Tropical Storm Melissa to Weaken As It Accelerates Away From the U.S.

weather.com meteorologists
Published: October 12, 2019

Melissa has made the transition from a subtropical to a tropical storm, but it will finally accelerate away from the United States this weekend after bringing multiple days of coastal flooding, beach erosion, rough surf and rip currents to the Eastern Seaboard.

The center of Tropical Storm Melissa is located more than 300 miles southeast of Nantucket, Massachusetts.

(MORE: What Is the Difference Between Subtropical and Tropical Storms?

Melissa is moving away from the East Coast, which will allow conditions to improve along the coast through the weekend.


Current Storm Status and Projected Path

This past week, winds gusted to 60 mph on Nantucket Island and 59 mph in Provincetown and Wellfleet, Massachusetts. Strong wind gusts downed one tree on a vehicle in the south Boston suburb of Dedham, Massachusetts, Wednesday night, according to the National Weather Service. There were numerous other reports of trees and wires down across southeastern Massachusetts Thursday and Friday.

Coastal flooding during Wednesday and Thursday evening's high tides shut down sections of U.S. 30 and U.S. 40 west of Atlantic City, New Jersey. A portion of U.S. 30 was closed due to flooding again Friday evening. State Highway 47 in Wildwood, New Jersey, was also closed due to coastal flooding.

The midday Friday high tide flooded U.S. 40 west of Atlantic City once again, prompting the right lane to be closed. The westbound side of U.S. 9 in Absecon, New Jersey, was also flooded during this tide, causing all lanes to be closed and detoured.

Reedville, Virginia, reported midday Friday that most neighborhood docks were underwater and estimated this was the highest tide there in at least the past three years.

Coastal flooding also prompted road closures in parts of Delaware and Maryland, including Ocean City, on Friday.

Forecast

Winds will persistently blow toward the mid-Atlantic and Northeast coasts between the counterclockwise flow around Tropical Storm Melissa and the clockwise flow around a strong high-pressure system to its north over the Canadian Maritimes and northern New England.

As a result, rough surf conditions and rip currents will continue to impact the East Coast this weekend, but conditions will gradually improve with time as Melissa moves farther away from the U.S.

Minor to moderate coastal flooding is expected from the northern Outer Banks of North Carolina to Long Island, with localized major flooding possible. Beach erosion will also occur along the mid-Atlantic and Northeast coasts.

This event has been ongoing for several days now, extended across multiple high-tide cycles, allowing water to pile up in vulnerable areas.

Coastal inundations of 1 to 2 feet at high tide are expected from the mid-Atlantic coast to Long Island.

Coastal flood warnings and advisories have been issued by the National Weather Service for the areas shaded in green below.


Coastal Flood Warnings and Advisories

The Weather Company’s primary journalistic mission is to report on breaking weather news, the environment and the importance of science to our lives. This story does not necessarily represent the position of our parent company, IBM.


The Weather Company’s primary journalistic mission is to report on breaking weather news, the environment and the importance of science to our lives. This story does not necessarily represent the position of our parent company, IBM.