YCQM: July 7, 2013 - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

YCQM: July 7, 2013

Posted: Updated:
BURLINGTON, Vt. -

FROM VERMONT'S MOST TRUSTED NEWS SOURCE. WCAX BRINGS YOU YOUR NEWS MAKERS, YOUR NEIGHBORS. THIS IS YOU CAN QUOTE ME.

>>> GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE, I'M KRISTIN CARLSON, THANK YOU FOR JOINING US. WE ARE GOING TO TALK ABOUT WEATHER ON THIS EDITION OF YOU CAN QUOTE ME. EVERYONE KNOWS IT'S BEEN RAINING TOO MUCH, IT'S LED TO DANGEROUS CONDITIONS ON THE ROADS AND THE RIVERS, AND ALSO LED TO A LOT OF PROBLEMS FOR PEOPLE WHO RELY ON GOOD WEATHER FOR THEIR JOBS. HERE TO TALK ABOUT THE WEATHER IS GARY SADOWSKY, OUR MORNING METEOROLOGIST HERE AT CHANNEL 3. GREG HANSON IS A HIGH DROL GIST WITH THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE, I GUESS WE'LL CALL YOU THE WATER GUY.

>> YES.

>> AND SHARON MEYER IS THE DIRECTOR OF THE WEATHER DEPARTMENT. THANK YOU ALL FOR BEING HERE. I KNOW IT'S BEEN A VERY BUSY TOUGH TIME FORECASTING ALL THIS TOUGH NEWS THAT NO ONE WANTS TO HEAR. THE TOP QUESTION IS, WHAT LED UP TO THIS? HOW DID WE GET HERE?

>> WELL, ACTUALLY, IT'S KIND OF -- NOBODY THOUGHT THAT WE WERE GOING TO BE HERE IN THE BEGINNING OF MAY, BECAUSE I DON'T KNOW IF YOU REMEMBER, BUT EARLY IN MAY, IT WAS ACTUALLY DRYER THAN NORMAL, IT HAD BEEN DRIER THAN NORMAL FOR THE LAST SEVERAL MONTHS. SO WE WOULD GO ON THE AIR AND TALK ABOUT BEAUTIFUL, EARLY MAY WEATHER, AND YOU WOULD BE GETTING COMPLAINTS FROM VIEWERS WHO WERE SAYING, WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? WE ARE GOING TO BE IN A DROUGHT, IT'S THIS DRY ALREADY, JUST WAIT UNTIL JULY, YOU KNOW, WE WILL BE IN BIG TROUBLE, SO FORTH. SO WE STARTED SAYING THINGS LIKE WE ACTUALLY COULD USE THE RAIN. WELL, MIDDLE OF MAY, THAT ALL CHANGED DRAMATICALLY.

>> THE MIDDLE OF MAY, STORY LINE GOES FROM, WE NEED, TO WE GOT.

>> IN A HOT BAERT -- HEARTBEAT.

>> IF YOU REMEMBER THE FIRST WEEK IN MAY WAS ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL. SUNNY EVERY SINGLE DAY. IT WENT ON AND ON.

>> CAN HARDLY REMEMBER THAT NOW.

>> IT IS HARD TO REMEMBER THAT. WE HAD A LITTLE DISCUSSION AMONGST US IN THE MORNING, WE SAID, OKAY, IS THIS THE REWARD FOR WHAT WE PAID FOR IN ADVANCE? OR ARE WE GOING TO PAY FOR THIS LATER. SO TURNED OUT WE'RE PAYING FOR IT LATER, AND IT REALLY DID START MIDDLE OF MAY.

>> FIRST EVENT WAS REALLY MAY 22ND, 23RD, JERICHO, UNDERHILL STARTED THINGS OFF WITH A BANG AND BEEN GOING STRONG EVER SINCE.

>> WHAT MADE IT TURN FROM VIEWERS AND PEOPLE, FARMERS SAYING WE NEED WATER, WE NEED WATER, TO THEN, SO DRY, TO SO WET? I MEAN, YOU STEP OUT IN YARDS, IT'S LIKE WALKING ON A SPONGE.

>> YEAH. JUST TOO MUCH WATER TOO FAST, AND IT ALL ADDS UP.

>> YOU KNOW, IT HAS TO DO WITH THE JET STREAM.

>> UPPER ATMOSPHERE. WE WATCH ALL THESE THINGS. BEGINNING OF MAY, I WAS TAKING WHAT WE CALL A RIDGE OR A HOP OVER THE NORTHEAST, AND EVERYTHING WAS DRY BECAUSE OF THAT. AND THEN IT JUST ALL KIND OF SHIFTED OVER, THAT RIDGE WENT OUT OVER THE OCEAN AND JUST KIND OF BLOCKED UP ALL THE WEATHER THAT'S COMING IN FROM THE WEST, AND IT GETS STUCK, AND WHERE DOES IT GET STUCK? RIGHT OVER THE NORTHEAST.

>> SO THIS IS BECAUSE --

>> THE HEAT AND THE DROUGHT CONDITIONS THAT ARE OUT WEST, THEY ARE STUCK IN THEIR WEATHER PATTERN, WE ARE STUCK IN OURS.

>> WHY IS THAT? AGAIN, PEOPLE SEE THAT OUT IN THE MIDWEST, THEY NEED IT, AND WE'VE HAD WAY TOO MUCH OF IT.

>> THE QUESTION.

