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Paint Power / Blog

New York Today: Reflecting on Harvey, in the Northeast


Good morning on this sunny-soggy Thursday.

Hurricane Harvey, now a tropical storm, has left at least 38 people dead and many more injured, making its second landfall yesterday and continuing to barrel through Texas and Louisiana.

The devastation more than a thousand miles away got us thinking about New York and our chances of having a hurricane.

John Homenuk, the founder of New York Metro Weather, answered our questions.

Is there a “hurricane season” in the New York area?

Hurricanes pose the greatest threat to New York City between late August and October, as history has shown.

Hurricane Irene arrived in August, Hurricane Isabel in September, and Hurricane Sandy in October — among many others.

The main reason: The waters in the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico are warmest during the late summer months, and “warm water is what hurricanes feed off of,” Mr. Homenuk said.

Is New York less prone to hurricanes than other parts of the country, like Texas or Louisiana?


Farther south — in places like Houston, New Orleans, Florida or the Caribbean — the probability of being hit by a tropical storm is much higher, Mr. Homenuk said.

The temperature of the sea is a major factor, determining how strong a storm can become. Toastier temperatures promote tropical activity, and the ocean waters are far warmer in those areas than in the Northeast.

Will we feel the effects of Harvey in New York?


“Tropical systems impact the flow of the whole atmosphere,” Mr. Homenuk said, because even when they make landfall somewhere else, they’re often pulled up into our area.

“Moisture from the storm is going to eventually make its way up through the Mississippi Valley and then up through the Northeast.”

Labor Day weekend won’t be a washout, but we’ll see the remnants of the storm in the form of rain late Saturday into early Sunday.


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