Sunday Turns Stormy: Severe Thunderstorms Possible Again for NJ
It's been a wonderful early June weekend so far, with pops of sunshine and temperatures in the 80s on Saturday. However, our weather is about to turn downhill once again, as New Jersey braces for our 5th severe weather day in the last 11 days.
A strong cold front is charging toward New Jersey. That line of intense lift, coupled with the high humidity and warm temperatures in place already, will spark several rounds of thunderstorms. Furthermore, our atmosphere will be favorable for strong to severe thunderstorms through Sunday afternoon and evening.
Since it's the weekend, many New Jerseyans will be out and about, enjoying the summerlike weather. Unfortunately, that pleasantry is set to end with a bang.
Radar is picking up on an early round of showers and thunderstorms, impacting New Jersey through the late morning hours. This isn't really the one we're worried about — if that line holds together, there could be a quick downpour and some lightning.
Severe storms are expected to pop up in New Jersey between about 3 p.m. and 9 p.m. Sunday. Additional non-severe thunderstorms and areas of rain may linger in the southern half of the state through about Midnight.
Thunderstorms and severe weather seem equally likely across all parts of NJ Sunday.
Will everyone see a thunderstorm and/or some rain? Probably.
Will everyone in the state experience severe weather? Doubtful.
Bottom line? All of NJ needs to keep an eye on the sky.
Our biggest concern this time around will be straight-line wind. As a strong thunderstorm forms and grows, it usually pushes a lot of air out ahead of it — called "outflow". As those gusts blow over 40 to 60 mph, we start to worry about downed trees and property damage.
Secondary will be torrential rain leading to flooding. Most rainfall totals on Sunday will top out around a quarter-inch — nothing impressive there. However, if a storm cell sits and pours over one area for an extended period of time, we could see localized totals on the order of an inch or two. That's enough to cause flooding of roadways and low-lying areas. Keep in mind that often times "flooding" manifests itself as "a big puddle". You don't want to drive through any flooded areas — you have no idea how deep that water is, and/or if the road surface has been completely washed away.
There is also a non-zero risk for hail and an isolated tornado. Just like Wednesday's storms ("round 2"), there will be a narrow window at storm onset for this "worst of the worst" severe weather to occur. Just something we need to keep in the back of our minds.
Let's review the three steps of staying weather aware, which is my important message on a potentially dangerous weather day like Sunday:
1.) Know there is a risk of severe weather. By reading my blog, you can check this step off your list — but please make sure your friends and family are aware of the storm chance too.
2.) Have a way to receive weather warnings. Radio is good, app is better. When thunder roars, head indoors.
3.) Take action quickly if you're in the path of a nasty storm. This may include delaying or detouring a drive, seeking temporary shelter in a sturdy building, etc.
Cooler, much drier air arrives Monday, once again zapping any threat of rain, thunderstorms, and/or severe weather. High temperatures on Monday will struggle to reach 70 degrees, with a brisk northwesterly wind.