10 AM Hurricane Irene Brief Update: An update on Irene will be posted in the Tropics page at 11 AM and again at 6 PM, but from the latest model projections, Irene could make landfall somewhere near or over New York City as a weak category 1 hurricane. The update will also briefly discuss the potential that Irene trends even more west and moves through western New Jersey, which would spare most of the area of any significant impact.
10:20 AM: While today’s thunderstorms were expected to start affecting the area in the late afternoon, a squall line has formed much earlier than anticipated, and is already in NW NJ and is moving slowly to the ENE. This squall line will be capable of producing gusty winds, as well as heavy downpours which could dump 1/2 to 1 inch of rain in a short period of time. The squall line is expected to reach NYC around 11:30-12:00 PM, then moving into Long Island and southern CT between 12-3 PM.
Behind these storms, some breaks in the cloud cover are expected. While there is some uncertainty regarding this afternoon, it is possible that another round of scattered strong to potentially severe thunderstorms could develop in Pennsylvania this afternoon and move towards the area this evening. More updates on today’s storms will be posted later this afternoon.