>> THE PATTERN IS A BLOCKY PATTERN. SOMETIMES THEY GET STUCK LIKE THIS. WE'VE GOT A LOW IN THE MIDDLE PART OF THE U.S., AND THE BERMUDA HIGH THAT WE'RE UNDER NOW THAT'S AFFECTING US IS A TYPICAL SUMMERTIME THING. IT TENDS TO GROW DURING THE SUMMER, AND THE WINDS ROTATE AROUND IT, AND BRING UP A LOT OF MOISTURE FROM THE GULF OF MEXICO, SO THAT'S WHAT'S BEEN FEEDING US FOR THE LAST THREE WEEKS OR SO, IS THIS FEED OF MOIST AIR FROM THE GULF OF MEXICO, AND AS LONG AS EVERYTHING STAYS IN PLACE, YOU KNOW, THAT HIGHWAY OF -- THAT RIBBON OF WARM, MOIST AIR WILL KEEP GIVING US THUNDERSTORMS EVERY DAY.

>> THAT DOESN'T SOUND ENCOURAGING. BEFORE WE MOVE FORWARD, LET'S TALK ABOUT WHERE WE ARE. THE GROUND IS SATURATED, GREG. I KNOW AT THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE, YOU ARE KEEPING A CLOSE EYE ON THIS. WE HAVE SEEN A LOT OF CONCERN WITH WATER LEVELS IN CREEKS, RIVERS, LAKES. THE LAKE IS HIGH. WHERE ARE WE AT?

>> YEAH. EVERYTHING IS HIGH. WE SET A NEW RECORD, HIGH LEVEL FOR LAKE CHAMPLAIN, HIGHEST IN JULY, ANYWAY. IT'S STILL DRIFTING UPWARDS. A LOT OF THE REIGN RAIN WE HAD THE PAST COUPLE DAYS, IN THE WINOOSKI BASIN, SO THE FLOOD STAGE AT ESSEX JUNCTION, WE'RE DROPPING, BUT STILL A LITTLE ABOVE FLOOD. ALL THAT FLOW INTO LAKE CHAMPLAIN IS BRINGING IT UP. SO YOU SEE WITH THE HEAVY RAINFALL, THE SMALLER CREEKS AND STREAMS RESPOND MORE QUICKLY, YOU KNOW, WHEN IT RANGES ON THE STREET, THE GUTTERS FILL UP FIRST, THEN IT MOVES ON OUT. SO IT JUST -- IT'S KIND OF A PROGRESSION, A STAIR STEP EFFECT, THE SMALL ONES FEED INTO THE BIGGER ONES AND EVERYTHING ENDS UP IN THE LAKE.

>> WE SHOULD ALSO MENTION THAT, GREG, THAT IT HASN'T BEEN REALLY A WIDESPREAD FLOODING. IT'S NOT LIKE THE WHOLE STATE OF VERMONT IS GETTING FLOODED. WE'RE GETTING LITTLE BITS HERE AND THERE, AND THEY ARE HARD TO PREDICT EXACTLY WHERE WE'RE GOING TO GET THE HEAVY DOWNPOURS, BUT IT SEEMS -- A LOT OF IT HAS BEEN CONCENTRATED IN CHITTENDEN COUNTY AND RIGHT AROUND THE WINOOSKI RIVER. A LOT OF THAT WATER IS FLYING INTO THE WINOOSKI, WHICH FLOWS INTO THE LAKE VERY QUICKLY.

>> YOU KNOW, OBVIOUSLY YOU GUYS ARE KEEPING AN EYE ON THIS, WHAT HAPPENS WITH THE LAKE IS PEOPLE ARE GOING TO HAVE VERY BAD MEMORIES OF SPRING FLOODING THAT WE HAD A COUPLE YEARS AGO, THAT WAS REALLY BAD AROUND THE LAKE. IS THAT A CONCERN, OR IS THAT NOT A CONCERN AT THIS POINT?

>> IT IS NOT THAT HIGH YET. WHEN PEOPLE'S HOUSES WERE REALLY GETTING DAMAGED A COUPLE YEARS AGO, THE LAKE WAS 103.2, I THINK AT THE HIGHEST LEVEL.

>> WITH A LOT OF WIND.

>> WITH WIND, TOO. THAT'S WHERE THE MASSIVE DAMAGE WAS TAKING PLACE. RIGHT NOW WE ARE KIND OF FLIRTING WITH WITH, I WOULD SAY, WHAT'S CALLED THE MINIMAL FLOOD STAGE, IT IS JUST STARTING TO GO INTO PLACES LIKE THE KING STREET FERRY DOCK, AND PLACES LIKE THAT. SO IT'S MUCH HIGHER THAN USUAL, I THINK AT THIS POINT, THE BIGGEST DANGER IS FOR THE BOATERS THAT ARE OUT THERE, AND IT IS THE MIDDLE OF JULY, AND TEASE ARE KIND OF EARLY -- THESE ARE EARLY SPRING CONDITIONS WHERE MOST PEOPLE AREN'T ON THE LAKE YET. NOW THEY ARE. IT IS AFTER THE 4TH OF JULY. SO IF YOU ARE GOING TO BE OUT ON YOUR BOAT, YOU ARE OUT THERE BY NOW, AND WE HAVE TO BE WORRIED ABOUT THE BREAKWATER IS ALMOST COVERED. PEOPLE CAN'T SEE THAT VERY WELL AFTER DARK, WHEN ORDINARILY IT'S WELL EXPOSED BY THIS TIME OF YEAR. SO THERE'S OTHER -- WITH THE FLOODS THAT COME IN IT FROM THE WINOOSKI AS WELL, YOU TEND TO GET MORE LOGS, DEBRIS THAT TENDS TO BE WASHED AWAY BY THIS TIME OF YEAR. EVERY TIME THE LAKE LEVEL RISES, IT IS ALSO PULLING THINGS OFF THE BEECHGS, AND BACK INTO THE WATER, YOU YOU KNOW -- BEACHES, ALL THOSE BRANCHES AND LOGSZ. -- LOGS. BOATERS HAVE TO BE CAREFUL. WE THOUGHT EARLY IN MAY THEY WOULD BE SCRAPING THE BOTTOM OF THE BOATS AGAIN LIKE LAST SUMMER. IT TURNED OUT TO BE THE OPPOSITE SITUATION FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR.

