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10/12/06 NOW: NY

"Unique and Unprecedented Situation."
"Historic"

The National Weather Service in Buffalo has issued the earliest Lake Effect Snow Warning in history for the Buffalo, NY Area. They are claiming historic instability paramaters.

Lake induced CAPES with a water temperature of 62 has risen to 1200-1500 J/KG and lightning (thundersnow) is expected to be common. Current radar already shows intense convective banding with this situation. Of note, Buffalo has never seen a snowfall greater than 4" this early in the season.

Though snowfall amounts will vary from 1 to 6", the historic nature of this event, the presence of convective thunderstorm activity, the fact that trees are still in full leaf and the unprecedented Lake induced CAPE make this a noteworthy severe situation to follow.

A few quotes fron the National Weather Service, supporting text:

THE INSTABILITY PARAMETERS ARE ALMOST HISTORIC WITH SUCH A SITUATION
WITH A 62 DEGREE LAKE INVOLVED MAKE THIS ALMOST UNPRECEDENTED. LAKE
INDUCED CAPES ARE WAY UP INTO 1200-1500 J/KG RANGE...INVERSION/EQUIL
LEVELS ARE OVER 20K FT! SO LIGHTNING AND GRAUPEL WILL BE COMMON.
QUESTION IS PRECIP TYPE.

DRAMATIC AND POSSIBLY HISTORIC EVENT UNDERWAY FOR METRO BUFFALO.
MAJOR LAKE EFFECT BAND ALREADY IN PLACE AND WITH
CONVERGENCE...UPLIFT AND ASSOCIATED DYNAMIC COOLING...PRECIP TYPE
ALREADY BECOMING FROZEN IN THE HEAVIER BANDS...EVEN RIGHT OVER THE
LAKE. THIS LEADS TO A GREATER CHANCE OF WET SNOW AFTER DARK...WHICH
COULD LEAD TO TREE AND POWER PROBLEMS AS TREES REMAIN IN FULL LEAF.
WILL THEREFORE HOIST LAKE EFFECT SNOW WARNING (OUR EARLIEST IN
HISTORY) FOR THE 4 COUNTY AREA OF NORTHERN ERIE/NIAGARA/ORLEANS AND
GENESEE FROM 8 PM TO 6 AM FRIDAY

http://www.erh.noaa.gov/data/txtprods/BUF/AFDBUF
 
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Heavy snow with occasioanl in cloud lightning is occurring at Buffalo at 5pm. Small hail has also been reported, but it is possible that this could be snow pellets. See ob below. AMAZING.

KBUF 122054Z 29012G24KT 1/4SM R23/1800V3500FT +TSSN FG OVC005CB 01/M01 A2964 RMK AO2 TSB54GSB31E45 SLP041 OCNL LTGIC OHD TS OHD MOV NE P0008 60032 T00061006 53024

A very significant band of rain and snow will continue overnight. This is likely to produce whiteout conditions, heavy snow and thunder/lightning. Snow totals should be interesting to see.

PS: If the snow does pile up, there could be MAJOR tree and power line damage as the leaf season is about 3 weeks behind schedule...ie...lots of leaves that will become weighted down and snap branches.
 
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