Hurricane Felicia hits Category 3; may affect Hawaii next week

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:45 PM GMT on August 05, 2009

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As is often the case in an El Niño year, there's nothing to talk about today in the Atlantic, but the Eastern Pacific is very active. It has been 17 years since we went this long without a tropical cyclone in the Atlantic--the hurricane season of 1992 didn't start until August 16--but in the Eastern Pacific, we've already had six named storms this year. Hurricane Felicia is the latest addition, and Felicia has put on an impressive burst of intensification this morning by powering up to Category 3 status with 115 mph winds. Recent satellite loops show that Felicia has continued to intensify, with the cloud tops surrounding the eye cooling as they push higher into the troposphere.


Figure 1. Current satellite image of Hurricane Felicia.

While Felicia is an impressive hurricane now, its days of glory will be short-lived. Felicia is currently passing over a region of warm sea surface temperatures (SSTs) of 28.5°C, a full 2.5°C above the 26°C threshold needed to sustain a hurricane. These warm waters also extend to great depth, as seen on the Ocean Heat Content image (Figure 2). Felicia's west-northwest track will take the storm into a region of cooler waters with lower Oceanic Heat Content beginning tonight, which should induce a steady weakening trend beginning Thursday night. By Friday morning, SSTs should fall to 26°C, and decline to 25°C by Saturday. While wind shear is expected to remain in the low to moderate range over the next five days, 5 - 15 knots, the cooler SSTs should be able to significantly weaken the hurricane. By Monday, when most of the computer models indicate that Felicia will be nearing the Hawaiian Islands, the storm will be at tropical depression strength with top winds of about 35 mph, according to the latest runs of the HWRF and GFDL models. Exactly how close Felicia will get to the Hawaiian Islands is a bit tricky to call right now, since the hurricane is interacting with nearby Tropical Storm Enrique. Whenever two storms get within 900 miles of each other, they tend to rotate around a common center in a dance called the Fujiwhara Effect. This sort of storm-storm interaction is a complicated affair not well-handled by the computer forecast models.


Figure 2. Total oceanic heat content (also called the Tropical Cyclone Heat Potential, TCHP) along the forecast path of Hurricane Felicia. The initial time of the forecast is 06 UTC (1 am EDT) on August 5, 2009. Oceanic heat content of 90 kJ per square cm is often associated with rapid intensification of hurricanes. Felicia is currently over waters with high heat content, but the heat content will steadily decrease over the next two days. Image credit: NOAA/RAMMB.

There are no areas of disturbed weather in the Atlantic worth mentioning today, and no computer models forecast tropical storm development over the next seven days.

I'll have an update on Thursday.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting CycloneOz:
And since the glass exploded all over the rooms of the other floors, the hurricane was free to enter the room, too.

It was a mess...you should have seen it.

I gave you a glimpse of the damage to our hotel in my Experience Hurricane Dolly video. That particular shot was from the 7th floor. I was on the 8th.

Everyone on my floor came by to thank me that evening after the storm. The rest of the hotel occupants had to exist in the hotel lobby, which was expansive...and good thing! 200 people had to live down there.
Hey gator, would do/would the experts say about this ? I know in a single family home or townhouse it would be a good way to lose your roof.
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As of 11 PM EDT - Felicia has officially gone annular?

Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 3617
Quoting Tazmanian:



do you here the buzzing on the IM???


I'm not on IM...
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1130. gator23
Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:


I dont think he is lying either, but he still didnt get your point

If he meant inland than ya he probably is lying. If he mean along the coast than I believe him.
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And since the glass exploded all over the rooms of the other floors, the hurricane was free to enter the room, too.

It was a mess...you should have seen it.

I gave you a glimpse of the damage to our hotel in my Experience Hurricane Dolly video. That particular shot was from the 7th floor. I was on the 8th.

