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Hagerstown unlikely to feel effects of Hurricane Earl

Rain associated with the hurricane is expected to be 'hugging the coast'

September 02, 2010|By DAVE McMILLION

Area gardeners hoping for rain from Hurricane Earl to help salvage what's left of their withered flowers and vegetables are likely in for a disappointment.

Although Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley signed a declaration of emergency in preparation for Hurricane Earl, National Weather Service officials said the rain from the hurricane is expected to stay on the East Coast and away from the Hagerstown area.

Hurricane Earl is expected to reach Maryland today about 1 a.m. and the rain associated with the hurricane is expected to be "hugging the coast," said Brandon Peloquin, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Sterling, Va.

A cold front is expected to cross through the local area this afternoon and evening, and because that system is moving from west to east, it is expected to help turn Hurricane Earl away from the Tri-State area, Peloquin said.

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The cold front will trigger a slight chance for rain as it passes through today, Peloquin said.

About the only hint locally that Hurricane Earl is passing by Maryland will be high clouds, Peloquin said.

"That might be somewhat interesting," Peloquin said.

Local crops and residential gardens have taken a beating this summer because of dry weather. Hagerstown is experiencing its second driest summer on record with 4.96 inches of rain.

This summer also has been the hottest on record for Hagerstown with a three-month summer average temperature of 77.7 degrees, according to Hagerstown weather observer Greg Keefer's website at i4weather.net.

Temperatures are expected to start dropping in the area and on Saturday, the high temperature only is expected to be 74 degrees, according to the National Weather Service. Sunday's high temperature is expected to be 78 degrees.

O'Malley advised travelers not to drive to or from Ocean City during the height of stormy weather from Hurricane Earl, although he said it's unlikely the seaside vacation spot will have to be evacuated.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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