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Doria flooding photo
Flooding along the Millstone River in Millstone associated with Tropical Storm Doria in 1971.

With more than a third of the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season behind us, many may assume this season has been quiet. However, the two hurricanes already named mark the first time since 1992 when the first two named storms have reached hurricane strength and the first time there have been two hurricanes by this date since 2008. With the peak of the tropical season yet to come, the question is whether the heart of the season will be active or quiet. The National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center recently updated their seasonal forecast, projecting only a 5% chance of an active season and 70% chance of a less than normal one. Still, it only takes one storm to seriously impact NJ, so we can never let our guard down. With this in mind, here is a brief history of memorable tropical cyclones affecting New Jersey and a summary of the frequency of storms through the hurricane season.

Latest Conditions & Forecast

Enter a zipcode to view the latest conditions, forecasts, graphs, maps and more for the location nearest to you.

New Brunswick, NJ

73°F

Wind

3 mph from the SW

Wind Gust

5 mph from the SW

Mostly Sunny
94 °F
Scattered Thunderstorms
70 °F
Sunny
87 °F
Mostly Clear
62 °F
Sunny
88 °F
Mostly Clear
65 °F
Mostly Sunny
89 °F
Chance Thunderstorms
69 °F
Chance Thunderstorms
89 °F
Chance Thunderstorms
65 °F
Partly Sunny
77 °F
Mostly Cloudy
58 °F
Mostly Sunny
78 °F

Today

Mostly sunny, with a high near 94. Light southwest wind becoming west 8 to 13 mph in the morning.

Tonight

Scattered showers and thunderstorms before 1am, then isolated showers between 1am and 2am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 70. Southwest wind 6 to 9 mph becoming northwest after midnight. Chance of precipitation is 30%. New rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.

Wednesday

Sunny, with a high near 87. Northwest wind around 7 mph.

Wednesday Night

Mostly clear, with a low around 62. West wind around 5 mph becoming calm in the evening.

Thursday

Sunny, with a high near 88. Calm wind becoming south around 6 mph in the afternoon.

Thursday Night

Mostly clear, with a low around 65.

Friday

Mostly sunny, with a high near 89.

Friday Night

A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly cloudy, with a low around 69. Chance of precipitation is 30%.

Saturday

A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with a high near 89. Chance of precipitation is 40%.

Saturday Night

A chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 65. Chance of precipitation is 30%.

Sunday

Partly sunny, with a high near 77.

Sunday Night

Mostly cloudy, with a low around 58.

Monday

Mostly sunny, with a high near 78.

Latest Extremes

City, State Temp
Sea Girt, NJ 83
Atlantic City (NJDOT), NJ 78
West Cape May, NJ 78
Dennis Twp., NJ 78
Atlantic City Marina, NJ 78
City, State Temp
Oswego Lake, NJ 66
Pequest, NJ 67
Hope, NJ 67
Walpack, NJ 67
Lafayette, NJ 68
most current information as of Sep 2 7:36 AM

More News

Rainfall estimate map

Extremely heavy rain drenched portions of the Mid-Atlantic during the daytime hours on August 12 until after sunrise on the 13th. Starting off in the Washington-Baltimore area and moving up into central Long Island, a narrow ribbon of rainfall exceeding 5”, and over 10” in a few locales, resulted in flash flooding that resulted in water rescues and many damaged roads and vehicles. Excessively heavy rains, occasionally accompanied by lightning, traveled up a frontal boundary that was associated with an unusually strong August low-pressure system situated over the Great Lakes. The...

Thunderstorm photo

Despite a general feeling amongst NJ residents that July 2014 was a cold summer month, in actuality, compared to long-term records, it was rather average. The statewide average temperature of 74.5° was 0.5° below the 1981-2010 mean. However, it was 0.3° above the 1895-present mean and ranked as the 45th warmest July of the past 119 years. Even the number of afternoons with temperatures of 90° or higher was close to normal. So why the common misperception? Some armchair psychology brings me to four possibilities: 1) The first half of the month was above average, while the more recent...

