Ike's storm surge an extreme danger to Texas

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 9:06 PM GMT on September 11, 2008

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Hurricane Ike remains a huge a dangerous Category 2 hurricane, and has changed little since this morning. Ike's central pressure continues to hold steady at 950 mb, as measured by the Hurricane Hunters at 3:14 pm EDT. Ike's tiny 9-mile wide eye appears to be collapsing, which will allow a new eyewall of much larger-diameter to form. This event should allow Ike to start intensifying tonight. The latest Tropical Cyclone Heat Potential image shows that the center of Ike has just finished crossing a cold eddy in the Gulf of Mexico waters, and is now beginning to pass along the north side of a warm eddy. This change in oceanic heat should also help allow Ike to intensify tonight. The eddy is not ideally positioned, though, for rapid intensification to occur. The eddy is on the left (weak) side of the hurricane, where wind speeds are slower since the forward motion of the storm subtracts from the wind speed of the circulation. These lower-speed winds will be able to evaporate less moisture from the warm ocean than if the eddy were positioned on Ike's right side. Oceanic heat content remains moderately high after Ike crosses the eddy, which should allow some modest strengthening to continue. Wind shear of 10-15 knots and dry air on Ike's west side is hampering Ike slightly, as evidenced by the lack of upper-level outflow on the storm's west side and lack of heavy thunderstorm activity. Shear is expected to decrease to 5 knots by the time of landfall Saturday morning, and I expect Ike will be maintaining its strength or slowly intensifying right up until landfall. Ike will probably be at the top end of Category 2 strength at landfall, with 110 mph winds.

Comparisons to Carla and Katrina
Ike is larger than Katrina was, both in its radius of tropical storm force winds--275 miles--and in it radius of hurricane force winds--115 miles. For comparison, Katrina's tropical storm and hurricane force winds extended out 230 and 105 miles, respectively. Ike's surge will probably rival the massive storm surge of Hurricane Carla of 1961. Carla was a Category 4 hurricane with 145 mph winds at landfall, and drove a 10 foot or higher storm surge to a 180-mile stretch of Texas coast. A maximum storm surge of 22 feet was recorded at Port Lavaca, Texas. Despite the fact that the center of Carla hit over 120 miles southwest of Houston, the hurricane drove a 15-foot storm surge into the bays along the south side of the city. Ike's maximum surge is not likely to reach the extreme values above 20 feet seen in Hurricane Carla, though.


Figure 1. Experimental storm surge heights for Ike. There is a 10% chance the storm surge from Ike will exceed these values. Data courtesy of NOAA.

The total energy of Ike
The amount of water Ike has put in motion is about 10% greater than what Katrina did, and thus we can expect Ike's storm surge damage will be similar to or greater than Katrina's. The way we can estimate this damage potential is to compute the total energy of Ike's surface winds (kinetic energy). To do this, we must look at how strong the winds are, and factor in the areal coverage of these winds. Thus, we compute the Integrated Kinetic Energy (IKE) by squaring the velocity of the wind and summing over all regions of the hurricane with tropical storm force winds or higher. This "Integrated Kinetic Energy" was recently proposed by Dr. Mark Powell of NOAA's Hurricane Research Division as a better measure of the destructive power of a hurricane's storm surge than the usual Category 1-5 Saffir-Simpson scale. For example, Hurricane Katrina hit Mississippi as a strong Category 3 hurricane, yet its storm surge was more characteristic of a Category 5 storm. Dr. Powell came up with a new scale to rate potential storm surge damage based on IKE (not to be confused with Hurricane Ike!) The new scale ranges from 1-6. Katrina and Wilma at their peaks both earned a 5.1 on this scale (Figure 2). At 12:30pm EDT today, Ike earned a 5.2 on this scale, the second highest kinetic energy of any Atlantic storm in the past 40 years. Hurricane Isabel of 2003 had the highest. Note that the figures I quoted in this morning's blog saying Ike had an IKE of 180, 50% higher than Katrina's, were found to be in error due to some bad data from one of the Hurricane Hunter observations (the IKE is an experimental product, after all). Thus, this morning's IKE was actually a little lower than Katrina's.