Everyone on my floor came by to thank me that evening after the storm. The rest of the hotel occupants had to exist in the hotel lobby, which was expansive...and good thing! 200 people had to live down there.
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 3617
Quoting Vortex95:
Since 1992 Miami Dade building department has made sure that that new buildings, houses are compliant to survive from a hurricane, usually guarrante up to cat 3 status.
Not all buildings in the tri-county area are built post 1992...and there are no guarantees.
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Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:


It did that becuase it had great conditions for days and was a large storm, but Annular hurricanes dont have outflow, Frances had very pronounced outflow


No, annular hurricanes indeed have upper-level outflow, albeit not as pronounced as a typical hurricane.

After all, anticyclonic outflow is one of the key factors that aid in intensification of a tropical cyclone.
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Quoting KoritheMan:
Oh yeah, I'm pretty sure Donna (1960) and Fabian (2003) were also annular hurricanes.



do you here the buzzing on the IM???
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1125. BDAwx
Quoting gator23:

pretty sure this is a lie


If he means inland ya but along the coast is not doubtable...
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I'm pretty sure Floyd wasn't annular, either. It was a massive storm and had heavy outflow. It also went through a number of eyewall replacement cycles.
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1123. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
KOREA METEOROLOGICAL ADMINISTRATION.

** WTKO20 RKSL 060000 ***
KMA TROPICAL CYCLONE ADVISORY NO. 10
NAME TY 0908 MORAKOT
ANALYSIS
POSITION 060000UTC 23.4N 128.3E
MOVEMENT WNW 10KT
PRES/VMAX 960HPA 78KT
FORECAST
24HR
POSITION 070000UTC 24.5N 123.7E WITHIN 80NM
PRES/VMAX 925HPA 99KT

48HR
POSITION 080000UTC 25.4N 121.2E WITHIN 135NM
PRES/VMAX 940HPA 89KT
72HR
POSITION 090000UTC 26.5N 118.9E WITHIN 215NM
PRES/VMAX 970HPA 70KT
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Quoting Weather456:
I don't think he is lying, the aerial pics of Ike resembled 2005.


I dont think he is lying either, but he still didnt get your point
Quoting gator23:

Why would you crack your balcony door?


Pressure equalization / force dissipation.

Practically every piece of glass on every floor but ours was popped and exploded.

No loss of glass on our floor. Not one pane.
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 3617
I don't think he is lying, the aerial pics of Ike resembled 2005.
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s
Quoting gator23:

1. In Miami our homes can withstand VERY high winds
2. I was in a Cat 5 and my house survived
3. I already cited articles from experts to make my point that you should stay put
4.Miami Dade County Alvarez said "We advise everyone to remember, run from the water hide from the wind" this was in regards to Ike a cat 5 at the time. He followed that with "We dont want to see problems like in Texas with people evacuating unnecessarily
As to #1, please define "our"...there are still many homes not built to current code.

As to #2, congrats. If "we" stay and are injured or dead, do we say, "but gator23 told us to stay" ?

#3, experts are ?

#4, a form of population control ? I am glad I dont live in Miami-Dade.


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Quoting KoritheMan:


I was unsure, but I thought I heard someone say that it was. It certainly had the characteristics of one, though: a large eye and the sustaining of hurricane force winds for an extended period of time.


It did that becuase it had great conditions for days and was a large storm, but Annular hurricanes dont have outflow, Frances had very pronounced outflow
1116. gator23
Quoting CycloneOz:
During Hurricane Dolly, every room on my floor was occupied.

I took the time to knock on every door the morning of the storm to ask people to crack their balcony doors.

Every single person complied.

Result: Ours was the only floor that was habitable after the hurricane passed. All the other floors were heavily damaged.

