October, 2012

Don’t Forget To Fall Back!

October 30th, 2012 at 9:12 pm by under Community, News, Weather

So, I was wasting some time on Facebook earlier today, when an old radio friend of mine reminded me that Daylight Saving Time ends this weekend!  With all of the Sandy stuff happening, I totally forgot!

We set our clocks back one hour this Sunday at 2am.  That gives you an extra hour of sleep (or an extra hour of Saturday night fun!).  It takes away an hour of daylight Sunday afternoon.  Sunset on Sunday afternoon will be 4:40pm EST.   This is a great time to change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors!

We’ll be reminding you all week!

Political signs could be gone with the wind

October 29th, 2012 at 1:41 pm by under Politics

With winds expected to kick up here in Western Massachusetts due to Hurricane Sandy,  if you have a lawn sign for a candidate on your lawn, you might want to take it in.

With just a week to go before the election, you might have a hard time getting another sign if yours flies away.

There’s more signs around for the U.S. Senate race between Sen. Scott Brown and challenger, Elizabeth Warren.

But signs for the Presidential race, have been harder to come by, because resources have been going to battleground states.

So if you have one for your candidate, best to hold on to it, bring it in, since supplies of those signs would be limited at this point,

More Wind Than Rain

October 29th, 2012 at 9:35 am by under Tropical Tracker, Weather

After a long week of watching and waiting, Hurricane Sandy’s effects are now being felt across the mid-Atlantic and Northeastern states!  Today and tomorrow will be the worst days – very strong winds along bouts of heavy rain!

Here in western Massachusetts, we are not going to feel the full effect of Hurricane Sandy.  The storm will be much worse in other parts of the Northeast: cities along the coast will have to deal with 5-10′ storm surge, while parts of West Virginia will be contending with blizzard conditions!!  It’s not often you see hurricane and blizzard warnings in close proximity.

Nat’l Weather Service Watches/Warnings










Since we don’t have to think about storm surge or snow, here’s what we can expect over the next 48 hours:

Strong winds.  The strongest winds will be felt from this afternoon through Tuesday afternoon.  A high wind warning will be in effect for all of western Massachusetts through Tuesday morning as we are anticipating sustained winds between 20-30 MPH with gusts up to 60 MPH!  The higher gusts will likely be in the Hilltowns/Berkshires, but we will all be susceptible to high winds.  With tropical storm-force wind gusts, lies the possibility for downed trees and power lines which could lead to power outages.

Rain.  We will be tracking bands of moderate to heavy rain across southern New England.  Expect periods of rain from this afternoon through Tuesday.  With 2-4″ of rain in the forecast, flooding is possible.  Make sure you clear storm drains of leaves and debris!  If you leave near any rivers or places that are prone to flooding, keep a close eye on the water levels!  We are not anticipating as much rain as we saw with Tropical Storm Irene!

Sandy is expected to make landfall near Atlantic City, New Jersey sometime late today or early Tuesday morning.  Once she makes landfall, she will continue to track inland towards Pennsylvania.  By Wednesday, the storm will make a sharp turn towards western New York.  By Friday and Saturday, the remnants of Sandy will still be loitering in northern New England.  Since this storm will get caught up in the Northeast, we can expect showers from Wednesday through Friday.

National Hurricane Center tracks Sandy












By this weekend, El Sol will be back to dry up the mess.

-Meteorologist Ashley Baylor

Presidential Campaign rolls on around Sandy

October 29th, 2012 at 8:28 am by under Politics

Just over a week to go until Election day.

Hurricane Sandy which is menacing the East Coast, has forced President Obama and Mitt Romney, re-arrange campaign schedules just as they head into the final week of the Presidential race.

Rallies in the storm’s path have been cancelled.   President Obama will be monitoring the federal response to the storm on Monday back in Washington, after cancelling a scheduled appearance in Florida.

Mitt Romney is campaigning in the Midwest after cancelling appearances in Virginia on Sunday.

A stop in New Hampshire on Tuesday has also been cancelled.

Sandy Is No Ordinary Hurricane

October 28th, 2012 at 10:26 pm by under Weather

As we continue to track Sandy it’s very interesting to see how she is not like most of the hurricanes that we’ve seen move into the Northeast.