Figure 2. Comparison of the potential damage from storm surge and waves on a scale of 1 to 6 (left scale, and corresponding to little "x" marks on the plot), as a function of total Integrated Kinetic Energy in Tera-joules (IKE, on the right scale, corresponding to the little squares on the plot). Hurricane Ike at 12:30pm EDT had an IKE of 134, 10% higher than the value of 122 Katrina had at landfall in Mississippi. Ike's amount of wind energy can generate storm surge and wave damage rated at 5.2 on a scale of 1 to 6, worse than Katrina's 5.1 at landfall. Image credit:"Tropical Cyclone Destructive Potential by Integrated Kinetic Energy" by Mark Powell and Timothy Reinhold.

Ike's waves
All this energy is also going into the waves in the Gulf of Mexico, and the offshore oil rigs can expect to receive a terrific battering. At 1:50pm CDT, waves at the buoy 42001 180nm south of Louisiana peaked at 30 feet. NHC is predicting Ike's waves will peak at 50 feet (15 meters) in the northern Gulf on Friday. For comparison, Hurricane Ivan of 2004 generated 27 meter (89 foot) high waves in the Gulf of Mexico. The oil companies spent hundreds of millions of dollars upgrading their oil rigs in the Gulf in the wake of the destruction wrought by Ivan and Katrina and Rita, and I'm not anticipating severe damage to the rigs from Ike's 50-foot waves.

Ike's storm surge
According to the NOAA tide gauges, the storm tides along the Mississippi coast have peaked at 4 feet above normal, and are currently running 5 feet above normal on the east side of New Orleans at Shell Beach in Lake Borgne. A storm surge of 5.9 feet was observed in New Orleans' Industrial Canal at 10:45 am CDT, and 5.75 feet in Waveland, Mississippi. Coastal Alabama is reporting a 4-6 foot storm surge, with 10-15 foot waves. Considering the center of Ike is over 250 miles south of these locations, it is not hard to imagine that Texas will get a 15-20 foot storm surge, even if Ike does not strengthen.

Ike will probably inundate a 250-mile stretch of Texas coast from Port O'Connor to the Louisiana border with a 10-15 foot storm surge. This will occur even if Ike is a Category 1 storm at landfall. If Ike is a Category 3+ hurricane at landfall, surges of 20+ feet are possible. The latest experimental storm surge forecast From NOAA's SLOSH model (Figure 1) shows a 10% chance that Ike's storm surge will exceed 18-21 feet at Galveston. The Galveston sea wall is 17 feet high, so it may get overtopped. At noon today, a mandatory evacuation of the entire island was ordered in case this worst-case scenario is realized. The official NHC forecast is calling for maximum storm surge heights of 20 feet.

What should Texas residents do?
We must assume Ike will intensify to a Category 3 hurricane by landfall, which would likely do $20-$30 billion in damage. Ike's storm surge is going to be affect a huge area and be tremendously destructive. The latest Hurricane Local Statement from the Galveston National Weather Service office puts things in pretty stark perspective:

All neighborhoods... and possibly entire coastal communities... will be inundated during high tide. Persons not heeding evacuation orders in single family one or two story homes will face certain death. Many residences of average construction directly on the coast will be destroyed. Widespread and devastating personal property damage is likely elsewhere. Vehicles left behind will likely be swept away. Numerous roads will be swamped... some may be washed away by the water. Entire flood prone coastal communities will be cutoff. Water levels may exceed 9 feet for more than a mile inland. Coastal residents in multi-story facilities risk being cutoff. Conditions will be worsened by battering waves. Such waves will exacerbate property damage... with massive destruction of homes... including those of block construction. Damage from beach erosion could take years to repair.

I recommend Texas residents consult NHC's wind probability product to determine their odds of getting hurricane force winds.

For storm surge evacuation zone information, consult the Texas Division of Emergency Management.

For storm surge heights, consult our Storm surge risk for the Texas coast page.

