Bloomberg News

Thunderstorms May Hit Mid-Atlantic Region

July 24, 2012

Thunderstorms that delayed some air traffic in Chicago early today may move east, taking high winds, hail and heavy rain to Washington and the mid-Atlantic, according to the U.S. Storm Prediction Center.

The East Coast from Delaware to South Carolina has a 30 percent chance of experiencing damaging winds as the front moves from the Midwest to the Atlantic later today, according to the center in Norman, Oklahoma.

The coastline from Massachusetts to South Carolina, including New York and Boston, has a 15 percent chance, the center’s forecast said.

Severe thunderstorms between the large airline hub cities of Chicago, New York and Atlanta often disrupt air travel throughout the U.S. Such fast-moving storms, which may include tornadoes, accounted for about $8.8 billion in insured losses in the U.S. in the first six months of 2012, according to the Insurance Information Institute in New York.

Some flights to Chicago’s airports were delayed early today because of passing thunderstorms, according to the Federal Aviation Administration website.

Any cool air the storms bring with them will be short-lived along the mid-Atlantic, as temperatures in Washington are expected to reach 99 the day after tomorrow, according to the National Weather Service.

Eastern Cooling

By next week, the East Coast from the Canadian Maritimes to North Carolina may be experiencing more seasonal temperatures, according to Matt Rogers, president of Commodity Weather Group LLC in Bethesda, Maryland.

“The East Coast sees some occasional heat bursts, especially in the short term, but mainly average seasonal to slightly above normal for the 6- to 15-day period,” Rogers said.

The East Coast may remain seasonal through most of the rest of August, while the heat and drought in the Midwest will probably continue, according to the latest long-range forecast from Weather Services International in Andover, Massachusetts.

“With cooler-than-normal temperatures expected along the East Coast in August, natural gas prices could see some late- summer price weakness, as gas inventories begin to approach last year’s record level by the end of the month,” said Chris Kostas, a senior power and gas analyst at Energy Security Analysis Inc. in Wakefield, Massachusetts, who contributed to the WSI forecast.

Midwest Rainfall

For the next two weeks, passing thunderstorms may bring some relief to the drought-parched Midwest. The region will probably lag behind the normal amount of rainfall, said Joel Widenor, co-founder of Commodity Weather.

Temperatures are expected to remain 5 to 8 degrees above normal throughout the region during the period, he said in a note to clients today.

The normal average temperature in New York for Aug. 1 is 78, according to MDA EarthSat Weather in Gaithersburg, Maryland. It’s 74 in Boston; 80 in Washington; 85 in Houston; 76 in Chicago; 80 in Atlanta; 67 in Seattle and 76 in Burbank, California.

To contact the reporter on this story: Brian K. Sullivan in Boston at bsullivan10@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Bill Banker at bbanker@bloomberg.net


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