Claudette hits Florida; Ana approaches Puerto RIco; Bill becomes our first hurricane

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:10 PM GMT on August 17, 2009

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Tropical Storm Claudette made landfall at about 1:15 am EDT near the eastern end of Santa Rosa Island, just southeast of Fort Walton Beach in Florida. Claudette's top winds were around 50 mph. A Personal Weather Station in Eastpoint, FL recorded sustained winds of 49 mph, gusting to 66 mph last night. So far, the rain from Claudette has had a tough time penetrating inland (Figure 2). Heavy rains of 3 - 4 inches have been confined to a narrow strip of coast, and Claudette is unlikely to cause any major flooding. Apalachicola received just over 4 inches of rain so far from Claudette. Radar animations out of the Florida Panhandle show that heavy rains continue along the coast in association with a main spiral band of Claudette, and these rains will gradually subside today.


Figure 1. Radar reflectivity image of Tropical Storm Claudette as it approached landfall just southeast of Fort Walton Beach shortly after midnight on 8/17/09.

The tropics featured a rare triple threat the past two days--simultaneous named storms beginning with the letters A, B, and C. The last time this occurred was in the slow-starting 1984 hurricane season, when Tropical Storms Arthur, Bertha, and Cesar were all active on September 1. This year's A, B, and C storms all got their names in just a 33 hour span. This is not a record, since in 1995, three tropical storms--Humberto, Iris, and Jerry--got their names in a 27-hour span (thanks to NOAA's Ryan Sharp for looking up this stat).


Figure 2. Total precipitation estimated by radar for Claudette, as of 3:28pm EDT 8/17/09.

Ana not dead yet
Tropical Depression Ana continues to cling to life, and is now approaching landfall in Puerto Rico. Radar animations from the San Juan, Puerto Rico radar show a surface circulation just southeast of the island, with some low-level spiral banding trying to develop to the south. Recent satellite images also show a rejuvenation of the heavy thunderstorm activity near Ana's center, as the storm regroups from being nearly torn apart yesterday. Ana has already dumped up to 4 inches of rain along the north coast of Puerto Rico, according to radar-estimates.

It is unlikely that Ana will survive past today, however, since the storm will move over both Puerto Rico and the rugged terrain of Hispaniola. The high mountains of these islands should act to disrupt the relatively small and fragile circulation of Ana. None of the computer models foresee that Ana will survive passage over Hispaniola. The Dominican Republic can expect 3 - 6 inches of rain from Ana, and Haiti can expect 1 - 3 inches.


Figure 3. Total precipitation estimated by radar from Ana for Puerto Rico.

Bill becomes the first Atlantic hurricane of 2009
Hurricane Bill continues to gather strength, and is now the first hurricane of the 2009 Atlantic hurricane season. An eye has appeared on visible and infrared satellite imagery, and Bill is displaying an impressive symmetry, with plenty of low-level spiral banding.

Wind shear is low, 5 - 10 knots, and is forecast to be in the low range through Wednesday. With Sea Surface Temperatures only 27°C today, substantial intensification may not occur until Tuesday and Wednesday, when SSTs warm to 28 - 29°C and ocean heat content sharply increases. By Thursday, Bill is expected to leave the favorable upper-level wind environment it currently finds itself in, and moderate shear of 15 - 20 knots may limit further intensification.

Water vapor satellite imagery shows that there is a modest trough of low pressure in the upper atmosphere near 50°W longitude, that Bill is currently approaching. All of the computer models except the UKMET predict that this trough will be strong enough to turn Bill more to the northwest so that the hurricane misses the Lesser Antilles Islands. The UKMET predicts the trough will not affect Bill much, and that the hurricane will pass through or just north of the islands on Thursday. For now, the UKMET solution is being discounted, since the trough at 50W appears substantial enough on satellite imagery to be able to turn Bill more to the northwest.