>> WE ARE ALL BREATHING A SIGH OF RELIEF IN THE SPRING, THAT THE LAKE DIDN'T GET VERY HIGH AT ALL. NOW HERE IT IS, MUCH HIGHER AT THIS POINT. THE OTHER THING IS, THE WINDS, TYPICALLY IN THE SPRING THE WINDS ARE ENOUGH STRONGER, SO ONCE YOU GET INTO JULY, AS FAR AS LARGE-SCALE WINDS, THEY DO SITL DOWN A BIT. YOU CAN GET THUNDERSTORM WINDS, YOU KNOW, STRONG GUSTS, BUT THEY ARE KIND OF ON THE SMALLER SCALE. SO AS FAR AS YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT WHEN IT WAS AT OVER 103 FEET, AND YOU HAD A LOT OF WIND COMING, THAT'S WHAT REALLY --

>> SOUTH WIND AT 20 MILES PER HOUR.

>> THAT DOESN'T HAPPEN AS MUCH AS AS MUCH IN THE SUMMER AS THE SPRING.

>> THAT'S NOT A PRIMARY CONCERN RIGHT NOW. YOU GUYS TALK ABOUT THE NEED FOR BEING SAFE WHILE YOU'RE BOATING. WE'VE ALSO HAD SOME VERY TRAGIC SITUATIONS HAPPEN WITH SWIMMERS WHO WERE SWIMMING IN CONDITIONS THAT WERE TOUGH. THERE'S BEEN SEVERAL RESCUES. WE'VE ALSO HAD A SWIMMER WHO DIED WHO GOT DRAGGED IN A SPOT IN BRISTOL. A VERY TOUGH SITUATION FOR SWIMMERS AS WELL. WHAT IS THE ADVICE THERE?

>> JUST STAY OUT OF THE RIVERS. THE WATER IS TOO HIGH. I'VE SPOKEN TO SOME OF THE TECHNICAL RESCUE FOLKS BEFORE. AND WHAT WE'RE INTO NOW IS IS A REALLY DANGEROUS TIME, BECAUSE THEY SAY IT IS THE COMBINATION OF HEAVY RAIN IN THE WEEK THAT BRINGS THE RIVERS UP, AND THEN THE WEEKEND HITS, HOLIDAY WEEKEND, EVERYBODY HEADS OUT. EVEN THOUGH THE RAIN HAS BEEN A COUPLE OF DAYS AGO, THE RIVER IS STILL HIGH.

>> PEOPLE WANT TO GO SWIMMING BECAUSE IT'S HOT.

>> THE RAIN IS ADDITION TANT MEMORY, BUT THE RIVER IS STILL HIGH.

>> TOUGH MESSAGE TO KEEP TELLING PEOPLE. WE STILL SEE PEOPLE SWIMMING.

>> IT'S GOING TO BE DANGEROUS FOR THE INDEFINITE FUTURE, BECAUSE WE DON'T HAVE A BREAK COMING UP IN THIS WEATHER PATTERN. WE ARE GOING TO CONTINUAL TO SEE THUNDERSTORMS -- CONTINUE TO SEE THUNDERSTORMS FIRING UP, PUTTING LARGE AMOUNTS OF WATER IN THE STREAMS AND RIVERS AND SO FORTH. IT IS NOT LIKE WE CAN SAY, YOU KNOW, WAIT A COUPLE DAYS UNTIL IT SETTLES DOWN. IT IS NOT GOING TO BE SETTLING DOWN ANYTIME. SO THE MESSAGE TO GET OUT NOW, FOR THE INDEFINITE PERIOD OF TIME, IS IF YOU'RE HOT AND YOU WANT TO GO SWIMMING, FIND A POOL, POND, LAKE. SOMEPLACE, ANY PLACE BUT A RIVER.

>> ALL RIGHT. ONE OF THE THINGS THAT I AM AN OBSERVER OF THE WEATHER AND WHAT ALL OF YOU DO, YOU KNOW, IT SEEMS LIKE IT'S IN SOME WAYS UNPREDICTABLE. I REMEMBER YESTERDAY ON THE 4TH OF JULY, WE WERE INCH SIDE THE STUDIO, INSIDE THE STATION, AND IT WAS SUNNY, AND THEN LIKE NIGHT AND PITCH DARK AND CRAZY DELUGE. THEN IT WAS SUNNY AND NICE AGAIN. AND THEN OUTSIDE IT WAS A CRAZY DELUGE. I KNOW YOU GUYS GET A LOT OF GRIEF ABOUT THE WEATHER. I AM NOT GIVING YOU GRIEF ABOUT THE 4TH OF JULY FORECAST, BUT WHY IS IT? IS IT JUST THIS UNSETTLED PATTERN, OR LIKE WHAT IS GOING ON?

>> IT IS. IT HAS TO DO WITH HOW THUNDERSTORMS FORM IN THE FIRST PLACE, RISING AIR, GOES UP VERY QUICKLY, ALL THE NOSE TOUR CONDENSES. THERE IS A LOT OF MOISTURE IN THE AIR. YOU CAN FEEL THAT WITH ALL THE HUMIDITY WHEN YOU WALK OUT THE DOOR.

>> OUR WINDOWS ON OUR OFFICE ARE STEAMED UP.

