Dr. Masters co-founded wunderground in 1995. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990. Co-blogging with him: Bob Henson, @bhensonweather
By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:44 PM GMT on September 28, 2008
Hurricane Kyle is racing towards a landfall in Nova Scotia late tonight or early Monday morning, and has likely peaked in intensity. Visible satellite loops show a rather un-hurricane like appearance to the storm, whose center is exposed to view with all the heavy thunderstorm activity on the north side. Despite the non-traditional appearance of the storm, Kyle was generating winds near hurricane force at about 7 am EDT today, according to data from the Hurricane Hunters. Buoy 44011 about 200 miles east of Hyannis, MA, recorded sustained winds of 60 mph, gusting to 80 mph, at 11:50 am EDT. Waves were 22 feet high at the buoy, which is on the strong (east) side of Kyle.
Figure 1. Current estimated rainfall for Kyle.
Wind shear is 30 knots over Kyle, and the water temperatures are cooling quickly, now that the storm has crossed north of the Gulf Stream. This combination of effects should induce steady weakening. The HWRF, GFDL, and SHIPS intensity models forecast a strength of 55 mph, 65 mph, and 70 mph, respectively, for Kyle at landfall over the southwestern part of Nova Scotia. A landfall intensity of 60-65 mph is a good bet. Winds of this level should cause widespread power outages and tree damage over western Nova Scotia, but only light structural damage. Kyle's expected storm surge of 1-2 feet should not cause major flooding, but its large 10-foot high battering waves could cause considerable coastal erosion. Kyle is moving fast enough that rains are only expected to be 2-4 inches, which should not cause major river flooding. Rains over eastern Massachusetts from Kyle (and the remnants of the unnamed storm that hit the East Coast on Thursday) were as high as four inches (Figure 1).
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Provincetown, MA weather
Bar Harbor, ME weather
Yarmouth, Nova Scotia weather
Nova Scotia radar
A low pressure system over the Yucatan Peninsula and the adjacent Western Caribbean waters has the potential for some slow development over the next few days. Visible satellite images show a modest-sized area of heavy thunderstorms that is currently not increasing in size. Wind shear is a moderate 10-20 knots over the region. NHC is giving this system a low (<20% chance) of developing into a tropical depression by Tuesday. Most of the models predict the low will start to develop over the next few days, although interaction with the landmass of the Yucatan Peninsula will be a problem for it. The low should lift north or northeastwards beginning Monday, and the west coast of Florida can anticipate heavy rains from this system by Wednesday. There is probably not time for this disturbance to reach tropical depression strength by Wednesday.
Several of the models predict a separate disturbance will get organized over the Western Caribbean late this week, and we'll have to watch this area closely this week.
Northern Atlantic disturbance
An extratropical low pressure system has cut off from the jet stream near 37N, 43W, about 700 miles southeast of Newfoundland, Canada. This low is over 26.5°C waters, and is slowly acquiring tropical characteristics. Heavy thunderstorm activity is building near the center of the low as it drifts westwards at 10 mph. NHC is giving this system a medium (20-50% chance) of developing into a tropical storm or tropical depression by Tuesday. By Wednesday, this storm should get caught up by the jet stream and recurved out to sea without affecting any land areas.
Figure 2. Typhoon Jangmi at 1:30 am EDT Sunday, 9/28/08. Image credit: NOAA.
Typhoon Jangmi hits Taiwan
Typhoon Jangmi hit Taiwan today as a dangerous Category 3 typhoon with 130 mph winds. Jangmi dumped up to 1.4 meters (4.6 feet) of rain in one mountainous region of Taiwan, according to news reports. Rainfall amounts in excess of one foot were common over northern Taiwan, according to the Taiwan Central Weather Bureau. Storm chaser James Reynolds filmed the landfall of Jangmi on Taiwan today, and is posting updates at http://www.typhoonfury.com/.
I'll have an update Monday.
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