Two almost-tropical storms promise windy and wet weather for U.S. East Coast

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:50 PM GMT on September 25, 2008

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A powerful extratropical storm (94L) with some tropical characteristics is bringing tropical storm-like conditions to the waters just offshore the U.S. coast, from South Carolina to Virginia. QuikSCAT data from this morning and last night (Figure 1) show that tropical storm-force winds of 40-50 mph cover a 400-mile swath of ocean just offshore the North Carolina coast. A Hurricane Hunter mission currently investigating 94L confirms that these winds continue, with a few spots of 55 mph winds. Visible satellite loops show a small amount of heavy thunderstorm activity near the center, with a long curved band of thunderstorms that arcs from the center northeastwards for several hundred miles. This configuration is characteristic of a subtropical or extratropical storm. NHC is currently judging the storm to be more extratropical, so it doesn't get a name. The difference is unimportant as far as the impact on the coast goes, since this storm will bring tropical storm force winds of 40-50 mph to the coast from northern South Carolina to Virginia today through Friday morning as it moves ashore. NHC is currently giving 94L a high (>50% chance) of becoming a subtropical storm by Friday. An Air Force Hurricane Hunter aircraft sent in a center fix at 9:48 am EDT, finding a central pressure of 994 mb and top surface winds of 54 knots (62 mph).


Figure 1. High-resolution QuikSCAT wind estimate from 7:05 pm EDT Wednesday 9/24/08. Browns and purples represent winds of tropical storm force (35 knots) or greater. Image credit: Brigham Young University.

The storm is affecting a wide area of coast from New York to South Carolina. Minor coastal flooding due to high winds is forecast as far north as New York City. The Onslow Bay buoy south of Wilmington, North Carolina, reported 13 foot waves and sustained winds of 45 mph at 8:20 am EDT. Wave heights in excess of 15 feet have been observed from Delaware to South Carolina, with the highest waves of 19 feet measured at the Virginia Beach Buoy 75 miles offshore from the Virginia/North Carolina border. Expect tide levels of 3-6 feet above normal along the coast, and rain amounts of 2-3 inches. Cape Hatteras, NC radar shows an extensive area of rain all along the coast. Thus far, (Figure 2) only 1-2 inches has fallen along the coast, but the heaviest rain has yet to move ashore. Rainfall amounts up to five inches (Figure 3) are likely from 94L as it sloshes northwards along the coast over the weekend.


Figure 2. Estimated rainfall from 94L.


Figure 3. Forecast rain amounts for the 5-day period beginning 8 am EDT Thursday 9/25/08. Image credit: NOAA.

Dominican Republic disturbance 93L
Tropical disturbance 93L is finally on the move, and is pulling away northwards from the Dominican Republic. Visible satellite loops show the classic signature of a tropical storm undergoing high wind shear--an exposed low-level circulation center, with all the heavy thunderstorm activity pushed over to one side by the shear. This morning's QuikSCAT pass found top winds of 45-50 mph in the region of heavy thunderstorms on the east side of 93L. A NOAA Hurricane Hunter plane is currently investigating 93L to see if it qualifies as a tropical storm.

The forecast
Wind shear remains near 20-25 knots, which is marginal for development. The current wind shear forecast from the SHIPS model relaxes the shear to 10-20 knots this afternoon through Friday, which should allow 93L to become a tropical storm. The most likely track for 93L, according to the computer models, is just east of Cape Cod, Massachusetts on Saturday afternoon, to a landfall in Nova Scotia on Saturday night or Sunday morning. Since the U.S. is on the thunderstorm-free weak side of the storm, it appears that Massachusetts and Maine will miss the highest winds. Sustained winds of 30-35 mph on Cape Cod and Nantucket are likely Saturday afternoon and evening from 93L. The storm's highest winds of 40-50 mph will affect Nova Scotia and New Brunswick Saturday night.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The UKMET and ECMWF models indicate the western Caribbean needs to be watched during the middle of next week for tropical storm development.

