Snow Storm Just A Close Call?

By Terry Eliasen, WBZ-TV Executive Weather Producer

BOSTON (CBS) – The latest forecast models now suggest a huge snowstorm will miss southern New England.

The storm, expected to arrive Sunday evening, will now likely stay out to sea.

Check: Seven Day Forecast

A day after all of the computer models were showing a powerful nor’easter for our entire region, they have now shifted to the East significantly, meaning the likelihood of a major winter storm here Sunday and Monday has been greatly reduced.

Watch Barry Burbank’s forecast

For a nor’easter to come together you need to have all the ingredients just right, much like the pie you may be cooking for the holidays – a little bit too much of one thing or not enough of another and it just doesn’t taste right. 

In this case, we had energy from a northern jet stream phasing with (or combining) with a piece of energy in the southern jet stream, while at the same time gathering moisture from the Gulf of Mexico. 

This would form a potent storm off the southeastern U.S., then get drawn up to New England by winds at upper levels of the atmosphere.  A complex series of events for sure!

It now appears that all of these “ingredients” will come together in a slightly different fashion, still creating a very powerful ocean storm, but doing so too far to our east. 

Read: WBZ-TV Weather Blog

There is still a possibility that coastal New England and the Cape might see some light snow Sunday night and early Monday, but at this point it appears our best shot at a white Christmas could come later on Tuesday. 

The storm will stall up in the Canadian Maritimes and rotate spokes of snow southward, leaving us one final chance to whiten the ground before Santa arrives.

More from Barry Burbank
  • victor

    Ha ha remember what say yesterday few flurries. They always wrong. Last night potential foot snow? They have no idea was going happend. Once again they wrong wrong ahgain.

    • Heather trust a news station to give you 100% accurate weather? Are you 2 or just a little numb in the brain? If you look at all the weather models out there, one especially comes to mind – Unisys – you can see the track and it takes the Low Pressure way out to sea. At the most, areas of central and Southern New England will get a couple of inches.

      I don’t go by news channels. I go by tracking the systems based off of satellite images. You should try it. And then get hooked on Phonics.

      • JonM

        Sorry, I meant to say Victor instead of Virgil. My mistake.

      • JonM

        I don’t get why anyone thinks they have access to better computer models than the local news stations, or better ability to interpret those models than their trained meteorologists. My advice to Heather, if you really dig meteorology and enjoy looking at the models, then do it for that reason, but don’t think you’ll get a more accurate forecast that way. If accuracy is what you want, save yourself the time; just listen to the news stations.

        The problem is, most people don’t LISTEN CAREFULLY to these news stations. They hear “50/50 chance that we’ll get a foot of snow” and say “wow, that must mean we’ll get at least 6 inches, no matter what”. If they listened to early forecasts, they were all saying things like “2 of 4 models say we’ll get nothing”.

        So, NO, Virgil, they weren’t wrong, because they never said “definite significant snow”. That’s just what you heard.

        Another problem: too many people expect 100% accuracy.
        NEWS FLASH: Nobody can give you a 100% accurate forecast! It’s as likely as someone predicting precisely which way the stock market will move each day with 100% accuracy. It can’t be done. That’s why they talk in ranges of possible snow, and probabilities.

        I think some folks just have trouble understanding probabilities. Some folks only think in “black & white”, and expect to hear “black & white” clear cut answers to all their questions, so they either misinterpret “60% chance” as “100% chance”, or they correctly interpret “60%”, but just get angry that they’re not being told “100% chance”.

      • Heather

        JonM – I did not say Unisys was 100%, I said it took it out to sea. And I save myself more time following radar directly from it’s source rather than waiting for the news to come on at 5 and 11PM that offers me nothing more than a newscaster in a fancy suit prancing infront of the camera to give me a breif synopsis of the weather at Logan Airport. Go ahead and watch the news if you’d like. I’m not the one that was hyping this from the start. I said to myself “we’ll probably get a dusting, inch at the most” (in Danvers), and now listen to what they’re saying. I’m not saying I’m right 100% of the time either, but I do not believe most of the meteorologists on TV. If they weren’t as animated in their performance people probably wouldn’t watch.

    • Wicked Wilbur

      Great spelling, No Verbs in there!

    • Dave

      Your grammar is pathetic! The only person “wrong” is you! Go back to school hunny!

      • Jen

        Victor who predicted a foot of snow last night??
        I watch all the area news channels for the weather and not one meteorologist said there would be a foot of snow last night.
        Maybe check where you get your info

      • TH

        Channel 5 did. Both Harvey and J.C.

  • Sandy

    Better run out and get the milk and toilet paper..

    • ken r

      And don’t forget the run to the package store in case the road are closed like in ’78

  • Joe

    Victor doesn’t know what grammar is. He thinks you’re talking about his grandma.