Links to follow
Galveston, TX weather

Tide gauges along the Gulf Coast

Mid Gulf Buoy 180 nm South of Southwest Pass, LA (42001)

Tropical disturbance 91L north of Puerto Rico
An area of disturbed weather (91L) has developed a few hundred miles north of Puerto Rico. Satellite loops show that 91L has a very small amount of heavy thunderstorm activity, but does have a circulation at middle levels of the atmosphere. A surface circulation is not apparent, but the mid-level spin could work its way down to the surface over the next day or two. The disturbance in under about 20 knots of wind shear, and is also having trouble with some dry air to the west. Shear is expected to remain 10-20 knots though Saturday, then increase to 25 knots. We may expect some slow development until Saturday, when wind shear should be too high to allow further development. None of the models are developing 91L. By Tuesday, as 91L will be approaching the east coast of Florida, shear is expected to decline to 15 knots, and some additional development may be possible, if the disturbance holds together that long.

I'll have an update tonight if there's a significant change in Ike.

Jeff Masters

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2146. BtnTx
3:15 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
Quoting kingy:


This guy thinks there will be no oil/chemical spillages. Katrina left NOLA with a putrid soup of sewerage, oil/gas from cars, mud, etc. Why would Ike be different.

The plants have learned since then and now they shutdown in advance to prevent what happened before. EPA fines them big time so they get smart.
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2145. MTCseadrifter
8:17 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
My question is when are they going to adjust the cone west? Ike has been out of the "lane" to the south for hours now.....
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2144. trmptr
8:15 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
My dad checks this site. He's worried. It takes a lot to get him worried. And he hasn't slept yet. Maybe he will get some sense in him and decide to leave soon. I doubt it though. And we are running out of time.

What would be expected if Ike hits just to the right of the bay? How bad would the surge be for my area? We would be in the "clean side" but, being sooo close, would it really be "clean"?
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2143. RiverRose
8:15 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Quoting kingy:


This guy thinks there will be no oil/chemical spillages. Katrina left NOLA with a putrid soup of sewerage, oil/gas from cars, mud, etc. Why would Ike be different.

Yep. I pointed that out to my sil, my brother's widow, when I argued with her this morning to evacuate with the children from La Porte. Thank God I won, and they are safely ensconced in Austin tonight.
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2142. AtmosphericWrath
8:13 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
My opinion is everything has its boundary or line that can be crossed.
I don't think ditj should be banned.
I'd hope everyone can continue posting in a constructive manner with respect. IF someone disagrees with someone try to find another way of getting your point across without resorting to insults, to be condescending, or rude.
Just my thoughts....
Member Since: September 6, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 34
2141. EarthwalkUSA
8:14 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
I would like to call your parents. Anyway you can get them to this site? YOU are being responsible, THEY need help. Denial is a terrible thing and maybe we can help.
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2140. Nutzabout3
8:11 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Ike has moisture over Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Cuba, Jamaica and the Yucatan Peninsula.

Moisture from Ike just left the Bahamas too.

That just blows me away. This guy is King Kong.
2139. RiverRose
8:12 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
2129.
I think you're naive.
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2138. trmptr
8:13 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
I just got back from Galveston. Drove down to see how much the winds had picked up. Some pretty big waves looking from the flagship hotel. In the 30 minutes I was there, winds picked up quite a bit on the causeway. I took pictures, but not very good lighting. Back in Dickinson now, if you aren't familiar with the area, Dickinson is almost half way between Houston and Galveston. Closer to Galveston though. I'm only 17. I begged my parents to evacuate Wednesday evening. Obviously, they won the fight. We are going to try to fight it off here. We have 9 dogs, 2 parrots, a 10 month old baby, 10 year old girl, myself(17) my brother and sister in law(20) and then my parents. I sure am hoping this storm doesn't hurt too bad.

My first post. Sorry it's so long. I'm kind of really scared. I hope I'm not telling my parents "I told you so" as our house is under water in 24 hours...
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2137. txcgal
8:09 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Pensacolanewbie...

I'm assuming you are responding to the post I made to ditj earlier... It's not that I was suggesting he be banned from the site. I should have said "ignore", because I'm pretty sure you're correct in that admin doesn't ban for "arrogance". However, my point still stands in that his arrogant and flippant attitude towards other posters is out of line. He exhibits contempt towards those who post divergent opinions & I was merely pointing out that he & his points might be better received if he sought to explain and educate, rather than lecture & mock.

Hope that makes sense!
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2136. kingy
8:08 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Quoting BtnTx:


No way the Chemical plants will spew chemicals as you say. Are you on drugs or what?


