Adam Strzempko

Some Of Our Longest Heat Waves

July 21st, 2013 at 9:19 pm by under Weather

sunOn Saturday we made it to 92 degrees,  it was the 7th and final day of our latest heat wave. 

The last time we had a heat wave that lasted that long was 11 years ago. In August of 2002 we had a 9 day heat wave with temperatures of 90 degrees or higher from August 11th through August 19th.

An official heat wave here in New England occurs when we reach 90 degrees or higher for three or more days in a row. On average we get about two to four heat waves a summer. Most of them tend to last about 3 to 4 days but some have been longer.

In July of 2010 we had a 6 day heat wave from July 4th through July 9th and back in 1999 we had a 6 day heat wave from July 28th through August 1st.

Remembering The Worcester Tornado 60 Years Ago

June 8th, 2013 at 9:03 pm by under Weather

One of the worst tornadoes ever to touch down in New England occurred 60 years ago on June 9, 1953.

It’s known as the Worcester Tornado and it first touched down near the small town of Petersham, just northeast of the Quabbin Reservoir at 4:25 p.m.

It continued its path of destruction through Worcester County before turning just west of Worcester in the town of Holden.

The tornado then began tearing up northern sections of the city of Worcester as an F4 or possibly even F5 tornado. 

Winds were estimated at over 250 mph as the path neared one mile in diameter.

Assumption College took a direct hit with some of the brick buildings on the campus being leveled.

The tornado continued eastward, and finally dissipated just west of Framingham.

The Worcester Tornado was on the ground for 84 minutes and left a 46 mile path of destruction. 

94 people died Tornadoand over 1,000 people were injured.  4,000 homes and buildings were damaged or destroyed. 

The damage in 1953 dollars was a reported at around $52 million.

Debris carried by the storm was found as far away as the Outer Cape. 

The first warning for the tornado did not come until 5:45 p.m. by then it was too late and the tornado had dissipated.


Sun Halo Seen In The Skies Over WMass

May 18th, 2013 at 9:13 pm by under Weather

If you saw what you thought looked like a rainbow around the sun Saturday afternoon you weren’t alone. 22News received numerous calls and e-mails from people who saw it.

It’s actually what is known as a  sun halo or sometimes called an  icebow.

It’s created when light is  reflected and  refracted by the  ice crystals in the clouds.

The light splits up into different colors forming a ring around the sun.


High Brush Fire Danger

April 6th, 2013 at 8:52 pm by under Weather

While many of us are happy the snow is pretty much all gone and the weather is finally warming up that leads to another problem we typically see this time of year, brush fires.


Right now the air we have is very dry. Relative humidities have been less than 20 percent.

That along with gusty winds, a lack of leaves on the trees and storm debris leftover from the October Snowstorm of 2011 and the 2011 June 1st Tornado, all help to create the perfect conditions for brush fires.

And when the winds are gusty those brush fires can get out of control and spread very quickly.

Even though this is burning season you should refrain from burning on days when the fire danger is high. Several western Massachusetts cities and towns do not allow burning at all.  If yours does allow you to burn and you’ve obtained a permit, check with your fire department on the day you plan to burn. If the fire danger is high they may not allow you to burn.

Also if you smoke make sure you properly dispose of all smoking materials. Do not throw your cigarette butts out the car window. I was driving home from work the other day and the woman in the car in front of me kept flicking her cigarette butts out the car window even hitting my car.

Right now all it takes is a spark or ember for a brush fire to start.

Once we get some rain, the leaves get on the trees and it gets more humid the fire threat will diminish.

WWLP Celebrates 60 Years On The Air

March 16th, 2013 at 8:41 pm by under Weather

Sunday, March 17th, 2013 is not only St. Patrick’s Day it also marks 60 years that WWLP has been on the air. WWLP first went on the air back on March 17, 1953 and John Quill, the station’s very first meteorologist delivered his first weather forecast.

John Quill remained on the air at WWLP for 47 years before retiring in 2000.  Of course, I like many grew up watching John Quill deliver the weather here on 22News. He inspired me at a young age and I learned a lot about weather by watching his forecasts.

I had the honor and priviledge to work with John from 1996 right through 2000.




Snowstorm Hits Eastern Part Of The State

February 17th, 2013 at 9:31 pm by under Weather

We saw a little snow Friday night into Saturday morning across western Massachusetts but that was about it for us this weekend.

