New Jersey Rivers
August 27, 2011 by staff
On Saturday night and Sunday, 50 to 60 mph winds that smell in the area, over 5 to 7 inches of rain, according to the National Weather Service Gary Szatkowski.
Another forecast for Hurricane Irene in Hackettstown based WeatherWorks is a little less serious, but not by much.
“We are unlikely to experience hurricane winds, but we will have winds of 30 to 40 mph with some gusts over 50 mph,” said President Frank WeatherWorks Lombardo. “We are still looking for about 3 to 6 inches of rain, with more in the east and less as you go west. Less rain will be in Allentown Easton and more will be in Hunterdon County in Easton.”
The eye of the hurricane was miles from the area, according to Lombardo.
“At its closest, the hurricane will remain 70 to 90 miles east of the area,” said Lombardo.
But the storm will continue to contribute.
“The coast of South Carolina is getting 30 to 40 mph winds, even though the storm is 225 miles east of it,” Lombardo said Friday afternoon.
The combination of wind and rain is likely to lead to a nasty mix of the area.
“The storm may cause problems,” said Lombardo. “Look for fallen trees due to already saturated ground and power outages.”
Flooding is a major problem.
“We need six inches of rain on the Delaware River to flood for a period of 12 hours,” Lombardo said. “The Lehigh River and small rivers and streams will flood at least briefly. If the hurricane remains on the west, there will be more of a risk that all the rivers will flood.”
The National Weather Service predicts rain to begin in the area Saturday afternoon. That is both a flood warning is initiated in the Lehigh Valley and New Jersey.
Beginning Friday night, the weather service projects the Delaware River, at the height of 23.7 feet at 4 am Monday in Riegelsville, flood stage is 22 feet. Projections on Monday morning were not available at monitoring stations of flooding along the Delaware in Easton and Belvidere, and along the Lehigh River in Bethlehem.
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