Massive duststorm chokes eastern Australia; Atlanta floods ease

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:22 PM GMT on September 23, 2009

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A massive dust storm swept through eastern Australia today, turning the skies in Sydney a eerie shade of red-orange. The dust storm was reportedly the worst since the 1940s, and Sydney recorded its highest levels of particulate air pollution ever. The dust storm resulted from strong winds associated with a powerful low pressure system that swept through eastern Australia this morning. Winds today at the Sydney airport were sustained at 36 mph, gusting to 51 mph. Wind gusts as high as 64 mph were recorded in the Sydney area as the storm's strong cold front passed through. Particulate pollution levels are still in the hazardous range this evening in Sydney, but are expected to improve to the "good" range on Thursday as the winds die down and the dust storm dissipates.


Figure 1.. Strong northwesterly winds carry dust over Sydney, Australia, at 00 UTC 9/23/2009. Image credit: NASA.


Figure 2.. A strong cold front passing through eastern Australia this morning generated a sustained winds in excess of 20 mph over a large portion of the region.

Severe drought has affected large regions of Southeast Australia over the past three years (Figure 3). In isolated areas near Melbourne, the drought is the worst on record. The resulting loss of vegetation has created large regions of loose dust, which the strong winds from this week's storm was able to loft in the air and transport long distances.


Figure 3.. Rainfall deficiencies for Australia for the past three years. Image credit: Australian Bureau of Meteorology.

Atlanta floods ease
Very heavy rains exceeding fifteen inches soaked the Atlanta, Georgia region early this week, triggering widespread major flooding that continues today. Rainfall eased yesterday, and all of the rivers in the Atlanta area have crested and are now falling. Record flood levels were observed on at least seven rivers and creeks in the Atlanta area yesterday, breaking records that had been set as long ago as 1919. Utoy Creek near Atlanta broke its previous flood record by nearly 11 feet on Tuesday. The floods have killed at least nine people and did $250 million in damage. Portlight.org is experimenting with a new disaster relief strategy for this flood--they have decided to adopt a single family to help, the Baxter family of Lithia Springs, Georgia. The Baxters lost their home, car, furniture, clothes, and everything else in their house, and need assistance to defray the short-term expenses of lodging, food, and clothing, so help out if you can.


Figure 4. Radar estimated rainfall for the Atlanta, Georgia region ending on September 22. More than 15 inches (white colors) had fallen in and around Atlanta.

There are no threat areas in the Atlantic to discuss today, and none of our reliable computer models are forecasting tropical storm development over the next seven days.

Jeff Masters

Parkinson Avenue 06:15 (LNRSYDNEY)
Unusual sunrise 1
Parkinson Avenue 06:15

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331. earthlydragonfly
12:04 AM GMT on September 24, 2009
Quoting zoomiami:
Thanks PCola...

Still very hot, humid and sticky here. Were debating at dinner what the weather in orlando will be for mid october, planning a trip to Disney.


You really need to go to Universal.. They have a new rollercoaster!! Rip Ride Rockit!
Member Since: July 1, 2005 Posts: 10 Comments: 1683
330. leftovers
12:03 AM GMT on September 24, 2009
looking forward to reading the eight pm discussion of concern this evening is that dark red convection down by ne nicaraqua
329. Cavin Rawlins
12:03 AM GMT on September 24, 2009
Nora has really become well organized with clear banding of the convection around the center of circulation

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
328. Orcasystems
12:03 AM GMT on September 24, 2009

AOI

AOI

AOI

AOI
Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26512
327. tornadodude
12:02 AM GMT on September 24, 2009
Quoting msphar:
Pulled the little boat last weekend, took it in for winterizing today. There's a chill in the air around here. Went to Kragen's to buy some windshield wiper fluid. Didn't realize there were choices to be made. Blue, Orange and Green. -20F, -25F, -30F! Wow! Never lived in a place with this sort of choice. Hope I picked right.


