NewsWorldOne storm had a name, the other didn't. ...

One storm had a name, the other didn’t. Both brought floods but had different consequences


(CNN) – If you woke up this morning feeling like the last two days have lasted two weeks, you are not alone.

Tens of thousands of our friends in America woke up without power, trees downed around their homes, and in Tennessee there is heartbreaking devastation.

We are with you. Climate is our passion, but destruction is not. We are in mourning along with everyone else.

One of the storms was a tropical system, a hurricane, that eventually made landfall as a tropical storm.

Henri was widely predicted, commented and analyzed. But the nameless storm was the one that caused the most impact.

It was a cluster of thunderstorms that did not move. They settled in one area for hours and left destruction that has to be seen to be believed.

Henri is running out, but it’s not over

A bicyclist crosses a flooded street as Tropical Storm Henri approaches South Kingstown, Rhode Island, on Sunday, August 22.

Henri is now a tropical depression that continues to lie over New England and continues to produce torrential rains from the mid-Atlantic to New England.

The rain is going to linger for much of Monday because, well … I could outrun the storm, and I’m not a fast runner.

The depression is only moving at 1.6 km / h, so there is still the threat of more flooding on Monday. In fact, 33 million are still under some kind of flood watch, from eastern Pennsylvania to New Hampshire. We could see an additional 2.5 to 7.6 centimeters.

More than 50,000 customers are without power across New England, and I am concerned that that number could grow even further.

Henri’s ravages on the east coast 3:01

Yes, the winds have weakened in this storm, but the rain continues to fall. So stay tuned for more trees to fall through Monday.

Henri’s heaviest rain bands seemed to settle right over New York and New Jersey, producing some of the heaviest rains.

The rain flooded the subway, stranded motorists and forced rescues in the midst of rising water.

In fact, on Saturday night people had to go home before the star-studded concert in Central Park, after Henri’s inclement weather swept into the area.

Most of the rain has moved away from New York City and New Jersey, but there is still plenty of moisture with Henri producing heavy rain from Long Island to New Hampshire on Monday.

What’s left of Henri is to pick up some steam on Monday and will move out of New England on Tuesday.

Travel should return to normal on Tuesday, and the golf tournament of the Northern Trust in Jersey City, NJ, should be able to resume, after being postponed due to Henri.

How did the floods occur in Tennessee?

Flood damage in Waverly, Tennessee, on Sunday, August 22. The downpours quickly turned the streams that run behind the backyards and through downtown Waverly to rapids.

As we see more images of destruction, devastation and sadness emerging from the floods in central Tennessee, we see how sometimes those nameless storms will be the ones we will never forget.

We have received many questions about how this could have happened.

The first hit was a wet July. According to the Nashville National Weather Service (NWS), it rained more than normal in central Tennessee in July. Nashville had as much as 9 inches of rain in July, “which was more than double the normal value of 4 inches,” said the NWS Nashville.

Of course, to be fair, with over a foot of rain in 24 hours, flash floods would have been the consequence even if the ground was dry. However, the damp soil has most likely made the flooding worse.

Deaths and flood damage in Tennessee 1:00

Saturday’s floods were caused by multiple storms that formed in the same area.

“We had a stationary boundary set over western central Tennessee that provided the necessary conditions, a constant formation of (storms) over that area for several hours right along that boundary,” said NWS meteorologist Mark Rose. Nashville.

Rain totals were surprising. The city of McEwen received 17 inches of rain, likely breaking the state’s all-time 24-hour rainfall record.

This amounts to more than four months of rain in a 24-hour period. The rain caused the rivers to rise at a tremendous speed, washing away cars and even houses.

These images show how devastating the flooding has been in central Tennessee.

Floods they have killed at least 21 people and left dozens missing.

These storms are so difficult to forecast because it is nearly impossible to pinpoint where the storms that form one after another will settle.

This area will have a break from the rain for the next week. “The rain forecast for the next 7 days shows almost nothing (for the area that was flooded over the weekend). It’s going to be a relatively dry week,” Rose said.

This type of extreme rainfall are favored by warmer temperatures, which can retain more water vapor in the atmosphere, about 7% more for each degree centigrade. More water vapor in the atmosphere makes more moisture available to fall as rain, thus increasing precipitation rates.

Deaths and flood damage in Tennessee 1:00

Scientists say extreme rainfall, like this one and Saturday’s deadly flash floods in Tennessee, are becoming more prevalent due to man-made global warming.

A recent UN report on climate, he stated that “the frequency and intensity of heavy rainfall have increased since the 1950s over most of the earth’s surface.”

Sahara dust will give us short-term respite from hurricanes

While we say goodbye to Henri, we could have a breather in the tropics in the short term.

While we say goodbye to Henri, we could have a breather in the tropics in the short term.

“Tropical activity in the Atlantic looks much calmer this week than last week,” said CNN meteorologist Taylor Ward. “Although there are some areas that we are monitoring, it will be difficult for them to develop as another expansive area of ​​dust from the Sahara has moved away from Africa and will head across the Atlantic this week.”

What is the dust of the Sahara?

Last week I spoke with Dr. Bowen Pan from Colorado State University’s Department of Atmospheric Sciences about this week’s Sahara dust event, and she said, “Something could still come up during the Sahara dust event. , but it is more likely to suppress the development of hurricanes. “

It is very typical that during the summer months there are dust events from the Sahara. It will have positive and negative impacts, but, for the development of hurricanes, dust tends to win most of the time.

“Hurricanes need relatively humid conditions and an unstable atmosphere,” said Pan.

“The Saharan air layer is a warm and dry layer that is about 15,000 feet high, so it will basically introduce very dry and warm conditions in the North Atlantic, thus creating very stable and unfavorable conditions for hurricanes.” .

Pan noted that the only area to watch is right on the southern edge of the Sahara’s dust layer due to contrasting conditions.

“The southern edge of the Saharan dust outbreak is associated with the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), where 70% of hurricanes are generated from that region. So if there is a Sahara dust outbreak, chances are that there is a greater temperature contrast between the Sahara desert and the Sahel region that will increase the convection activity in the ITCZ, “said Pan.

Right now, models are showing a very short-term hiatus, just a few days, before things start to shake up again.

I will (and will return) to your inbox for the next big storm … and the next … and the next.

If you want to be up to date with what is happening, subscribe to our newsletter here and we will appear in your inbox from time to time with the latest news.

CNN meteorologists Brandon Miller, Haley Brink and Judson Jones contributed to this report.


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