May 19, 2012: Tropical Storm Alberto Forms

Forecast Highlights:

– Tropical Storm Alberto To Stay Offshore
– Scattered Showers, Storms Monday Through Thursday
– Warm Temperatures Return By Memorial Day Weekend


Today’s Observations:

Sunny skies and mild temperatures were once again observed across the region with a high pressure in place. High temperatures were warmer than those of yesterday, peaking in the lower 80s from NYC and further north/west, and in the lower to mid 70s in Long Island and southern CT, getting into the upper 70s closer to NYC, verifying yesterday’s temperature forecast for today.

There are two apparent lows to the south of the region; the first is near eastern North Carolina. To its south near South Carolina, Tropical Storm Alberto, the first tropical storm of the year, formed this afternoon. Alberto will stay offshore, although scattered showers will affect the region between Monday and Wednesday. A large ridge will build into the central US by the late week, and although the hottest temperatures will stay to the west, a brief surge of warm temperatures perhaps up to 90 degrees is expected around or after Memorial Day Weekend.

Tomorrow’s Outlook:

Sunny skies are expected to start the day, although cloud cover will increase later on in the day as the cutoff low from the south approaches. Warm temperatures are expected again, reaching the lower 80s from NYC and further north/west, although temperatures further east in Long Island and southern CT will end up cooler than those of today, likely peaking in the upper 60s to mid 70s, due to an eastern wind.

Monday – Wednesday: Cloudier, Some Showers

Increasing clouds are expected on Sunday night, with cloudy skies and occasional showers expected for Monday and Monday night. Locally heavy showers are possible in parts of the area. High temperatures will be cooler due to the cloud cover as well, peaking in the mid 60s from NYC and further north/west, and the upper 50s to lower 60s across most of Long Island and southern CT. During Tuesday and Wednesday, scattered showers and thunderstorms are expected, with locally heavy showers on both days. Temperatures will gradually warm up, starting to reach the 70s in parts of the area on Tuesday and in most of the area on Wednesday.

Late Week – Beyond: Temperatures To Warm Up

Another upper level low is expected to move into the region by the late week, although this ULL will not provide much rain, with partly sunny skies expected for the late week with temperatures again in the 70s. Meanwhile, a strong ridge will build into the central US. With the current pattern, the hottest temperatures and the greatest temperature departures will stay in the central US, with a trough in Canada resulting in more back door cold front influence over the region. Temperatures around the Memorial Day Weekend and the following week are expected to end up above average, generally in the 70s and the 80s, with a few days in this time period likely including temperatures surging well into the 80s and perhaps even 90 degrees for some. Stay tuned for more information on the long range outlook.

Tropical Storm Alberto: Storm To Stay East

Earlier this afternoon, Tropical Storm Alberto formed southeast of North Carolina, becoming the first named storm of this year’s Atlantic hurricane season. The hurricane season officially begins on June 1st; in addition to Alberto forming prior to the official start to the season, Alberto also became the first May named tropical cyclone since Arthur in 2008, and the earliest forming Atlantic tropical cyclone since Ana in 2003. Last week, Tropical Storm Aletta formed in the East Pacific; as Aletta formed prior to the Pacific hurricane season’s May 15 start, as the latest National Hurricane Center discussion for Alberto notes, this is the first year in recorded history that both the Atlantic and Pacific hurricane seasons started before their official start dates.

Alberto reached a peak of 60 mph and 995 mb, Alberto started a weakening trend late this evening, and as of NHC’s 11 PM update, is down to 50 mph sustained winds. Alberto’s appearance is becoming more disorganized, and some weakening is likely to continue over the next few days as Alberto remains stationary at first, then begins to move NE towards eastern North Carolina before becoming extra-tropical.

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