Bolaris: Super cyclone will graze Philly

Snow falls at the SEPTA station in Oreland, Montgomery County, on Tuesday, March 25. 2014. (Bob McGovern /

The very latest models indicate that a storm now slowly developing along the Southeast coast will move generally northeastward and "bomb," or rapidly intensify, into a super Western Atlantic cyclone by very late tonight.

Luckily all the major cities from Washington, D.C. to Philly to New York City & possibly even Boston look to avoid any heavy snow accumulations.

But coastal sections of New Jersey, and central and southern Delaware stand an increasing chance of heavier snow amounts, perhaps in a few places exceeding 4 inches.

The capes of New England have blizzard watches posted and will be dealing with a dangerous and very powerful storm with winds in excess of 50mph and snows of 6-12 inches depending on the storm's exact placement.

The set-up

The storm, now slowly developing along the Southeast coast, will merge with some very explosive energy diving down into the base of an energized trough, which will phase the Northern and Southern Jet energy (bring them together as one powerful jet) at the same time the trough (deep atmospheric valley in the East which enhances storm development) will take on a negative tilt (as the trough valley actually tilts back toward the coast). This will act as the final explosive mechanism allowing for a super cyclone to form.

Latest computer guidance keeps this storm far enough off the Northeast coast to limit its impact in the Philly region.

But with that being said, as this storm begins its transition into a superstorm, an enhancement of snow growth should start to take place along the Southeast coast of New Jersey, especially Cape May County and central and southern Delaware, south of Dover.

It's hard to pinpoint just how much enhancement of snow growth will take place, but I do believe enough for some places to pick up 4 inches or more. Right now computer models continue to keep the real heavy snow about 50-100 miles off the coast of New Jersey.

All suburbs north and west of the city looking at under 2 inches.


Snow will accumulate from 7 p.m.-1 a.m.

1-5 a.m.: Winds increase dramatically to 30mph - gusting 40mph at shore. Snow flurries.

Wednesday: AM commute DRY, windy and very cold low 20s.

No tidal flooding with this storm as wind will be blowing from the north.

Record snow for March 25th in Philly is 1.7 inches.

In summary parts of New England get hammered, as D.C.-Philly-NYC get grazed.

Snow totals

Philly: 1-3 inches, and all immediate surrounding suburbs.

All suburbs north/west of Philly: Under 2 inches

New Jersey: Generally 1-3 inches

Cape May County: On the 4-inch line

Ocean and Monmouth counties: 2-4 inches


New Castle: 1-3 inches

South of Dover: 3-6 inches

I have seen everything in my forecasting lifetime so will watch this closely.

John Bolaris

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