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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I turned off my McAfee Alert and it went away.
Did a short scan then a complete scan & nada.
Member Since: July 11, 2006 Posts: 14 Comments: 11314
1385. 7544
now the gfs shows ericka when it didnt for days what does that tell us she just might reform after dieing imo
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Quoting surfsidesindy:
Has anyone discreetly told Herbertsbox that it should be hEBertsbox? I was discreetly informed that last week myself...


That is about as discrete as one can get around here... good job sir! Haha...
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1383. Dakster
Good Evening Chucktown.

How are you local mets handling Erika in your kneck of the woods. Now is the time I expect local media to talk about her.
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Quoting Chicklit:

Looking elsewhere, vigorous whatchamablobit getting ready to roll off of Africa.

Which way Erika goes, is curiouser and curiouser! Loop


Doesn't the green indicate extremely strong convection? That seems unusual.
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I want to see Avila pull his hair out over this one...
AT 800 PM AST...0000 UTC...THE CENTER OF POORLY ORGANIZED TROPICALSTORM ERIKA WAS ESTIMATED NEAR LATITUDE 15.9 NORTH...LONGITUDE 62.0WEST...OR JUST WEST OF GUADELOUPE AND ABOUT 315 MILES...510 KM...SOUTHEAST OF SAN JUAN PUERTO RICO.

ERIKA HAS BEEN DRIFTING BETWEEN THE WEST AND WEST-SOUTHWEST DURING THE PAST FEW HOURS BUT IT SHOULD RESUME A WESTWARD MOTION NEAR 10 MPH...17 KM/HR LATER TONIGHT. A WEST-NORTHWESTWARD MOTION IS EXPECTED TO BEGIN EARLY TOMORROW. ON THE FORECAST TRACK...THE WEATHER ASSOCIATED WITH ERIKA WILL CONTINUE TO MOVE THROUGH THE LEEWARD ISLANDS TONIGHT AND APPROACH PUERTO RICO LATE TOMORROW.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS ARE NEAR 40 MPH...65 KM/HR...WITH HIGHER GUSTS. LITTLE CHANGE IN STRENGTH IS EXPECTED TONIGHT AND ERIKA COULD WEAKEN TO A TROPICAL DEPRESSION TONIGHT OR THURSDAY.
...AVILA
Member Since: July 11, 2006 Posts: 14 Comments: 11314
Quoting Baybuddy:
where yat taco?

Sitting in front of my laptop trying to see with 1 eye.... LOL
I got hit with a small pice of PVC chip last night..... and man I had no idea it would hurt this bad.... I also had saftey glasses on....
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agree,
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I think I have the virus too! I just checked my e-mail and StormTop is trying to sell me Viagra.
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Quoting CaneAddict17:
00z GFS (Avno) takes Erika right thru the middle of Miami. That will definately get people interested on here. The only thing is that I have no clue how strong.

Link


Yea, but every model takes it over almost all the islands. This is not going to be a big deal for anyone.
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1375. Becca36
Quoting AllStar17:
1325. No matter how many times I click, it does not show (quoting).
maybe i
Quoting surfsidesindy:
StormW...Same problem here. I'm guessing it's the Firefox issue.
I'm using Google Chrome and seems to work great with this site.
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My FireFox is working as well.
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1349. stormpetrol 1:01 AM GMT on September 03, 2009
Quoting AllStar17:
NHC has been so bad with this storm, they want to move on, thus killing it in about 60-72 hrs. Any thoughts on what future track/intensity would hold IF THE CENTER WERE TO RELOCATE NORTH?

They'd be all over it like tics on a Bull, jmo.

Ignore, I misunderstood the comment, too much Erika, driving me nuts!
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1372. 7544
quotes not working just copy and paste

1345. 7544 12:59 AM GMT on September 03, 2009
for all those using mcafeee you think it will be ok to check the box where it shows

do not show this alert again
now that dr masters said its a false alarm for this sort of trojan alert thanks
anyone know the above tia


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Quoting JeffMasters:
Many of you using the McAfee virus protection software reported today that wunderground web pages were triggering a Trojan virus alert.
Our thought at this point, from looking at the tickets, is that McAfee updated their virus files today and they've once again included JavaScript that is compressed with the compression tools we use, in their list. This is a false alarm.

Jeff Masters


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Has anyone discreetly told Herbertsbox that it should be hEBertsbox? I was discreetly informed that last week myself...
Member Since: September 7, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 287
Quoting masonsnana:

I don't have McAfee either, still doing it


weird stuff
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8326
00z GFS (Avno) takes Erika right thru the middle of Miami. That will definately get people interested on here. The only thing is that I have no clue how strong.

Link
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Quoting tornadodude:


same here


Same here Firefox
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where yat taco?
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Quoting surfsidesindy:
StormW...Same problem here. I'm guessing it's the Firefox issue.


