First Invest of the year peters out; Florida gets soaked

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:00 PM GMT on May 19, 2009

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A complex weather system is bringing showers and thunderstorms over Florida and the Bahamas, in association with a trough of low pressure. Two 1010 mb surface lows have developed--one over the Florida Keys, near 24N 81W, and the other over the south-central Bahamas, near 23N 77W. This second low was designated Invest 90L by the National Hurricane Center yesterday afternoon, and was the first area of interest so designated this year. At that time, they gave it a 30% chance of developing into a tropical cyclone by Wednesday. However, current satellite imagery shows little organization of the cloud pattern and no signs of a surface circulation, and the region is under high shear of 30 knots. 90L is being absorbed into the larger low over Florida, and is no longer a threat to develop, according to a Special Tropical Weather Outlook issued by NHC.


Figure 1. Current radar-estimated precipitation from the Melbourne radar.

The latest 00Z and 06Z runs of the computer models continue to forecast the intensification of an extratropical low near Florida over the next day. The low should bring heavy rain and possible flooding problems to Florida and the Bahamas this week as it moves west or west-northwest into the Gulf of Mexico. Up to eight inches of rain have already fallen over Florida so far (Figure 1), thanks in most part to a cold front that moved over the state during the past two days. Florida could use the rain--most of South Florida is under extreme drought, and Central Florida is under severe drought. The Lake Okeechobee water level is at 10.58 feet, which is about 3 feet below average. During the past week, the lake fell below the level that triggers water conservation measures for the first time since Tropical Storm Fay filled up the lake in August.

I don't expect development of a tropical or subtropical storm over the next two days, due to high wind shear. However, once the system moves into the Gulf of Mexico later this week, the ECMWF and UKMET models are predicting wind shear will drop enough over the northern Gulf of Mexico to allow some development. The GFS and NOGAPS models portray an unfavorable environment with higher shear. I'll give a 20% chance of this system eventually developing into a tropical or subtropical depression in the next seven days. The storm is expected to come ashore over Louisiana on Saturday (NOGAPS and UKMET models), or Sunday over Texas (ECMWF model). The GFS model dissipates the storm over the southern Gulf.

Jeff Masters

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1277. weathermanwannabe
1:05 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Good Morning.....Haven't had a chance to fire up the analysis yet this am (need some more coffee) but Yall have figured it out....The Low over Florida is not moving anywhere right now, Lake O is in the dry slot, and, more dry air keeps wrapping around into it from the Gulf...Guess it's a good "dry run" for H-Season and some needed rain for parts of Florida.......It needs some more juice...
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1276. Patrap
12:56 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Guys,,the Doc has a NEW Entry . And this aint it
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127601
1274. kmanislander
12:55 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting TheCaneWhisperer:


That low pressure in the EPAC on that map is the one the GFS is forecasting to come into our neck of the woods in a week or so. May not have much of a break till we're tracking the next. Seemed very frontal though, just like this one.


I noticed that on the GFS but 9 days out is too far away to be concerned about at this time. If it is still calling for it 5 days out then I will start to pay attention.
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15725
1273. TampaSpin
12:54 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting kmanislander:
Good morning Storm

Take a look at the QS pass I just posted. If this thing had a concentration of convection over the center who knows ??.

Gulf waters are still relatively cool but the windfield is closed.


If this was July or August we would have something to worry about as well as it is now!
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1272. Patrap
12:53 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Pssst..New Blog entry,this ones stale..
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127601
1271. TampaSpin
12:52 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting kmanislander:
The quikscat pass for this morning has just downloaded. That low is really well defined now. It will be interesting to see what the NHC has to say about it today. The windfield has really tightened up.

Quikscat here


Ya looks very well! But, Sheer and SST's just are not going to allow it to strenghten into anything.....Just a Big needed RAinmaker!
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
1270. TheCaneWhisperer
12:52 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting kmanislander:


Here is your 48 hr forecast map. That low will hang around for a while.



Hi Tampa. Something to watch already LOL


That low pressure in the EPAC on that map is the one the GFS is forecasting to come into our neck of the woods in a week or so. May not have much of a break till we're tracking the next. Seemed very frontal though, just like this one.
1269. kmanislander
12:50 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Good morning Storm

Take a look at the QS pass I just posted. If this thing had a concentration of convection over the center who knows ??.

Gulf waters are still relatively cool but the windfield is closed.
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15725
1266. TampaSpin
12:47 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting kmanislander:


You may be right about it getting heavier. If the low pulls far enough away to the W you could see very heavy weather ,similar to what is now East of Jamaica and over the Turks and Caicos Islands, coming in from the SW over the W coast of Fla.

