Thunderstorms and flooding dampen NJ’s Memorial Day Weekend
If you were one of the unlucky who saw a thunderstorm Saturday evening, any outdoor celebration came to an abrupt halt. Fueled by 90-degree air temperatures and high humidity, those widely scattered thunderstorms were on the strong side, producing heavy rain and even some hail.
The storms became more widespread and the rain became steadier overnight. Much of Central NJ has received upward of 2 inches of rain. Radar estimates the area around Lincroft, Red Bank, Eatontown, and Tinton Falls in Monmouth County saw 4 or 5 inches of rain!
So it's no wonder we have flooding concerns on this Sunday morning. A Flash Flood Warning has been issued for the following locations:
--SE Monmouth County, until 8:30 a.m.
--NW Middlesex and SE Somerset counties, until 8:45 a.m.
--NE Monmouth County, until 9:45 a.m.
--South-central Hunterdon County, until 10:30 a.m.
Additionally, a Flash Flood Watch is in effect for most of New Jersey until late morning. Several Flood Advisories are posted as well, due to high water.
Our newsroom reports high standing water has necessitated several partial or total road closures around the state:
--Route 33 in Freehold between Rt 9 and 79
--Route 79 in Freehold between Rt 33 and Brinkenhoff Ave
--Route 35 in Eatontown near Wyckoff Rd
--Route 35 in Aberdeen between County Rd and Laurence Pkway
--Route 22 in North Plainfield between Watchung Ave and North Drive
JCP&L reports about 5,000 customers have lost power in the Manalapan area of Monmouth County.
Also, minor coastal flooding is expected at the times of high tide Sunday, with up to a foot of extra water pushing against the coast. Making it even more a "not a beach day".
So it's a soggy start to your Sunday, and traveling could be difficult due to heavy rain and flooded roads. Attempting to cross a flooded roadway is very dangerous — the water may be deeper and swifter than you think.
There has also been some social media buzz regarding storm damage and a possible tornado in Monmouth County Saturday night.
The Storm Prediction Center shows one official severe weather report for New Jersey so far. 20 to 25 downed trees were reported in the Twinbrook Village area of of Ocean Township (Monmouth County) around 7:13 p.m. Saturday.
I looked back at radar from the time, and there's no tornado signature present. Additionally, no warnings were issued for this storm by the National Weather Service. To me, the situation reads more like a straight-line wind or a wet microburst — let's see if additional information, photos, evidence, storm surveys, etc. come out.
While Sunday will not be a total washout, you'll encounter a "mostly wet" day overall. It looks like we'll get a lull in the rainfall intensity and spread Sunday afternoon, before steadier rain returns Sunday evening. It will definitely be cloudier and cooler than Saturday, with most temperatures stuck in the 60s (at best) all day.
The forecast for Memorial Day Monday is still shaping up well. Models show only a few isolated showers. High temperatures will depend on how much cloud cover we see. If clouds win the day, thermometers will get stuck in the upper 60s to around 70. Any burst of sunshine could help to push temperatures to near 80 degrees.