ha where do you live?
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
326. msphar
12:00 AM GMT on September 24, 2009
Pulled the little boat last weekend, took it in for winterizing today. There's a chill in the air around here. Went to Kragen's to buy some windshield wiper fluid. Didn't realize there were choices to be made. Blue, Orange and Green. -20F, -25F, -30F! Wow! Never lived in a place with this sort of choice. Hope I picked right.
Member Since: August 20, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 289
325. msphar
11:52 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Let my guard down a few weeks back, but I'm glad for the quietness thus far. Looking forward to more of the same. Peace in the MDR, is it too much to ask for ?
Member Since: August 20, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 289
324. gatagus07
11:50 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
In Savannah here......now taking the brunt of the famous "remanants of Mr. Fred".....winds have to be gusting to 4 knots.....almost a whole trace of rain....I wouldn't be surprized if schools are closed tomorrow....my god...where is Cantore when you need him.....
323. WxLogic
11:48 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Good evening...

Sure like the new look the Navy gave their Model's page...
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 5038
322. PcolaDan
11:41 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting zoomiami:
Thanks PCola...

Still very hot, humid and sticky here. Were debating at dinner what the weather in orlando will be for mid october, planning a trip to Disney.


Went Thanksgiving couple of years back. Still used the pool in the place we stayed (heated pool). Didn't freeze getting out. Think I may have put jeans on some instead of shorts. October up here is when kids hope it gets cold enough to wear the new jackets they got when they go the the fair.

BTW, did I say I'M JEALOUS".
Member Since: August 22, 2008 Posts: 12 Comments: 6010
321. fire635
11:38 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
I hope to GOD that today is the last time we hear Fred's name. I personally think they should retire the name Fred just because of how long we had to endure its existence.
Member Since: June 24, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 492
320. Cavin Rawlins
11:37 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting Pitcher4114:
Fred is spread out from Jacksonville all along the coast from there to South Carolina.


yea, that was the original thinking.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
319. Pitcher4114
11:33 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Fred is spread out from Jacksonville all along the coast from there to South Carolina.
318. Cavin Rawlins
11:33 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:


according to the NHC, the remnants of Ex Fred are along the Florida east coast

From the 205pm discussion

A SURFACE TROUGH IS ALONG THE FLORIDA EAST COAST. THIS TROUGH
IS ASSOCIATED WITH WHAT WERE THE REMNANTS OF FRED. THAT LOW
PRESSURE CENTER HAS DISSIPATED FINALLY NEAR THE FLORIDA/GEORGIA
BORDER.


I guess off by a state but I was tracking using long period satellite rather than the TPC.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
317. zoomiami
11:30 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Thanks PCola...

Still very hot, humid and sticky here. Were debating at dinner what the weather in orlando will be for mid october, planning a trip to Disney.
Member Since: August 13, 2007 Posts: 10 Comments: 4158
316. PcolaDan
11:28 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting zoomiami:


Would you like to share?


I'll turn my fan on and aim it your way.
Member Since: August 22, 2008 Posts: 12 Comments: 6010
315. BurnedAfterPosting
11:28 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting Weather456:


Near GA/SC, thats where the sfc trough moved ashore.


according to the NHC, the remnants of Ex Fred are along the Florida east coast

From the 205pm discussion

A SURFACE TROUGH IS ALONG THE FLORIDA EAST COAST. THIS TROUGH
IS ASSOCIATED WITH WHAT WERE THE REMNANTS OF FRED. THAT LOW
PRESSURE CENTER HAS DISSIPATED FINALLY NEAR THE FLORIDA/GEORGIA
BORDER.
313. Cavin Rawlins
11:26 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting Pitcher4114:
What a boring hurricane season...we've missed out on the excitement of tracking developing storms and predicting where they will go and how strong they will be. No tension-filled reports from Max Mayfield. No yellow cone of concern. No...well, anything. A neat little moderate tropical storm threat would be nice.