A much larger trough of low pressure is expected to develop along the U.S. East Coast late this week, turning Bill even more to the northwest. Most of the models predict Bill will pass very close to Bermuda on Saturday as a result. The HWRF model predicts Bermuda will receive a direct hit at Category 4 strength. Until Bill interacts with the small trough at 50°W, it is too early to be confident of the potential threat to Bermuda. By Tuesday, we should have a much better idea of the threat. Likewise, I would like to see the UKMET model come around in line with the other models before dismissing the possible threat to the U.S. East Coast. It currently appears that Bill will miss the U.S. East Coast, but that a strike on the Canadian provinces of Newfoundland or Nova Scotia is possible.

I'll have an update Tuesday morning, or possibly this afternoon.

Jeff Masters

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2374. Relix
Bill is most definitely trending west.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting leelee75k:


that's funny, because in Western Broward it smelled like fish on Saturday night after pre claudette passed by. It was weird.


I am pretty sure that all of Broward county smells like fish.
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Quoting Weather456:


the NHC has him hitting 15N at 48.7W

LINK

Well then they're a bit off.. It's already at 14.9, borderline 15N as we speak.. Only 47.3-47.4W at the moment.
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LOL, look at bermuda in the eye:

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Quoting lovesdanger:
so reedzone you are going on record and saying bill will hit n england right..


Nope, but like I've been saying, it's a possibility
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Quoting HurricaneFCast:

Click image, paste the link, enter, enter.


hmmmm....doesnt work for me
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Quoting serialteg:


where is the weakness

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Quoting samiam1234:
NHC doesnt have him hitting 15N till about 51W.. if anything this thing is moving more northward


the NHC has him hitting 15N at 48.7W

LINK
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting samiam1234:
NHC doesnt have him hitting 15N till about 51W.. if anything this thing is moving more northward

wrong.

INITIAL 17/2100Z 14.6N 46.7W 80 KT
12HR VT 18/0600Z 15.2N 48.7W 90 KT
24HR VT 18/1800Z 16.2N 51.3W 95 KT
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Quoting WeatherMSK:
how do you post images?

Click image, paste the link, enter, enter.
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Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
Oh hey Drakoen--we're back after getting a new modem. BTW that virus attack last week downloaded more than 97,000 cookies and various programs into our temporary internet files. If your puter has been sluggish, clean that stuff out.


I ran my virus program last night and had a ton of garbage on it. Seems to be running much better now.
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....and from what I can see (with my amature eye) from the models, is that nothing is behind Bill...

Am I reading it right?

http://moe.met.fsu.edu/cgi-bin/gfstc2.cgi?time=2009081712&field=850mb+Vorticity&hour=Animation
Member Since: May 19, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 484
2347. Weather456 11:45 PM GMT on August 17, 2009
THE NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER HAS ISSUED THE LAST ADVISORY ON
TROPICAL DEPRESSION ANA. DISORGANIZED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS
ASSOCIATED WITH THE REMNANTS OF TROPICAL DEPRESSION ANA EXTEND FROM
HISPANIOLA THROUGH THE SOUTHEASTERN BAHAMAS. THIS ACTIVITY IS
MOVING TOWARD THE WEST AT 20 TO 25 MPH AND SHOWS NO SIGNS OF
REGENERATION. THERE IS A LOW CHANCE...LESS THAN 30 PERCENT...OF
THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.


lol...for now.....she's a fighter...
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North America image

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Quoting WPBHurricane05:
3. REMARKS: NOAA WILL BEGIN FLYING 5 RESEARCH MISSIONS IN A ROW ON HURRICANE BILL AT 18/0800Z WITH THE P-3 AND G-IV. TAKEOFFS WILL BE EVERY 12 HOURS.




Thanks for this!
So eager for their first readings!
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Quoting samiam1234:
NHC doesnt have him hitting 15N till about 51W.. if anything this thing is moving more northward


Check again.
Member Since: July 31, 2006 Posts: 56 Comments: 8112
2356. jscs
Quoting reedzone:
18Z NOGAPS aims for New England landfall!



