October 29, 2012

Sandy could bring waves as high as 33 feet to the Great Lakes.

"The National Weather Service... says waves on Lake Michigan could be 10 to 18 feet by Monday afternoon, then build to 20 to 33 feet on Tuesday before subsiding. Waves on parts of Lake Superior and Lake Huron could top 20 feet."

ALSO: "Crew of HMS Bounty forced to abandon ship as Hurricane Sandy bears down on East Coast."

AND: My "coastal cities" theory could apply to Milwaukee (and tip Wisconsin to Romney). In the most extreme, it could tip Illinois (because of Chicago).

MORE: Nate Silver says:
[I]t is probably unwise to anticipate what affects [sic] the storm might have within particular states, such as whether it might affect the Democratic parts of Pennsylvania more than the Republican ones. Hurricane Sandy is just too large a storm, and has such unpredictable destructive potential, to make reliable guesses about this.
Why would it be unwise to anticipate something? It's just speculation based on the available evidence. I suspect Silver is saying that because his methodology involves processing polling, but I don't see what's unwise about thinking about other things unless you impute more weight to the evidence than it deserves. And even if you do... so what? We're just guessing about what will happen in the future. No one is relying on any of this. We're just talking about the future event as we pass the time waiting for Election Day.

63 comments:

Ali Karim Bey said...

Here in the WASH-DC METRO every-thing is closed. The signs all point to POTUS Obama winning the DISTRICT. My building has fliers from DNC in the mail room. No one knows about Benghazi. Not even the coffee delivery service.

EMD said...

Did Cap'n Bligh go down with his ship?

Freeman Hunt said...

Yikes! Have they had waves that big since 1913?

john said...

If Obama wins in DC, then it's really all over.

Roger J. said...

Cue Gordon Lightfoot and the wreck of the edmond fitgerald--of course that was lake superior

Ali Karim Bey said...

GOP should forget DC, VA, and MD. Kaine is the next Senator (not Allen). GOP mailers never reached anywhere.

Focus on OH and WI.

Seeing Red said...

Rahm has experience with waves over Lake Shore Drive.

Curious George said...

"Roger J. said...
Cue Gordon Lightfoot and the wreck of the edmond fitgerald--of course that was lake superior"

Yes, the big lake they called Gitche Gumee.

MadisonMan said...

Wave height is a function of wind speed, fetch and duration, and Sandy's grinding to a halt tomorrow means strong winds for a long time down the length of Lake Michigan.

BarrySanders20 said...

Immediate report out my window of Lake Michigan: relative calm with boats moving in the harbor. Whitecaps east (lakeside) of the break wall, but nothing unusual yet. Sunny and quite nice, with wind from the NNE.

BarrySanders20 said...

Immediate report out my window of Lake Michigan: relative calm with boats moving in the harbor. Whitecaps east (lakeside) of the break wall, but nothing unusual yet. Sunny and quite nice, with wind from the NNE.

edutcher said...

Hyping the storm. Let's see what really happens.

PS I don't think you'd want to be on a ship named "Bounty" unless you were waiting to be rescued.

Then it would be the quicker picker-upper.

Nonapod said...

Here in upstate New York we just got a huge gust of wind that knocked a powerline into the driveway where I worked and the 'cane hasn't even really arrived in full yet.

Bender said...

More bizarre is that there are BLIZZARD warnings for Tuesday in mountainous western Maryland and eastern West Virginia.

John said...

And in an odd turn of events, Lake Erie is expected to be calm.

edutcher said...

It's the weight of all the sludge.

SteveR said...

If dead people could tip Cook County to JFK, I doubt water can stop Rahm from delivering

Dust Bunny Queen said...

More bizarre is that there are BLIZZARD warnings for Tuesday in mountainous western Maryland and eastern West Virginia.

Why is that bizarre?

Serious question. Doesn't it snow in the winter in Maryland or Virginia? I know it will be probably more snow than normal, and people will likely lose power (something we can count on every year here) but bizarre?

MadisonMan said...

Hyping the storm. Let's see what really happens.

Hyping in this case -- a storm that will cause at least $10bn in damage -- will save lives, and more importantly, provide for the common defense. Your hyping the storm wishcasting is precisely what leads people like the owners of the HMS Bounty to put their employees in harms' way.

This storm has been exceptionally well forecast since last Monday. What really happens is exactly what the forecasters have been warning about, in some cases, since about Wednesday last week.

The revolutionary changes in weather forecasting is one of the top intellectual achievements of the past 50 years. Back in the 60s this storm would have been predicted to stay out at sea, and the result would have been a monumental death toll.

karrde said...

