Little change to Erika; Jimena makes landfall as a Category 2 hurricane

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:30 PM GMT on September 02, 2009

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Tropical Storm Erika remains weak and disorganized, and the future track and intensity of the storm remain highly uncertain. The center has jumped several times over the past 12 hours, and now lies exposed to view, west of the main area of heavy thunderstorms. Radar animations out of Martinique show little organization of the echoes, and satellite imagery shows no low-level spiral bands or upper-level outflow. Wind shear analyses from the University of Wisconsin diagnose a moderate 10 - 15 knots of shear over Erika, a decrease from yesterday. SSTs are warm, 29°C. The Hurricane Hunters are in the storm now, and have found a slight increase in the surface winds, up to 45 mph. They noted that the surface center was displaced 12 miles north of the center they found at 1500 feet, which is the sign of a disorganized storm undergoing wind shear.

The forecast for Erika
Erika is embedded in a weak steering current pattern, and the storm's current state of disorganization is allowing the center to make random jumps as it reforms near the heaviest thunderstorm activity. This makes for a low-confidence forecast. The future track of the storm will depend upon how strong the storm gets over the next few days. A stronger Erika will extend higher into the atmosphere and be steered more to the northwest by upper-level winds. A weaker Erika will be steered more by the low-level winds, which will keep the storm on a more westerly track. The intensity forecast models did a poor job with Tropical Storm Danny last week, and appear to be repeating that poor performance with Erika. All of the major intensity forecast models predict substantial strengthening of Erika. This seems unlikely to occur, given the storm's current disorganization, and the predicted increase in wind shear along the path of Erika to 20 - 25 knots 3 - 5 days from now. The more southerly than expected track of the storm also brings the possibility that Erika will encounter the high mountains of Puerto Rico and Hispaniola. The GFS, GFDL, and Canadian models predict Erika will pass near Puerto Rico on Friday, then move over Hispaniola on Saturday. Erika in its current weak state would probably not survive an encounter with these islands. A wide range of scenarios is still possible for Erika, from outright dissipation (as forecast by the GFS, Canadian, and ECMWF models) to intensification to a Category 3 hurricane (as forecast by the HWRF model). Erika is a long-term threat to the Bahamas and U.S. East Coast if it is still around five days from now. Potential landfall locations range from Florida on Tuesday to North Carolina on Wednesday. The NOGAPS model has Erika potentially missing the U.S. entirely, scooting northwards between North Carolina and Bermuda. My current expectation is that Erika will dissipate on Saturday when it encounters Hispaniola.


Figure 1. Afternoon image of Tropical Storm Erika. The swirl of clouds just west of Guadeloupe island is the center. This center was what I had labeled a "false center" in this morning's post, and has taken over as the main center this afternoon.

Hurricane Jimena hits Baja
Hurricane Jimena made lanndfall on Mexico's Baja Peninsula late this morning near Cabo San Lazaro as a Category 2 hurricane with 100 mph winds. Jimena is the 2nd strongest hurricane to hit Baja's west coast since record keeping began in 1949. The only stronger storm was Hurricane Norbert, which made landfall in 2008 on the central Baja coast with sustained winds of 105 mph. Jimena has now weakened to a Category 1 storm, and will continue to weaken as it hits colder waters and interacts with land. No deaths or major damage have been reported from the storm.


Figure 2. Hurricane Jimena on Tuesday, Sep. 1, 2009, as seen by NASA's MODIS instrument. Image credit: NASA Earth Observatory.

California fire webcams
As I discussed in yesterday 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.

I'll have an update Thursday morning.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting eddye:
were not saying goodbye were saying hello to erika


"you say goodbye, I say hello..."
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
just looking at the historical map on WU and i have to say it is impresive they know a cat 1 storm went almost due north in 1872? imagine what were their tracking abilities back then were compared to now.
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1635. amd
winds are a puny 5 mph from the east in anguila which is just to the east of the convection buildup east of the island.

Link

Enough tracking of tropical storm Erika for me tonight.
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Quoting Relix:
Really waiting on StormW's input =P
Me too! Where ya at? Might have to check in later before bedtime. :)
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1633. rxse7en
Quoting MelbourneTom:


Station 13001
Prediction and Research Moored Array in the Atlantic
Location: 11.50N 23W
Conditions as of:
Wed, 2 Sep 2009 21:00:00 UTC
Winds: WSW (240°) at 8.0 kt
Atmospheric Pressure: 29.91 in
Air Temperature: 81.3 F
Water Temperature: 82.0 F

Have to wait for it to get a little further W.
Thank you!
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Wouldn't it be funny if somehow Erika was retired this year, and six years from now we had Fred and Ethel? I know...I'm tired.
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11557
1630. Patrap
Quoting hydrus:
KEEPEROFTHEGATE--I have to say that last loop you posted is very funny.Did you see the weird looking eyes and face moving towards the islands?



We saw that exact same Dvorak,BD look when Gustav was forming..creepy Alien we call it.

