Tropical Storm Erika likely soon; a weaker Jimena powers towards Baja

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:48 PM GMT on September 01, 2009

Share this Blog
3
+

Hurricane Jimena has weakened to a low-end Category 4 hurricane with 135 mph winds, thanks to the collapse of its inner eyewall. The hurricane is undergoing a process common in intense hurricanes called an Eyewall Replacement Cycle (ERC), where the eye shrinks to a size too small to be stable, resulting in the disintegration of the eyewall, and the formation of a new eyewall from one of the outer spiral bands. Once the new eyewall becomes stable tonight, Jimena has an opportunity to re-strengthen.

The latest set of 12Z model runs show little change in Jimena's track. The hurricane is still expected to make landfall Wednesday along Mexico's Baja Peninsula. If the hurricane makes landfall over the southern portion of Baja, it would likely be at major hurricane strength. However, SSTs cool quickly to 23°C at the middle of the Baja Peninsula, and Jimena would likely weaken to a Category 2 or 1 hurricane if it makes a strike towards the middle of Baja. The computer models are split on what might happen once Jimena makes landfall on Baja, with one camp predicting a northeast turn bringing the storm over Mainland Mexico and eventually into Arizona, and the other camp stalling Jimena out over or just west of Baja. Regardless, the main threat from Jimena will be flooding and mudslides due to heavy rains.

Baja's hurricane history
The most powerful hurricane on record to hit the west coast of Baja occurred last year, when Hurricane Norbert made landfall on the central Baja coast with sustained winds of 105 mph (Category 2) . Norbert's central pressure of 956 mb at landfall made it the 3rd strongest hurricane to hit the Pacific coast of Mexico since record keeping began in 1949. Norbert killed eight, knocked out power to 20,000 homes, and damaged or destroyed 40% of the homes on the islands of Margarita and Magdalena. Norbert crossed the Baja Peninsula and made landfall on Mainland Mexico as a Category 1 hurricane with 85 mph winds.

Only two major hurricanes have made landfall on Baja since record keeping began in 1949. Both hurricanes hit the east (Gulf of California) side of Baja. The first was Hurricane Olivia of 1967. Olivia made landfall on October 13, 1967 as a Category 3 hurricane with 125 mph winds. Due to its small size and the unpopulated region of coast it hit, damage was minimal. The second major hurricane was Hurricane Kiko, which made landfall on August 27, 1989, as a Category 3 hurricane with winds of 115 mph (minimal Category 3). Kiko was a small hurricane and hit a relatively unpopulated area, resulting in no loss of life and only scattered reports of damage.


Figure 1. A plot of all the major hurricanes to pass within 200 miles of Mexico's Baja Peninsula since 1949. Image credit: NOAA Coastal Services Center.

Invest 94L almost Tropical Storm Erika
The Air Force Hurricane Hunters are investigating tropical wave 94L, about 200 miles east of the Lesser Antilles Islands. So far this afternoon, they have found a broad circulation with top winds of 45 - 50 mph in heavy thunderstorms on the east side. The circulation may be too broad for 94L to be considered a tropical storm, but visible satellite imagery shows that the circulation is getting better defined, and 94L's heavy thunderstorms are moving closer to the center of circulation. Recent satellite wind shear analyses by NOAA/Colorado State University and the University of Wisconsin show that wind shear is a moderate 10 - 20 knots over 94L, and this shear is keeping any thunderstorms from developing on the system's west side.

The forecast for 94L
The latest of 12Z model runs are more in tune with the idea that 94L will become a tropical storm, with the latest ECMWF run now on board. The storm will be steered west-northwest to northwest over the next three days thanks to the presence to two upper-level lows to the northwest of the storm. Since most of 94L's heavy thunderstorms and high winds are on the east side, the northern Lesser Antilles and Puerto Rico will probably be spared tropical storm force winds from this system. The best guess track for 94L, assuming it does intensify into a tropical storm in the next 24 hours, is on a northwest path between the Bahamas and Bermuda. If 94L stays weak, a more southerly path, along the northern edge of the Bahama Islands, is more likely.


Figure 2. Infrared satellite image taken at 12pm EDT, Tuesday Sep 1, 2009. Five major African tropical waves are apparent. Image credit: Navy Research Lab, Monterey.

