Tropical Storm Ophelia rushed ashore in North Carolina early Saturday morning.
While coastal communities from North Carolina to New Jersey are currently dealing with flooding and storm surge issues, Schuylkill County will not be immune to the impact of Ophelia’s landfall and slow progress up the East Coast.
Some relatively heavy rain and wind is still forecast for us here as Ophelia saunters north.
The following information is based on the 11 a.m. Saturday update from National Hurricane Center and the latest forecast for Schuylkill County from National Weather Service in State College.
11 a.m. Update on Tropical Storm Ophelia
Here’s a look at the current trajectory of Ophelia as it moves north and inland. National Hurricane Center just sent out this cone map with its most recent update:
This map is showing Ophelia’s pace quickening somewhat and now a sharp right turn toward the Atlantic Ocean on Sunday evening, after it is downgraded to a Tropical Depression.
Currently, Ophelia is still a Tropical Storm with maximum sustained winds at 50 mph. The storm is also moving due north at 13 mph.
Rain from Ophelia in Schuylkill County
So, how does this information affect the forecast for Schuylkill County this weekend?
Currently, we’re seeing the National Hurricane Center predicting slightly less rain here than it was on Thursday and Friday.
Based on this map, you’ll see Schuylkill County and much of eastern Pennsylvania is firmly in the 1-2 inches zone:
That’s probably still enough to ruin any plans you might have had outdoors for the rest of today and tomorrow but less than was forecast a couple days ago.
In a Hazardous Weather statement from NWS-State College, the agency says, “Rainfall totals by Sunday morning will be close to 2 inches with spot amounts closer to 3 inches possible.”
The local forecast for the area shows that we could get a maximum 2 inches of rain here through Sunday night here in Pottsville.
Wind from Ophelia in Schuylkill County
The wind from Ophelia was never much of a concern here in Schuylkill County. And the latest updates on the storm show they’re still not much of a worry.
Breezy, yes. In fact, wind gusts could hit 31-32 mph today and tomorrow here. But that’s far from Tropical Storm-force winds. And sustained winds will range from 15-20 mph this weekend.
NOTE: We’ll have updates on Ophelia’s impact here in Schuylkill County if conditions or future forecasts warrant.