January 30, 2013 Storm Summary

January 28-30, 2013 Snow, Sleet, Rain, Wind

A widespread system affected the region between January 28 and 31, 2013. After a strong cold air mass settled overhead for the January 22-27 time frame, a brief pattern reload occurred with light to moderate snow, sleet and freezing rain on the 28th, followed by unseasonable warmth on the 29-30th and a strong cold front producing heavy rain and strong wind gusts on the 30-31st, with rainfall between 1-3 inches and wind gusts up to 60-75 mph.



January 30, 2013 Storm Archive

January 26 – Wintry Mix Monday, Then Warm
January 27 – Snow/Ice Tomorrow, Then T-Storms/Wind
January 28 – Storm Updates
January 30 – Heavy Rain, Wind, Thunder Tonight
January 30 – Storm Updates


Storm History

jan30trackThe region was affected by two waves; the first was on Monday, 1/28, with a wave of low pressure moving east through New York state and southeast into Massachusetts, removing the cold air mass from the region and producing light snow in the interior Northeast region and a wintry mix further south, where low level cold air held in place initially. Once this wave of low pressure moved out of the region, a broad low pressure developed and intensified over the central US on Tuesday into Wednesday, January 29-30, bringing a strong warm air mass into the northeast US while another strong cold surge dived southeast behind the developing storm. The low pressure then rapidly intensified late on the 30th into the 31st as it quickly tracked northeast through Michigan and southeast Canada just north of the US/Canada border, deepening from about 984 mb to 960 mb in 18 hours, while bringing a strong cold front through the northeast US region with strong winds, heavy rain and some thunder.


Forecasting The Storm

This section will be added soon.


Storm Impact in the Northeast

Regional radar image from 10:18 AM 1/28,  from the National Weather Service. Widespread light to moderate precipitation in the form of snow fell over NY state, with light snow/sleet in the NYC area and sleet/freezing rain in Pennsylvania.

1518The first part of the system affected the region on Monday, January 28. As a wave of low pressure tracked through the interior Northeast before sliding southeast towards Cape Cod, light precipitation spread into the region on Monday morning. With enough cold air in the front end of the precipitation shield, snow was initially observed especially from NYC and north/west between 9-11 AM, with a changeover to sleet occurring around 11 AM-1 PM while Pennsylvania observed light freezing rain, and light snow spread through the interior Northeast with light to moderate accumulations. Long Island and Connecticut also started with a period of light snow in the late morning before changing over to sleet and rain by the early-mid afternoon, with most of the area drying up from west to east during the mid to late afternoon hours.

Regional radar image from 11:58 PM 1/30,  from the National Weather Service. Widespread heavy rain covered PA and NY states before shifting east into the area.

The second round of the storm affected the region during Wednesday into early Thursday, January 30-31. Rain initially began over Pennsylvania and New York states during Wednesday afternoon and evening, mostly staying west of the area. The rain gradually began extending eastward, with northwest NJ and SE NY beginning to see rain between 10 PM and 12 AM. Rain affected the rest of the area between 1-6 AM, with a narrow line of heavy rain and strong winds moving through western NJ around 3 AM and NYC around 4 AM, producing up to 1/2 inch in just 1 hour, along with wind gusts in the 45-60 mph range. The storm then gradually ended by the early morning hours, with temperatures steadily falling throughout the day on Thursday.


Storm Rain/Snow Totals

Estimated snow accumulation map for the first round of the storm, based on storm reports from the National Weather Service.

SnowSnow totals from the first wave on Monday, January 28 were generally light across the region. Most of the NYC area reported a coating to 1 inch of snow/sleet, with totals locally over 1 inch over southern Connecticut. Elsewhere in the region, snow totals of up to 1 inches were observed across large portions of the northeast US north of the MD/PA border, with a narrow swath of 2 inches from NW to central Pennsylvania, and a wider swath of 3-7 inches of snow over northern NY state into Vermont, New Hampshire and southwestern Maine. The highest snow total in the NYC area was 2.0″ in Madison, CT and Wolcott, CT (New Haven).

Rain totals from the second round on Wednesday night into Thursday, January 30-31, were generally between 1-2 inches north and west of NYC, and 1/2 to 1 inch east of NYC. The highest totals in the region were observed along an axis from SW Virginia through central Maryland, with totals locally over 3 inches. The more significant aspect of the storm, however, was the wind, with strong wind gusts in the 45-60 mph range, locally even higher. The strongest reported wind gusts according to the National Weather Service was 78 mph in Westbrook, CT, with numerous other reports of wind gusts above 60 mph in Long Island and Connecticut.

Below is a list of selected wind gust reports across the area from the National Weather Service storm reports, listed by highest report from each county:

Northern NJ:
59 mph – Newark, NJ (Essex)
56 mph – Teaneck, NJ (Bergen)
54 mph – Berkeley Heights, NJ (Union)
50 mph – Bayonne, NJ (Hudson)

Southeast NY:
54 mph – Larchmont, NY (Westchester)

New York City:
64 mph – LaGuardia Airport (Queens)
43 mph – Central Park, NY (Manhattan)

Long Island / South CT:
78 mph – Westbrook, NY (Middlesex)
73 mph – Madison, NY (New Haven)
70 mph – Centre Island, NY (Nassau)
64 mph – Plum Island, NY (Suffolk)
64 mph – Norwalk, CT (Fairfield)
54 mph – Groton, NY (New London)

Leave a Reply