Elsewhere in the tropics
It's September, the most active month for hurricane activity in the Northern Hemisphere. There's every indication that the 2009 Atlantic hurricane season will have an active first half of September, since SSTs are 0.5 - 1.0°C above average, wind shear is near average, and the African monsoon is sending a long parade of African waves spinning off the coast of Africa. An IR satellite image from noon today shows this activity well (Figure 2). We can see a line-up of five African waves stretching from the Lesser Antilles to eastern Africa. The GFS model develops the waves numbered "2" and "3" into tropical depressions next week, and the waves labeled "1" and "4" also have a chance to develop into tropical depressions, as well. The wave labeled "1" is mentioned on NHC's Tropical Weather Outlook as having a low (less than 30%) chance of developing into a tropical depression by Thursday. This wave is under a moderate 10 - 15 knots of wind shear, and is over sufficiently warm waters (27 - 28°C) that some development may occur this week. The wave is far enough north that it will be hampered by dry air from the Sahara Desert.

California fire webcams
As I discussed in this morning's post, you can use our wundermap for Los Angeles with the fire layer turned on to see where the fire and smoke are located, and track the temperatures and winds during today's air pollution event. We also have two webcams with views of the fire: Altadena and Tujunga.

Jeff Masters

Backing Down (Fotoguy77)
Part of the massive Station Fire backs down toward Sunland, Ca in this shot taken around 1am. The fire has burned through over 122,000 acres and killed two.
Backing Down
getting out (Fotoguy77)
This fire Chief from El Dorado County in Northern California is chased out of Aliso Canyon by a wall of flames. This was in the Acton area just off the 14 Freeway.
getting out

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

Sign In or Register Sign In or Register

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 2060 - 2010

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56 | 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61 | 62 | 63 | 64 | 65 | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75 | 76 | 77Blog Index

Is talking about 94L getting in the GOM, Taboo in here right now, because ive seen storms Where Erika either goes over FL. or slide in the SE GOM!I think this storm is going to be very unpredictable and we cant rule anything out! Also the believing that a trough is going to come down and scoop up Erika is up in air,so to speak!LOL
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2059. Drakoen
Quoting Relix:



My bag of crow is in the microwave right now.....

What do you think about it?


They still want the system to move out to sea though. The only reason the GFS is as far west as it is is because it degenerates the system into a tropical wave
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 31658
Quoting Hurricajun:
truecajun, you my kind of person! Libby's vienna sausage and potted meat for storms!!!
In Cayman tuna, corned beef, sardines & vienna sausages.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Good evening folks. Any updates? Been away for a little while. I know we have TS Erika.

I was looking at the 6pm model runs and it appears we have a SC/NC storm potential. High builds eastward which prohibits the turn out to sea, and forces a nnw path towards the coastline.

Major outflow with interesting sheer stress of some sort in the uppper levels right now. I take it that's the strong anticyclone causing that?

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Ok....gotta run.....hoping Erika goes "poof" with the shear and we continue to have a quiet Atlantic season. I like the excitement and tracking and all too....always have...but Ike broke me of that for a while. LOL Y'all take care!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting clwstmchasr:
canesruel1 should be banned. Language like that is not acceptable.
reported
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Wow! Erika definitely grew overnight...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:



article containing above photo of Oz


Mexico evacuates thousands ahead of hurricane

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gVWjsPEiqe1tEu2mhBIRaxxGi8owD9AES3OG2

Most tourists had already fled by Tuesday, leaving 75 percent of hotel rooms vacant. But some of those who remained came out to see the storm with avid anticipation, fighting the winds and intermittent bands of rain at the shore.

Hurricane chaser Brian Osburn of Pensacola, Florida, stood on a beach in high tech gear and protective padding while holding a plastic-encased, submersible Hi-definition video camera to take shots of the pounding surge and gusts.

"I think Cabo San Lucas is still in for a good blow," said Osburn, holding his waterproof microphone into the shrieking winds.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2046. Relix

Quoting Drakoen:
Interestingly enough the European models take the system across the northern islands and over Puerto Rico.


My bag of crow is in the microwave right now.....

What do you think about it?
Member Since: August 3, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 2741
truecajun, you my kind of person! Libby's vienna sausage and potted meat for storms!!!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2043. 7544
oh great thanks 1 and half hours to go
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6884
Quoting 7544:
what time is the hh flight is it in the am
Around 2 am edt
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting boiredfish:
Ok....who here has filled bathtubs and jugs with water, and stocked up on Wolf Brand chili in advance of a storm? LOL
JFV, Wherever he is...here's to ya..cheers!
Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 2359
Per NRL
06LERIKA.50kts-1004mb
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2036. 7544
does anyone knoow what time is the next hh plane going in i edt tia
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6884
Quoting 7544:
what time is the hh flight is it in the am



FLIGHT TWO - TEAL 76
A. 02/0600Z, 1200Z
B. AFXXX 0206A CYCLONE
C. 02/0400Z
D. 18.0N 58.0W
E. 02/0530Z TO 02/1200Z
F. SFC TO 10,000 FT


Takeoff at midnight, center fix at 2 AM.
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 16 Comments: 11703
2034. Drakoen
Interestingly enough the European models take the system across the northern islands and over Puerto Rico.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 31658
Quoting boiredfish:
Ok....who here has filled bathtubs and jugs with water, and stocked up on Wolf Brand chili in advance of a storm? LOL


i prefer vienna sausages over wolf chili.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:


Having a Old Rotary Phone with a Jack to run it actually is a Fantastic Hurricane tool to keep.
I have 2.