>> STEAMED UP BECAUSE OF THE AIR CONDITIONING. YEAH. IT IS DOING THAT. SO STORMS CAN FORM VERY QUICKLY WHEN WE WATCH THEM ON THE RADAR. YOU KNOW, THERE CAN BE NOTHING THERE AND ALL OF A SUDDEN YOU SEE A LITTLE YELLOW THING, AND THEN IT QUICKLY GROWS, TURNING RED WHICH INDICATES HEAVY DOWNPOURS, AND THAT'S THE STORM, GROWS VERY QUICKLY, THEN IT CAN RAIN ITSELF OUT, OR MOVE ALONG, AND UP COMES THE SUN. YOU GET A RAINBOW. THINGS CHANGE VERY QUICKLY.

>> OR THEY DON'T MOVE VERY MUCH AND THEN YOU ARE REALLY IN TROUBLE.

>> I NOTICE A LOT OF TIMES WHEN I LOOK AT THE FORECAST, IT HAS BEEN A LOT OF THOSE SUN, WITH THE RAINSTORM, THUNDER AND LIGHTNING. HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TO FORECAST WHEN YOU'RE STUCK IN THIS KIND OF A WEATHER PATTERN?

>> IT'S EASY AND IT'S HARD. THE EASY PART, WE KNOW THE BACKGROUND PATTERN.

>> WE KNOW WE ARE GOING TO GET RAIN.

>> BUT THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS. HARD PART IS TRYING TO PINPOINT WHERE IS TODAY GOING TO BE THE DAY WHERE IT WILL BE A SLOW MOVER, ARE THEY GOING TO KEEP MOVING A LITTLE BIT AND LESSEN THE FLASH FLOOD THREAT OR FLOOD THREAT. SO, YEAH, IT IS KIND OF THE BIG PICTURE IS A LITTLE BIT EASIER, BUT THE DETAILS ARE TOUGH.

>> WE HAD BAD FLOODING IN THE BURLINGTON AREA ONE DAY, AND THEN IT'S OFF IN THE NORTHEAST KINGDOM THE NEXT DAY, THEN MORE IN SOUTHERN VERMONT THE DAY AFTER THAT. SO, YEAH, THAT'S HOW IT GOES. KIND OF FINDS A LITTLE SPOT AND DOES ITS THING, AND THEN THE NEXT DAY IT'S ANOTHER STORY.

>> SO THAT'S WHAT'S DIFFICULT TO NAIL DOWN, GARY, JUST WHERE -- WHO IS GOING TO -- WHAT POCKET IS GOING TO GET THE WORST.

>> RIGHT. ALL WE CAN DO IS SAY THAT THE CONDITIONS ARE SUCH THAT THIS COULD HAPPEN AGAIN. KEEP YOUR EYES OPEN, AND, YOU KNOW, YOU HAVE TO WATCH THE SKY. IF YOU SEE IT TURNING DARK, YOU SEE LIGHTNING, HEAR THUNDER, GET INDOORS.

>> IT'S IMPORTANT TO STAY INDOORS FOR A WHILE AFTER, EVEN IF YOU THINK IT'S ALL CLEAR.

>> RIGHT. AFTER A THUNDERSTORM, REALLY SHOULD WAIT 30 MINUTES AFTER THE LAST TIME YOU HEAR THUNDER BEFORE YOU GO BACK OUT, EVEN IF THE CLOUDS BREAK AND THERE'S BLUE SKY. THAT'S WHERE THE EXPRESSION OUT OF THE BLUE COMES FROM. YOU CAN STILL GET STRUCK BY LIGHTNING.

>> DIDN'T KNOW THAT. THAT'S VERY INTERESTING. SO WE ARE GOING TO STICK ON THE SAFETY MESSAGE BEFORE WE MOVE ON TO WHAT HAPPENS NEXT. SOME LONG-RANGE THINGS, BUT GREG, LET'S TALK ABOUT THE LANGUAGE OF THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE USES TO MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE UNDERSTAND. RIGHT NOW THE ADVICE IS JUST DO NOT GO IN THE WATER. BUT LET'S TALK ABOUT THE DIFFERENCE IN WATCHES AND WARNINGS AND SOME OF THE DANGERS OUT THERE.

>> RIGHT. WE OPERATE ON A READY, SET, GO PHILOSOPHY FOR THAT SORT OF THING. SO WE'LL DO, YOU KNOW, DAYS IN ADVANCE, THEN OUR REGULAR FORECAST, OR GARY OR SHARON ARE TALKING, WE MAY MENTION THE POSSIBILITY FOR HEAVY RAIN, OR JUST SOME GENERAL KIND OF IDEAS WE CAN SEE THINGS SHAPING UP, BUT NOTHING IS READY TO GO YET. WHEN WE CAN PIN POINT TIMES A LITTLE BIT BETTER, AND MORE SPECIFIC AREAS, THAT'S WHEN THE WATCH COMES INTO OOE EFFECT, SO THAT'S THE SET PART OF THE READY, SET, GO. SO, SAY, FOR A FLOOD WATCH OR FLASH FLOOD WATCH, YOU KNOW, WE SHOOT FOR MAYBE 12 TO 24, 36 HOURS IN ADVANCE. SO THAT GIVES PEOPLE, HOPEFULLY, A LITTLE HIGHER LEVEL OF READINESS. AND THEN THE WARNINGS ARE WHEN WE ACTUALLY ARE HIGHLY CONFIDENT THERE WILL BE FLOODING. IF WE SEE ON RADAR A STORM PARKED OVER ONE AREA FOR A WHILE, OR IF WE'RE FORECASTING RIVER GAUGE ON THE RIVER, LIKE THE WINOOSKI AT ESSEX TO GO INTO FLOOD, THAT'S WHEN THE WARNING COMES, THIS IS A PLACE WHERE IT IS GOING TO HAPPEN.