I used to have problems when I used IE, but I'm currently using Safari and I'm not having any problems, even with crappy university connection...
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Quoting tornadodude:


i have mcafee too...

I don't have McAfee either, still doing it
Member Since: February 14, 2004 Posts: 2 Comments: 664
Quoting JupiterFL:


Erika was in earlier. She was saying how much she is enjoying your box. Really loves what you've done with the place.


Nicely done Jup
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1361. amd
if one has Mcafee anti-virus protection, many of the functions associated with wu have been turned off because of the fake virus alert. Mcafee users, myself included, will not have full functionality of this site until new dat files are generated to alleviate the fake virus alert.
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Quoting surfsidesindy:
So it must be a McAfee issue. I will need to look into it


i have mcafee too...
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8326
So it must be a McAfee issue. I will need to look into it
Member Since: September 7, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 287
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:


Sometimes you have to hit the quote button twice.


Why does that happen? I thought maybe it was just my computer.
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Quoting TreasureCoastFl:
No, I'm on Firefox and it's quoting for me


same here
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8326
Quoting surfsidesindy:
StormW...Same problem here. I'm guessing it's the Firefox issue.

Not Firefox, don't have it!!
Member Since: February 14, 2004 Posts: 2 Comments: 664
Quoting taco2me61:


Test Test Test just checking if it worked


worked lol :)
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8326
Quoting surfsidesindy:
StormW...Same problem here. I'm guessing it's the Firefox issue.
Not just firefox... I am using a browser called safari on my mac and having the same problem
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Quoting StormW:
I'm working on an analysis.

I haven't answered anyone, as I am having a problem quoting folks...I click on qoute, and their post doesn't show in the comment box. Anyone else having trouble?


If you're using IE usually I have to wait til the empty box shows then scroll up click quote another time then it works. Basically click it twice. lol
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Quoting surfsidesindy:
StormW...Same problem here. I'm guessing it's the Firefox issue.
No, I'm on Firefox and it's quoting for me
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It is strange the models are showing strengthening with Erika, but anything is possible.....especially with this storm. NHC not buying it though. To be quite honest, though, the NHC has been terrible with this system.
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Quoting Relix:


I am having some problems like this, but when for example I click on Show on a post that's hidden I can't access the quote function. Very strange. Good Evening by the way StormW, really looking forward to your analysis =D
I had that show problem but I went to the top and made it "show all" and it solved that problem.
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Quoting AllStar17:
NHC has been so bad with this storm, they want to move on, thus killing it in about 60-72 hrs. Any thoughts on what future track/intensity would hold IF THE CENTER WERE TO RELOCATE NORTH?

They'd be all over it like tics on a Bull, jmo.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
StormW...Same problem here. I'm guessing it's the Firefox issue.
Member Since: September 7, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 287
Quoting tornadodude:


well not at the moment, but the other day i was having similar issues


Test Test Test just checking if it worked
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1345. 7544
for all those using mcafeee you think it will be ok to check the box where it shows

do not show this alert again
now that dr masters said its a false alarm for this sort of trojan alert thanks

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Avila thinks Erika will weaken further during Dmax.
Link
If the northern burst takes over, then it's going to run into shear.

Looking elsewhere, vigorous whatchamablobit getting ready to roll off of Africa.

Which way Erika goes, is curiouser and curiouser! Loop
Member Since: July 11, 2006 Posts: 14 Comments: 11314
Maybe she will break some kind of Hebert box record?
Member Since: September 7, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 287
Quoting StormW:
I'm working on an analysis.

I haven't answered anyone, as I am having a problem quoting folks...I click on qoute, and their post doesn't show in the comment box. Anyone else having trouble?


well not at the moment, but the other day i was having similar issues
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8326
1340. Relix
Quoting AllStar17:
NHC has been so bad with this storm, they want to move on, thus killing it in about 60-72 hrs. Any thoughts on what future track/intensity would hold IF THE CENTER WERE TO RELOCATE NORTH?


Would pass once more north of PR or over PR. Right now it seems to be heading to the Mona Passage or Hispaniola thanks to the south circulation.
Member Since: August 3, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 2722
1339. Dakster
Quoting Yalahaman:
It's wet here now!


Yep. Has been since July...

Connie1976 - Are you all wet too?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting StormW:
I'm working on an analysis.

I haven't answered anyone, as I am having a problem quoting folks...I click on qoute, and their post doesn't show in the comment box. Anyone else having trouble?



nop not me has you can see
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting StormW:
I'm working on an analysis.

I haven't answered anyone, as I am having a problem quoting folks...I click on qoute, and their post doesn't show in the comment box. Anyone else having trouble?

Yes, have to click on it twice,, been having probs all night...
Member Since: February 14, 2004 Posts: 2 Comments: 664

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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.