesses to act now to ensure readiness for likely power outages of uncertain duration, and to stay alert to changing weather conditions. If you know of elderly or infirm neighbors, check on them frequently or — better yet — invite them to stay with you until the danger has passed. This storm will cause dangerous to impossible driving conditions, so be sure to have any needed medication on hand before it gets too bad. Use extreme caution when shoveling the heavy, wet snow: take frequent breaks and rest if you tire. Monitor roofs for heavy snow loads and clear them before they have a chance to cause structural damage.

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Another storm on the way

Posted: February 19, 2010 in Archive

Meteorological discussions about a storm on Monday through Tuesday, Feb. 22-23 agree pretty much on one thing: no one seems to know exactly what’s going to happen. Forecasts for everything from 4-8 inches of snow to a rain/sleet event in the Delaware and Lehigh Valleys are being tossed about. The good part seems to be that even if it turns out to be an all-rain event, the ground will get soggy and we could have some flash flooding and ponding, but no significant river flooding, despite all the snow that’s still on the ground to melt.

There is definitely another storm behind that one for later in the week, and perhaps even a third waiting in the wings. Best to simply keep an ear to the weather reports for now.

As of 4:45 am today, the National Weather Service put our area under a Blizzard Warning. The current NWS predicted snowfall map shows us getting 17 inches of snow, but the potential exists for anywhere from 12 to 22 inches for this storm event total. See the entire advisory, along with the Hazardous Weather Outlook, on the National Weather Service’s Bucks County Forecast page.

A snow emergency continues to be in effect for our township, and a county-wide snow emergency was declared last evening. Nockamixon residents are urged to stay aware of changing conditions.

This storm began with relatively warm temperatures, meaning the snow is heavier than that of last weekend, which was fairly light and dry. Building owners should pay attention to mounting snow depth on roof areas that might be vulnerable to collapse, and take necessary precautions to keep those areas as clean of snow as possible. Several roofs and at least one airplane hangar have already collapsed to our south, where snow totals on Saturday exceeded ours by more than a foot.

Another element we’ll be dealing with during this storm is high winds. These will increase throughout the day  today, when the most intense snowfall is expected to occur. Travel has already been curtailed by widespread business and school closings, and all major thoroughfares have had maximum speeds reduced to 45 mph for the duration of this snow emergency. If you must travel for emergency reasons, please be prepared for extremely dangerous driving conditions, including visual white-outs at times. Do not leave home without being properly dressed for potential stranding in very cold conditions, and take a survival kit with you.

If you do get stuck somewhere, these tips may help save your life:

  1. Stay with your vehicle. It will provide shelter from the elements and make you easier to find. It only takes a few minutes exposed to high winds in low temperatures, especially once you’re wet, to succumb to hypothermia.
  2. If you must run the engine to stay warm, only do so once every 15 minutes or so. This will extend the time you can continue doing so. Make sure you keep your exhaust pipe clear of snow to prevent accidental carbon monoxide poisoning.
  3. Keep votive candles in your kit. A single candle burning in your vehicle’s passenger compartment can raise the interior temperature 10°F, which can be the difference between staying awake and alive, and not coming through the situation. Remember to crack a window open on the lee side of the vehicle to keep fresh air circulating without letting snow and wind enter the car.

Another issue with strong winds is the possibility of power outages. Make sure you have plenty of flashlights and batteries, or candles ready where you can find them. If you do burn candles, burn them safely to prevent accidental house fires, and keep them out of reach of small children and curious pets. Speaking of pets, please bring them inside for the duration of the storm. Domesticated companion animals are not used to being out in the weather. They suffer from cold and exposure as much as people do. If you cannot shelter your pet, call the Bucks County Animal Response Team (BCART) coordinator at 215-901-2505 for help.

Under no circumstances should you:

  • use a gas oven to keep warm
  • bring a charcoal or wood-fired grill into the house
  • run a gas generator inside any building

All these activities invite asphyxiation. Being cold may be uncomfortable, but breathing toxic fumes or smoke can be deadly. Avoid tragedy by following these simple rules. If it just gets too cold, move yourself, your family and any pets to a friend’s or neighbor’s house or to a hotel until you can safely go back home. Report any life-threatening situations immediately by dialing 9-1-1 on your land line or cell phone.

Please visit our News and Activity page for full extreme winter weather statements direct from the National Weather Service, and monitor this site for further information and instructions.

To subscribe to the RSS Feed for these emergency posts, please click the link at the bottom of this page. You can also sign up for email alerts of this site’s updates at the upper right corner of this page.

As of 5:00 PM this evening, the Nockamixon Board of Supervisors declared a pre-emptive snow emergency to set the stage for fast and easy deployment of snow removal resources. Snow began falling in the Township around 7:00 PM, and the current NWS snowfall total forecast map as of that time indicated an expected total of 17.0 inches by the time the storm ends, which is expected to happen sometime around midnight on Wed., 2/10. This pre-emptive declaration means only that Nockamixon residents and businesses should stay alert for changing conditions.