Beach sunset photo

Another comfortable mid-summer air mass is destined to invade the Garden State this week. This arrives on the heels of several other mild, dry air masses that have contributed to making this a rather average July in the temperature department. While many may think that this has been an exceptionally cool summer, it has not. However, given that the most recent four Julys all ranked within the top six for heat dating all the way back to 1895, all are forgiven for any misperception! The overall pattern that has led to temperatures more often being on the cool than than warm side of the...

Latest Blog Posts

Storm Chasing Photo 2
From May 28 to June 10, 2014, 15 aspiring meteorologists from Rutgers University headed on a journey to the central US on the hunt for tornadoes. This trip was a Rutgers course designed to teach students how to forecast severe weather, and actually witness severe storms first hand, with the possibility of seeing a tornado. Tornado chasing popularity has been on the rise because of popular TV...
Our now-retired web site that for many years dutifully disseminated valuable New Jersey weather and climate data to citizens, educators, government officials and agencies, emergency managers and more was in need of an update. Today, we're pleased to make our new web site available to the general public for the first time. This latest incarnation of the New Jersey Weather and Climate Network,...

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Mid-Atlantic Deluge

August 13, 2014 - 5:40pm -- Dave Robinson

Rainfall estimate map

Extremely heavy rain drenched portions of the Mid-Atlantic during the daytime hours on August 12 until after sunrise on the 13th. Starting off in the Washington-Baltimore area and moving up into central Long Island, a narrow ribbon of rainfall exceeding 5”, and over 10” in a few locales, resulted in flash flooding that resulted in water rescues and many damaged roads and vehicles. Excessively heavy rains, occasionally accompanied by lightning, traveled up a frontal boundary that was associated with an unusually strong August low-pressure system situated over the Great Lakes. The atmospheric impulses riding up this front joined forces with abundant atmospheric moisture (in the top 1% for the region) to bring multiple inches per hour rainfall rates…for multiple hours.

The heaviest rain was situated within less than a 10-mile wide path. Within 20 miles on either side, totals fell off to a mere inch or two, or even less. Such is the nature of these events, where despite the abundant atmospheric moisture, there is a finite amount of water available. The dynamics concentrated the atmospheric lifting, thus the condensation of the majority of the moisture and resultant rainfall, while adjacent areas balanced out the lifted air with subsiding air that greatly limited rainfall totals.

A Rather Average July, Believe It or Not: July 2014 Summary

August 4, 2014 - 6:26pm -- Dave Robinson

Thunderstorm photo

Despite a general feeling amongst NJ residents that July 2014 was a cold summer month, in actuality, compared to long-term records, it was rather average. The statewide average temperature of 74.5° was 0.5° below the 1981-2010 mean. However, it was 0.3° above the 1895-present mean and ranked as the 45th warmest July of the past 119 years. Even the number of afternoons with temperatures of 90° or higher was close to normal. So why the common misperception? Some armchair psychology brings me to four possibilities:

1) The first half of the month was above average, while the more recent weeks were on the cool side. Our perceptions are biased toward the most recent.

2) People have yet to “recover" from the cold start of 2014. The dubious media ramblings of the “polar vortex" returning to the eastern US in mid-July fueled these thoughts.

3) The most recent four NJ Julys all rank in the top six for warmth over the past 119 years. This was an amazing run of hot Julys.

4) Those sticking their toes in the Jersey surf in early July were shocked by water temperatures in the 50°s and may have equated this to the cool July atmosphere. The cold surf was actually indicative of persistent southerly winds that brought atmospheric warmth. This wind flow led to coastal upwelling that pushed warmer surface waters offshore and introduced cool deeper waters to the surf zone.

So this is how a normal July feels...