@freeman hunt,

If I remember the story (told to me by someone who has lived near Lake Superior since the 70s), Lake Superior had such waves on the night that the Edmund Fitzgerald sank.

I doubt that Lake Michigan has had such waves since 1913, though.

[UPDATE after a short troll through Wiki: Apparently some waves with heights in the 20-to-25-foot range were reported on the Lakes in a surprise storm in 2010. However, that storm produced no major shipwrecks, though the winds caused damage on the land in many places.]

MadisonMan said...

Doesn't it snow in the winter in Maryland or Virginia? I know it will be probably more snow than normal, and people will likely lose power (something we can count on every year here) but bizarre?

Not really bizarre. Certainly it's unusual to see a blizzard warning about 300 miles from a hurricane warning on a weather map because of all the tropical air normally embedded within a hurricane.

Beckley WV's record snowy October is 15" (1918). The forecast for tomorrow is for 8-16". Not sure about leaf extent in the mountains of WV. The MODIS Imagery from several days ago shows lots of color in WV, meaning leaves still on trees. I suspect there are still plenty of leaves, and heavy wet snow on leaves is a disaster. Of course, the wind before the storm might have de-leafed the trees :)

Paddy O said...

What was the HMS Bounty replica doing out at sea with a hurricane approaching.

Now the ship is presumably lost.

Bligh would have brought the ship back in, but more importantly Bligh would have never taken the ship out into such weather.

edutcher said...

MadisonMan said...

Hyping the storm. Let's see what really happens.

Hyping in this case -- a storm that will cause at least $10bn in damage -- will save lives, and more importantly, provide for the common defense. Your hyping the storm wishcasting is precisely what leads people like the owners of the HMS Bounty to put their employees in harms' way.


No wishcasting. If that were so, I'd be hoping the thing shuts down the East Coast and sufficiently suppresses the Demo vote so the Northeast goes Republican.

My point is, so many of these storms are hyped so you'll "stay tuned to WINO for all the updates on 'Frankenstorm' - the Storm of the Century" that a great many turn out to be a great deal less.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Thanks MM. I see. The blizzard along with the tropical storm is the bizarre thing. Not the snow itself, necessarily.

6 to 18 inches of snow doesn't seem like such a big amount or big deal to me. /shrug. But I guess it is all about what you are used to.

The weight of the snow on the trees and ice is always a problem if you haven't properly trimmed the trees on your property. The snow load on trees in the outlying areas is almost always why we lose power. Trees falling into the lines in the remote mountainous areas. Not the main lines where the trees have been trimmed back and cleared but the side lines (I guess that is the term)

A few years ago we had an ice storm. You could hear the trees all around breaking and snapping. It sounded like gunshots and a war zone.

We are planning to buy a generator and install a large propane tank for those times we have extended power outages. Mainly to protect the freezed goods and refrigerator Probably NEXT winter :-)

Meanwhile, hope everyone stays safe, warm and dry.

EMD said...

And in an odd turn of events, Lake Erie is expected to be calm.

A quick look at a map shows that Erie is short and wide and Lake Michigan is tall and skinny.

That might explain the effect the winds/storm will have on the waters of the two.

Conserve Liberty said...

All the speculation on storm-related voter suppression presupposes there is no National Emergency delay of the Voting Day.

With the current Administration in place we can count on a delay if such would increase the turnout they need.

Nonapod said...

My point is, so many of these storms are hyped so you'll "stay tuned to WINO for all the updates on 'Frankenstorm' - the Storm of the Century" that a great many turn out to be a great deal less.

While it's certainly true that there's some exploitive elements to all the news coverage, in this situation I'd rather have them over reporting events like this than under reporting simply due to preparedness.

MadisonMan said...

so many of these storms are hyped so you'll "stay tuned to WINO for all the updates on 'Frankenstorm' - the Storm of the Century" that a great many turn out to be a great deal less.

The hype for this storm is very much well deserved. The path is unusual. The interaction with the hurricane and cold front is unusual. The intensity is unusual. The very accurate prediction by the forecast models is not unusual -- not anymore.

If you're in NJ -- check out your barometer later today. You'll never see it lower.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

MadisonMan said...

Wave height is a function of wind speed, fetch and duration...

MadisonMan, stop trying to make fetch happen!

Paul said...

Remember in the primaries they said the hurricane bearing down on Florida was Devine intervention for Obama and punishment for the Republicans?

Well who does this hurricane 'hurt'?

Hahaha, who laughs last laughs best...

traditionalguy said...

The Edmund Fitzgerald has been reported loading up voters for a quick sail down to polling places along Lake Michigan.

If the HMS Bounty can sail into the outer banks, then so can the Edmund Fitzgerald.

edutcher said...

Ann Althouse said...

