A lot has become evident over the last 24 hours. Mathew's forecast is beginning to become more clear, so let's get started.
Hurricane Matthew has weakened a bit since yesterday, down from a Category 4 to a Category 3, but still powerful nevertheless. However, the forecast with Matthew has becoming increasingly more clear. The forecast models we rely on the most with tropical weather forecasting have been producing out to sea tracks over the last 24 hours, and it appears that the they should be right. There are a few reasons for this. Firstly, Matthew's decreased speed means that it will not have time to race up the coast, rather, just slowly move off the southeast coast. Secondly, the late-week dip in the jet stream that we were talking about yesterday, that would send it into the coast, now looks significantly weaker, so it would have no steering flow to come up the coast.
We did talk about this being on the table, just about as much as storm racing up the coast, yesterday. Because that dip in the Jet Stream does not appear to be as much of a player anymore, the ridge of high pressure, along with the atmospheric currents, will bring the storm up the Florida coast, and then out to sea. Some models show the storm doing a "loop" in the ocean with its track, but nevertheless, impacts here seem to very little, if there are any.
While this is the best case for us, this is the worse case scenario for the southeast. The storm is still getting pulled north by the high pressure, it just won't come all the way off the coast. It does appear that a landfall could be possible anywhere along the Florida coast. The storm then parallels the Georgia and South Carolina coastlines, as a weakening, but still strong, hurricane before heading out to sea. It does look like the worst impacts will be just offshore, but what would this mean for them?
All in all, while some may criticize my earlier forecast, and call this a bust, I'm happy it is. A landfalling Category 2 or 3 hurricane in SoMD would cause so much destruction and devastation. This area would look like a natural disaster zone. We dodged a huge bullet this time, but next time we may not be so lucky. However, the southeast will not be so lucky. Stay tuned to JB Weather for the latest Southern Maryland weather forecasts.