Links to follow
Cape Hatteras, NC weather
Duck, NC weather info and webcams fro the U.S. Army

The Hurricane Ike, "Presslord will wear a dress challenge" begins
Thanks go to everyone who has contributed to the portlight.org charity! We raised enough dough to send another truck with relief supplies to Winnie and Bridge City, Texas, where traditional relief efforts have fallen short. Wunderground member Presslord (AKA Paul Timmons, Jr.), who is coordinating this effort, has announced that if we raise an additional $10,000 mark, he will pose in a dress for our wunderphoto gallery. I know I personally will be contributing to help decorate our wunderphoto gallery (but more so to help out the people of Winnie and Bridge City!) We're up to $1500 so far.


Figure 4. The town of Bridge City was inundated with a massive storm surge even though it was far displaced from Ike's landfall point. This speaks to just how massive Ike was. The people of Bridge City, Winnie, and other small towns in Ike's path will need help for a long time to come: www.portlight.org. Image credit: Storm Junkie.

Your contributions do make a difference, and you can read more about the effort at at stormjunkie's blog.

Jeff Masters

Rio Yaurel de Arroyo (12345678912345678912)
Inundaciones en Arroyo, Puerto Rico debido a los fuertes aguaceros provocados por una fuerte onda tropical entre el 21 y 22 de Septiembre de 2008.
Rio Yaurel de Arroyo
Bridge City in shambles from the Surge (StormJunkie)
The town of Bridge City was inundated with a massive storm surge even though it was far displaced from Ike's landfall point. This speaks to just how massive Ike was. The people of Bridge City, Winnie, and other small towns in Ike's path will need help for a long time to come. www.portlight.org
Bridge City in shambles from the Surge

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597. lickitysplit
9:30 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting tiggeriffic:
ok...gotta bounce for a bit...time to make the doughnuts...i mean dinner...(rather have doughnuts though)bbl with some light hearted humor to try to brighten someone else's day...


donuts for dinner? my kid would LOVE that.
Member Since: May 17, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 632
596. OceanMoan
9:29 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting tiggeriffic:
ummmm....no ants out today...too wet...LOL... but no birds or squirls either...so couldn't animal cast if I wanted to....


There were alot of squirrels out this morning, I almost hit 3 of them just driving thru my neighborhood. My cats seem to be enjoying the weather, running around like crazy. I am kind of enjoying the day, wasn't expecting weather like this.
Member Since: September 7, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 262
595. Orcasystems
9:28 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
new blog
Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26516
594. tiggeriffic
9:26 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
ok...gotta bounce for a bit...time to make the doughnuts...i mean dinner...(rather have doughnuts though)bbl with some light hearted humor to try to brighten someone else's day...
Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3666
593. MissNadia
9:25 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting tiggeriffic:
oh gee, thanks orca...some of the spaghetti is a little close to
me...just what I wanted to hear...but...on the other hand...if the
winds get high enough and they close the bridges...I don't have to go
to work tomorrow....hmmmmm....

Check the ILM radar...can see the eye and track it westbound!... looks like it will come in well North of you
Member Since: July 27, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3003
592. SWFLDigTek
9:24 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting cantoriesnumber1fan:
I believe shear tendency will decrease with time as an anticyclone builds aloft the GOM which could spell trouble.


So you think that patch of convection is going to hang out in the BOC for 120hrs, then move toward the US?
Look at the Shear Forecast Loop
Member Since: August 31, 2008 Posts: 117 Comments: 398
591. Seastep
9:24 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


I really dont see anything developing in the next 72hours. (besides 94L)


The wave out at 36W/37W ain't looking too shabby and low shear all the way...

Loop

Member Since: September 9, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 3414
590. Cotillion
9:23 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting StormW:
565. 900MB 5:12 PM EDT on September 25, 2008
Storm-
Are you right or left of Track on Kyle?
Do you agree with NHC that it will be a hurricane in Maine?
Could a Fujiwhatyamacallit effect push it closer to Long Island?
Thanks again!