A Snow Emergency means that the township’s road crews are in full activation to keep roads cleared and passable, and require the cooperation of residents and businesses in our community to continue being as effective as possible. Please see below for more details.

A Snow Emergency is the term used to indicate the active response plan when a snowstorm severely impacts a city, county or town in the United States or Canada. Schools, universities, government offices, airports and public buildings may close during a Snow Emergency.

Typically, a Snow Emergency is declared by authorized officials. The declaration is usually issued after the winter storm has impacted a city or county. This designation is not a product issued by the National Weather Service. However, Winter Storm Warnings, Blizzard Warnings, and Winter Weather Advisories are taken into account when declaring a Snow Emergency. Snow Emergencies are a common occurrence during the winter snowfall season in the northern United States.

During life-threatening winter storms, a State of Emergency may be declared for an entire state. This declaration overrules a county- or municipality-issued Snow Emergency. These declarations may or may not include travel restrictions, based on the severity of the storm and resources available to clear roads and otherwise assure public safety.

This storm is beginning with relatively warm temperatures, meaning the snow will be heavier than that of last weekend, which was fairly light and dry. Building owners should pay attention to mounting snow depth on roof areas that might be vulnerable to collapse, and take necessary precautions to keep those areas as clean of snow as possible. Several roofs and at least one airplane hangar have already collapsed to our south, where snow totals on Saturday exceeded ours by more than a foot.

Another element we’ll be dealing with during this storm is high winds. These will increase throughout the day on Wednesday, when the most intense snowfall is expected to occur. By then, travel will likely be curtailed by a higher level snow emergency, but if you must travel for emergency reasons, please be prepared for extremely dangerous driving conditions, including visual white-outs at times. Do not leave home without being properly dressed for potential stranding in very cold conditions, and take a survival kit with you.

If you do get stuck somewhere, these tips may help save your life:

  1. Stay with your vehicle. It will provide shelter from the elements and make you easier to find. It only takes a few minutes exposed to high winds in low temperatures, especially once you’re wet, to succumb to hypothermia.
  2. If you must run the engine to stay warm, only do so once every 15 minutes or so. This will extend the time you can continue doing so. Make sure you keep your exhaust pipe clear of snow to prevent accidental carbon monoxide poisoning.
  3. Keep votive candles in your kit. A single candle burning in your vehicle’s passenger compartment can raise the interior temperature 10°F, which can be the difference between staying awake and alive, and not coming through the situation. Remember to crack a window open on the lee side of the vehicle to keep fresh air circulating without letting snow and wind enter the car.

Another issue with strong winds is the possibility of power outages. Make sure you have plenty of flashlights and batteries, or candles ready where you can find them. If you do burn candles, burn them safely to prevent accidental house fires, and keep them out of reach of small children and curious pets. Speaking of pets, please bring them inside for the duration of the storm. Domesticated companion animals are not used to being out in the weather. They suffer from cold and exposure as much as people do. If you cannot shelter your pet, call the Bucks County Animal Response Team (BCART) coordinator at 215-901-2505 for help.

Under no circumstances should you:

  • use a gas oven to keep warm
  • bring a charcoal or wood-fired grill into the house
  • run a gas generator inside any building

All these activities invite asphyxiation. Being cold may be uncomfortable, but breathing toxic fumes or smoke can be deadly. Avoid tragedy by following these simple rules. If it just gets too cold, move yourself, your family and any pets to a friend’s or neighbor’s house or to a hotel until you can safely go back home. Report any life-threatening situations immediately by dialing 9-1-1 on your land line or cell phone.

Please visit our News and Activity page for full extreme winter weather statements direct from the National Weather Service, and monitor this site for further information and instructions.

To subscribe to the RSS Feed for these emergency posts, please click the link at the bottom of this page.