Her track itself is highly unusual, to have a hurricane that initally looked like it would go out to sea but now is projected to make a hard left turn is something that is very rare.

Tropical Tracker

You may remember Hurricanes Gloria, Bob, of course Irene and Tropical Storm Floyd. They brought us mainly rain and some wind.  With those storms we were on the left side of the storm, that usually means we see the heavierst rain. The strongest winds are on the right side. We’ll be on the right side of  Sandy which will mean we’ll see the strong gusty winds and less rain.

Sandy is classified as a category 1 hurricane but has an extremely low central pressure. That combined with a large high pressure system to the north, the one that is basically turning her into the coast, will help to strengthen her winds. That’s why we’re expecting the winds to be more of a problem than they normally would be with a weaking category 1 hurricane.

Also, when Sandy makes landfall she won’t be classified as a hurricane even though she will likely still have winds around 75MPH. This is because she will be losing her tropical characterstics and taking on more of the characteristics of a winter storm. She’ll be classified as a post-tropical cyclone.

That is why it does look like now our main concern will be for strong, gusty winds that will likely lead to power outages. The strongest winds will be Monday night. I still don’t expect the kind of power outages we saw during the October snowstorm.


“Chasing Mavericks”

October 28th, 2012 at 11:23 am by under A Look at the Movies

Rated PG
1 hour 50 minutes

Starring: Gerard Butler, Jonny Weston, Elizabeth Shue

Let me tell you, I was pleasantly surprised with “Chasing Mavericks”. It’s an inspirational drama that rises above its clichés exploring California’s surfing culture.

Veteran surfer Gerard Butler becomes mentor and second father to a kid with a passion for the surf.

We all learn something about those colossal waves called mavericks. “Chasing Mavericks” has far more substance than those typically superficial surfer movies providing easy entertainment for teens.

The directing and cinematography are also of the highest caliber. At its core, “Chasing Mavericks” conveys the deeply felt caring of a surrogate father.

The depth of the water is only matched by the deeply felt true story. Dramatically, “Chasing Mavericks” pulls you in with as much intensity as those monster waves.

I can’t get over how much care and craftsmanship went into this powerful story. What first appeared to be an ordinary family friendly movie builds into an extraordinarily touching film that surfs its way to a solid 3 stars.

Something tells me, “Chasing Maverick” will generate a lot of good buzz.

Meteorologist in the City

October 27th, 2012 at 8:40 pm by under Tropical Tracker, Weather

I wasn’t going to let Sandy ruin my plans in New York City this weekend – so here I am!

Took a nice drive on the Merritt Parkway to get down here.  It seemed like more people were actually trying to get INTO the city, rather than trying to escape as Sandy continues along the coast.

Hurricane Sandy is forecasted to make landfall anywhere from New Jersey to Delmarva on Monday.  Here in New York City, coastal flood warnings have been issued along with high wind watches.  Places along the coast will be impacted the most not only because of the wind and rain, but storm surge as well.

There will be a full moon on Monday.  During a full moon, the water level during high tide is higher than normal.  Combine a lunar high tide with a hurricane, and that means places like New York City, Long Island, the Jersey shore, and the Delmarva Peninsula could see seas rise 4-8 feet higher than normal.  The National Weather Service predicts up to 20 foot waves south of Long Island, that’s why a mandatory evacuation was ordered for Fire Island.  So far, that is the only place in the greater New York area that has been ordered to evacuate.

New York City’s mayor, Michael Bloomberg, held a news conference earlier, letting the public know they have made preparations for Sandy’s arrival.  One thing that caught my attention – he asked all surfers to stay out of the water.  Obviously, the surfers will want to take advantage of the high waves, but even the most experienced surfer could put themselves in danger with this storm.

Here in New York, they can expect 2-4″ of rain along with sustained winds of 40-50 MPH with gusts up to 70 MPH!

I’ll be making the trip back to the Pioneer Valley tomorrow!  See you Monday morning!

