Hermine is about ready to write chapter four. Chapter 1 – Unwillingness to develop across Atlantic. Chapter 2 – Tropical depression in Gulf. Chapter 3 – Southeastern landfall impacts ending the 10 year Florida hurricane drought. Now chapter 4 is starting, which should be Northeast impacts. Like many storms of the past, as storms exit back over the warm waters of the Gulf Stream and the frictional effects of land lessen, storms can easily intensify and over the next 24 hours this is what is expected with Hermine.
However, it should be noted that this next chapter will not be similar to Hurricane Sandy. I have seen a few reports that Hermine will be the next Superstorm Sandy, AKA Superstorm Hermine. This is just a function of the 24/7 weather information era, social media hypecasters, and click bait that is all to common. Each storm is different and it is easy to lock onto analog storms. I am guilty of doing that often.
However, Hermine is not Sandy, where are many differences between the two storms:
The setup is obviously different . Sandy came up from the Bahamas and Hermine from the Gulf of Mexico so two totally different directions.
Sandy was a 940 mb low pressure system moving towards the New Jersey coastline with tropical storm force winds 1000 miles across and over 90 mph along the New Jersey coastline. Hermine will have a low pressure center around 990 mb which is much higher and the tropical storm force winds will only extend out, less than 350 miles according to the latest National Hurricane center forecast. However, both will likely be hurricanes off the New Jersey shore, but again this depends on how textbook the National Hurricane center is with the classification.
Sandy’s wave heights were historic at 30ft+ Hermine’s waves are only expected to be 20ft with maybe a few reports of 30ft.
What will make Hermine impactful is this looks like this will be a long duration event. This means waves and wind will batter the northeast coastline for days, not hours like Sandy did. There is still some track uncertainty and clearly the closer Hermine tracks to the coastline the worse the winds will be. One can expect, given the long duration of strong winds, minor structural damage could occur.
Currently the Verisk Climate wind model which can be viewed in BMS iVision suggest these tropical storm force winds > 39 mph will not be impacting the New Jersey coastline, but this could change with the next few model runs.
This will also create coastal flooding problems with some area seeing close to record flooding which will be similar to Sandy along parts of the New Jersey coastline.