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Chat with The Weather Channel meteorologist about the Blizzard of 2015

The Weather Channel meteorologist Nick Wiltgen answers your questions about the snowstorm.

  • Hello, everyone. We're going to get started in a couple minutes. Feel free to start submitting your questions.
    Catherine Cloutier 1/27/2015 6:58:40 PM
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  • Hello, everyone. We're going to get started in a couple minutes. Feel free to start submitting your questions.
    Catherine Cloutier 1/27/2015 6:59:34 PM
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  • Good afternoon. We're here with Nick Wiltgen, a digital meteorologist at The Weather Channel. He's here to take your questions, so please share them in the box above this thread.

    First and foremost, Nick, what's the latest storm update for Massachusetts?
    Catherine Cloutier 1/27/2015 7:02:03 PM
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  • Catherine, we are still dealing with moderate to heavy snowfall across much of central and eastern Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire. Winds are still running 20 to 30 mph sustained, with gusts as high as 50 mph still being reported on the Cape and 64 mph this hour on Nantucket.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:05:10 PM
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  • So how much more accumulation do you think we should expect in Boston? Are we going to break the top 5?
    Callum 1/27/2015 7:05:34 PM
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  • We are sitting at 20.8 inches at Logan as of 1 p.m. ... and checking our forecast for additional accumulations...
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:06:28 PM
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  • We are calling for an additional 5.5 inches of snow, which would bring the storm total to 26.3 inches. That would place this storm as the third-heaviest on record behind the Presidents' Day storm of 2003 and the Blizzard of 1978.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:07:51 PM
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  • Nick, Why has this storm been so hard to forecast? How much more snow do you think Boston will get?
    Tom Brady 1/27/2015 7:08:11 PM
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  • Hmm, I am a little nervous, fielding a weather question from Tom Brady! As I mentioned, we're calling for another 5.5 inches (give or take... that would put it in our 5 to 8 inch range at The Weather Channel)...
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:09:54 PM
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  • As for why the storm is so hard to forecast...
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:10:16 PM
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  • For one, this storm originated as a clipper out over the Plains, and most clippers don't turn into massive Northeast storms. But some do. That said...
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:11:10 PM
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  • There was another storm right before this (as everyone reading this knows)... we called it "Iola." At one point on Friday our models seemed to agree that this current storm would just zip out to sea from New Jersey and Delaware. There was a sudden change in those computer forecasts Saturday afternoon, but even so, it's hard to nail down the details of exactly how far inland snow will get.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:12:27 PM
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  • So far it looks like we've done very well forecasting snow around Boston and southeastern New England... but we didn't do as well for NYC and Philadelphia.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:12:53 PM
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  • When do you think all the roads, and everything will be safe for travel again?
    Kyle 1/27/2015 7:13:14 PM
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  • Kyle -- at the very least we have to get the snowfall rates below 1 inch per hour for road crews to even have a hope of clearing the roads. That would be true even if we didn't just get 20 to 30 inches of snow. We also need the winds to come down, because with all this snow on the ground even a 15-20 mph wind is going to tend to cause enough blowing/drifting to undo any work done to clear the roads.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:16:02 PM
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  • We'll get the snowfall rates to come down a bit by evening... to 1/2 inch per hour or so... then tapering off and ending overnight. Winds will be slower to subside... down below 15mph by Wednesday morning at Logan, and probably sooner inland away from the bay.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:17:04 PM
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  • Will snow stop and be cleared for Logan Airport to reopen on Thursday? We are trying to get home. Been stuck in Phoenix since Monday morning!
    Teddi Champa 1/27/2015 7:17:34 PM
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  • Teddi - we're forecasting the snow to stop at Logan between 3 a.m. and 5 a.m. Wednesday, with skies turning sunny by 3 p.m. Wednesday. While temperatures will be well below freezing, the diminishing winds and sunshine "warming" the tarmac should help crews to get the airport open by Thursday if not sooner.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:18:57 PM
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  • Are we through the worst of the windy weather? And where did the storm move to? tx
    Winds? 1/27/2015 7:19:51 PM
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  • Yes -- peak winds were a few hours ago and speeds should very slowly diminish over the next several hours, though still blizzard or near blizzard conditions for the Cape and Islands... and still not especially nice for the rest of the region.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:21:37 PM
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  • The snow right now is flying from eastern Connecticut and Rhode Island through the Boston area and into New Hampshire, Maine, and New Brunswick. The center of the storm is actually just southeast of Nantucket this point, and the pressure is down to 975 millibars.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:23:38 PM
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  • What is a millibar?
    Phoebe 1/27/2015 7:24:28 PM
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  • Phoebe - a millibar is a unit of atmospheric pressure. 975 millibars equals 28.80 inches of mercury on a barometer - that's a pretty low pressure, though far from the worst this region has seen.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:26:12 PM
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  • Recent radar image of Winter Storm Juno

    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:26:31 PM
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  • High tide is expected at 4 pm. What should we expect? A repeat of this morning?
    LauraNorton 1/27/2015 7:27:17 PM
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  • Laura -- the National Weather Service says the next high tide will be "probably more severe" for the north shore of Cape Cod as well as for Chatham and Nantucket, as compared to the morning high tide. Elsewhere, probably about the same.
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:29:46 PM
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  • Will there be school tomorrow?
    Phoebe 1/27/2015 7:30:48 PM
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  • Phoebe -- we have a hard enough time predicting the weather... predicting school officials' decisions is beyond our skill level :-)
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:32:49 PM
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  • I live in the southern end of Merrimack NH. We have maybe 12-14 in. But just a few miles S/E in Nashua, they are reporting 27 inches. That's amazing!
    michael fallon 1/27/2015 7:33:07 PM
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  • Unfortunately, that's all the time we have this afternoon. Nick, thank you so much for being here.
    Catherine Cloutier 1/27/2015 7:33:52 PM
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  • Michael -- Now you see why New Yorkers are so frustrated. These amazing differences almost always happen somewhere in a snowstorm if you look closely enough!
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:33:54 PM
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  • My pleasure. Thank you Catherine and thank you to everyone reading!
    nick.wiltgen 1/27/2015 7:34:26 PM
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  • We'll be updating our storm coverage here on bostonglobe.com throughout the night. Please share your updates, photos, and videos with us on social media by using #BOSnow or #Blizzardof2015.
    Catherine Cloutier 1/27/2015 7:35:51 PM
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