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{ 4 }  SNJ Today  |  MAY 19, 2021                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 MAY 19, 2021  |   { 5 }
             FEATURE                                 meteorologist and staff writer                                winds greater than 100 mph. The storms
                                                      By Brian Lada, AccuWeather
                                                                                                                   leveled entire fields of crops and caused
                                                                                                                   billions of dollars in damages.
                                                     August, there will also be a                                     Complexes of thunderstorms like
                                                     flip in the weather pattern                                   derechos that take shape in the north-cen-
                                                     that will open the door for                                   tral or midwestern U.S. this summer could
                                                     the hottest conditions of the                                 potentially travel eastward into the Ohio
                                                     entire summer.                                                Valley or mid-Atlantic before fizzling out.
                                                        “We could have a dry                                          The western states can expect another
                                                     spell later in the summer                                     active fire season. California experienced
                                                     that could spark some     canes and three or four U.S. landfalls.  its third-driest winter in history which
                                                     intense heat for a time,”   “Our biggest concern is the fact that   has left water reservoir levels well below
                                                     Pastelok said.            water temperatures across the Atlantic   normal, and with minimal snowpack across
                                                        All of the major cities   are already warmer than normal over a   the mountains, there will not be much
                                                     along the I-95 corridor of   larger part of the basin,” said AccuWeather   snowmelt to feed the reservoirs throughout
                                                     the Northeast are predicted   Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski, who has   the summer.
                                                     to experience around the   been forecasting the tropics for 45 years.  A drought emergency was issued for
     Late summer heat to build in                    same number of 90-degree    Warm water is one of the key ingredi-  several counties in California on April 20

     Northeast after stormy start                 days as last summer, which is   ents for tropical cyclone formation, and   due to drought conditions with the poten-
                                                                                                                   tial for Gov. Gavin Newsom to declare a
                                                  near to slightly above normal.
                                                                               with the temperatures continually rising
     to season.                                   This includes New York City   throughout the summer, it will translate   more widespread drought emergency in
                                                  and Philadelphia, both of which   to more fuel for tropical storms and hurri-  the coming months.
        The summer of 2020 was one that will      experienced a notably higher   canes that do develop.               Water use restrictions are likely to
     not soon be forgotten, not only because of   number of 90-degree days in 2020 com-  As residents who live along stretches of   “come into play during the course of the
     COVID-19, but also because of extreme   pared to normal.                  the Gulf Coast and Atlantic Seaboard will   summer season,” Pastelok added.
     weather across the country. Phoenix shat-  New York City recorded 20 days in   need to prepare for potential impacts from   The parched earth has left vegetation
     tered the record for the most 110-degree   2020 on which the mercury hit 90 F,   tropical systems, those across the north-  dry ahead of the hot summer, setting the
     days in one year, Colorado experienced   and Philadelphia managed to crack the   central U.S. should brace for an uptick in   stage for another active wildfire season
     the four largest wildfires in state history   90-degree mark on 36 occasions in 2020.   severe weather events.  across California. Researchers from San
     and the Atlantic spawned a record-setting   Washington, D.C., may even come close to   The Storm Prediction Center (SPC)   Jose State recently found that moisture
     30 named tropical systems, 11 of which   reaching 90 F on 50 days in 2021.  reported 253 tornadoes in 2021 as of April   content levels in vegetation samples were
     made landfall in the U.S., in a hyperactive   As a whole, Pastelok said that tempera-  23, below the average of around 400 for   the lowest in a decade.
     hurricane season.                    tures may be around 1 to 3 degrees above   late April. However, AccuWeather fore-  “We might have bigger fires earlier in
        Veteran meteorologist Paul Pastelok,   normal this summer across the Northeast,   casters believe that a big uptick in tornado   the season than we typically would if we
     who leads AccuWeather’s team of long-  while temperatures will average close to   activity will occur in May and June.  had more of a wet year,” Craig Clements of
     range forecasters, has painted a picture of   normal across the Ohio Valley and lower   AccuWeather is predicting between   San Jose University Fire Weather Research
     what people can expect across the U.S. this   Midwest.                    1,300 and 1,400 twisters by the end of 2021.   Laboratory told AccuWeather National
     summer, which officially begins at 11:32   Meanwhile, the Southeast is bracing for   This is slightly higher than the number of   Reporter Bill Wadell.
     p.m. EDT on June 20, 2021.           another busy hurricane season. The 2020   tornadoes in 2020 and right around the   Colorado, Utah, Nevada and northern
        As the nation heads into its second   Atlantic hurricane season was one for the   average of 1,383, according to SPC data.  California will face the highest risk of early
     consecutive summer during a global pan-  record books with some communities along   The most active zone for severe weather   summer wildfires before the fire threat
     demic, signs of normalcy are returning. In   the Gulf Coast still recovering following   is predicted to be around Minnesota, Iowa,   shifts as the season progresses.
     the Northeast, the stifling heat of summer   several strikes by powerful storms.  Illinois, Wisconsin and Missouri. This   In 2020, Colorado experienced its four
     may not take hold right away from the   The overall impacts from tropical sys-  includes major cities such as Minneapolis,   largest wildfires in state history. Among the
     Interstate 95 corridor to the shores of the   tems in 2021 is expected to be a bit lower   Chicago and St. Louis.  Colorado fires, the Cameron Peak Fire was
     Great Lakes, but that doesn’t mean that air   than the past few years, but it is not zero,   This region may also experience an   the biggest, scorching more than 208,000
     conditioners will be able to take it easy this   Pastelok said.           extreme weather event that is sometimes   acres. Previously, the record for the largest
     year.                                  “We do feel there could be a named   called an “inland hurricane.”     wildfire in the state was more than 139,000
        The first part of the summer will fea-  storm in June, but the way the pattern   A derecho is a complex of intense thun-  acres burned earlier in 2020.
     ture frequent thunderstorms across the   is setting up in June in the eastern U.S.,”   derstorms that unleashes damaging winds   Northern California is another area of
     Northeast, Ohio Valley and Midwest, lim-  Pastelok explained, anything that might   over an area extending hundreds of miles.   concern to Pastelok early in the summer
     iting the potential for long-duration heat   develop “may be forced away from the   This extreme weather event is sometimes   with the potential for several significant
     waves with temperatures averaging right   coast or head well down to the south   called an “inland hurricane” due to the   fires. Although the winter and spring
     around normal.                       towards Mexico or South Texas.”      hurricane-force wind gusts and the way   were not nearly as dry across the Pacific
        AccuWeather’s long-range forecast-  While not predicted to be as busy as last   that it appears on radar.  Northwest as across California, the hot and
     ers believe that several rounds of stronger   year, the 2021 Atlantic hurricane season   “We are still very nervous about the   dry summer weather will lead to an elevat-
     storms could sweep across the region,   is expected to be another above-average   possibility of derechos developing based on   ed wildfire risk across the region as well.
     particularly in June and July, in addition to   season. AccuWeather is predicting 16 to 20   the pattern that we’re forecasting” begin-  Keep checking back on AccuWeather.
     garden variety summer storms that pop up   named storms, 7 to 10 hurricanes and three   ning in early June, Pastelok said.  com and stay tuned to the AccuWeather
     on warm and humid afternoons.        to five direct hits on the U.S. A typical sea-  On August 10, 2020, a particularly   Network on DirecTV, Frontier, Spectrum,
        As the calendar flips from July to   son features 14 named storms, seven hurri-  strong derecho blasted across Iowa with   FuboTV, Philo, and Verizon Fios. n
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