Please don't flip-out and crucify me as is often the case on this message board. I'm not asking for the Hand of God to destroy the east coast.


well said. But you can also learn from quiet seasons.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
312. PcolaDan
11:26 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting GBguy88:


I was in the Pensacola area for Opal, in a town called Gulf Breeze, and I remember there not being any *great* amount of wind. It actually seemed rather light in comparison to hurricane Erin that hit in August that year. We were also on the western side of Opal, which has a lot to do with it.


Because of Erin and the strength of Opal about 200+ miles out. Headed to Tallahassee where I had a place to stay.
Can you say stuuupppiiiddd.
Got to watch a small tornado pass in front of me in the parking lot (commonly called I10). 3 hours turned into 8 hours.
Some things you just learn the hard way.

Member Since: August 22, 2008 Posts: 12 Comments: 6010
311. Pitcher4114
11:24 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
What a boring hurricane season...we've missed out on the excitement of tracking developing storms and predicting where they will go and how strong they will be. No tension-filled reports from Max Mayfield. No yellow cone of concern. No...well, anything. A neat little moderate tropical storm threat would be nice.

Please don't flip-out and crucify me as is often the case on this message board. I'm not asking for the Hand of God to destroy the east coast.
310. zoomiami
11:24 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting IKE:


Yo bud. I am so glad...

From Mobile,AL. extended....

"MODELS ARE IN GOOD AGREEMENT ON ANOTHER TROUGH BECOMING HIGHLY
AMPLIFIED OVER THE EASTERN STATES MON-WED. A STRONG COLD FRONT IS
FORECAST TO MOVE INTO THE REGION BY MONDAY NIGHT AND CLEAR THE
FORECAST AREA BY TUESDAY MORNING.
STRONG MODEL PERSISTENCE AND
AGREEMENT LEADS TO A HIGHER CONFIDENCE OF THIS FRONTAL PASSAGE
OCCURRING. THE EVOLUTION OF THE PRECEDING TROUGH AND THE RESULTANT
AVAILABILITY OF MOISTURE WILL GO A LONG WAY IN DETERMINING POPS FOR
THIS FROPA. FOR NOW...WILL MAINTAIN JUST CHANCE POPS. AFTER ANOTHER
WARM AND HUMID DAY ON MONDAY...MUCH DRIER AND COOLER AIR IS EXPECTED
TO FILTER IN FOR TUE-WED. SLIGHTLY NUDGED TEMPS DOWN TUE/WED TO AT
OR JUST BELOW CLIMO WITH HIGHS EXPECTED TO BE IN THE LOW 80S AND LOWS
IN THE UPPER 50S INTERIOR TO LOW 60S ALONG THE COAST."


Would you like to share?
Member Since: August 13, 2007 Posts: 10 Comments: 4158
309. Cavin Rawlins
11:24 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting Dakster:


Ok... Good. I did just get a special devliery from UPS, no relation though.


lol, that is one storm I won't miss.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
308. Dakster
11:22 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting Weather456:


Near GA/SC, thats where the sfc trough moved ashore.


Ok... Good. I did just get a special devliery from UPS, no relation though.
Member Since: March 10, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 10631
307. tornadodude
11:21 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Child Abduction Emergency

TXC047-061-215-247-261-427-489-505-240000-

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
CHILD ABDUCTION EMERGENCY
TEXAS EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
RELAYED BY NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BROWNSVILLE TX
444 PM CDT WED SEP 23 2009

THE FOLLOWING MESSAGE IS TRANSMITTED AT THE REQUEST OF THE TEXAS
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY .

THE LAREDO POLICE DEPARTMENT IS SEARCHING FOR KARLA VICTORIA
YRIGOYEN-RIVAS, HISPANIC, FEMALE, 12 YEARS OLD, DATE OF BIRTH
08/28/1997, HEIGHT 5 FEET TALL, WEIGHT 100 POUNDS, BLACK HAIR,
BROWN EYES, WHITE BLOUSE, BLUE JEANS, AND BLACK SANDALS.