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1629. eddye
were not saying goodbye were saying hello to erika
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Quoting Chicklit:
Going to put in a plug for NYHurricaneboy's blog.
Link
Thought he made an astute remark (I agreed with...lol). Anyway, his blog is pretty good too. :)


Thank you!
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1627. Patrap
Quoting jipmg:


Difference is, this dominating low has heavy convection over it



So did Last Nights Convective Burst,.but without a Mean Centered CoC,..thats all you'll get.

What goes Up,will come down,..without a Neat Stack and ventilation. Erkia has never been able to do that..yet.
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wsvn stating that is should be down graded bc of shear, then it needs to travel over mountians DR..and by the end of the weekend.."we can say goodbye"
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1625. hydrus
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
KEEPEROFTHEGATE--I have to say that last loop you posted is very funny.Did you see the weird looking eyes and face moving towards the islands?
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FRED IS COMING!!!
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1623. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
Japan Meteorological Agency
Tropical Cyclone Advisory #1
TROPICAL DEPRESSION
9:00 AM JST September 3 2009
=========================================

SUBJECT: Tropical Depression In Sea East Of The Philippines

At 0:00 AM UTC, Tropical Depression (996 hPa) located at 18.2N 130.0E has 10 minute sustained winds of 30 knots with gusts of 45 knots. The depression is reported as moving west slowly

RSMC Dvorak Intensity:

Forecast and Intensity
=======================
24 HRS: 19.5N 131.2E - 35 knots (CAT 1/Tropical Storm)
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Quoting kachina:


From the McAfee site:
"McAfee Avert Labs has found a false detection with JS/Exploit-Packed.c.gen and will be releasing the 5729 DAT Files to correct this issue. The false detection is being seen on websites containing certain types of javascript obfuscation."

Link to the discussion:
http://community.mcafee.com/showthread.php?s=16bf755cc4c8811cbdc3d8491064d1ae&p=577163#post5771 63

http://vil.mcafeesecurity.com/vil/content/v_218755.htm
Member Since: August 18, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 474
1621. jipmg
Quoting Patrap:

What most are forgetting is that this is a LARGE Cv Circ that has always had Multiple CoC's within the Mean Overall Circ..thats whats been its problem from Genesis.
What its doing is the same as Last evening..One coc is trying to Dominate.

Until One does in the Center of the Overall Mean Circ..it will repeat the last 24,or spin Out,.or Consolidate a New central CoC in the end.

00 UTC Multiplatform Satellite Surface Wind Analysis


Difference is, this dominating low has heavy convection over it
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HIEXPRESS you rock!!

I didn't know that list of recommended books existed on this blog. Thanks for taking the time to let me know it does. I already see several I must have.

Anyone else who wants to recommend a book about an historical hurricane, please do.

Thanks
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FRED IS COMING!!!
http://www.ssd.noaa.gov/eumet/eatl/avn-l.jpg
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1618. Relix
Really waiting on StormW's input =P
Member Since: August 3, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 2741
Quoting TreasureCoastFl:
WS, good evening
rumor had it you were as dead on this blog as Erika. You've made a come back, so will Erika as well? lol
Member Since: August 18, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 474
Quoting surfsidesindy:
1599. tornadodude
haha, well, the reason I asked is because I live in Indiana... =P ha but I have a good reason to do this since I'm going to Purdue for meteorology

Good for you! Well, I am off to bed because I am currently a stay at home mom and school will come early for me tomorrow too!


well have a goodnight!
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
1615. centex
I think they will keep min TS and say COC relocating again.
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Until there's more evidence of a new center to the north, Erika will most likely get downgraded at 11 p.m.
Member Since: July 1, 2008 Posts: 13 Comments: 7437
1599. tornadodude
haha, well, the reason I asked is because I live in Indiana... =P ha but I have a good reason to do this since I'm going to Purdue for meteorology

Good for you! Well, I am off to bed because I am currently a stay at home mom and school will come early for me tomorrow too!
Member Since: September 7, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 287
Going to put in a plug for NYHurricaneboy's blog.
Link
Thought he made an astute remark (I agreed with...lol). Anyway, his blog is pretty good too. :)
Member Since: July 11, 2006 Posts: 14 Comments: 11424
1610. kachina
Quoting OracleDeAtlantis:
McAfee just blocked a trojan when signing on to this site, which is a first for me. The name of the critter is JS/Exploit-Packed.c.gen. This site was the only thing I had open in my browser.

I also can't quote anyone tonight, which is new.


From the McAfee site:
"McAfee Avert Labs has found a false detection with JS/Exploit-Packed.c.gen and will be releasing the 5729 DAT Files to correct this issue. The false detection is being seen on websites containing certain types of javascript obfuscation."

Link to the discussion:
http://community.mcafee.com/showthread.php?s=16bf755cc4c8811cbdc3d8491064d1ae&p=577163#post577163
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1609. Patrap
NOAA RAAMB AL062009 - Tropical Storm ERIKA
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Quoting WeatherStudent:



Right...and this is coming from an individual whom would bet his pention/social security, daily govermental pay-check on the ECMWF Model! Anyways, and on that note, good evening, everyone!!! :)
WS, good evening
Member Since: August 18, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 474
1607. 7544
is fixed Kman, just do the update for McAfee and it goes away :)
Action: Quote | Ignore User

thanks but i did the update and its still poping up idk
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6874
Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
I think Erika will be downgraded to a TD @ 11 p.m. And I don't think it makes much difference if a new circulation center forms to the north. There may be a few twists and turns with her track, and Hispaniola has to watch for flooding rains. But as a strong, organized tropical cyclone I don't think Erika has much of a future.


