Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.
By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:10 PM GMT on September 29, 2008
Hurricane Kyle raced ashore over southwestern Nova Scotia last night at about 9 pm AST, rated as a Category 1 hurricane with 75 mph winds and a 985 mb pressure. Kyle did generate one hurricane force wind gust--77 mph at Baccaro Point, on the extreme southernmost point of Nova Scotia--but it is questionable whether it really was a hurricane over Nova Scotia. Kyle weakened dramatically right at landfall. The storm passed just west of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, which measured a pressure of 988 mb at 9 pm AST last night. Even though Yarmouth was on the strong (right) side of Kyle where the highest winds should have been, the airport measured top winds of only 30 mph, gusting to 50 mph. Not even minor damage was reported there, according to news reports. Buoy 44038, which also measured a 988 mb pressure, but was located on the weak (left) side of Kyle as it came ashore, measured top sustained winds of 36 mph. Kyle generated some very high waves offshore--waves heights of 36 feet were observed at Buoy 44011 about 200 miles east of Hyannis, MA yesterday afternoon. Kyle caused minor flooding in Maine, where up to seven inches of rain was reported in Hancock County (Figure 1). Several roads flooded, but no rivers reached flood stage in Maine.
Figure 1. Estimated rainfall from Hurricane Kyle. Isolated rain amounts up to seven inches were reported in Maine.
Figure 2. Radar image of Kyle as it approached St. John, New Brunswick. Image credit: Environment Canada.
Thunderstorms associated with a low pressure system over the Yucatan Peninsula and the adjacent Western Caribbean waters have diminished today, and tropical storm formation is not likely in this region through Tuesday. A moist flow of tropical air will continue along a trough of low pressure extending from the Yucatan Peninsula over South Florida for the next two days, bringing rainfall amounts of up to two inches over much of South Florida. Late this week, the NOGAPS, UKMET, and ECMWF models predict a tropical depression may form over the Western Caribbean.
Subtropical Storm Laura
Subtropical Storm Laura formed this morning over the middle North Atlantic, but is not a threat to any land areas. Visible satellite images show that Laura has most of its heavy thunderstorm activity in a band removed several hundred miles from the center, a trait characteristic of subtropical storms. However, Laura is over waters of about 26°C, which is warm enough to support a fully tropical storm. Indeed, the latest satellite images show heavy thunderstorms beginning to wrap around the center, and Laura could be a hurricane by Tuesday morning. By Wednesday, Laura should get caught up by the jet stream and recurved out to sea without affecting any land areas.
Figure 3. Latest satellite image of Laura.
I'll have an update on the Hurricane Ike portlight.org charity relief efforts in my next post, which will be Tuesday morning.
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