POLICE ARE LOOKING FOR JOSE ANGEL CRUZ A.K.A. GIOVANNI, HISPANIC
MALE, 28 YEARS OLD, HEIGHT 5 FEET, SIX INCHES, WEIGHT 200 POUNDS,
BALD, BROWN AND LAST SEEN WEARING A BLUE MUSCLE SHIRT, BLUE JEANS,
AND YELLOW BOOTS, DEVIL HEAD SKULL ON RIGHT ARM AND MEDUSA ON
RIGHT LEG IN HER ABDUCTION.

LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIALS BELIEVE THIS CHILD TO BE IN GRAVE OR
IMMEDIATE DANGER.

IF YOU HAVE ANY INFORMATION REGARDING THIS ABDUCTION, CALL THE
LAREDO POLICE DEPARTMENT.

NEW MEDIA POINT OF CONTACT IS THE LAREDO POLICE DEPARTMENT
AT 956-785-2800.

END OF MESSAGE


&&

$$






Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
306. Cavin Rawlins
11:18 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Blog update

Met Office GloSea Model Performance for 2009
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
305. 954FtLCane
11:17 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting Dakster:
954 - Are the remains of FredEx coming ashore in Florida tonight?


ROTFLM*O
Member Since: September 30, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 108
304. Cavin Rawlins
11:16 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Quoting Dakster:
954 - Are the remains of FredEx coming ashore in Florida tonight?


Near GA/SC, thats where the sfc trough moved ashore.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
303. tornadodude
11:16 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
Good evening guys,

so, does anyone know why there are so many gnats in my area? do you think it is because of the very dry september we've had? (only .12 inches this month)
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8360
302. Cavin Rawlins
11:15 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
296. plywoodstatenative 7:03 PM AST on September 23, 2009
what are the shear values for the area east of the Lesser Antilles and for the system that appears to be moving in more West direction in the Caribbean?


20 knots
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
301. Dakster
11:14 PM GMT on September 23, 2009
954 - Are the remains of FredEx coming ashore in Florida tonight?
Member Since: March 10, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 10631
I'm waiting for the once a night beginning of FredEx... and dreading it... but I'll be honest I haven't laughed as hard reading posts on this sight as I have from the enjoyment the FredEx wishcasters gave me. I'll definitely miss those days.
Member Since: September 30, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 108
Quoting Seasidecove:


No, I was in a (Zone C) Flood zone,
[Not suppose to Flood in Zone C.]
-No Insurance available for that Zone.-

So I got nothing but a concrete slab, for my efforts on the home.

The business was in (Zone A),
and was able to recover it completely,
with help of SBA.


Sorry for your loss... At least you were able to recover your business... I am in ZONE X in Florida...
Member Since: March 10, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 10631
however due east of and just about due south of the system that 456 mentioned is a system that bears watching, small ball of convection on the visible whether thats the ITCZ or not, can't tell.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting fire635:


THANKS.... I did a little research just now too... It was actually in 1993 when the storm hit... so I guess it was an El Nino year. That was one hell of a storm system.

Wow OK, now that you brought that up I do remember that storm... the front that storm brought down was ridiculously strong...
Member Since: September 30, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 108
what are the shear values for the area east of the Lesser Antilles and for the system that appears to be moving in more West direction in the Caribbean?

If I were to be watching anything, I would be more concerned if the wave that is currently in the pacific were to cross over into the BOC and develop. The system in the caribbean seems to be heading in a more east to west direction. As for whats in the atlantic, one system appears to be leftovers of Fred, and has the likelihood to become a problem wave wise for the Northeastern seaboard and not anything else. The other system is simply a bunch of clouds.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Nights will be getting longer from now until 21 December. The sun is directly lined up with the longitude lines.