This guy thinks there will be no oil/chemical spillages. Katrina left NOLA with a putrid soup of sewerage, oil/gas from cars, mud, etc. Why would Ike be different.
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2135. lopaka001
4:10 AM EDT on September 12, 2008
Quoting silverstripes:
2105. Nope no wave heights. It's on an oil rig out there.


Have you seen this data?
Your browser will auto-refresh every minute, the site is real time data..
Getting pretty windy in the bay.
Houston/Galveston Bay PORTS: All Meteorological Data
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2134. swlaphotographer
8:06 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Is there still a chance that Ike could move any closer to the east
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2133. RobDaHood
4:02 AM AST on September 12, 2008
Quoting Cotillion:
Morning everyone.

Despite it being my birthday, couldn't help but check on how things are progressing.

Seems Ike still has intensiphobia?


Morning, Cotillion, and Happy Birthday.

Can alway count on you for my new "big word of the day" ha-ha!

Yes Ike is perplexing everyone as usual - Gonna probably turn in soon so I can get work done early and watch friday afternoon/evening - I know Ike will have something new to surprise me with.

Hope you have a wonderful birthday and great year!

-rob
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33598
2132. atmosweather
4:05 AM EDT on September 12, 2008
Yeah that was it SJ...I honestly had to check to see if I was hearing it right. Someone has to let them know that the SS categorization means virtually nothing in this case. TWC actually did a decent job in outlining that point earlier.
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2131. CirrusCloudWalker
3:06 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
I just started watching KHOU. I'm in Dallas watching it through their sister station WFAA digital channel 8.2.
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2130. PensacolaNewbie
8:02 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
I don't believe that arrogancy or flippancy deserve a ban, although you have the right to choose who you want to ignore. Half the people on this sight who know what they are talking about and take a stand for it will come off sounding arrogant. Maybe he's just frustrated that people just don't see what he's seeing. Banning should be reserved for more serious stuff like racist, religious, or other such offensive stuff. Plus there's already rules on this blog that give why some are banned. I don't believe arrogancy is one of them, but I could be wrong. Am I?
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2129. BtnTx
3:01 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
Quoting STORMTTOP:
Anyone notice Ikes bands/clouds are being Pulled into NW Texas...Perhaps he seeks the weakness in Nrth C Texas...If so, that would give him a more western component to his landfall.


I have never been banned but here I go:
I think everyone on this blog should change their handle to be like:
STORMTOP
STRMTOP
STROMTOP
STORMTTOP
STROMTTOP
STROMNOT!!!
What you think ?
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2128. AtmosphericWrath
7:54 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Humor is really great and if you have the right timing it is stress relieving, helps folks out.
---------------------------------------
Well as I said tropical and Hurricane related analysis I am new to..
My basic understanding is an eye is determined if the RECON finds an established closed eye wall. All Hurricanes generally do have an eye yes. Sometimes when a Hurricane is in a weakening stage or undergoing an EWRC (Eyewall Replacement Cycle) they can lose their eye, or it "fills in" When that occurs further weakening can occur. Sometimes the eye is partially open meaning one or more sides are collapsed. This means the convective ring around the eyewall is not robust showing weakening. It seems to me when dry air is persistently ingested into a Hurricanes COC (Center of Circulation) or inner core that you will find a real struggle in intensity..... Which up to yesterday seems to be the case with Ike. Also and this is a very big factor with Ike. Due to his sheer size he is far more subjected to having atmospheric conditions create his problems because his overall circulation is so vast and expansive making it more conducive for continental dry air to eat up his outflow bands, for upper level shear to push against him which would weaken him, and allowing for a trough/frontal boundary to "pick him up" easier which would eject him to the NNE-NE quickly. If you remember a week ago Ike was east of the Bahamas, Cuba, and the Antilles Island that Ike was a smaller/compact and yet very intense Hurricane. He was less susceptible to running into problems as he is now.
I will say folks like StormW, Kman, and a few others seem very knowledgeable and are far more experienced in this field than I.
Member Since: September 6, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 34
2127. washingaway
2:55 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
IKE is moving more west,IMO, because the high that was over N MX has move into TX and IKE is on the south side of what is left of that high. Link...By the way Unisys did not blackout tonight.
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2126. EarthwalkUSA
8:03 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
I rest my case. BUT, the important thing is, this is a killer storm. Even one life lost is catastrophic to me. I will be in Galveston as soon as this is over as many will be needed.
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2125. Kjsasey
2:58 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
Quoting Cotillion:
Morning everyone.