Basically what im thinking for now.
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
Quoting Ossqss:


It is fixed Kman, just do the update for McAfee and it goes away :)


No problem for me, I don't use McAfee
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Quoting tropics21:
Not very funny to someone who lost alot when we got two direct hits Frances and jean history is history


I didn't say that it was funny. A lot of this is speculation based on historical fact. I'm sorry if this offended you.
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I had read/heard from a few sources about a small ULL that was racing SW toward Erika and would probably catch up with her and start sheering her NW quadrant. Does anyone else see that ? It looks to me like that is what is happening.
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1602. Ossqss
Quoting kmanislander:


Dr M posted a note earlier that McAfee has a false positive for this site.


It is fixed Kman, just do the update for McAfee and it goes away :)
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1601. Patrap

What most are forgetting is that this is a LARGE Cv Circ that has always had Multiple CoC's within the Mean Overall Circ..thats whats been its problem from Genesis.
What its doing is the same as Last evening..One coc is trying to Dominate.

Until One does in the Center of the Overall Mean Circ..it will repeat the last 24,or spin Out,.or Consolidate a New central CoC in the end.

00 UTC Multiplatform Satellite Surface Wind Analysis
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1600. Relix
The Battle of the COCs! Who shall win??? This is so strange and exciting at the same time =P
Member Since: August 3, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 2741
Quoting surfsidesindy:
QUOTE: oh ok, I saw "indy" in your name, and thought indiana, but i believe that it is your name, Sindy? lol sorry

If I was in Indiana tracking tropical cyclones (and I DON'T knock anyone in an inland state that does :P) I would have WAY too much time on my hands!



haha, well, the reason I asked is because I live in Indiana... =P ha but I have a good reason to do this since I'm going to Purdue for meteorology
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
yes but there is an anticyclone placed over it which is intensifying.


I wouldnt hold dearly to that anticyclone. Its future is rather uncertain.

Currently its located to the SW of the main convection so its not in a great position to help.
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
winds not as usual here! Waiting to see what's gonna happen! I don't know what to think of this eventual new COC on north
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QUOTE:

I think Erika will be downgraded to a TD @ 11 p.m. And I don't think it makes much difference if a new circulation center forms to the north. There may be a few twists and turns with her track, and Hispaniola has to watch for flooding rains. But as a strong, organized tropical cyclone I don't think Erika has much of a future.

...And I hope you are right and I will go to bed now with visions of dust bunnies swirling around in the Atlantic...Good Night!
Member Since: September 7, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 287
Quoting kmanislander:
Surface pressure is rising at this buoy when it should be falling if the "old center" was approaching it.

Either Erika no longer has a low pressure center or the new one has taken over NE of Guadeloupe.
I agree with what I highlighted
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
1594. jipmg
Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
I think Erika will be downgraded to a TD @ 11 p.m. And I don't think it makes much difference if a new circulation center forms to the north. There may be a few twists and turns with her track, and Hispaniola has to watch for flooding rains. But as a strong, organized tropical cyclone I don't think Erika has much of a future.


I disagree, I Believe its finally found its center, why? Because it has convection right over it and its not in a hostile environment.

It might be downgraded to a TD just because the old center will likely fall apart due to this new one, but then it should gradually gain strenght (as the models suggest) as it moves WNW towards the bahamas.
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
looks can be deceiving but ya i think its trying to do somthing but the sw shear is preventing it from happening we will know more the next full updated at 11 pm imo i beleive we are watching a dying system thats fighting to stay alive
i agree
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Quoting masonsnana:

Dr. Lyons saying that TS Erica will be TD at 11pm update...any thoughts?????


I agree with that IF the NHC doesnt designate the circulation under the burst of convection the dominant one.
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
Surface pressure is rising at this buoy when it should be falling if the "old center" was approaching it.

Either Erika no longer has a low pressure center or the new one has taken over NE of Guadeloupe.
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Quoting nyhurricaneboy:


You bring up an interesting point.

Hurricane Frances Path -



Hurricane Jeanne Path -



Jeanne was very erratic, in both track and intensity. Erika may do something similar, but will probably be weaker, due to the current wind shear situation in the Bahamas (Link). Erika may actually be something if the shear relaxes, though.
Not very funny to someone who lost alot when we got two direct hits Frances and jean history is history
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Quoting Patrap:


LOL..your way in over yer head on that sport..
lol, i know
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
QUOTE: oh ok, I saw "indy" in your name, and thought indiana, but i believe that it is your name, Sindy? lol sorry

If I was in Indiana tracking tropical cyclones (and I DON'T knock anyone in an inland state that does :P) I would have WAY too much time on my hands!

Member Since: September 7, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 287

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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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