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Severe Thunderstorms Possible In Central, Eastern Massachusetts

BOSTON (CBS) - The East Coast is currently in an atmospheric "squeeze play." A large area of high pressure is anchored off the coast just south of Nova Scotia and it is serving as a roadblock for weather trying to move west to east.

The main frontal boundary that we have been watching (and waiting) on has been moving at a snail's pace the last few days, literally taking days to move through the Upper Midwest and now Mid Atlantic. Typically, when we see a cold front in those areas it is a matter of hours until we are affected in New England. Now, as we look ahead to our weekend, the front is finally approaching our area and unfortunately it looks as though it may slow to a stall as it reaches the New England coastline on Saturday.

Flash flood watches are posted for portions of western Massachusetts Friday morning in anticipation of as much as 1-to-3 inches of rain from the slow moving band of downpours.

Current timing has the rain arriving in Worcester County mid-morning on Friday and in eastern Mass. by the early afternoon. Areas in central and eastern Mass. are not currently under any flood watches or warnings mainly because the front is expected to lose a bit of its punch as it runs into the dry air associated with the high pressure to our east.


We will see some scattered showers in our area Friday afternoon and evening though, and perhaps even an isolated thunderstorm. Even though the risk of severe weather is relatively low here on Friday, given the amount of "spin" in the atmosphere, we will need to closely watch radar trends to be sure a storm doesn't start to build and rotate, again a fairly low risk but not zero.

I wish I could say the front would just keep inching eastward Friday night and forecast a bright and sunny Saturday but, of course, it isn't that simple. It appears the frontal boundary will stall either just over eastern Mass. or just offshore, thereby keeping clouds and a risk of showers near the coast and over southeastern Mass. and the Cape.


The farther west you live or travel on Saturday, the greater the chance of seeing sunshine and drier (more comfy) air. While areas along the coast will likely be stuck in the clouds and still feeling the humidity, just 10-20 miles inland, perhaps as close as Route 495, will be basking in sunshine and low dewpoints.


It does appear that things will get moving again Saturday night and early Sunday. While we can't rule out one final wave of rain along the front early on Sunday (affecting eastern Mass.), we should get a good deal of sunshine for all of southern New England for the majority of the day.

The forecast for Gillette Stadium Sunday afternoon - mainly sunny, low 70s, comfy and a big W!

As always, we urge that you stay tuned to WBZ-TV, and CBSN Boston for updates!

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