Despite it being my birthday, couldn't help but check on how things are progressing.

Seems Ike still has intensiphobia?


Happy Birthday!!
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2124. StormJunkie
7:59 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
atmos, were you watching that KHOU feed/station?

I concur, they should not even talk about weakening prior to landfall. The numbers don't matter with Ike he is going to wreak havoc. Can not believe how much air time they gave the weakening scenario tonight. I second, third, and fourth your stupid, stupid, stupid...
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 16874
2123. txcgal
7:59 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Add on to my last post... if you animate the link posted by silverstripes to include the frames before blackout there definitely looks to be noticable improvement in Ike's presentation & thermal reading after blackout.
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2122. lopaka001
3:57 AM EDT on September 12, 2008
Quoting AfterTheStorm:


I know we are all in serious mode preparing for an extreme catastophic event, but I have not had a really good laugh until after reading this. Thanks.


I have my moments..
;)
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2121. txcgal
7:57 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
silver--- definitely looks like some cold tops building around the coc...
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2120. RiverRose
7:53 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Quoting WestbankNOLA:


I still have the boards on my house from Gustav and if the winds from Ike were any stronger it would rip them away from the windows. It definately feels like the storm should be a lot closer to NOLA/SELA

I'm on the eastbank along the river, and I concur. Good luck.
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2119. drj27
7:57 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
has the trough already came down to texas or no
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2118. groundgirl
7:56 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Is the tide up in galveston? On Linkunder surf cam there used to be sort of a road going out into the water, I KNOW it's dark but the water wasn't over it today.
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2117. silverstripes
12:54 AM PDT on September 12, 2008
Ike is really starting to put out some intense convection all around the COC. He may be starting to ramp up and work on that eyewall that has been N/A all night. :)

Link
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 5 Comments: 595
2116. Cotillion
8:55 AM BST on September 12, 2008
Morning everyone.

Despite it being my birthday, couldn't help but check on how things are progressing.

Seems Ike still has intensiphobia?
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2115. atmosweather
3:45 AM EDT on September 12, 2008
Morning people...just gonna stop in for a minute. A few thoughts: I don't care what the NHC set the winds at, I don't care what winds RECON finds, I don't care if it doesn't strengthen at all...realize that Ike is a storm that is going to do Category 4 damage in the way of surge and its incredibly expansive winds. Was watching a TX local TV feed online and they actually were saying ON AIR that the storm might be weakening and that it will only be a Category 1 or 2. They are stupid, stupid people. Ike isn't weakening anyway, he will probably reach Category 3 before landfall since I have never seen a hurricane travel the length of the Gulf without clearing out an eye under the current upper air conditions and I have also rarely seen a "weak Category 2" with a sub 955 mb pressure. The winds will catch up, they might be doing that now in fact since the long drawn out EWRC seems to be close to finished. I am praying hard for everyone in this storm's path, but also would hate to see him come ashore just W of the Bay, we might be talking about Ike for a long time. Anyone living along the TX coast...I can't stress this enough...forget the Category 2 status, he will do Category 4 damage and there will be much devastation unfortunately. I just pray to God that everyone in a surge/flood prone area got out. No more 4 figure death tolls this year...please.
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2114. CirrusCloudWalker
2:53 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
Quoting AtmosphericWrath:
No wonder why Ike has moved so erratically!
Look who's steering him...

The Gorton's Fisherman!


Eye-eye Captain. Everyone has been looking for the eye.
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2113. BtnTx
2:54 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
Quoting kingy:
the surge will probably over the top the galveston sea wall and scour the place. But remember that a massive funnel of water will be forced into the houston bay area and will also flood galveston from behind. Galveston will take months to recover from this, it will be like katrina....cars floating round smashing houses. Property full of slime and mud. No one has mentioned the chemical plants littered along the coasts - they will be spewing toxins into the water too. This will be a real mess. Fridays roads in houston will reach gridlock and then the weather will come down on them.


