Major nor’easter storm to impact millions, including Virginia

Posted at 4:05 PM, Mar 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-01 20:23:28-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- A major nor'easter storm will develop off the Virginia coast Thursday night into Friday morning.  The storm will then track up to off the New England coast on Friday.

The impact to Virginia will be a big increase in wind speeds.  Advisories and warnings have been issued for Friday into Saturday.  Wind speeds will gradually decrease Saturday afternoon, and will be much lighter on Sunday.

  • Gusts across the metro and central Virginia will be mainly between 40 and 50 mph.
  • Coastal Virginia will see gusts between 45 and 55 mph.  Coastal flooding is possible, with the biggest impact on the Atlantic side of the Eastern Shore.
  • Northern Virginia will see gusts between 45 and 60 mph, but a few higher gusts are possible up closer to D.C. and the Maryland border.
  • Western Virginia will see gusts between 45 and 60 mph, but gusts could reach up to 70 mph in the higher elevations.

Here is one computer model's output of gusts:

The strong winds could cause power outages.  The wet ground may make some trees fall more easily in the strong wind gusts.

The nor'easter will have big impacts on the northeastern United States.  In addition to strong gusts, heavy rain will fall near the coast.

Inland areas will see some heavy snow, especially across central New York, where over two feet may fall.

The low pressure of the storm and the strong winds spiraling around it will have far-reaching effects.  Wave heights will be increased along much of the eastern seaboard, and waves in excess of 30 feet will occur over the open Atlantic.

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