July 27, 2014 - 8:45pm -- Dave Robinson

Beach sunset photo

Another comfortable mid-summer air mass is destined to invade the Garden State this week. This arrives on the heels of several other mild, dry air masses that have contributed to making this a rather average July in the temperature department. While many may think that this has been an exceptionally cool summer, it has not. However, given that the most recent four Julys all ranked within the top six for heat dating all the way back to 1895, all are forgiven for any misperception!

The overall pattern that has led to temperatures more often being on the cool than than warm side of the ledger since last fall is one of pronounced waviness in the jet stream, with a resultant tendency for a ridge (northward swing) in western North America and a trough (dip in the jet) in the east. This allows cool and dry air to infiltrate our region, with warm and humid air kept at bay to the south. It has also kept the west in severe drought and plenty warm.

Soaking rains keep much of the Garden State green

July 17, 2014 - 10:59pm -- Dave Robinson

Heavy rain photo

The past week has seen localized soaking rains across much of NJ, though not everywhere has gotten clobbered. The map below shows rainfall totals from Sunday morning the 13th through the morning of the 16th. Over this roughly 72 hour interval as much as 8.52” fell in Howell Township (Monmouth County), followed by Belmar (Monmouth) with 7.42”, Wall Township (Ocean) 7.22”, Millstone Township (Monmouth) 5.98”, and Raritan (Somerset) 5.42”. To demonstrate the local variability of the precipitation, four Bridgewater (Somerset) locations received 5.09”, 4.55”, 4.41” and 3.88”. Differences were even more pronounced over distances of several tens of miles. For instance, only 20 miles from Howell, rainfall totaled just 0.89” at Seaside Heights (Ocean) to the south and 2.42” in Rumson (Monmouth) to the north.

On the Mild and Dry Side: June 2014 Summary and Mid-Year Recap

July 4, 2014 - 5:17pm -- Dave Robinson

Flood photo in Stewartsville

Statewide, the first six months of 2014 averaged 45.8°. This is 2.2° below normal and ranks as the 31st coolest since 1895. It was the coolest start since 2003, which was 45.0° and ranked 15th. Before then you have to go back to 1982 (45.3°), which ranked 20th. The chilliest was 1907 at 43.2°.

Precipitation (rain and melted snow) averaged 24.76" across NJ from January through June. This total is 2.11" above normal and is 26th wettest. Since 2003, four January-June intervals have been wetter, including last year. 2011 ranked one notch drier at 27th. The wettest first half of the year was 1983 at 32.51".

Heat, Rain, and Tropical Storms: Your Fourth of July Forecast

July 2, 2014 - 2:35pm -- Tom Karmel

Will this 4th of July holiday bring stormy or sunny skies?  (Photo credit: Dan Zarrow, ONJSC, 3/6/13)

The Fourth of July embodies the meaning of summer. Whether on a serene beach in Barnegat Light or in a crowded suburban backyard, New Jerseyans (and all Americans) come together for the day to celebrate our nation through excessive eating, relaxation, fireworks, and sporting the red, white, and blue. We welcome the chance to barbeque with family and friends, and just like any gathering, there is a family member you avoid... Maybe it's the uncle that eats all the food... Or the aunt who chews your ear off with anecdotes... This year, however, you'll have to keep an eye on Mother Nature.

This Friday forecast looms ahead of us with a chance of showers, which is nothing unusual. These storms look as though they should pass around noon, as a cold front advances through our region. However the impending impact of separate tropical system is far from the usual, as Tropical Storm Arthur was officially confirmed Tuesday morning.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Arthur is sitting just off the east coast of Florida and is predicted to accelerate north along the coast reaching Nova Scotia by Saturday. There is a possibility for landfall in North Carolina’s Outer Banks as a hurricane on early Friday morning before turning northeast during the day due to aforementioned front pushing it off the coast. With a bulk of the storm activity on the east side of the circulation, it will most likely not impact our area with rain as it turns away from the coast.

