May 24, 2023 | 6:00 p.m
Heavy rain, strong winds and rough surf are expected for parts of the East Coast for Memorial Day weekend, potentially ruining travel plans for millions of vacationers during the unofficial start of summer.
The FOX Prediction Center is tracking a complicated weather scenario on the East Coast that could lead to a tropical disturbance developing over the western Atlantic that causes a holiday weekend for parts of the Carolinas and the Southeast coast.
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) said in a tropical weather outlook Wednesday afternoon that there is only a 10% chance the storm could become a subtropical or tropical cyclone because it “is expected to remain frontal as it moves generally northward and inland over Carolinas. this weekend.”
To become tropical, the system would have to lose its cold and warm fronts and develop a well-defined circulation center, which the NHC said seems unlikely.
“Places like Atlanta … are going to have to focus on this just because of the changes and also the patterns that are going to come together in this forecast story,” said FOX Weather meteorologist Britta Merwin. “It looks like a lot of people between Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina will need indoor options for Memorial Day weekend.”
Computer forecast models indicate that a cold front that has stalled near Florida this week may interact with circulation developing in the upper atmosphere.
Regardless of whether the coastal low is tropical in the making, some Florida communities are in for several inches of rain over the next few days.
The low pressure system is then expected to swing west into the Carolinas over the Memorial Day weekend.
Periods of heavy rain, rough surf and strong winds are likely along parts of the southeast coast, dampening some beach plans for the weekend.
“These forecasts are going to fluctuate a little bit here over the next 24 hours,” FOX Weather meteorologist Jason Frazer said. “But we’re really confident that the Carolinas will get rain. You’ll also get hit by a good amount of wind.”
42.3 million Americans will travel this weekend
The American Automobile Association predicts that 2.7 million more people will travel this year compared to last – a 2.7% increase and a sign of what’s to come in the coming months.
More than 42.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home this weekend.
“This is expected to be the third busiest Memorial Day weekend since 2000 when AAA began tracking holiday travel,” said Paula Twidale, senior vice president of AAA Travel. “More Americans are planning trips and booking them earlier, despite inflation. This summer travel season could be one for the record books, especially at airports.”
A large ridge of high pressure over the Northeast will provide the saving grace this weekend for those out there, keeping the forecast dry north of Washington, DC
“It’s also really going to affect this coastal lowland toward the Carolinas,” Merwin said. “A double-edged sword here where we have some big impacts for the Carolinas because of the high blocking in the north.
It just can’t move north, and so this low pressure area has only one option, which is to drive it right into the coastal areas of South Carolina and North Carolina.”
Additionally, the combination of strong winds and rough seas will likely lead to an increased threat from rip currents that could stretch from the Carolinas to the Sunshine State.
Leave a Reply