  • Beans

    You guys are really rude. He might not have the best grammer but should be as free as you are to express his opinion. Keep your racist comments to yourself.

    • Swamper

      Wow, typical liberal, you disagree with someone and your a racist, what has race got to do with his comment? Or are you making an assumption which if you are, is racist in itself and you should be looking at yourself!

    • A

      What does grammar have to do with race? Victor never mentioned his race. You are making assumtions, which is just as racist, if not more so!

      Let’s stick to the weather! And by the way, the meteorologists all are doing a great jopb keeping us up to date on the latest. They have not been wrong about anything yet. Factors in the atmosphere change, but how would you nay-sayers with no meteorological experience know that!?

  • Kate

    I can’t believe how rude everyone is being. Obviously you care somewhat about what the weather people have to say or else you wouldn’t be here reading this article! Thanks so much for contributing to the bullying epidemic we have in this country.

    • Amanda

      Well said!

      I hope we get the snowstorm:-))

      • Liz

        I’m with you! I”ll take a couple of feet….
        Let it snow, Let it snow!


        I SECOND THAT.

      • Ralph I. Marple III

        I think all the weather men r wrong and its going to bomb out and stall and give us 3 feet with hurricane wind gusts major coastal flooding.

  • bill

    Let’s get back to the subject. They are wrong again. No snow, maybe a flurry.

  • Jonathan

    Ralph850 – “We need a common language, used properly so that we can understand one another. Victor here does not care to be part of our society so he did not bother to learn grammar.”

    Yes, we all need to speak the same language. However I suspect your comments about Victor are incorrect. He likely learned a different language and is now attempting to use English. Yes, his English grammar is atrocious, but at least he made an attempt. So many new American citizens don’t even bother.

    Any native New Englander will on the other hand understand just how difficult making an accurate 72 hour forecast can. Barry Burbank is one of the regions better forecasters. Yes the potential for a large snow storm still exists, the tricky question is where will it be, so far it seems that it will largely be out at sea.

  • sean

    So originally it was some flurries then it was definitely a foot of snow in some areas, and now maybe a dusting all because a computer model had an “aberration.” Where are the days where a meteorologist would sit and research areas of pressures and come up with their own forecast instead of relying on a compute model? What happened to the days where they were driven to provide the most accurate forecast instead of trying to get the most ratings?

  • Wayne

    Though I agree with your comment in principal, not content, and hate the whole P.C. movement in the future you may want to properly use commas and punctuation when you criticize someone’s lack of grammar.

  • jakee

    i dont understand this, why is it only BOSTON that always has hard time forcasting snow. alabama mississippii tennessi and all the midwest states all predicted snow and it happend. same thing with new york. Why is it always here. Yesterday they said a foot the day before that they said trace and now they done know and we are 2 away godness

  • Bear

    Call Don Kent, he’ll know………….

  • Tammy

    Dear Mother Nature,
    You and I need to have a sit down because you are pulling on my heart strings and all I want is some white fluffy stuff, usually goes by the name of snow, maybe you forgot?? Please stop messing with the weathermen, K thanks a bunch!!


  • Tammy

    Everyone who is complaining about Victor and his/her grammer should be happy that he/she is actually trying to learn English. Our language is one of the hardest to learn. I give him/her kudos on actually trying unlike some people who come here and expect us to learn their language to communicate with them, or feel it is a hassel for them.

    • Mohammad

      WOW… how do you know if victor is even foreign, not that it matters at all.. how do you know he isnt just some random guy just trying to quickly put a comment out there.. not caring at all about grammer, like me. Honestly if this is what people do in their spare time (correcting people’s grammer) than get a life..

  • sean

    Jen…last night on this website Barry said we would have a foot of snow and blizzard like conditions which is what he alluded to when he said there was an “aberration.”

  • My $0,02

    I heard more than one meteorologist say the words “more than a foot likely” yesterday. Just my $0.02.

  • Hadie Nuff

    Stop crying about a weather forecast being “wrong” 72 hours in advance. If it comes, grab a shovel. If it doesn’t, it’s still cold and it’s still dead-ass winter.

  • Charlie

    I think there will be an area that will get a few inches just away from the coast, and a much wetter snow at the coast, if u live west and north of 495 u will only get an inch or 2 from backlash Tuesday, south and east of there there will be an area where they get 2 or 3 inches from the storm and then get a back lash with an additional inch or two, sorry it’s not the foot but it’s something :)

  • leah

    I am getting tired of the storm. It keeps changing. I want to get the storm that they were talking about with a foot of snow. I am getting tired of so called flurries.

  • Steve

    They get all hot and bothered when the first storm comes around they try to be the first on the block to make the call!

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