In fact. I would expect to see rain bands swing inland from offshore today anyway.


In fact look at the Southern Half of Florida how it is filling in from the West spinning around.....I expect to see a More Rain than already received coming.
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
1264. nrtiwlnvragn
12:45 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
.
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 10888
1263. kmanislander
12:45 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
The quikscat pass for this morning has just downloaded. That low is really well defined now. It will be interesting to see what the NHC has to say about it today. The windfield has really tightened up.

Quikscat here
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15725
1262. ftpiercecane
12:44 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting leftovers:
how do you all like my logo? took two yrs to post. the picture was taken a couple wks ago at pavonnes southern costa rica near the panama we got the best swell of the yr so far surfed our brains out up to 6-8 ft hawaiian. this picture was from the spot we stayed on the hill up above pavonnes. it was going off. happy weather



Great looking wave. It looks like that left could go on for days. PERFECT!
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1261. Chicklit
12:43 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
I think Dr. Masters was the one who said, 'from drought to deluge.' It has been quite a weather event here in ECF. And it won't be over for another day or so.
Member Since: July 11, 2006 Posts: 14 Comments: 11178
1260. conchygirl
12:42 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
We are still solid cloud cover here in Melbourne and rain, rain and more rain. Starting to look like Fay is back! :)
Member Since: June 11, 2008 Posts: 24 Comments: 5910
1259. kmanislander
12:41 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting TampaSpin:


Looks like about 4 moere days of Rain coming before much improves! In fact the rain may become heavier in some areas!


You may be right about it getting heavier. If the low pulls far enough away to the W you could see very heavy weather ,similar to what is now East of Jamaica and over the Turks and Caicos Islands, coming in from the SW over the W coast of Fla.

In fact. I would expect to see rain bands swing inland from offshore today anyway.
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15725
1257. kmanislander
12:37 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting TampaSpin:


Alot of over Hype of a rain! LOL.....Heck some had a TS forming 3 days ago........LOL


I suppose the first Invest for the season was bound to generate excitement in some. Typically anything tropical early in the season comes up from the SW Caribbean in June.
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1255. TampaSpin
12:34 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting Chicklit:
Dearmas, I thought the system is expected to be north of Orlando by this weekend.


Looks like about 4 moere days of Rain coming before much improves! In fact the rain may become heavier in some areas!
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
1254. kmanislander
12:31 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting IKE:


Looks like 1007 mb. Seems the last 48 hr. map they had was for 1008 mb. Slightly stronger low, just like the 6Z GFS showed.

Eventually it looks to get drawn north and make for a soggy weekend along the northern GOM coast.



Looks that way. I am afraid that Fla has another two days of a soaking.

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1253. Chicklit
12:31 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Dearmas, I thought the system is expected to be north of Orlando by this weekend.
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1252. TampaSpin
12:29 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
The Low is not going anywhere very fast....its trapped South of the High with little steering flow...ALOT more Rain coming to Florida..
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
1251. dearmas
12:29 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting IKE:
Latest 6Z GFS seems more aggressive on the precipitation for the north-central GOM where the low makes landfall and points east including my neck of the woods.

Still showing a 2nd system the end of next week possibly affecting Florida again.


I know that we REALLY need the rain, but this REALLY sucks because it's my bday this week end and we were planning on going to Orlando Fl for the week end :( We live in Riverview Fl (15 mins from Tampa)
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1248. IKE
12:28 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting kmanislander:


Here is your 48 hr forecast map. That low will hang around for a while.



Hi Tampa. Something to watch already LOL


Looks like 1007 mb. Seems the last 48 hr. map they had was for 1008 mb. Slightly stronger low, just like the 6Z GFS showed.

Eventually it looks to get drawn north and makes for a soggy weekend along the northern GOM coast.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
1247. 69Viking
12:27 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
If that low stays far enough south and keeps going West we make luck out in NW FL! It's pretty much a waiting game now....
Member Since: August 25, 2006 Posts: 1 Comments: 3012
1246. TampaSpin
12:27 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting kmanislander:


Here is your 48 hr forecast map. That low will hang around for a while.



Hi Tampa. Something to watch already LOL


Alot of over Hype of a rain! LOL.....Heck some had a TS forming 3 days ago........LOL
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
1245. kmanislander
12:22 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting 69Viking:
Good morning! The GOM low is a little rough looking this morning. Kman good reading, I think you've summed up the action in the GOM region rather well. Now I just wish this thing would get moving so we can enjoy the Memorial Day weekend along the Gulf Coast.


Here is your 48 hr forecast map. That low will hang around for a while.