In the most extreme, it could tip Illinois (because of Chicago).

Then there's my theory that any state, like IL (or WI) that exchanged Demos for Republicans in either the Governor's Mansion or State House (or both) is in play this year, but there have been articles that the live people vote out of the Windy City may not be enough to beat the downstate Republican vote in IL.

MadisonMan said...

stop trying to make fetch happen!

My daughter loves that movie. LOL.

Freeman Hunt said...

MM, what is likely to happen if the Great Lakes have waves like that? Is the infrastructure such that it would be no big deal or would the damage be huge? Are the cities around the Great Lakes prepared for that kind of weather?

Nora said...

Paul,
I could start on ocean rising on the Obama core voters. However, the disruptions and harm that is coming to people there is no laughing matter whatsoever.

OTOH, Sandy takes pressure from Bengazi investigations, so media is embracing it and hopefully overhypes.

Also, if election in the states inin the question are disrupted due to disaster, then, in case of Romney's win, you'll hear no end claims that he won only because of the disaster and his mandate is not valid.

Nora said...

Ann, who has the power to pospone elections? IIRC, Obama signed executive order that gives him extended powers over infrastructure in case of emergency. What other powers it gives him, if any?

wildswan said...

If a thirty-five foot wave came west across Lake Michigan and hit Milwaukee it could go up the river and do damage. But Milwaukee County is only preparing for 16-20 foot waves that would be dangerous on Bradford Beach and nowhere else and they scoffed at the idea of thirty-five foot waves. Maybe someone else could call them.

David said...

The Great Lakes storm of November 1913 was a convergence event between a tropical and a northern storm. The result was about 300 dead, 20 ships sunk and massive property damage. Let's hope we don't get that again.

kimsch said...

Freeman there are some bluffs along the lake protecting some from waves that high. We're probably in more danger from the winds knocking down power lines. Although they'll probably close lake shore drive, at least they should do so. Down near the president's house there are no bluffs....

kimsch said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kcom said...

Superior, they said, never gives up her dead
When the gales of November come early

tacotaco said...

i love how desperately hopeful and revealingly un-American the "coastal cities" theory (wish) is. It wreaks of a fantasy that a natural disaster will deprive people of the opportunity to exercise their right to vote. Althouse has spent the fast few days decrying Democrat commentators as being desperate to the point of delusion. She is just as bad with her ridiculous and baseless Sandy fantasy.

To use Althouse's favorite word of judgment, her coastal city wish is disgusting.

chickelit said...

If you're in NJ -- check out your barometer later today. You'll never see it lower.

That reminded me of the story William Manchester recounted about the 1938 hurricane in his The Glory And The Dream. Recall that people had no warning back then--no radar and no inkling that a hurricane was coming ashore. Manchester wrote:

Among the striking stories which later came to light was the experience of a Long Islander who had bought a barometer a few days earlier in a New York store. It arrived in the morning post September 21, and to his annoyance the needle pointed below 29, where the dial read 'Hurricanes and Tornadoes.' He shook it and banged it against a wall; the needle wouldn't budge. Indignant, he repacked it, drove to the post office, and mailed it back. While he was gone, his house blew away.

chickelit said...

tacotaco shills hard sell soft shells by the sea shore.

Cedarford said...

Madison Man -

"The revolutionary changes in weather forecasting is one of the top intellectual achievements of the past 50 years. Back in the 60s this storm would have been predicted to stay out at sea, and the result would have been a monumental death toll."

Agree. The NWS and European modelling have been awesome tools - as well as earlier versions.
Not just for hurricanes, but other predictive models for winter storms, monsoons in Asia, Cyclones, tornadic activity, emerging snowstorms.

Great stuff.

Now I want to see us work on weather modification - the Soviets made a little progress on it - time to go back to it.

Of course, I want us to nuke a hurricane someday. With a very low radioactive residue 95% fusion sort of bomb. With a test on one that is well out to see and dissapates and rains out in the Atlantic away from any landmass. (Even if the 500KT-1.2 megaton device fails to break it up.)
Even if it doesn't work, it would be a cool thing to try.




pst314 said...

Paddy O "Bligh would have brought the ship back in..."

Not so: Hurricanes used to sink many sailing ships commanded and crewed by competent experienced sailors.

Bender said...

The blizzard along with the tropical storm is the bizarre thing

Yes, one typically thinks of a hurricane as involving warm water and warm air. In other words, not the kind of weather you would expect would cause intense heavy snow. Lots of rain, certainly, but not snow.

Bender said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
chickelit said...

Are people surprised that an 18th century style ship was overwhelmed by a tropical storm?