Ih he gets too close to 94L...left of track. Based on current forecast steering, NHC track looks about right, As I said in my morning fcst...it's all gonna hinge on how close Kyle gets to 94L.


I nominate 94L to be called STS Alpha... just like the old days.
Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 7 Comments: 5300
587. tiggeriffic
9:22 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
TO THE SOUTH....TO THE SOUTH....TO THE SOUTH...
ROFLMAO
Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3666
585. largeeyes
9:21 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Amazing how we've stayed in that slot all day.

Member Since: August 22, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1462
584. cantoriesnumber1fan
9:20 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
I believe shear tendency will decrease with time as an anticyclone builds aloft the GOM which could spell trouble.
583. Orcasystems
9:20 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting tiggeriffic:
oh gee, thanks orca...some of the spaghetti is a little close to me...just what I wanted to hear...but...on the other hand...if the winds get high enough and they close the bridges...I don't have to go to work tomorrow....hmmmmm....


Seeee... you can please some of the people all of the time :)
Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26516
582. tiggeriffic
9:20 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
lol chrisW....yep...type in shorthand...ROFL
Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3666
581. tiggeriffic
9:18 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
oh gee, thanks orca...some of the spaghetti is a little close to me...just what I wanted to hear...but...on the other hand...if the winds get high enough and they close the bridges...I don't have to go to work tomorrow....hmmmmm....
Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3666
580. chrisrw
9:18 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting tiggeriffic:
damage...may agree with...since they have been hit so hard and so many times, there is nothing left to destroy maybe?????? Not only that, the poorest areas live in a shanty...after the storm, they pick up the debris and slap it back together...if their neighbor died, they pick up their pieces and use em to make a bigger shanty...


I hope you mean the pieces of their neighbor's shack!
578. SWFLDigTek
9:17 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting SWFLDigTek:


Still, you stated it was the real cyclone threat to the US and that is simply not going to take place, doubt it will be more than what you see now.


Sorry btwntx08, it was not you who made that statement, it was cantoriesnumber1fan.

My apologies.
Member Since: August 31, 2008 Posts: 117 Comments: 398
577. agrarianrrl
9:16 PM GMT on September 25, 2008


uh oh. Is this possible for us in Nova Scotia again. Please say no...CBC news says sunny.?

Thats hurricane Juan 2003 BTW
576. Cotillion
9:16 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Link

Shear's still building there in the Gulf too.
Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 7 Comments: 5300
575. BKeen12
9:16 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
just hit me lol Bay of Campeche!
574. Orcasystems
9:15 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Complete Refresh
Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26516
572. Stormchaser2007
9:14 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting SWFLDigTek:


Still, you stated it was the real cyclone threat to the US and that is simply not going to take place, doubt it will be more than what you see now.


I really dont see anything developing in the next 72hours. (besides 94L)
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
571. hurricanemaniac123
9:14 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Cyber Teddy, May you answer this:

So was the vortex message for Kyle and 94L?
Member Since: September 21, 2008 Posts: 9 Comments: 688
570. SWFLDigTek
9:13 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting btwntx08:

in the boc there is low shear just to its north 40+ kts of shear
Link


Still, you stated it was the real cyclone threat to the US and that is simply not going to take place, doubt it will be more than what you see now.
Member Since: August 31, 2008 Posts: 117 Comments: 398
569. tiggeriffic
9:13 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
ummmm....no ants out today...too wet...LOL... but no birds or squirls either...so couldn't animal cast if I wanted to....
Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3666
568. Seastep
9:12 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Crazy shear protecting US from S and W: Link
Member Since: September 9, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 3414
567. dewdana
9:12 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
486. KeyWestBrat
thanks! That does help, still curious if it is Kyle related since it is all the way on the other side of the bahamas. Seems unlikely but interesting to me anyway!
Member Since: September 20, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 11
566. SunnyDaysFla
9:12 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Re:549