I have a rotary dial phone in my wall in my kitchen and it still works! My kids friends are AMAZED by it!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2031. Lizpr
Quoting boiredfish:
Just curious...how many of you fine people on this website have tracked hurricanes on maps with pencil and ruler due to there being no home computers in existence????


lol I did it in 1989 for Hugo I was 11 years old.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
i think are storm is intensifieing rapidly
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5095 Comments: 116090
Quoting canesrule1:
I dont care im tired of this blog. Im not coming back anymore!
good, we could use someone who will actually provide true info, rather then someone who will provide infor that he thinks will get him the brunt of the storm
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:


Hurricane chaser Brian Osburn records video along the beach as Hurricane Jimena starts hitting Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2009. (AP Photo/Guillermo Arias)


GO OZ YOU ROCK!! :)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Wow. Am I caught up???? took me 2 hours!

Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 23090
Patrap..didn't know that about those phones. Grandma in Austin, now. She used to live in Robstown, TX back in the day. I would spend summers with her. Fun times. I remember tracking Alicia quite well. Scared the poop out of me.
Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 2359
Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:


Hurricane chaser Brian Osburn records video along the beach as Hurricane Jimena starts hitting Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2009. (AP Photo/Guillermo Arias)


How do you not just love this guy?!?!?!?!?!
Member Since: August 13, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10513
Ok....who here has filled bathtubs and jugs with water, and stocked up on Wolf Brand chili in advance of a storm? LOL
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
New updated blog on Erika's current appearance and conditions. No forecast map or intensity. Too much uncertainty. I don't know if I can stay up for the 11pm advisory. I will try.
Member Since: October 21, 2008 Posts: 248 Comments: 3970
Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:


Hurricane chaser Brian Osburn records video along the beach as Hurricane Jimena starts hitting Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2009. (AP Photo/Guillermo Arias)


I first thought he was a member of a SWAT team.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2015. 7544
what time is the hh flight is it in the am
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6884
2013. Bonz
"I must admit that i have great anticipation every time a tropical system gets near south florida. Not that i am a wishcaster, but I am fascinated by mother nature. During Frances, Jeanne and Wilma I was in awe of the fury of the storms. Now..the aftermath...plain awful. I will say that strong Cat 3 or higher and i am out of town."

Me too. Used to be I'd go if it were only 4 or higher. Dealing with Wilma changed my mind. The second half of that storm was plain scary.

I think this one is more apt to hit further north, but until it is safely north of Fort Lauderdale, I will eye it warily.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting boiredfish:
Just curious...how many of you fine people on this website have tracked hurricanes on maps with pencil and ruler due to there being no home computers in existence????
I did so until 1999.... Floyd was the last "big one" I tracked that way. After that I got a laptop that had wireless internet, and the rest is history.

Quoting boiredfish:
Yeah....you got maps on grocery store bags, from TV stations....
Some people still publish them, but I don't like how they don't give the intermediate dots or lighter lines between the main lines of Lat / Long so u can plot points w/out "gestimating"....
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 23090
Quoting BDADUDE:

Trust me I do not want a Gulf Storm. Saints look better then ever this year and after Katrina I don't think this City would manage too well. I pray day in and out that it curves.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting canesrule1:
hey smart ass, check out the damn WU models, the only fu**ing wishcaster is you, by the way welcome to my ignore list!



hey idiot, the models are still not close to the coast, and if you look at the sfwmd hurricane models they arent even close to florida. and the only wishcaster is me? dude please, quit lying to yourself, we all know you are a huge wishcaster. see bill or any other storm
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 2060 - 2010

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56 | 57 | 58 | 59 | 60 | 61 | 62 | 63 | 64 | 65 | 66 | 67 | 68 | 69 | 70 | 71 | 72 | 73 | 74 | 75 | 76 | 77Blog Index

Top of Page

About

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

JeffMasters's Recent Photos

Dunham Lake Sunset
Carrot Nose in Danger
Deep Snow in Brookline, MA
Sunset at Fort DeSoto