-Meteorologist Ashley Baylor

Sandy And Western Massachusetts

October 27th, 2012 at 6:55 pm by under Weather

As Sandy continues on a track that will have an effect on us here in western Massachusetts it’s important to be prepared but we should not panic.

Last year we went through three of the worst storms that we’ve seen in our history. The devastating June 1st Tornado, the major flooding from Tropical Storm Irene and the unprecedented and devastating October snowstorm.

The likelihood of us seeing the same kind of devastation that we saw with those storms here in westernMassachusetts is not very likely.

Now that is not to say we won’t have flooding and power outages because it is pretty likely that we will have some. There are now Flood Watches and High Wind Watches in effect for all of western Massachusetts.

What we don’t expect is the same kind of damage and destruction we had last year. The damage from the October snowstorm was caused by very heavy, wet snow on trees with leaves. We are not forecasting any snow with this storm here.

The main thing right now that is trending in our favor is the path of the storm and the intensity. It would be nice if Sandywould go out to sea but that isn’t going to happen.

The models are in good agreement now that the storm will make landfall to our south, somewhere between Maryland and Long Island Sound with the best likelihood of it happening over New Jersey. This better for us then if it took the same track as Irene and moved right up the Connecticut Valley.

The storm would then track into Pennsylvania and New York. We will see the effects of it with strong winds and heavy rain. We are also prone to flooding from Tropical Storms that move inland so that will be a concern for us next week.

What we won’t have to worry about, but what places along the coast do have to worry about is coastal flooding, beach erosion and storm surge which could be devastating along the coast because the storm will be affecting the Northeast during a full moon and a high tide.

So yes be prepared, but right now here in western Massachusetts we don’t need to panic.

“Alex Cross”

October 27th, 2012 at 11:24 am by under A Look at the Movies

Rated PG-13
1 hour 55 minutes

Starring: Tyler Perry, Matthew Fox, Jean Reno

Don’t you remember that classic line from “The Godfather”? It’s not personal Sonny, It’s strictly business.  Not the case, however, in “Alex Cross”, where Tyler Perry makes the business of catching lunatic killer Matthew Fox very personal, which gives this far fetched manhunt thriller a stronger sense of urgency. They spend what seems like half the movie just taunting each other.

You’ve got to remember, Tyler Perry isn’t the cool and calculating “Alex Cross” that Morgan Freeman created years ago.
As a constant hothead ruled by his emotions, Perry only diminishes the deductive power of this master detective.

But aside from quibbling about the character, “Alex Cross” features a fair share of suspense and a bit of a twist to the ending, which only heightens our curiosity. Not about the hero, but the more fascinating villain. That creep will make your skin crawl.

Let’s be honest, this isn’t exactly a first rate mystery. Not with all the holes in the plot. But “Alex Cross” does have its pleasures, and it’s got enough pizzazz to reward this tricky thriller with 3 stars.

You’ll be entertained for about two hours and then forget about it completely.


The Weekend Before Sandy

October 27th, 2012 at 7:15 am by under Weather

We continue to analyze the latest computer forecast models as well as the outlook for Sandy and we’re getting a better idea what to expect when Sandy pulls into the Northeast.

As of 8AM Saturday, Sandy is a Hurricane with sustained winds at 75 MPH with gusts near 90 MPH.

The latest track shows Sandy running parallel to the coast before making a hook left toward the Northeast.

As far as the closer track goes, it looks like Sandy will fluctuate between a strong Tropical Storm and then briefly strengthen to a Category 1 strength Hurricane on Monday and make landfall as either a Cat. 1 Hurricane or strong Tropical Storm. Landfall looks to happen anywhere from Northern Virginia to Long Island. The further north landfall is…the closer western Massachusetts will be to the strongest winds.

Speaking of winds, it looks like western Massachusetts should expect tropical storm force winds from the second half of Monday into early Tuesday. That means winds 39-74 MPH winds. Hurricane force winds SHOULD stay to our southwest. IF the storm center moves further north, we could be dealing with stronger winds.

While our computer models are in much more agreement on the location of Sandy’s landfall…the difference of a few hundred miles could mean a big difference for us. Here are some of the different forecast models for where the center of Sandy makes landfall.