Laura headed north; Western Caribbean worth watching

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:03 PM GMT on September 30, 2008

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Subtropical Storm Laura is headed north over colder water, and 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. It is probably too late for the storm to make the transition to a tropical storm. By Saturday, the remnants of Laura are likely to be a powerful extratropical storm that could bring 50 mph winds to the British Isles.


Figure 1. Latest satellite image of Laura.

Western Caribbean disturbance
Thunderstorms associated with a trough of low pressure over the Western Caribbean waters are weak and disorganized. However, the NOGAPS and UKMET models are predicting this activity may start to organize by Saturday or Sunday, so we will need to watch the Western Caribbean this week. If a tropical depression did develop, it would likely stay in the Western Caribbean for a number of days, moving very slowly.

Hurricane Ike portlight.org charity relief efforts
I spent most of the day yesterday coming up to speed on the efforts of the Hurricane Ike portlight.org charity relief efforts spearheaded by Patrap, Presslord, and StormJunkie. I haven't finished writing up a full summary of the effort, but I have found that our donations dollars have been well-spent. All of those involved have done a great amount of outstanding volunteer work. I'll have more details in my next post.

Jeff Masters

TS Kyle at Rehoboth (dlegge)
TS Kyle at Rehoboth

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963. BonInBama
6:19 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting TxBlaze:
I missed whatever happened with Patrap, Presslord, Stormjunkie, etc. I haven't been on here much myself lately. Still no internet at home.

But thought I would mention after reading some of this mess I looked out my office window and across the Houston Ship Channel watched people search for bodies. It kind of just brings everything back to perspective.

What little I was able to give to portlight gave some people things they desperately needed. I hope they resolve their conflict and are able to move past whatever the problem is. They all meant well and there are many people still without.


I just thought this bears repeating!
962. MahFL
2:10 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting CharFranJean04:
..... Storm surge was never mentioned. ....
(Back to lurking)


How many people mentioned this ?
Member Since: June 9, 2004 Posts: 0 Comments: 4248
961. Randyman
1:47 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting CharFranJean04:
The schools are closed and will be closed for at least several more weeks.

The storm surge is what did most of the damage, not the winds. The residents were saying that the media was not mentioning the storm surge at all.


I know you're just volunteering your time to help these people in need. But those persons telling you this should go directly to the source if possible. In other wors, don't just sit back and tune in to the local television stations for all of their info. They probably need to be more aggressive and attempt to find out what the NHC and their respective local NWS offices are saying with respect to the storm.

I understand 90% of the residents don't take this approach and simply sit back and rely on what the local television stations are 'passing' along from local city and state officials. I have no problem with doing this. However, if you live in an area that is susceptable to the multi-faceted dangers of a hurricane, then you really need to be educated and up-to-speed on where to find the latest and credible info regarding a potential theatening storm. Just relying on local news conferences for all of your storm information is not a wise approach in my opinion.
Member Since: July 26, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 223
960. Randyman
1:34 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting CharFranJean04:
(Momentarily delurking)

I volunteer with the American Red Cross and just got back last night from Galveston. The evacuees have just started coming back to Galveston and most have no where to stay. The city condemned all of the low rent housing as uninhabitable and those folks have no where to go. Most of the rest of the housing was damaged but still inhabitable, however, the mold and mildew set in and those people can't live in their places either. The city set up a shelter ("Tent City") at one of the schools for the folks who have nowhere else to go. There is no electricity and no potable water. What is operational is being run off of generators. The debris is incredible. The Galveston people I have talked to said they were told only that IKE was a Cat 1 or 2 and not going to be much of a problem. Storm surge was never mentioned. Sorry for the long entry but I thought you folks might want to know what was happening.
(Back to lurking)


Our local NWS Office made a big deal about the storm storm, while some of the national media appeared (at least in my opinion) to question some of the verbage the NWS was using in its local hurricane statements...

MAXIMUM WATER LEVELS FORECAST:

GULF-FACING COASTLINE WEST OF SARGENT...5 TO 8 FEET

SHORELINE OF MATAGORDA BAY...4 TO 7 FEET

GULF-FACING COASTLINE SARGENT TO HIGH ISLAND
INCLUDING GALVESTON ISLAND......12 TO 16 FEET

SHORELINE OF GALVESTON BAY...15 TO 25 FEET

LIFE THREATENING INUNDATION LIKELY!