Check out StormW blog....he has the whole list of abbrev. spelled out
Member Since: September 19, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 642
565. 900MB
9:12 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Storm-
Are you right or left of Track on Kyle?
Do you agree with NHC that it will be a hurricane in Maine?
Could a Fujiwhatyamacallit effect push it closer to Long Island?
Thanks again!
Member Since: June 11, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 684
564. MissNadia
9:12 PM GMT on September 25, 2008

Frying Pan Tower

NDBC - Station 41013 Observations
Station 41013
September 25, 2008 4:50 pm EDT
Location: 33.436N 77.743W
Wind Direction: E (100°)
Wind Speed: 33 knots
Wind Gust: 41 knots
Significant Wave Height: 13 ft
Dominant Wave Period: 8 sec
Atmospheric Pressure: 29.41 in (995.9 mb)
Pressure Tendency: -0.13 in (-4.3 mb)
Air Temperature: 77°F (25.2°C)
Water Temperature: 77°F (25.1°C)

Member Since: July 27, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3003
563. Stormchaser2007
9:12 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
70knots of shear in the GOM. Beautiful....
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
562. lickitysplit
9:11 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting tea3781:
Whats going on in the BOC?


Not much. Couple of thunderstorms.
Member Since: May 17, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 632
561. Stormchaser2007
9:10 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting BKeen12:
could someone please tell me wat BOC means?? thanks


Bay of Campeche.
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
560. angiest
9:10 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Interesting note here. Assuming Kyle moves where he's forecast to go, this is the first time this year since Fay that fewer than half of this year's storms have been in the GOM for some part of their life. I can't find a recent year so far that had such a high percentage of the total count of storms entering the GOM at some point. Even 2004 and 2005 look to be at best about 33%.
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 16 Comments: 4766
559. tiggeriffic
9:10 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
thanks stormw...not getting as much attention as it should IMO...having to rely on Local Mets instead of the internet...
Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3666
558. NorthxCakalaky
9:10 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
549. BKeen12 9:09 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
could someone please tell me wat BOC means?? thanks
Action: Quote | Ignore User


I think it means somewhere in the GOM.
557. Seastep
9:10 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
CRAZY shear in GOM:



Member Since: September 9, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 3414
555. lickitysplit
9:10 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting keywestbrat:
hello can you say coverup, after that major earthquake they were busted after the american reporters got in there and reported it, and after a big push they finally excepted aid from the world


Thats weird. My impression of the earthquake was that the Chinese press was all over is right off and that the Chinese authorities were very open about it. Thats not to say that they dont "cover up" on hurricanes but I didnt sense that from the earthquake. But, what about Japan and Taiwan?
Member Since: May 17, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 632
553. tea3781
9:09 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Whats going on in the BOC?
Member Since: August 29, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 455
552. BonInBama
9:09 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting tiggeriffic:
where exactly is 94 supposed to make landfall now or are they still not sure...some of the spaghetti models shifted back to central SC...

http://www.tropicalatlantic.com/plots/94-googlemaps.shtml


Follow the ants!!!

;-)
551. OBXNC
9:09 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Wow . . . it has gotten very warm and muggy outside here in Kill Devil Hills. It was chilly and wet the first half of the day.

Can someone PLEASE help me understand ... it seems to me ... and I'm not a meteo, but it seems that this storm has taken on the classic definition of a subtropical storm. I have watched bands develop around a clear coc, and as that happened the wind has virtually stopped here.

I see the connection with the frontal system, especially on satellite, but it looks very clear on radar that this swirl is an entity of its own.

Can anyone please help?
549. BKeen12
9:09 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
could someone please tell me wat BOC means?? thanks
548. tiggeriffic
9:08 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
damage...may agree with...since they have been hit so hard and so many times, there is nothing left to destroy maybe?????? Not only that, the poorest areas live in a shanty...after the storm, they pick up the debris and slap it back together...if their neighbor died, they pick up their pieces and use em to make a bigger shanty...
Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3666
547. Stormchaser2007
9:08 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Quoting Vortex95:
certinally somthing brewing in the GOM.


Its a flare up. Probably will dissipate by 2am.
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950

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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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