YET ANOTHER MAJOR WINTER STORM WILL AFFECT OUR AREA FROM LATE
TODAY INTO WEDNESDAY EVENING…
URGENT – WINTER WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MOUNT HOLLY NJ
330 AM EST TUE FEB 9 2010
AN EXPLOSIVELY DEVELOPING NOR’EASTER WILL BRING HEAVY SNOW TO MUCH OF OUR AREA STARTING LATE TODAY AND THIS EVENING…AND PERSISTING THROUGH WEDNESDAY AND INTO WEDNESDAY EVENING.
NEW CASTLE-KENT-CECIL-KENT MD-QUEEN ANNES-TALBOT-CAROLINE-SUSSEX-WARREN-MORRIS-HUNTERDON-SOMERSET-MIDDLESEX-WESTERN MONMOUTH-EASTERN MONMOUTH-MERCER-SALEM-GLOUCESTER-CAMDEN-NORTHWESTERN BURLINGTON-OCEAN-CUMBERLAND-ATLANTIC-COASTAL OCEAN-SOUTHEASTERN BURLINGTON-CARBON-MONROE-BERKS-LEHIGH-NORTHAMPTON-
CHESTER-MONTGOMERY-BUCKS-DELAWARE-PHILADELPHIA
INCLUDING THE CITIES OF: WILMINGTON…DOVER…ELKTON…CHESTERTOWN…CENTREVILLE…EASTON…DENTON…NEWTON…
WASHINGTON…MORRISTOWN…FLEMINGTON…SOMERVILLE…NEW BRUNSWICK…FREEHOLD…SANDY HOOK…TRENTON…PENNSVILLE…GLASSBORO…CAMDEN…CHERRY HILL…MOORESTOWN…MOUNT HOLLY…JACKSON…MILLVILLE…HAMMONTON…LONG BEACH ISLAND…WHARTON STATE FOREST…JIM THORPE…STROUDSBURG…READING…ALLENTOWN…BETHLEHEM…WEST CHESTER…NORRISTOWN…DOYLESTOWN…MEDIA…PHILADELPHIA
A WINTER STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 4 PM THIS AFTERNOON TO MIDNIGHT EST WEDNESDAY NIGHT.

LOW PRESSURE MOVING FROM THE DEEP SOUTH EARLY THIS MORNING WILL HEAD INTO THE OHIO VALLEY THIS AFTERNOON. THAT LOW WILL GIVE UP ITS ENERGY TO A COASTAL STORM…WHICH WILL DEVELOP ALONG THE NORTHERN NORTH CAROLINA COAST LATE TODAY AND THIS EVENING. BY WEDNESDAY MORNING…THIS NOR/EASTER IS FORECAST TO BE INTENSIFYING STRONGLY JUST EAST OF OUR AREA…AND IS EXPECTED TO BRING HEAVY SNOW TO A GOOD PART OF OUR AREA THROUGH WEDNESDAY AND PERHAPS INTO WEDNESDAY EVENING.

SOUTHEAST OF INTERSTATE 95 THE SNOW MAY MIX WITH SLEET AT TIMES TONIGHT…AND WITH SLEET AND RAIN AT TIMES DURING THE FIRST HALF OF THE DAY WEDNESDAY. HOWEVER…THIS IS MORE LIKELY CLOSER TO THE COAST. BUT AS COLDER AIR WRAPS AROUND THE STORM EVEN THESE AREAS ARE EXPECTED TO CHANGE BACK TO ALL SNOW.

TOTAL SNOW ACCUMULATIONS ARE EXPECTED TO RANGE FROM 10 TO 18 INCHES WITH THE HIGHEST AMOUNTS OVER THE NORTHERN EASTERN SHORE OF MARYLAND…NORTHERN DELAWARE…EASTERN PENNSYLVANIA…AND MUCH OF NEW JERSEY. HEAVY SNOW IS EXPECTED TO OCCUR IN TWO BURSTS ACROSS THE REGION. THE FIRST IS EXPECTED TO OCCUR TONIGHT WITH FOUR TO EIGHT INCHES LIKELY TO ACCUMULATE BY THE MORNING COMMUTE WEDNESDAY. THE SECOND SHOT WILL BE AN EVEN MORE INTENSE BURST OF HEAVY SNOW WITH THE UPPER AIR DISTURBANCE ITSELF THAT SHOULD OCCUR IN THE PHILADELPHIA AREA…MARYLAND…AND DELAWARE DURING WEDNESDAY MORNING AND NEW JERSEY AND NORTHEASTERN PENNSYLVANIA DURING WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON. THE SNOW WILL END BY MIDNIGHT WEDNESDAY NIGHT.

WINDS WILL INCREASE AS WEDNESDAY CONTINUES AND WILL CAUSE CONSIDERABLE BLOWING AND DRIFTING OF SNOW…EVEN MORE THAN WHAT OCCURRED WITH THE WEEKEND SNOW STORM. AT AND NEAR THE ATLANTIC SHORE BLIZZARD CONDITIONS ARE POSSIBLE WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON AS
WINDS INCREASE.

A WINTER STORM WARNING MEANS SIGNIFICANT AMOUNTS OF SNOW AND SLEET ARE EXPECTED OR OCCURRING. STRONG WINDS ARE ALSO POSSIBLE. THIS WILL MAKE TRAVEL VERY HAZARDOUS OR IMPOSSIBLE.

With snow no longer falling and roads now cleared, the snow emergencies declared for this weekend’s storm have been cancelled. However, a larger snowstorm is on the way Tuesday into Wednesday. Residents are urged to monitor changing conditions.

10 AM, Sat. Feb. 6 – Governor Rendell has declared a state of emergency for our area until further notice.

All non-essential traffic must stay off the roads until they’re cleared, to allow road crews to do their jobs more effectively and to leave what cleared room there is for emergency vehicles.