>> AND WITH THIS TYPE OF WEATHER, WE'VE BEEN SEEING NOW, IS IT STUFF -- TOUGH FOR YOU AT THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TO NAIL DOWN TO PEOPLE, HERE'S THE SPOT TO WATCH?

>> YEAH, IT IS. WE WERE TALKING ABOUT THAT BEFORE WE GOT GOING, THAT THAT'S SOMETHING WE STRUGGLE WITH A BIT. IF WE HAVE A SPECIFIC WEATHER PATTERN WE CAN KIND OF HANG OUR HATS ON, LIKE A COUPLE DAYS AGO WHEN WE HAD THE WATCH UP, WE HAD A WELL DEFINED WEATHER SYSTEM MOVING THROUGH THAT PRODUCED RAIN. THAT'S WHEN UPSTATE NEW YORK REALLY GOT HAMMERED. WE JUST BARELY DODGED THAT BULLET. SO THAT WAS A WATCH THAT WE ISSUED FOR THAT. NOW THAT WE ARE IN THIS PATTERN, WE COULD HAVE A WATCH GOING EVERY AFTERNOON FOR THE NEXT WEEK, AND IT'S NOT REALLY PROVIDING ANYONE ANY SERVICE. WHAT WE TRY TO DO NOW, NOW THAT WE'RE LOCKED INTO THIS PATTERN, VERY ISOLATED TO SCATTERED STORMS, SO WE JUST MENTION THERE IS GOING TO BE HEAVY RAIN OUT THERE. WE TRY TO FOCUS ON FINDING THE HEAVY RAINERS AND ISSUING FLASH FLOOD WARNINGS FOR THOSE AS THEY HAPPEN.

>> IT'S BEEN REALLY A STAGGERING TO JUST SEE HOW QUICKLY THE WATER MOVES IN. JUST THE 4TH OF JULY, WE HAD A LOT OF VIDEO AROUND THE STATION IN BURLINGTON, WHERE THE WATER GOT REALLY HIGH ON STREETS AROUND PINE STREET, FOR EXAMPLE, AND YOU GUYS, I MEAN, THAT TO ME IS ASTONISHING HOW THAT WATER IS.

>> YES. THE GROUND IS SATURATED NOW, THOUGH. IT WOULDN'T HAVE NECESSARILY HAPPENED QUITE TO THAT EXTENT IF THIS WAS A NORMAL YEAR. BUT YOU COMBINE THESE HEAVY DOWNPOURS, AND WE DID GET NEARLY TWO INCHES OF RAIN IN ABOUT A THREE-HOUR PERIOD OF TIME. I THINK IT WAS 1.88 INCHES IN THREE HOURS. THAT'S A LOT OF RAIN UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, IN A QUICK PERIOD OF TIME, BUT YOU COMBINE THAT WITH THE FACT THAT WE'VE BEEN GETTING SO MUCH RAIN, AND AS YOU KNOW, WALKING ACROSS THE LAWN, SQUISH, SQUISH, SQUISH.

>> THE GROUND IS SO SATURATED.

>> THAT'S WHY WE SAY DON'T GO THROUGH WATER. YOU DON'T KNOW HOW DEEP IT IS, WHAT'S LYING UNDERNEATH.

>> NOTHING COULD BE UNDERNEATH. THIS IS STANDING WATER, STREET FLOODING. SO IT'S A LITTLE DIFFERENT ANIMAL, BUT ESPECIALLY IN RURAL AREAS, WHERE YOU GET THE SPEED OF THE WATER, THE VELOCITY THAT CAN WASH A ROAD OUT. IT CAN UNDERMINE EVERYTHING UNDERNEATH THE ASPHALT AND STILL LEAVE JUST A THIN VENEER OF ASPHALT. SO IF YOU THINK THE ROAD IS THERE, YOU DRIVE INTO IT, AND YOUR WHOLE CAR COULD BE SWEPT AWAY.

>> YOU HAVE ALL BEEN VERY CLEAR, DO NOT DRIVE THROUGH STANDING, TURN AROUND, DON'T DROWN, IS THE MESSAGE. BUT PEOPLE ARE STILL DOING IT. I GUESS THERE IS A TENDENCY, PEOPLE THINK I CAN MAKE IT, I CAN MAKE IT. IS THERE ANY LEVEL OF WATER THAT'S SAFE, OR ONCE IT STARTS HITTING OVER YOUR TIRES, TURN AROUND.

>> FROM STANDING WATER, IT TAKES 6 INCHES TO 12 INCHES ABOVE THE SILL OF YOUR CAR TO GET YOU MOVING.

>> KIND OF DEMANDS ON HOW FASHION THE WATER IS MOVING -- DEMANDS HOW FAST WATER IS MOVING, WHAT KIND OF VEHICLE YOU ARE IN.

>> IT CAN TIP OVER THE CAR.

>> YES.

>> THE CAR BECOMES BOY BOUYANT PRETTY QUICKLY.

>> WE ARE GOING TO PAUSE FOR A BRIEF BREAK, BUT CONTINUE TO TALK ABOUT THE WEATHER AFTER

>>> WELCOME BACK, EVERYONE, WE ARE TALKING ABOUT THE WET SUMMER WE'VE HAD AND WHAT IS NEXT WITH SOME FAMILIAR FACES. YOU RECOGNIZE SHARON MEYER, DIRECTOR OF THE WEATHER DEPARTMENT, GARY SADOWSKY WAKES UP WITH YOU EVERY MORNING, A LITTLE BEFORE YOU PROBABLY, AND HE IS OUR MORNING METEOROLOGIST. GREG HANSON WORKS WITH THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE AS A HYDROLOGIST, A WATER EXPERT. LET'S TALK LONG RANGE NOW. STUCK AROUND FOR A WHILE. WHAT DO YOU THINK IS GOING TO HAPPEN? [ LAUGHTER ]

>> WE SAID YOU WERE GOING TO GET THE HARD QUESTIONS, GARY. NOW THAT YOU ARE HALF ASLEEP.