ALL NEIGHBORHOODS...AND POSSIBLY ENTIRE COASTAL COMMUNITIES...
WILL BE INUNDATED DURING THE PERIOD OF PEAK STORM TIDE. PERSONS
NOT HEEDING EVACUATION ORDERS IN SINGLE FAMILY ONE OR TWO STORY
HOMES MAY 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 CLOSER TO THE COAST. 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'm not saying you're wrong, I'm just wondering why those people are telling you that the storm surge was never mentioned. I remember the media making quite an issue of the Houston/Galveston NWS Office's "may face certain death" statement.
Member Since: July 26, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 223
959. surfmom
1:33 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
942themom - in Emmyrose's blog she gives/gave some information on the school situation --which if I remember correctly is on halt! and for a good long while
Member Since: July 18, 2007 Posts: 30 Comments: 26536
958. surfmom
1:31 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
936charfranjean - Appreciate the inside view......many people I talk to in the course of the day --think it's business as usual in TX --totally cluless and in denial that conditions are so bad......of course there is NO coverage other then what "leaks" out. You post helps give me credibility --when I need to get the message out.
Member Since: July 18, 2007 Posts: 30 Comments: 26536
957. surfmom
1:25 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
910Kehcharleston -- thanks for the link!!!
Member Since: July 18, 2007 Posts: 30 Comments: 26536
956. TXnovice
1:15 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting FloridaRoofer:


I have a roofer in the area if you need help


Yes! e-mail is play_to_learn@hotmail.com
Member Since: August 29, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 80
955. TXnovice
1:12 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
YES! e-mail is play_to_learn@hotmail.com
Member Since: August 29, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 80
954. KEHCharleston
1:01 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting Bonedog:
here are some tips for organizing your links


Make some folders up, here are some of mine

satalights
upper air
low levels
shear maps
radar
storm surge
NHC
NWS
local
tutatorial

that way as links come in you just add them to the appropriate folder.


Excellent!! Thanks - copied and pasted to notebook to work on when I get home for work.
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 2490
953. KEHCharleston
1:00 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting TampaSpin: Please come organize mine also.......wow what a mess....lol
LOL - Sure... will be right there (hehe)

RE:936. CharFranJean04
It was terribly frustrating for those of us who read the blog here, to know that it was a tragedy in the making, and that the info was not getting to the folks who needed to know - and that all we could do was watch it unfold.
I know you must be heart-sick. I cannot tell you how much I admire you for what you do. Will keep all in my thoughts and prayers.
Portlight
Red Cross
Salvation Army

Nothing of note with buoys in the Caribbean - I am off to work in a moment - Have a wunderful day, folks
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 2490
952. CharFranJean04
12:59 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
The schools are closed and will be closed for at least several more weeks.

The storm surge is what did most of the damage, not the winds. The residents were saying that the media was not mentioning the storm surge at all.
951. Bonedog
12:58 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Im not a cold cruel person. My heart and prayers go out to those affected. I just dont like or understand when folks say it was only supposed to be this or that.
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
950. TheMom
12:57 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
IKE that is so not fair! We are still waiting on the cold front to come down Daytona level of course since it was Humid and High 70s at the least this morning it can wait till tonight since we are not dressed for the at noon it is 90 and by 3 it is 50 days we get occasionaly this time of year.
Member Since: August 3, 2006 Posts: 5 Comments: 672
948. Bonedog
12:56 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
I agree Tampa even the NHC and NWS used certain death in there forcasts. So to say they didnt know is foolishness
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
947. NEwxguy
12:55 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
new blog!!!
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 896 Comments: 16202
946. FloridaRoofer
12:54 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting TXnovice:
Rain-free and nice cold front came though here in Houston. It's dry here, but I'm appreciative! Roof isn't repaired yet!!!!


