High winds threaten New Year’s Eve fireworks at Space Needle
It is possible that for the first time ever, Mother Nature could cancel the Space Needle’s annual New Year’s Eve fireworks, with high winds in the forecast for Tuesday night.
The Space Needle says they’re planning for the midnight fireworks show as scheduled. Its team is monitoring the weather.
The Seattle Fire Department will be monitoring the weather in the hours leading up to midnight. They say they will call off the pyrotechnics if there are sustained winds of at least 25 miles-per-hour, or gusts exceeding 30 miles-per-hour.
That being so, the National Weather Service has issued a Wind Advisory that started at 10 a.m., and continues through 4 a.m. Wednesday.
NWS meteorologist Dustin Guy tells KIRO Radio that Seattle can expect sustained winds from 20 to 30 miles-per-hour throughout Tuesday night. He adds that we’ll likely see gusts from 40 to 45 miles per hour.
Things will be even worse toward the top of the Space Needle, where winds will likely be stronger.
“You could certainly add 5 of 10 miles an hour easily when you’re 500 feet off the ground,” said Guy.
According to Guy, the timing of these high winds couldn’t be worse in terms of fireworks, blowing the hardest between 7 p.m. and midnight.
The one bright spot, even if the fireworks are canceled, the light show will still go on as planned, at least giving revelers something with which to ring in the new year and decade.
If everything does go ahead as scheduled, the light show will be on display once an hour between 7 p.m. and 10 p.m., and then at midnight with fireworks for the grand finale. That will include 15,000 pounds of lighting fixtures, and tens of thousands of fireworks set up at 72 points along the 605-foot high iconic tower.
Rain is also expected, with the NWS warning Seattleites to “plan for a wet and windy New Year’s Eve.”