>> PART OF NOAA OR THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IS THE CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER. THEY DO MORE LONGER RANGE. YOU DON'T WANT TO CALL IT FORECAST, BUT OUTLOOK IS PROBABLY A BETTER WAY TO DO IT.

>> BEYOND LIKE A WEEK, YOU REALLY CAN'T GET ANY GOOD PLANNING OR MODELLING.

>> YOU CAN GET AN IDEA OF WHAT IS GOING ON, BUT NOT A SPECIFIC FORECAST. SO THERE'S A 6 TO 10-DAY OUTLOOK, THEN THERE'S THE 8 TO 14-BE DAY, 30 DAY AND 90 DAY. WE LOOK AT THOSE ALL THE TIME TO SEE WHAT'S ON TAP, AND, YOU KNOW, A COUPLE OF SHORTER TERM ONES, 6 TO 10-DAY, 8 TO 14 SHOWS THE NORTHEAST GOING TO BE A LITTLE WETTER THAN NORMAL. OVER THE NEXT WEEK. SO THE 30-DAY ONE SAYS THAT THINGS ARE LOOKING PRETTY AVERAGE HERE IN THE NORTHEAST. SO THAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN, ARE WE GOING TO GET A TON OF RAIN FOR TWO WEEKS AND THEN TOTALLY DRY OUT? HARD TO SAY. IF YOU CHECK BACK AND LOOK AT PAST MONTHS AND HOW THE PREDICTIONS TURNED OUT, MAYBE NOT SO WELL.

>> YEAH. I WAS GOING TO SAY, I DON'T THINK THE LONG-RANGE OUTLOOK CALLED THIS ONE AS FAR AS THE HEAVY RAIN WE ARE GETTING FOR MAY AND JUNE.

>> SO HOW DO YOU GUYS AT CHANNEL 3 WORK WITH THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE WHEN IT COMES TO GIVING THE FORECAST AND WHAT YOU TELL VIEWERS EVERY NIGHT OR MORNING?

>> WELL, WEATHER SERVICE, THEY ARE THE ONES RESPONSIBLE FOR FUTING OUT THE WATCHES AND WARNINGS -- PUTTING OUT THE WATCHES AND WARNINGS LIKE GREG WAS TALKING ABOUT. IT IS OUR JOB REALLY TO CONVEY THAT MESSAGE AS QUICKLY, AND CLEARLY AS POSSIBLE. AND OF COURSE WE GOT A NUMBER OF WAYS WE DO THAT.

>> TECHNOLOGY HELPS.

>> TECHNOLOGY HELPS, YEAH. AND THINGS HAVE CHANGED, ACTUALLY, JUST RECENTLY, TOO, WHICH HAS HELPED OUT A LOT, WE HAVE APPS SO THAT WHEN PEOPLE ARE OUT AND ABOUT, YOU CAN BE OUT ON YOUR BOAT, YOU CAN BE DRIVING OR WHATEVER, AND, YOU KNOW, YOU CAN DOWNLOAD OUR WEATHER APP, JUST A LITTLE SHAMELESS PLUG FOR THE WCAX WEATHER APP, AND SEE WHAT'S GOING ON ON THE RADAR. BUT ALSO, NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CAN TAP RIGHT INTO YOUR CELL PHONE.

>> THERE IS WIRELESS EMERGENCY ALERTS, A PARTNERSHIP, NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE, FEMA AND THE FCC, AND A LOT OF HELP FROM THE CELL PHONE COMPANIES, AND IT'S WEATHER ALERTS, FLASH FLOOD WARNINGS, TORNADO WARNINGS, REALLY HIGH-END BLIZZARD WARNINGS, ONE OF THEM, AND ALSO PRESIDENTIAL DECLARATIONS, WE CAN HAVE THE PRESIDENT POP IN AND GIVE US A MESSAGE IF SOMETHING REALLY HAPPENS. IT'S I -- ITS INTENT I THINK IS FOR THE REALLY BIG EVENTS, WHERE YOUR LIFE MAY BE IN DANGER, YOUR PHONE WILL GO OFF. IT KNOWS WHERE YOU ARE USING THE GPS FEATURE OF THE PHONE. SO YOU WON'T GET AN ALERT IF YOU ARE --

>> I LOVE IT. I THINK IT IS A FABULOUS IDEA.

>> IT WON'T GIVE YOU ALL THE INFORMATION, BUT IT LETS YOU KNOW SOMETHING IS GOING ON. YOU CAN TURN ON THE TV AND GET MORE INFORMATION THAT WAY.