However, Saturday night into Sunday afternoon a strong ocean storm brought heavy snow to parts of eastern Massachusetts, Cape Cod and Rhode Island.

That same storm is responsible for the gusty winds and cold air that has moved in. Fortunatley we saw virtually no snow from this storm even though it wasn’t all that far away. Here is a look at how much snow fell just off to our east.

Brewster, MA: 6.3″
Hyannis, MA: 5.0″
South Sagmore, MA: 3.0″
Nantucket, MA: 2.5″
New Bedford, MA: 5.0″
Hanson, MA: 4.0″
Taunton, MA: 4.0″
Westerly, RI: 4.0″
West Warwick, RI: 4.0″
Acushnet, MA: 4.0″
Mattapoisett, MA: 4.0″
South Yarmouth, MA: 4.0″
Hingham, MA: 4.0″
East Walpole, MA: 4.0″
Franklin, MA: 3.9″
Sherborn, MA: 3.5″
Mansfield, MA: 3.5″
Warwick, RI: 3.5″
Scituate, RI: 3.3″
Walpole, MA: 3.0″
Coventry, RI: 3.0″
Bristol, RI: 3.0″
Warwick, RI: 3.0″
East Braintree, MA: 3.0″
East Killingly, CT: 3.0″
Pembroke, MA: 2.8″
Hanson, MA: 2.8″
Millis, MA: 2.4″
Hopkinton, MA: 2.0″
Nantucket, MA: 1.5″
Ashford, CT: 1.0″

Punxsutawney Phil Did Not See His Shadow

February 2nd, 2013 at 8:37 pm by under Weather

If you’re hoping for an end to winter, Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow Saturday morning, which is supposed to signify an early spring.

Phil’s accuracy rate is only around 39 percent. Last year he did see his shadow and predicted 6 more weeks of winter and we all remember how that turned out. February and March of 2012 were two of the warmest months on record.

There are some long range models that do point to some wamer than normal weather over the next few months so maybe Phil is onto something.

Climate Prediction Center Temperature Outlook Feb-April

Cold Weather Safety Tips

January 22nd, 2013 at 8:39 pm by under Weather

Here are some safety tips for dealing with the extreme cold that will be with us this week.

1. Dress in layers, cover all exposed skin and keep dry. Wear a hat and gloves/mittens. Be especially cautious of frostbite and hypothermia.

2. It is recommended to keep indoor temperatures at or above 55 degrees.

3. Check your automobile for proper fuel, antifreeze, windshield wiper fluid and oil levels. Check your car battery as well.

4. Be especially cautious of fire places and any indoor heating device for the potential of carbon monoxide poisoning. Never use a generator inside your home.

5. Be sure to bring pets indoors

More winter weather tips are available at: http://www.Ready.Gov/winter-weather

Dense Fog Driving Tips

January 12th, 2013 at 9:14 pm by under Weather

Lately we’ve been dealing with a lot of dense fog  that forms when warm moist air moves over the cold snow covered ground.

Here are some tips for driving when dense fog moves in.

•Drive with lights on low beam. High beams will only be reflected back off the fog and actually impair visibility even more.

•Reduce your speed — and watch your speedometer. Fog creates a visual illusion of slow motion when you may actually be speeding.

•Listen for traffic you cannot see. Open your window a little, to hear better.

•Use wipers and defrosters as necessary for maximum visibility.

•Use the right edge of the road or painted road markings as a guide.

•Be patient. Do not pass lines of traffic.

•Do not stop on a freeway or heavily traveled road. If your car stalls or becomes disabled, turn your vehicle’s lights off, and take your foot off of the brake pedal. People tend to follow tail lights when driving in fog. Move away from the vehicle to avoid injury.

It’s Looking More And More Like A White Christmas

December 22nd, 2012 at 8:43 pm by under Weather

So far this December we haven’t seen much snow at all and officially winter arrived at 6:12 Friday morning. Lately it’s been very mild and we’ve been getting more wet than white. Cooler more seasonable air has moved in now and that is helping to set the stage for snow.

It’s now looking like a fairly weak systen will pass through Monday night into Tuesday bringing us some snow late Christmas Eve into Christmas Day. Right now it looks like we could pick up around an inch or two of snow.  So if you’ve been dreaming of a white Christmas it looks like you just might be in luck.

After that we’ll be tracking a more significant storm that could bring us snow or a wintry mix late Wednesday into Thursday. We’ll keep you posted.

Have a very Merry Christmas!