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Saturday Soaker Incoming for New England: Timing & Impacts

This Saturday will be yet another soaker for most of New England. This will come as a strong cold front pushes through New England from the west. As this happens, the remnants of Tropical Storm Philippe (the storm will become post-tropical in the Gulf of Maine) will likely pass into eastern Maine. Philippe will be absorbed by the frontal system over the weekend, leading to the potential for heavier rain.



While the approaching front will create a lot of clouds and a few light showers Friday and Friday night, the main event will arrive on Saturday. Steadier rain and more widespread showers from the cold front will likely enter into western New England by Saturday morning and gradually push eastward during the day. Heavy rain from Philippe will enter into Maine by Saturday afternoon.


Expected weather Saturday morning. You can see the heaviest band of rain from the front in eastern New York pushing east. You can also see Philippe's remnants approaching from the south in the bottom right corner:



It looks increasingly likely that the heaviest of the rain will fall across New England Saturday evening through Sunday morning. Despite this, there will be a constant chance for showers beginning Friday evening, with steadier downpours possible beginning Saturday morning. Saturday afternoon and night is likely when downpours will be most numerous. These downpours will be most common across western New England (Vermont, Connecticut and the Berkshires) as well as Maine. These two areas will have the best chance at seeing multiple inches of rain.


Expected weather Saturday evening. Heaviest rain across Vermont, steady rain from Philippe's remnants approach Maine. Also notice the lack of heavier rain in between western New England and Maine:


Downpours are looking to be less common across southern New Hampshire, central and eastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island. It still won't be dry in these areas, there will just be less overall rain. Rainfall also will not be a constant rate, sometimes it'll be a drizzly overcast, other times it will be a downpour.



It looks like Philippe's remnants will enter into Maine by Saturday night. The center is looking to impact somewhere along Maine's midcoast region. Exactly where and when the center impacts land is inconsequential as the system will be post-tropical as it gets absorbed by the cold front. The leading edge of the rain from Philippe will enter into Maine well before the actual center makes it to land.


Philippe's heaviest rain will likely impact Maine overnight Saturday night into Sunday morning. Drenching, torrential rains will be possible across most of the state all night long. Rainfall rates up to a half an inch an hour will be possible at times during the night. The further east in Maine you go, the more rain is likely to fall at this time.


Expected weather early Sunday morning. This is the Euro model showing the heaviest rain impacting the center of the state. Other major models (American, Canadian) have the heaviest rain pushed further to the east. The general idea is that the eastern two thirds of Maine will have the best chance for these drenching rains. Steady rain also continues in Vermont and the White Mountains:



By Sunday morning, the frontal system and Philippe will have merged together and will push northwest into Quebec. Sunday will see conditions dry out for most of New England. Lighter showers will likely continue for northern New England as the system sits to the north of New England. By Sunday afternoon, a vast majority of New England will likely have seen at least a half an inch of rain with 1-3 inches across much of Vermont, the White Mountains and most of Maine.


It's looking increasingly likely that the highest of rain totals will be centered in eastern Maine for New England, where locally up to 4 inches is possible. The Champlain Valley will be another area to watch for the highest totals. Overall, the absolute highest of rain totals from the system look to occur to New England's north, in Quebec.



FLOODING CONCERNS


At this time, widespread, significant flooding is not expected by way of river flooding or flash flooding. Some rivers have the possibility to reach minor flood stage in Vermont and Maine, but a vast majority are not forecast to reach flood stage. Northern New England is being aided by the fact that it has now been a few weeks since the last appreciable rainfall for most of the area since the last two storms primarily affected southern New England, so soils have dried out and rivers are running lower.



Flash floods are a possibility, but not expected to be widespread at this time. Overall, flooding issues are looking to be minor/nuisance rather than bigger issues. Flash flooding is also looking to be more localized rather than affect larger areas. Like yesterday, this threat level is not set in stone, and we need to continue to watch trends today. Areas in yellow below will have the greatest chance to see localized flooding issues.


Flood watches have not been posted anywhere in New England as writing, but some could go up later today.



WIND


Winds will also be gusty with Philippe in Maine. Winds will be concentrated more on the east side of the system, so Downeast Maine would likely see the highest wind gusts. Maximum gusts of 40-50mph will be possible. Gusts of this strength are generally below the threshold for tree damage, but wind advisories may be posted for the storm as heavy rain will saturate soils, making trees easier to uproot. Overall, impacts from Philippe in Maine will be much less than that of Lee.



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