No way the Chemical plants will spew chemicals as you say. Are you on drugs or what?
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2112. silverstripes
12:53 AM PDT on September 12, 2008
2105. Nope no wave heights. It's on an oil rig out there.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 5 Comments: 595
2111. STORMTTOP
2:52 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
Anyone notice Ikes bands/clouds are being Pulled into NW Texas...Perhaps he seeks the weakness in Nrth C Texas...If so, that would give him a more western component to his landfall.
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2110. StormJunkie
7:51 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Rob, I think you may have that backwards, but it is late and I am tired.

3d super high definition Houston Radar...

The 3d iso-surface returns will come in to view as the storm approaches. This should be really interesting to see as it gets closer.
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 16874
2109. TxKeef
2:50 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
Link

Watching the waves getting bigger in galveston, just saw something white wash up on the beach, wonder if its a sonde:P
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2108. geoeye
7:43 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
2075. ...It's one big round swimming pool concentrating the energy of the moving system into the Texas coast.

Well said.
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2107. WestbankNOLA
2:48 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
Quoting washingaway:
I live on the westbank of N.O., I getting winds that would suggest an approching storm, not one 300 miles away and moving away from me. This is one big mudda $%#@er!


I still have the boards on my house from Gustav and if the winds from Ike were any stronger it would rip them away from the windows. It definately feels like the storm should be a lot closer to NOLA/SELA
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2106. AfterTheStorm
7:50 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Quoting lopaka001:
Since everyone is talking about their credentials let me say I am not a MET, but I drink a lot and can throw darts with the best of them..
Can I have a secret decoder ring now?
;=~


I know we are all in serious mode preparing for an extreme catastophic event, but I have not had a really good laugh until after reading this. Thanks.
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2105. lopaka001
3:48 AM EDT on September 12, 2008
Quoting silverstripes:
Winds at the shell station are nearing 90 mph already. The anemometer is at 122m though but you get the point. This station is 100 miles from the center.

Wind Direction (WDIR): NNE ( 20 deg true )
Wind Speed (WSPD): 77.7 kts Atmospheric Pressure (PRES): 29.22 in
Pressure Tendency (PTDY): -0.23 in ( Falling Rapidly )
Air Temperature (ATMP): 80.6 °F
Dew Point (DEWP): 73.4 °F
Heat Index (HEAT): 85.3 °F

Link


That station doesn't report Wave Height?
;=(
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2104. txcgal
7:43 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Ay... I've been a long-time lurker on this blog (and have learned a great many things)

But before I sign off for the night (which is something I shoulda done hours ago) I just wanted to say thanks to the posters (like AtmosphericWrath) who've done their best to lighten the blog a bit and help fight off the trolls.

I for one am hoping Ike doesn't get his act together for the sake of my fellow Texans (and the Louisianians.. lol.. or however you spell it) in his path. My grandparents left for a cruise from Galveston last Sunday... their car is parked at the embarcadero on the bay side of the island.. I have no idea where the cruise will disembark or what will have happened to their car... But suffice it to say, I hope Ike has mercy on our beautiful coastline (and the folks who have stayed to weather it out). Que Dios te bendiga if you're in the path of this cane!

I for one am not looking forward to having Ike come up this way Saturday evening (in N.E. Texas here)...
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2103. PensacolaNewbie
7:43 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Quoting AtmosphericWrath:
Hmmm my credentials.

I have primarily been a severe storms analyst/tracker and I continue to do so on various myfox.com live chats throughout the USA. I mainly was on the Dallas Fox4 live chat during the Spring severe weather season. My analysis was accurate and proven helpful as well as I kept folks safe and prepared. I have had many people after I had warned for possible tornado in a particular town later on tell me that I helped keep their family safe.
I have been doing this for several years. It is extremely rewarding and gratifying when I put in 10+ hours on non-stop analysis to have it pay off in keeping folks safe. Again being right isn't what is important. What is important is keeping folks prepared and safe.
I would say my "expertise" is in interpretation of atmospheric conditions, reading WV/VIS loops. In addition I have spent a lot of time learning/discussing with Fox12's chief met. I just recently thought I would try my hand at Hurricane analysis and am finding my methods for tracking Ike and projecting things are really the same for anything else. I have been rather accurate thus far, but this is a learning experience. I have learned a great deal from others on this Blog from their own analysis, thoughts, and insight.