I have a roofer in the area if you need help
945. TampaSpin
12:53 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
940. Bonedog 12:49 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
No Tampa I am in NJ

NEwxguy is in Mass


OH i thought that was the same planet....LMAO
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20450
944. Bonedog
12:52 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
tk no problem glad to help.

I will do my best over the winter, as I have stated last season and ever since. I am by no means a professional I am just giving my own personal interpratation of the data. Please follow all local, state, and federal watchs and warnings.
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
943. TampaSpin
12:51 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
936. CharFranJean04 12:44 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
(Momentarily delurking)

I volunteer with the American Red Cross and just got back last night from Galveston. The evacuees have just started coming back to Galveston and most have no where to stay. The city condemned all of the low rent housing as uninhabitable and those folks have no where to go. Most of the rest of the housing was damaged but still inhabitable, however, the mold and mildew set in and those people can't live in their places either. The city set up a shelter ("Tent City") at one of the schools for the folks who have nowhere else to go. There is no electricity and no potable water. What is operational is being run off of generators. The debris is incredible. The Galveston people I have talked to said they were told only that IKE was a Cat 1 or 2 and not going to be much of a problem. Storm surge was never mentioned. Sorry for the long entry but I thought you folks might want to know what was happening.
(Back to lurking)


It was a CAT.2 ......did they not understand what a Cat.2 could do to such and exposed area.....sorry....my heart goes out along with my donataions to the Red Cross.....but, for anyone to say they didn't know is in denial for not taking the right actions.
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20450
942. TheMom
12:51 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
936. CharFranJean04
Thanks for being there for them!

If they have a tent city at the school what are they doing for the kids are they still all out of school?
Member Since: August 3, 2006 Posts: 5 Comments: 672
941. tkeith
12:50 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting KEHCharleston:
RE:922. SpicyAngel1072 - I have bookmarked so many sites, and now I have a royal mess. I have begun trying to sort them out by category, etc. But it is a real mess - every time someone offered a link, I copied it. Will have to take time to sort them soon.
RE:926. Bonedog - Thanks for the link. Put in under my tutorial catagory.
same here KEH, thanks bone...dont worry im not gonna pull a Drak on yall over the winter, just need all the help I can get...lol
Member Since: November 1, 2004 Posts: 25 Comments: 8939
940. Bonedog
12:49 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
No Tampa I am in NJ

NEwxguy is in Mass
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
939. TheMom
12:49 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting bollidear:


Be grateful - we only really have two seasons - Hurricane and Not Hurricane!!
ROTFLSHIPMP!!! You left out Natural Fire and Arsonist Seasons.
Member Since: August 3, 2006 Posts: 5 Comments: 672
938. Bonedog
12:48 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
here are some tips for organizing your links


Make some folders up, here are some of mine

satalights
upper air
low levels
shear maps
radar
storm surge
NHC
NWS
local
tutatorial

that way as links come in you just add them to the appropriate folder.
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
937. TampaSpin
12:45 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
BoneDog you live in Mass. if i remember.
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20450
936. CharFranJean04
12:44 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
(Momentarily delurking)

I volunteer with the American Red Cross and just got back last night from Galveston. The evacuees have just started coming back to Galveston and most have no where to stay. The city condemned all of the low rent housing as uninhabitable and those folks have no where to go. Most of the rest of the housing was damaged but still inhabitable, however, the mold and mildew set in and those people can't live in their places either. The city set up a shelter ("Tent City") at one of the schools for the folks who have nowhere else to go. There is no electricity and no potable water. What is operational is being run off of generators. The debris is incredible. The Galveston people I have talked to said they were told only that IKE was a Cat 1 or 2 and not going to be much of a problem. Storm surge was never mentioned. Sorry for the long entry but I thought you folks might want to know what was happening.
(Back to lurking)
935. TampaSpin
12:43 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting KEHCharleston:
RE:922. SpicyAngel1072 - I have bookmarked so many sites, and now I have a royal mess. I have begun trying to sort them out by category, etc. But it is a real mess - every time someone offered a link, I copied it. Will have to take time to sort them soon.
RE:926. Bonedog - Thanks for the link. Put in under my tutorial catagory.