Why would you crack your balcony door?
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Quoting gator23:

4.Miami Dade County Alvarez said "We advise everyone to remember, run from the water hide from the wind" this was in regards to Ike a cat 5 at the time. He followed that with "We dont want to see problems like in Texas with people evacuating unnecessarily


And the reasoning behind this is because even if evacuations started 3 days in advance people would still be stuck on the highway during hurricane force winds. Takes a long time to evacuate that many people. Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties have over 5 million people combined.
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Quoting gator23:

pretty sure this is a lie
Why would I lie? 6 to 8 inches of sand were removed from the Texas beaches all the way from the Mexican border to the LA border. They were deposited in offshore bars. Mother nature spent a long time replenishing them. There are photos in the Corpus Christi newspaper to attest to my veracity.
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Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:


Frances was not annular


I was unsure, but I thought I heard someone say that it was. It certainly had the characteristics of one, though: a large eye and the sustaining of hurricane force winds for an extended period of time.
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During Hurricane Dolly, every room on my floor was occupied.

I took the time to knock on every door the morning of the storm to ask people to crack their balcony doors.

Every single person complied.

Result: Ours was the only floor that was habitable after the hurricane passed. All the other floors were heavily damaged.
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 3617
1111. gator23
Quoting SavannahStorm:








Not many.

Wood homes. the only thing left standing are the concrete blocks.
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1110. gator23
Quoting hunkerdown:
Here is a quote from that article, "Baker had more points to ponder: In 1992's Hurricane Andrew, a Category 5 storm, 60,000 homes in Florida were rendered uninhabitable by the wind, and only 20 percent of them had been evacuated. Still, the death total for people inside their homes was only six." Even if only six died, why take the chance. There is also no mention of injury count.

Be safe, be smart...do you trust the builder/subs who built your house ? That was part of the problem of the wind destroyed homes in Andrew.

Yes I do those home were made of wood. My home is concrete block.

Im done here sit on an expressway for all I care. Me and Max Mayfield will be in our homes.
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1109. amd
Quoting CycloneOz:


*Unless you are in an area designated as being "mandatory evacuation!" Always remember to follow the directions of authorities when it comes to guidance in hostile situations. A mandatory evacuation zone means that authorities have deemed that area to be at severe risk for extreme loss of property and life.


forgot to mention that, good call
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Quoting Weather456:


I understand what you are saying, but you had the option of moving as far inland as you wished, when you live on an island, your options are limited.


Exactly, they dont seem to be understanding that that was your point.


I bet the low coming off the African coast in 2 weeks will be the first real threat of the season.
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Oh yeah, I'm pretty sure Donna (1960) and Fabian (2003) were also annular hurricanes.
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Quoting Weather456:
It's sad though, becuz, I dont know how much buildings would stand up to a once in lifetime cat 5. I would leave the island.








Not many.
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Quoting PortABeachBum:
Storm surge from IKE came within 100 feet of my home and I live 200 miles from IKE's landfall!


I understand what you are saying, but you had the option of moving as far inland as you wished, when you live on an island, your options are limited.
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Quoting Weather456:
It's sad though, becuz, I dont know how much buildings would stand up to a once in lifetime cat 5. I would leave the island.


In a Cat V, the only structure I would come close to trusting would be a reinforced concrete parking garage...and even then....
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 3617
1101. gator23
Quoting PortABeachBum:
Storm surge from IKE came within 100 feet of my home and I live 200 miles from IKE's landfall!

pretty sure this is a lie
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Quoting gator23:

you dont evacuate from wind read this article!
Link
Here is a quote from that article, "Baker had more points to ponder: In 1992's Hurricane Andrew, a Category 5 storm, 60,000 homes in Florida were rendered uninhabitable by the wind, and only 20 percent of them had been evacuated. Still, the death total for people inside their homes was only six." Even if only six died, why take the chance. There is also no mention of injury count.

Be safe, be smart...do you trust the builder/subs who built your house ? That was part of the problem of the wind destroyed homes in Andrew.
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Quoting KoritheMan:


I believe Frances and Floyd were as well. If not the latter, definitely the former.



IM me
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Quoting KoritheMan:


I believe Frances and Floyd were as well. If not the latter, definitely the former.