>> WE TALKED A LITTLE BIT ABOUT WHAT'S NEXT. GARY MENTIONED THERE'S LONGER OUTLOOK, BUT BEFORE WE TAKE YOU THERE, YOU WERE TELLING ME THE INTERESTING DYNAMICS THAT JULY TYPICALLY, I KNOW YOU OUR WEATHER IS NOT TYPICAL, BUT TENDS TO BE DRY. SO IF IT'S THIS WET ALREADY --

>> THAT'S SOMETHING WE TALKED ABOUT, TOO. IT IS NOT TO SAY THAT THIS IS WHAT IS GOING 0 -- TO HAPPEN, BUT OFTEN WHEN WE'RE HAVING A PARTICULARLY DRY SUMMER AND EVERYBODY IS COMPLAING ABOUT HOW DRY IT IS -- COMPLAINING HOW DRY IT IS, WE LOOK FORWARD TO TROPICAL SEASON DURING AUGUST AND CEMENT, BECAUSE SOMETIMES WE'LL GET THE REMNANTS FROM A TROPICAL SYSTEM, EVEN IF WE DON'T HAVE AN IRENE OR SANDY COMING UP THE COAST. EVEN IF SOMETHING HITS THE GULF, OR NORTH CAROLINA OR SOMETHING, A LOT OF TIMES THE MOISTURE FROM THESE TROPICAL SYSTEMS WILL FEED INTO A FRONT AND BRING US SOME OTHER YEARS MUCH-NEEDED MOISTURE INTO THE NORTHEAST. WE COME THEM DROUGHT-BUSTERS WHEN THE REMNANTS OF THE TROPICAL STORM COME IN.

>> DROUGHT BUSTER OF 99.

>> YES. SO I THINK THERE'S PROBABLY A LITTLE CONCERN THAT WE'RE SETTING OURSELVES UP, YOU KNOW, WE'VE GOT A LOT OF MOISTURE ALREADY, SO IF WE DO HAVE THE REMNANTS FROM ANOTHER SYSTEM, IT WILL BE ADD BEING INSULT TO INJURY. GREG, YOU CAN TALK MORE ABOUT THIS THAT.

>> I KNOW IT'S A POSSIBILITY --

>> IT CAN BE DRY FOR THE SECOND HALF OF JULY AND BE DRY INTO THE FALL, TOO.

>> YOU ARE KEEPING AN EYE ON THIS AS WELL.

>> THAT'S SOMETHING THAT WE ALWAYS WATCH OUT FOR, AND FOR THAT KIND OF THING, WHAT'S HAPPENED IN THE PREVIOUS MONTHS IS REALLY IMPORTANT, SO KNOWING THAT WE'RE THIS SATURATED, THAT IT'S THIS EASY TO GET A LITTLE BIT OF RAIN AND A LOVED -- A LOT OF RUN-OFF FROM THAT, JUST HAVING THAT INFORMATION, IF WE DO SEE A TROPICAL SYSTEM COMING IN LATER ON, AND WE'RE STILL WET, YOU KNOW, THAT'S SOMETHING WE'LL KEY ON AND REALLY START TO ERASE THE RHETORIC A LITTLE BIT.

>> IF YOU THINK ABOUT JULY BEING TYPICALLY DRY, AND YOU KNOW THE JULY WE'VE HAD, AND THE JUNE, AND IT'S AUGUST, IT'S RAINY, I MEAN, THAT'S -- SHARON MENTIONED THAT TO ME AS A POSSIBILITY. AGAIN, IT IS A POSSIBILITY.

>> RIGHT.

>> BUT THAT WOULD BE A TOUGH ONE.

>> IT WOULD BE.

>> I DON'T KNOW THAT THERE'S REALLY TOO MUCH WE CAN DO TO PREPARE FOR IT. JUST SORT OF BE AWARE THAT THAT'S A POSSIBILITY, AND TAKE WHAT WE'VE BEEN DOING FOR THE LAST SEVERAL WEEKS, TAKE EACH DAY AS IT COMES. YOU KNOW, WHEN YOU'RE TALKING BEFORE IN THE WEATHER OFFICE, THIS IS WHAT OUR DAYS HAVE BECOME, THIS, YOU KNOW, RIGHT AFTER LUNCH, WE SIT THERE AND START STARING AT THE RADAR, WAITING THEM TO POP UP. PART OF OUR JOB IS FORECASTING. PART OF IT IS REACTING AND THEN FORECASTING AGAIN. THE REACTING PART COMES WHEN WE'RE WAITING FOR THOSE LITTLE CELLS TO START FORMING. THEN WE TRY TO FIGURE OUT WHERE THEY ARE GOING, WITH THE HELP OF THE NAFGS, SO WE CAN WARN PEOPLE -- NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE, WE CAN WARN THEM.

>> THAT'S ONE THING ABOUT NEW MEDIA, AS WE ARE SITTING THERE IN THE AFTERNOON, OF COURSE WE DON'T HAVE BROADCASTS DURING THE AFTERNOON NEWSCASTS, WE GO FROM NOON UNTIL 5:00, WITH THAT BIG HOLE, AND NOTHING TO BROADCAST ON TV, BUT WE CAN REACH PEOPLE VIA FACEBOOK AND TWITTER WHEN WE SEE A STORM POPPING UP. WE CAN PUT A GRAPHIC RIGHT ON THERE, AND SEND IT RIGHT TO THEM IMMEDIATELY. AND WE'RE GETTING THE MEKSAGE OUT VERY QUICK -- MESSAGE OUT VERY QUICKLY THAT WAY.

>> DO YOU FIND THAT PEOPLE ARE A LITTLE MORE, YOU KNOW, SOMETIMES YOU ISSUE WARNINGS, AND, YOU KNOW, PEOPLE SAY, OH, NO, I WILL BE FINE. BUT OF COURSE THE MANTRAS HAVE BEEN THROUGH TROPICAL STORM IRENE, SO DEVASTATING TO SO MANY PEOPLE, PEOPLE ARE STILL CLEANING UP FROM, DO YOU FIND THAT GIVEN WHAT THEY HAVE BEEN THROUGH, THEY ARE A LITTLE MORE RECEPTIVE WHEN THEY HEAR WATCHES AND WARNINGS? IS THERE A DIFFERENT FEELING YOU GET, YOU ALL HAVE BEEN FORECASTING HERE FOR MANY, MANY YEARS. I WON'T SAY HOW MANY.