Please come organize mine also.......wow what a mess....lol
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20450
934. Bonedog
12:43 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Glad to help KEH
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
933. KEHCharleston
12:42 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
RE:922. SpicyAngel1072 - I have bookmarked so many sites, and now I have a royal mess. I have begun trying to sort them out by category, etc. But it is a real mess - every time someone offered a link, I copied it. Will have to take time to sort them soon.
RE:926. Bonedog - Thanks for the link. Put in under my tutorial catagory.
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 2490
931. Bonedog
12:39 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
No problem Spicy. Its a very good read. Very organized and easily understood. I have several of the parts printed out and look at them regularly.
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
930. Bonedog
12:38 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Thanks Cotillion. Having a friend from across the pond helps!

Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
929. SpicyAngel1072
12:36 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting Bonedog:
Spicy here is a good link to learn about all the diffrent maps, charts, ect.

Link

it offers the layperson a very good tutitorial on all things weather in a way you can understand


Thanks! :) I sent the link home so I can look later. I have flip back and forth here at work :)
Member Since: September 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 315
928. Cotillion
12:35 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting TampaSpin:
914. Bonedog 12:23 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Morning Tampa.

It sure is one powerful Low. The UK is in for one hell of a blow this weekend. I will be monitoring the platforms over there to see just how bad it gets


I look for it to tighten some when it gets in open water....and wow are they in for it...


I'm sure I'll keep you guys updated at the weekend to see how it is.

UK Met Office hasn't said anything about it, yet. Don't think they're anticipating the pressure to be all that low, 990s - which isn't even windstorm level (They can be in the 960s-970s area.) See if they say anything in the next two days.
Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 7 Comments: 5300
927. stoormfury
12:35 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Tampa the area in the eastern atl 8n 33w also looks good and could be 96L today
Member Since: August 22, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 2786
926. Bonedog
12:33 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Spicy here is a good link to learn about all the diffrent maps, charts, ect.

Link

it offers the layperson a very good tutitorial on all things weather in a way you can understand
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
925. TampaSpin
12:33 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
The convection at 15N 38W could move West if it can duck under the trough of weakness north of it.....

Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20450
924. Bonedog
12:31 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Yea with the westerlys and some dynamical forcing this thing is going to blow up to a good gale.

Already seeing 29Knt winds and 12 foot seas at the outer bouys and its only going to get worse.

Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
923. kap333
12:30 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Morning Storm,

How's things looking in the tropics?? Anything looking Floridaish??

Do you do all your sites at home or at an office?

Now I must get to my work...blech..but I'll check in soon to see if you posted an answer.

Go Red Sox!

Steve
Member Since: October 28, 2002 Posts: 0 Comments: 31
922. SpicyAngel1072
12:29 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Got about 12-15 sites I pull up.

I pull up a bunch as I learning from all of you how to read them. But I still have a problem at home.. most them will not show for me. But here at work .. they all do. I will figure it our sometime.
Member Since: September 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 315
921. TampaSpin
12:28 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
914. Bonedog 12:23 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Morning Tampa.

It sure is one powerful Low. The UK is in for one hell of a blow this weekend. I will be monitoring the platforms over there to see just how bad it gets


I look for it to tighten some when it gets in open water....and wow are they in for it...
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20450
920. Bonedog
12:27 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Very good Sir.
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
919. Cotillion
12:27 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Quoting KEHCharleston:
Good morning

Cotillion - Where in the UK do you live?


Not far from Manchester.
Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 7 Comments: 5300
917. KEHCharleston
12:26 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Good to see all of you this morning.
I am off for coffee (death before dishonor nothing before coffee).BBL
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 6 Comments: 2490
915. SpicyAngel1072
12:23 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Good thanks. Another day at work! Popping on to see what is happening in the tropics and to see what everyone is saying about anything for FL.
Member Since: September 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 315
914. Bonedog
12:23 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Morning Tampa.

It sure is one powerful Low. The UK is in for one hell of a blow this weekend. I will be monitoring the platforms over there to see just how bad it gets
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
913. Bonedog
12:22 PM GMT on October 01, 2008
Morning Storm.

Hows things on your end this fine day?
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418

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Dr. Masters co-founded wunderground in 1995. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990. Co-blogging with him: Bob Henson, @bhensonweather

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