Rutgers in the Big Ten: a tradition of athletics, academics, and WEATHER

June 30, 2014 - 9:53am -- Dan Zarrow

Rutgers University Football Stadium
High Point Solutions Stadium at Rutgers University. (Photo: Wikipedia)

On July 1, Rutgers University officially becomes a member of the Big Ten Conference. In doing so, the Scarlet Knights join thirteen other schools in the Big Ten, bringing with it "new opportunities for academic collaboration and athletic competition."

In addition to a long-standing tradition of outstanding athletics and academics, 10 of the 14 universities in the Big Ten are home to their respective state's climate office. Each state climatologist serves as a focal point for all activities pertaining to the weather and climate of their state. The Office of the New Jersey State Climatologist at Rutgers University is proud to be among some great climatological company in the Big Ten.

In the spirit of that friendly, scholastic competition, we are putting the 14 Big Ten schools head-to-head in a weather and climatology showdown! Which school in which city and which state is the hottest? The coldest? The wettest? The snowiest? Click to find out!

Snow and more snow: 2013-2014 snow season recap

June 19, 2014 - 4:48pm -- Dave Robinson

Snow in Echo Lake Park

The record book on the winter of 2013-2014 officially closes on June 30. Given the recent streak of hot weather, and the summer solstice this Saturday, we're confident it's safe to run the calculations on seasonal snow totals a few days early. Indeed it will be hard for many New Jersey residents to forget this very active, cold, and snowy winter.

From first flake to last, this past season ranked 7th snowiest of the past 120 years. The statewide average snowfall was 54.3”, which is 28.4” (or 210%) above average. The most snow fell up north but ranked lowest of the three regions (14th) due to its normally higher seasonal average. The south had the least snow but ranked 9th highest. This was the third season on record that each of the three divisions recorded over 50"; the other two occurred in 1898-99 and 1957-58. All regions shared the snow load similarly through January. Snow was more plentiful in northern and central areas in February. The situation was reversed, exceedingly so, in March, when three accumulating events impacted the south but missed the other two regions.

A wet week: drenching rains and flash flooding visit opposite corners of the state

June 11, 2014 - 2:44pm -- Dan Zarrow

Photo of flash flooding in a parking lot

A steady stream of scattered showers and thunderstorms have brought heavy rain to several locations in New Jersey this week. And even more rain is in the forecast through the end of the week.

The deluge began on Monday morning, as commuters experienced periods of heavy, steady rain through parts of Mercer, Middlesex, Somerset, Union, Morris, Essex, and Bergen counties. The National Weather Service reported severe flash flooding in Newark, which required several motorists to be rescued.

Tuesday afternoon, another area of very heavy rain affected a narrow band in Camden, Gloucester, Burlington, and Atlantic counties. Rainfall estimates from the New Jersey Weather & Climate Network station in Sewell (Gloucester County) totaled almost 2 inches within just a half-hour from 4:30pm to 5:00pm on Tuesday. Widespread flash flooding, over a foot deep in spots, was reported to the National Weather Service by trained storm spotters and officials.

Typical Springtime Variability: May and Spring 2014 Summaries

June 7, 2014 - 1:01pm -- Dave Robinson

Flooding in Newark

May 2014 had a difficult time establishing an identity. What began with a storm that carried over from April 30th and resulted in the 7th largest flood of the past century in the Raritan basin on the 1st (see the April narrative for discussion of this event), later included some warm days, late freezes in a few locations, severe thunderstorms with hail in others, and a spectacular Memorial Day. Overall, May averaged 62.1°, which is 1.3° above average (compared to the 1981-2010 average). This ranks as the 35th warmest (tied with 1962) in the 120 years back to 1895. Precipitation averaged 5.18", which is 1.18" above average and ranks as 19th wettest. This value includes the considerable rain that fell on April 30th at National Weather Service Cooperative Stations that report during the morning hours (see April narrative for a full explanation).

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