Hi Tampa. Something to watch already LOL
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15725
1244. Chicklit
12:20 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Link
They're focusing a thunderstorm warning south of us in Melbourne but it appears a pretty fiesty cell is coming ashore in New Smyrna Beach. Good morning! It's a bit distracting with the lightening so close...This is my first season on the beachside and although the house is well constructed, I'm high up and feel a bit like a fish in a tank watching what's going on around me.
Member Since: July 11, 2006 Posts: 14 Comments: 11178
1243. biff4ugo
12:20 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Why does Dr. Masters say Florida got up to 8" of rain this week when Flager county got 8" on Monday Alone!
His max pixel on the screen is 15.7" of rain.
There are 2 classes of rainfall above that, and big patches in the 10 - 12" range.
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1242. TampaSpin
12:19 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Morning everyone......Hi KMan
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1241. MahFL
12:18 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
The TPC does infact have a 1007 low depicted on it's latest surface map, off the SW coast of FL.
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1240. 69Viking
12:17 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Good morning! The GOM low is a little rough looking this morning. Kman good reading, I think you've summed up the action in the GOM region rather well. Now I just wish this thing would get moving so we can enjoy the Memorial Day weekend along the Gulf Coast.
Member Since: August 25, 2006 Posts: 1 Comments: 3012
1239. kmanislander
12:13 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:
Thanks Kman
I hope (and think)
you are right...
Rain we can handle...

and you got 1234 comment...

I tried to get it for:

1234
who are we cheering for
NOT ANA

CRS


Hi there CRS

Good to see you again. Hopefully it will dry out for you soon but expect more flare ups over the next 24 hrs. I Don't expect anything more than that.
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1238. kmanislander
12:11 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting KendallHurricane:


any devopment expected from this area subtropically


None of the models call for any development N of Hispaniola and conditions aloft are not conducive for anything other than flare ups of thunderstorms around the SE base of the GOM low.

With the feature in the GOM expected to hang around for a while the windfield around it will control the atmosphere for a quite a wide swath and act to deter any other possible development in the general area.
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15725
1237. CaicosRetiredSailor
12:09 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Thanks Kman
I hope (and think)
you are right...
Rain we can handle...

and you got 1234 comment...

I tried to get it for:

1234
who are we cheering for
NOT ANA

CRS
Member Since: July 12, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 5997
1236. TheCaneWhisperer
12:09 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Nothing like being stuck in a dry slot of a semi-stationary system, BLAH. Coastal areas of PBC has recorded a whopping 1.5 to 2" from this thing so far. I guess a little is better than nothing. Glad to see many others have benefited tremendously from this area of low pressure.
1235. KendallHurricane
12:06 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting kmanislander:


I do not see anything going on N of Hispaniola other than rain showers that will likely come and go from time to time. The only vorticity right now is with the GOM low.



any devopment expected from this area subtropically
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 498
1234. kmanislander
12:04 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting KendallHurricane:
any new updates on our low pressure area off the southwest coast of florida and there is somewhat of circulation developing north of hispaniola


I do not see anything going on N of Hispaniola other than rain showers that will likely come and go from time to time. The only vorticity right now is with the GOM low.

Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15725
1233. KendallHurricane
12:00 PM GMT on May 20, 2009
any new updates on our low pressure area off the southwest coast of florida and there is somewhat of circulation developing north of hispaniola
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 498
1232. kmanislander
11:59 AM GMT on May 20, 2009
good morning all

A hot and sultry day on tap in the NW Caribbean today.
Very light winds from the NW around the base of that low in the GOM. Would be nice if it could dig a bit further S and swing some moisture our way.

A slow mover for now that's for sure. Meanwhile, just east of Jamaica, diffluence on the SE of the low is causing a big flare up of showers and thunderstorms. These will likely come and go for the next day or so until the GOM low moves away to the N.
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15725
1230. stoormfury
11:50 AM GMT on May 20, 2009
morning
a very interesting area just north of hispanola. there is some cyclonic turning near 20.3n 69.5w. convection has been on the increase the last few hours . the area is moving to the north east
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1229. geepy86
11:49 AM GMT on May 20, 2009
We'll with all this rain I'm going to have to break out the mosquito spray and the lawn mower (wonder if it still runs) lol
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1228. MahFL
11:47 AM GMT on May 20, 2009
Reedzone, I was just looking at that myself. So yes I see it.
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1227. WxLogic
11:46 AM GMT on May 20, 2009
Quoting Thundercloud01221991:


I could use some. You will likely have around 12-14 inches of rain by the end of this storm


Hehe definitely agree, as there's another healthy band of rain heading towards CFL... wish I could share.
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4932

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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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