A developing nor'easter will affect New England during the second half of this week, bringing heavy rain, gusty winds, and widespread media panic. You'll probably survive, but you should hug your loved ones a little tighter tonight, just to be safe.
The word "nor'easter" can strike fear into the heart of even the most hardened winter enthusiast. Some of the most notorious winter storms that have affected the I-95 corridor were nor'easters. However, not all of these coastal low pressure systems produce snow—don't worry, though. Newscasters are frantically screaming the word "nor'easter" as many times as possible to make you worry, anyway.
This nor'easter's greatest impact will be widespread rains over parts of coastal and interior New England, with rainfall totals exceeding five or six inches in areas that receive the heaviest precipitation. The above map depicts predicted rainfall totals over the next seven days, with the nor'easter producing one of three major bullseyes for precipitation around the country.
What makes a nor'easter a nor'easter is the winds. Gale warnings are in effect for waters off of the northeast, as sustained winds are expected to reach 20-30 MPH with gusts up to 50 as the nor'easter develops and deepens. The strongest winds affecting land will occur along the coast from Massachusetts up through Nova Scotia. The strong winds could result in some coastal flooding and beach erosion.
Folks who live in low-lying areas or along creeks and rivers should keep an eye on flood alerts issued by local National Weather Service offices. This much rain will prove beneficial for the ongoing drought along parts of the East Coast, but too much rain at one time can be dangerous.
Nor'easter Word Count: 12/299, 4.02%.
Media Panic Skill Level: Local News Reporter at the D.O.T.'s Salt Dome
[Images: author, WPC, WeatherBELL]