New York – Philip has become a post-tropical storm and is moving north toward New England, bringing heavy rain and strong winds that could trigger flash flooding and scattered power outages.
The storm battered Bermuda for much of Friday with heavy rain, strong rip currents and 40-mph winds.
As Phillip pushes north, the next 36 hours will become a complex weather mess as the storm draws energy from sources more traditional than tropical nature.
What is a post-tropical cyclone?
Phillip’s new form will soon be met by a cold front moving from the west to the northeast. Moisture from both will combine to produce widespread drenching showers across the region this weekend.
“The front will bring its own moisture and wind energy,” said Fox Weather Hurricane Specialist Brian Norcross. “The net result will be heavy rain and gusty winds in New England (Saturday) through Sunday along the I-95 corridor in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast (Saturday). Combo will bring rain as a coastal storm. and pre-meeting.”
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Many communities will see 1-3 inches of rain, with local spots getting more than half a foot. This can lead to flash flooding events as much of the soil in New England and the Northeast is already saturated from a wet summer.
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A flood watch is in effect for parts of south central and west central Maine from Saturday afternoon through Sunday morning.
New York has already activated their flash flood emergency plan as the risk of flooding increases for vulnerable areas. Cities like New York City, which flooded amid record rainfall last week, may be spared severe water problems, but that’s not a guarantee.
“There are places that could flood very easily because of the tipping point,” Fox Weather meteorologist Amy Freese said. “Plus, there’s a storm here, and that’s accompanied by streams of moisture.”
According to the FOX Forecast Center, areas across Massachusetts and Connecticut have seen 200-300% of their average rainfall over the past two weeks, making them particularly sensitive to any heavy rain.
“We had the weekend of June 1-13 with rain in the Northeast, and here we go again,” Freese added. “We’re looking at rain across New England, basically a washout in the Northeast for the weekend.”
Since Phillip is no longer a tropical system, the NHC said it will not issue Tropical Storm Watches or warnings for the US coast, with warnings being left to individual NWS offices. The NHC has stopped providing forecast discussions and updated cone projections.
Winds 50-60 mph Saturday night into Sunday
Due to the dip in the jet stream mentioned earlier, the remnants of Phillip will become a stronger storm than it was a tropical storm. It will produce strong winds in a small area of lower eastern Maine.
Wind gusts of 50-60 mph are possible as the low pressure system passes through Saturday night and Sunday. As a result, some power outages may occur.
Wind gusts as high as 57 miles per hour are considered damaging, but on a brisk day small limbs can be uprooted and fall onto power lines.