That's amazing. Hope he gets shoved away. That part of the country isn't even thinking hurricane this time of year.
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Drak....Is that dry air that's all around Bill on that water vapor imagery? And also is that high above it pushing downward on it? Sorry if those are stupid questions...just tryin to learn...
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Quoting indianrivguy:


I have for all my life maintained I could "smell" a tropical system. Friends have called me crazy, and they may be right, but not about sniffing a storm. Saturday morning I stepped outside, sniffed the air and came in and opened up the radar to see what was around.. Claudette was in her beginings on top of the Keys... the nose knows

Hey 456.. do you have a link to cimms please sir.. I have it saved somewhere and cannot find it.. arrggg... thanks!


that's funny, because in Western Broward it smelled like fish on Saturday night after pre claudette passed by. It was weird.
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Quoting Weather456:


LINK


Thanks bro, I appreciate the help!
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how do you post images?
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0800Z is 4am EDT. so they are getting a very early start tomorrow.
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NHC doesnt have him hitting 15N till about 51W.. if anything this thing is moving more northward
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Repeat post
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Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
drg0dOwnCountry I liked your posts on Dr. Rood's blog.

Thanks. Anything in particular?
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8PM Ana

THE NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER HAS ISSUED THE LAST ADVISORY ON
TROPICAL DEPRESSION ANA. DISORGANIZED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS
ASSOCIATED WITH THE REMNANTS OF TROPICAL DEPRESSION ANA EXTEND FROM
HISPANIOLA THROUGH THE SOUTHEASTERN BAHAMAS. THIS ACTIVITY IS
MOVING TOWARD THE WEST AT 20 TO 25 MPH AND SHOWS NO SIGNS OF
REGENERATION. THERE IS A LOW CHANCE...LESS THAN 30 PERCENT...OF
THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
18Z NOGAPS aims for New England landfall!

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2345. JRRP
Link
Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6213


14.9, ~47.3
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Quoting WPBHurricane05:
3. REMARKS: NOAA WILL BEGIN FLYING 5 RESEARCH MISSIONS IN A ROW ON HURRICANE BILL AT 18/0800Z WITH THE P-3 AND G-IV. TAKEOFFS WILL BE EVERY 12 HOURS.




thats about 4am 2mr
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting WeatherMSK:


Man it sure looks like the convection ditched the northern coc and is trying to redistribute a little further south, right at the end of that loop.
I thought I saw that too, I have looked at a couple other images and I have to agree with you.
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Quoting presslord:
I have a VHF radio base in my bedroom (yes...I'm a sick, disturbed man)...and the offshore shipping traffic is talking a good bit about Bill...nothing nice to say, though....
Don't feel like the Lone Ranger.
I'll bet they don't use the term "Fish Storm".
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Quoting alaina1085:


Thank you
no prob
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Quoting tropicaltank:
Probably a stupid question. How often do the models re-adjust?


Most every 6 hours...some of them update every 12 hours.
Member Since: July 31, 2006 Posts: 56 Comments: 8112
Quoting tropicaltank:
Probably a stupid question. How often do the models re-adjust?
every 6 hours.
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3. REMARKS: NOAA WILL BEGIN FLYING 5 RESEARCH MISSIONS IN A ROW ON HURRICANE BILL AT 18/0800Z WITH THE P-3 AND G-IV. TAKEOFFS WILL BE EVERY 12 HOURS.


Member Since: July 31, 2006 Posts: 56 Comments: 8112
Quoting Weather456:


still not showing up here


If anyone knows when they will heading it, just halla
2PM tomorrow
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2332. jpsb
Quoting WxLogic:
Good evening...

Well is hard to believe how Bill is going to get passed this... but where's there's a Coriolis there's a way!!!
em>
Oh that is bad very very bad.
Member Since: June 30, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1276
Probably a stupid question. How often do the models re-adjust?
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Bill is getting tugged at from the north based on the water imagery.
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When do HHrs fly Bill again? @ 55W?
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 22736
Quoting alaina1085:


When are they going in? Sorry if this has been asked 50 times.


still not showing up here


If anyone knows when they will heading it, just halla
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting canesrule1:
2PM tomorrow.


Thank you
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1240

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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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