ADVISORY: Strong, Windy System Blowing In Monday Night

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The National Weather Service issued a “Special Weather Statement” Sunday afternoon about a strong, windy weather system that’s predicted to hit the area Monday night.

We’re no Cliff Mass, but one thing that struck us was the mention of the pressure in this storm, rated at 980 millibars. As comparison, Hurricane Katrina was rated at 920 mb (lower is stronger), and the Inauguration Day storm of 1993 was rated between 972-980 mb (for a great read on northwest storm systems, with info on pressures, click here).

While it’s a powerful system, since the storm will weaken as it pushes inland, wind speeds are predicted to be between 20-35 mph, with gusts up to 45. There could be downed trees and power outages though, so you may want to batten down all those flowers you worked on Sunday.

Here’s the statement:

Statement as of 3:51 PM PDT on May 03, 2009

… Very windy conditions are expected to develop in the western Washington lowlands Monday night and continue through Tuesday morning…

A developing storm system in the central Pacific is expected to deepen to around 980 mb as it moves through the Washington offshore waters toward northern Vancouver Island Monday and Monday night. A strong frontal system associated with this low will move through western Washington Monday night.

A storm and frontal system of this magnitude is more typical of late fall or winter than of early may.

At this point it appears that south winds of 20 to 35 mph with gusts to 45 mph will develop Monday night as the front moves through and continue through the early morning hours on Tuesday. Many deciduous trees are now leafing. So winds of this magnitude may break some large branches and possibly topple a few trees.

Local power outages are possible.

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