Frances was not annular
It's sad though, becuz, I dont know how much buildings would stand up to a once in lifetime cat 5. I would leave the island. The threshold here is cat 3-4.
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Quoting amd:
actually gator is right in this case. If you live in a well constructed builiding and you are out of a surge or flood zone, you should stay in your place until the storm passes.



*Unless you are in an area designated as being "mandatory evacuation!" Always remember to follow the directions of authorities when it comes to guidance in hostile situations. A mandatory evacuation zone means that authorities have deemed that area to be at severe risk for extreme loss of property and life.
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 3617
Quoting FloridaTigers:


I knew Isabel and Ioke were.


I believe Frances and Floyd were as well. If not the latter, definitely the former.
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1094. Skyepony (Mod)
Quoting HURRICANECAT5:
The area just nw of Puerto Rico has vorticity at all levels. What is this? i lnow shear is high at the moment but can some development happen?


That's a surface trough playing with an upper level low. This is what the NAM had worked up into something weak the other day. It takes an ULL days to develop. An interesting feature, likely not to develop.
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Quoting Weather456:


Read posts 1078 & 1079
Storm surge from IKE came within 100 feet of my home and I live 200 miles from IKE's landfall!
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Quoting PortABeachBum:
Inland on my island is 3 blocks West. Elevations of any significance are 100 mi. North.


yea but you can go into mainland Texas, its nowhere near the same
1091. amd
actually gator is right in this case. If you live in a well constructed builiding and you are out of a surge or flood zone, you should stay in your place until the storm passes.

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1090. gator23
Quoting stormno:
gator if a cat 5 is coming at you i think most sensible people even if they dont get the storm surge will run from the WIND....what are you thinking of man gezzz..i would recant that or word it differently man....just looking out for you...i dont want people to think if a cat 5 is coming and they wont get the storm surge they can stay that is ludicrous man....Stormno

1. In Miami our homes can withstand VERY high winds
2. I was in a Cat 5 and my house survived
3. I already cited articles from experts to make my point that you should stay put
4.Miami Dade County Alvarez said "We advise everyone to remember, run from the water hide from the wind" this was in regards to Ike a cat 5 at the time. He followed that with "We dont want to see problems like in Texas with people evacuating unnecessarily
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Quoting Weather456:


Read post 1079


that person obviously didnt read what you said

Texas is not an island last I checked, if you live on a barrier island in the US you have the option to go inland on the mainland

On an island like Hawaii or Haiti, you dont have that option. They are two completely different situations.
Quoting KoritheMan:


Daniel (2006)
Isabel (2003)
Ioke (2006)
Alberto (2000)


I knew Isabel and Ioke were.
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Quoting Gumbogator:
It'll take a long time for this monster cane {Felicia} to spin down as it approaches Hawaii.


Time is relative. 48 to 72 to 120 hours. A long time to some....
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 3617
Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:


He is talking about inland on an island, in the US evacuating inland is much different
Inland on my island is 3 blocks West. Elevations of any significance are 100 mi. North.
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Quoting FloridaTigers:
If Andrew, even at his size, landfalled just 15 miles north than where it did, that would be a worst case scenario.

What are other examples of annular hurricanes?


Daniel (2006)
Isabel (2003)
Ioke (2006)
Alberto (2000)
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Quoting PortABeachBum:
I wonder how many of the TX Gulf Coast would agree? Do you think those homeowners of Gilchrist,TX on the Bolivar Penisula would want to be asked to remain on the coast?


Read posts 1078 & 1079
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Katrina made landfall @ Buras LA and the sea level pressure was 917 mbs(Cat 5). When Rita(who can forget that bad girl) winds were 185 mph in the GOM. The pressure was much lower than Katrina was. It'll take a long time for this monster cane to spin down as it approaches Hawaii. The string of pearls in peril?? I'd be on edge if I were in Hawaii, despite what the computer models predict*****
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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.