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting 954FtLCane:


It looks like it wasn't, here's a listing I found through October 1999.

Warm Episode (El Nino) Years

1925, 1929, 1930, 1940, 1941, 1951, 1953, 1957, 1963, 1965, 1969, 1972,
1976, 1977, 1982, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1997

Cold Episode (La Nina) Years

1933, 1938, 1942, 1944, 1945, 1948, 1949, 1950, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1961,
1964, 1967, 1970, 1971, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1978, 1988, 1995

This list is taken from the article by Pielke and Landsea in the Bulletin of the American Meteorology Society, Volume 80, Number 10, October 1999, pps 2027-2033. An El Nino (La Nina) is said to occur when sea surface temperatures in the region of the Pacific known as Nino 3.4 (5oN-5oS and 120o- 170oW) are 0.4oC or more higher (lower) than the long-term average during August, September, and October (the months in the Atlantic hurricane season when 95% of Saffir-Simpson Category 3, 4, and 5 hurricanes occur).


THANKS.... I did a little research just now too... It was actually in 1993 when the storm hit... so I guess it was an El Nino year. That was one hell of a storm system.
Member Since: June 24, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 492
Quoting Dakster:
Seasidecove - Did you rebuild?


No, I was in a (Zone C) Flood zone,
[Not suppose to Flood in Zone C.]
-No Insurance available for that Zone.-

So I got nothing but a concrete slab, for my efforts on the home.

The business was in (Zone A),
and was able to recover it completely,
with help of SBA.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
BAP, he did say some of the energy will from it will get into the BOC, and may be an area to watch .
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting fire635:
Does anybody know if it was an El Nino year in 1992 when the "NO NAME" storm... or "GREAT MARCH" storm hit west central Florida?


It looks like it wasn't, here's a listing I found through October 1999.

Warm Episode (El Nino) Years

1925, 1929, 1930, 1940, 1941, 1951, 1953, 1957, 1963, 1965, 1969, 1972,
1976, 1977, 1982, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1997

Cold Episode (La Nina) Years

1933, 1938, 1942, 1944, 1945, 1948, 1949, 1950, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1961,
1964, 1967, 1970, 1971, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1978, 1988, 1995

This list is taken from the article by Pielke and Landsea in the Bulletin of the American Meteorology Society, Volume 80, Number 10, October 1999, pps 2027-2033. An El Nino (La Nina) is said to occur when sea surface temperatures in the region of the Pacific known as Nino 3.4 (5oN-5oS and 120o- 170oW) are 0.4oC or more higher (lower) than the long-term average during August, September, and October (the months in the Atlantic hurricane season when 95% of Saffir-Simpson Category 3, 4, and 5 hurricanes occur).
Member Since: September 30, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 108
Seasidecove - Did you rebuild?
Member Since: March 10, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 10631
Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:


I see shear running 5-10 knots in the NW Caribbean where you have indicated unfavorable conditions

Also StormW indicated earlier that are in the NW Caribbean could possibly develop if and when it gets to the BOC


5-10 in the Extreme NW Caribbean.

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Does anybody know if it was an El Nino year in 1992 when the "NO NAME" storm... or "GREAT MARCH" storm hit west central Florida?
Member Since: June 24, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 492
Quoting usa777:


Yes it does. What part of Bay Saint louis were you in for Katrina?


Old Town BSL...lived 2 blocks in from the beach, have business located 1 block in, next to the Court House in old town, behind Fire Dog Rest., cross street Sea Coast Echo. Both got wiped off the map. FEMA, measured storm surge wave height at 27' at home site, and 37' at business site.
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
September 23rd quick Tropical Update.



I see shear running 5-10 knots in the NW Caribbean where you have indicated unfavorable conditions

Also StormW indicated earlier that are in the NW Caribbean could possibly develop if and when it gets to the BOC
Seeds left by Ike bear fruit in Galveston:
Link
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September 23rd quick Tropical Update.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:

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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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