>> BUT IS THERE MORE SENSITIVITY TO MAYBE TAKE SOME OF THESE CONCERNS SERIOUSLY?

>> I THINK SO. WHEN PEOPLE HAVE BEEN THROUGH SOMETHING LIKE IRENE, YEAH, YOU UNDERSTAND WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN A LITTLE BETTER AND PLAN FOR IT A LITTLE BETTER. THERE'S BEEN STUDIES, THERE IS A NATURAL OPTIMISTIC PROCESS IN EVERYBODY, WHERE YOU THINK IT WON'T HAPPEN TO YOU. IT'S JUST KIND OF WIRED INTO US. SO THAT -- YOU DON'T WANT TO BE PEOPLE TOO WORRIED ALL THE TIME, BUT YOU ARE TRYING TO -- WE'RE TRYING TO FIND THE SWEET SPOT OF AWARENESS AND CONCERN AND KNOWING WHAT TO DO IF SOMETHING HAPPENINGS, AND TO OFFSET COMPLETE WORRY WART, OR TOTAL OPTIMISTIC.

>> YOU HAVE TO REMEMBER THAT IRENE ALSO WAS TECHNICALLY HERE IN VERMONT, A TROPICAL STORM, BUT REALLY, IT WAS A HURRICANE COMING AT US, AND OF COURSE, IT'S DETERMINED BY THE WIND SPEED, AND NOT SO MUCH THE RAIN CONTENT. BUT, BOY, RAIN CONTENT, THAT REALLY WAS A HURRICANE THAT CAME ON THROUGH.

>> YEAH. TECHNICALLY A TROPICAL STORM.

>> IT WEAKENED WIND WISE WHEN IT HIT IT, BUT THE FLOODING CAUSED ALL THE DAMAGE.

>> WE TALK A LITTLE BIT, WHEN YOU GUYS DO YOUR FORECAST, YOU TALK ABOUT HOW MUCH RAIN WE'RE GETTING. WHAT ARE SOME OF THE TOTALS WE'VE BEEN GETTING AS FAR AS DURATION OVER A PERIOD OF TIME? THAT SEEMS STAGGERING TO ME ALSO.

>> PART OF THE PROBLEM IS THAT A LOT OF IT FALLS ALL AT ONCE, YOU KNOW. IT'S NOT LIKE IT'S JUST BEEN RAINING A LITTLE BIT.

>> NO. IT'S LIKE A DELUGE.

>> AS YOU SAY, IT CAN BE SUNNY FOR QUITE A BIT OF TIME, AND THEN OTHER TIMES, YOU KNOW, YOU'LL GET A TON OF RAIN. SO THE BEGINNING OF MAY WAS ACTUALLY VERY, VERY DRY. WE'VE GOT A GRAPHIC A WE'RE LOOKING AT RIGHT NOW, BUT THEN WE MORE THAN MADE UP FOR IT IN THE SECOND HALF OF THE MONTH TO THE EXTENT WHERE WE WERE THE REDDEST MAY ON RECORD, 8.74 INCHES COMPARED TO A NORMAL MAY, AND WE DISCUSSED BEFORE ABOUT HOW NORMAL IS REALLY JUST AN AVERAGE OF A LOT OF ABNORMAL YEARS. BUT THE AVERAGE IS MUCH LESS THAN THAT, OF COURSE, 3.45. AND THEN JUNE, EVEN THOUGH IT WAS THE SECOND WETTEST JUNE ON RECORD, IT HAD EVEN MORE RAIN THAN THE MONTH OF MAY DID, 9.86 INCHES, COMPARED TO 3.69, SO THAT'S TWO MONTHS IN A ROW WHERE WE'VE GOTTEN WELL, WELL, WELL ABOVE WHAT IS CONSIDERED AN AVERAGE AMOUNT OF RAIN. AND ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU GET IT, THE GROUND IS SATURATED BECAUSE OF THE AMOUNT OF RAIN WE HAD, AND THEN YOU GET THE DOWNPOURS ON TOP OF THAT. THEY COME DOWN SO QUICKLY.

>> THAT'S AN IMPORTANT POINT FOR FLASH FLOODING, IS THAT RATE. IF YOU GET TWO INCH AN HOUR RAINFALL AND EVEN IF IT ONLY HAPPENS IN AN HOUR, YOU STILL GOT AN INCH OF RAIN IN HALF AN HOUR, AND THAT RATE IS WHAT IS CAUSING PROBLEMS IN BURLINGTON, WITH THE RUNOFF, AND IT GOES ON TO THE FLASH FLOODING, THERE'S TOO MUCH RAIN IN TOO SHORT AMOUNT OF TIME.

>> WE ARE GOING TO HAVE TO LEAVE IT THERE. I THINK IT SUMS UP OUR SUMMER. TOO MUCH RAIN IN TOO SHORT A PERIOD OF TIME. I THINK GREG HANSON, HYDROLOGIST WITH THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE, GARY SADOWSKY, YOU WAKE UP WITH HIM EVERY MORNING, MORNING METEOROLOGIST, AND SHARON MEYER, DIRECTOR OF THE WEATHER DEPARTMENT HERE AT CHANNEL 3. I DON'T ENVY YOUR JOB.

>> WE ARE GETTING TIRED.

>> I BET. EVERYONE IS. THAT'S THE MAIN MESSAGE. DON'T BLAME, THEY ARE HERE TO HELP.

>> TOUGH TO GO IN THE GROCERY STORE THESE DAYS.

>> I BET. TAKE CARE. HOPEFULLY YOU'LL HAVE A GREAT SUNDAY.

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