- Rob




Ok, I realize that you're new to hurricane stuff, but I'm trusting that to have come as far as you have, you must no something about the eye. So please answer my question. When is the "eye" officially considered an eye? What qualifies it? When it's breaking up or reforming is it still considered an eye? And do all hurricanes have an eye? Sorry, I know I said question, but at least they're all on the same topic?
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2102. RobDaHood
3:42 AM AST on September 12, 2008
SJ,

As I recall the late models use data from the previous run of the GFS.

-rob
Member Since: September 2, 2008 Posts: 102 Comments: 33598
2101. CirrusCloudWalker
2:43 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
Starting to see a little rain coming to Houston/Galvestion from Ike. Link
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2100. moonlightcowboy
2:42 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
SJ, man, cut 'em some slack. Ike is just a rootiepoot storm!

...ever seen a rootiepoot fill up the e n t i r e GOM? I can't say I remember one, not even Katrina!

Photobucket

Hang in there with 'em, SJ, friend! Maybe, eventually someone will pay attention and listen!

oK, MLC ---------------> OUT for the evening! Have a good sleep, all!
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2099. EarthwalkUSA
7:45 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Feeder bands will continue for some time. Ike has a tail all the way to the Caribbean. Anywhere along the GOM coast could see bands.
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2098. lopaka001
3:45 AM EDT on September 12, 2008
;=O


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2097. washingaway
2:40 AM CDT on September 12, 2008
I live on the westbank of N.O., I getting winds that would suggest an approching storm, not one 300 miles away and moving away from me. This is one big mudda $%#@er!
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2096. ThePatient
7:42 AM GMT on September 12, 2008
Quoting HiWay:



I think after a storm like this we need to quit basing everything off of the SS scale, cat 1 and cat 2 are not going to do this storm justice when we mark it down in the annals of history.


I'll bite on this one.

I had hoped we could learn that lesson 3 years ago or more.

1. Winds 74-95 mph (64-82 kt or 119-153 km/hr). Storm surge generally 4-5 ft above normal.
2.Winds 96-110 mph (83-95 kt or 154-177 km/hr). Storm surge generally 6-8 feet above normal.
3.Winds 111-130 mph (96-113 kt or 178-209 km/hr). Storm surge generally 9-12 ft above normal.
4. Winds 131-155 mph (114-135 kt or 210-249 km/hr). Storm surge generally 13-18 ft above normal.
5. Winds greater than 155 mph (135 kt or 249 km/hr). Storm surge generally greater than 18 ft above normal.

And from the latest advisory:

COASTAL STORM SURGE FLOODING OF UP TO 20 FEET ABOVE NORMAL TIDE
LEVELS...ALONG WITH LARGE AND DANGEROUS BATTERING WAVES...CAN BE
EXPECTED NEAR AND TO THE EAST OF WHERE THE CENTER OF IKE MAKES
LANDFALL...EXTENDING A GREATER THAN USUAL DISTANCE FROM THE CENTER
DUE TO THE LARGE SIZE OF THE CYCLONE. SURGE FLOODING OF UP
TO 25 FEET COULD OCCUR AT THE HEADS OF BAYS.

Quoting Dr. M:
The amount of water Ike has put in motion is about 10% greater than what Katrina did, and thus we can expect Ike's storm surge damage will be similar to or greater than Katrina's.


And this is a Category 2, some would even have them calling it a Category 1 or a really large tropical storm.

Surge is built into the scale, however...

Quoting NHC:
The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale is a 1-5 rating based on the hurricane's present intensity. This is used to give an estimate of the potential property damage and flooding expected along the coast from a hurricane landfall. Wind speed is the determining factor in the scale, as storm surge values are highly dependent on the slope of the continental shelf and the shape of the coastline, in the landfall region.


... size is not, and too much weight is given to wind.

Sadly, many people make decisions on the category and windspeed of a hurricane. Today they were repeatedly trying to explain on TWC that the difference between a "strong Cat 2 and a weak Cat 3 was nothing". Sigh.

2085. AtmosphericWrath... lol.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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