The real question is what was it doing offshore an infamous "Graveyard Of The Atlantic"?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Also, if election in the states inin the question are disrupted due to disaster, then, in case of Romney's win, you'll hear no end claims that he won only because of the disaster and his mandate is not valid.

We can always counter that with "It was a sign from God. God works in mysterious ways." That'll drive the libs crazy. :-P

Jamie Irons said...

The thought of these (so far only potential) waves brings to mind a memory of my childhood. One summer when I was about ten, a friend's family took me for a week to Washington Island. This was in July, and the weather was not particularly exceptional; there was no storm. But the ferry ride across "Death's Door" was a very wild one. I didn't think waves on the Great Lakes could get that big!

These days, in placid northern California, I enjoy mixing and having an occasional martini made with the gin from that region, a gin affectionately known as "Death's Door" which, in spite of the name, seems to have all the salubrious qualities of any first rate gin.


Jamie Irons

MadisonMan said...

The trajectory of the wind and waves means that Milwaukee is probably safe. Lake Shore Drive in Chicago? Not so much.

Thank you Gov. Walker!

MadisonMan said...

a gin affectionately known as "Death's Door"

It's actually the brand name. Great name for a liquor.

Alan said...

Nobody's blaming global warming>

Jamie Irons said...

MadisonMan

You wrote:

...It's actually the brand name. Great name for a liquor...

Yes, I was trying to say that, but phrased it inelegantly. Out here in the Napa Valley it is somewhat difficult to come by "Death's Door." I have to order it from the city.

Jamie Irons

chickelit said...

Yes, I was trying to say that, but phrased it inelegantly. Out here in the Napa Valley it is somewhat difficult to come by "Death's Door." I have to order it from the city.

Bevmo carries it--all three.

kcom said...

It's easy to speculate an opposite affect of this storm - namely the "saved by the bell" nature of it. Now that the Obama-oriented Sunday news shows have successfully dodged the Benghazi question this past weekend, there's only one weekend left where it could be a topic of importance. How much do you want to bet every spare moment this weekend will be devoted to the storm to freeze out any inconvenient questions about Benghazi. And the unemployment numbers, too, for that matter. Assuming they're published at all (storm willing). For the Democrats, this storm could be the gift that keeps on giving.

And I might go further and predict that the legacy media, NBCBSABCCNNMSNBCPBSWAPONYT, will put on a full court press this coming week to show Obama in his most presidential light, manfully responding to the storm. Striding like a colossus to rally the troops, mitigate the damage, and otherwise show himself to best advantage (while receiving the equivalent of millions of dollars in free advertising). It will be entirely political, but couched in such a way that makes it seem non-partisan - just honest coverage of a president heroically doing his job. That is, if he doesn't fuck it up completely and take that option off the table (which, if past is prologue, he might).

Dante said...

Why would it be unwise to anticipate something?

He is talking about Analysts:

Some analysts have also expressed concern that the storm could depress turnout along the Eastern Seaboard on Election Day itself.

. . .

Along the same lines, it is probably unwise

In other words, he is trying to sway analysts against drawing conclusions, by providing soft reasoning why they might be wrong.

Presumably, this is because the guy wants Obama to win, and he thinks any indication he might lose to be damaging. To me, here is the important part:

Since the affected states are Democratic-leaning, and since many of them are so Democratic-leaning that they are likely to vote for Mr. Obama even in a low turnout, it is thought that this might reduce Mr. Obama’s national popular vote without hurting his standing in the Electoral College much, potentially increasing the risk of a split outcome.

In other words, it won't hurt his Electoral College standing much, but in this race, it doesn't take much. That's the bias part of what he is writing.

Paddy O said...

Not so: Hurricanes used to sink many sailing ships commanded and crewed by competent experienced sailors.

Bligh was not a nice man but he was an extraordinary sailor.

Hurricanes have sunk many a ship, but Bligh (I suggest) still would have been able to bring her in. He got a crew 4600 miles in a boat to safety after the mutiny after all.

Bligh also, had he stayed in the Bounty with a crew during a Hurricane, also would have had a whole lot more men pumping out water, so there's not really a comparison to then and now with a 16 person crew on board.

rastajenk said...

When did Nate Silver start becoming the most quoted person in the interverse?

Rusty said...

I'm predicting more votes for Obama will wash ashore somewhere along Lake Shore Drive.

Jake Diamond said...

unless you impute more weight to the evidence than it deserves.

Classic! I love the admission that Althouse and her lemmings are careful to limit the significance they attach to evidence.

Life in the right wing bubble is so simple. It's a place where truthiness thrives.

Terry Canaan said...

It's unlikely that we'll see much effect of Lakes Michigan or Superior, since a series of locks connects them to the rest of the Great Lakes chain.