Rick weakens; Lupit headed to the Philippines; Western Caribbean brewing a storm?

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:09 PM GMT on October 19, 2009

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Hurricane Rick has weakened significantly over the past 24 hours, thanks to moderate wind shear of 15 - 20 knots. Although still a powerful Category 3 hurricane with 125 mph winds, this is a far cry from the spectacular Category 5 hurricane with 180 mph winds and 905 mb pressure Rick was early Sunday morning. At that time, Rick was the second most powerful hurricane ever recorded in the Eastern Pacific. The only Eastern Pacific hurricane that was stronger was Hurricane Linda of 1997, which had 185 mph winds and a 902 mb pressure. Reliable satellite measurements of Eastern Pacific storms go back to about 1970, and Rick is the 11th Category 5 hurricane in the Eastern Pacific since 1970.


Figure 1.Hurricane Rick just after peak intensity at 17:55 UTC October 18, 2009. A this time, Rick was a Category 5 hurricane with 175 mph winds. Image credit: NASA.

Recent microwave satellite imagery suggests that wind shear may have eaten away the southwest portion of Rick's eyewall, allowing dry air to intrude into the core of the storm. The Hurricane Hunters will visit Rick this afternoon to learn more, and I suspect Rick is weaker than the Category 3 hurricane with 125 mph winds that is currently advertised.

Wind shear will increase to the high range, 20 - 30 knots, in the 24 hours before landfall, and ocean heat content and sea surface temperatures will steadily decrease over the next two days as Rick approaches Baja. The latest GFDL and HWRF model runs put Rick at Category 1 strength at its closest approach to Baja, and this appears to be a reasonable forecast given the current appearance of Rick. NHC is currently giving both Cabo San Lucas and San Jose Cabo on Baja's southern tip a 20% chance of receiving hurricane-force winds from Rick. Rick will make a second landfall in Mainland Mexico on Wednesday night, and the moisture from Rick should reach southern Texas by Friday, possibly leading to heavy rains there on Friday and Saturday.

Typhoon Lupit a potential major disaster for the Philippines
Category 4 Super Typhoon Lupit has begun its turn to the west over the Philippine Sea, and is headed towards a landfall early Thursday morning on the northern portion of Luzon Island in the Philippines. Thanks to the departure of a trough of low pressure that was pulling the super typhoon to the northeast and creating a region of weak steering currents, a strong ridge of high pressure is now building in over Lupit and will force it slightly south of due west. The models are all in excellent agreement on the forecast track taking the super typhoon over northern Luzon as a major Category 3 or 4 typhoon, and Lupit--the Filipino word for cruel--is very likely to live up to its name. The northern Philippines are still reeling from the rains and mudslides unleashed by Super Typhoon Parma last week, which crossed over the northern Philippines three times, dumping over twenty inches of rain in many locations. Parma killed 438 people, and 51 are still missing. A week prior to Parma, Typhoon Ketsana brought the heaviest rains in 42 years to the capital of Manila, killing 420 people, with 37 still missing.


Figure 2. Rainfall forecast for Super Typhoon Lupit for the 24-hour period ending at 06 UTC Tuesday 10/20/09. Lupit is expected to dump 8 - 12 inches of rain (orange colors) in a small region near its center. Image credit: NOAA/NESDIS.

Wind shear over Lupit is in the low range, 5 - 10 knots, and the typhoon is embedded in a very moist environment with warm sea surface temperatures of 28 - 29°C. Total heat content of the ocean is too low (20 kJ/cm^2) to permit much additional intensification over the next two days, but in the final 12 hours before landfall, the total oceanic heat content will rise to 80 kJ/cm^2, which should allow Lupit to retain at least Category 3 strength right up until landfall, despite interaction of the storm with land. Lupit will move relatively quickly over the Philippines, but the typhoon is likely to dump 12+ inches of rain over the already saturated soils of northern Luzon Island. These rains will create life-threatening flash floods and mudslides capable of killing hundreds more Filipinos.


Figure 3 Morning visible satellite image of the area of disturbed weather in the Western Caribbean.

A Western Caribbean tropical storm coming?
In the Atlantic, an area of disturbed weather has developed in the Western Caribbean from Costa Rica to the Cayman Islands, in association with the remains of a cold front, a tropical wave, and a broad 1010 mb low pressure region that has developed over the extreme southwestern Caribbean off the coast of Costa Rica. Last night's QuikSCAT pass showed that the low off the coast of Costa Rica had a broad and disorganized surface circulation. The thunderstorm activity associated with this large and complicated area of disturbed weather is disorganized and under 10 - 30 knots of wind shear, and any development over the next three days will be slow. However, by Friday, wind shear over the Western Caribbean is expected to drop significantly, and development of a tropical depression in the Western Caribbean becomes a more real possibility. Numerous runs over the past few days of all of our reliable global forecast models have shown a tropical depression developing in the Western Caribbean by early next week. The timing, location, and track of such a such a storm are all pretty hazy, but I think there is a 60% chance of a named storm forming in the Western Caribbean sometime in the next 10 days. The regions most likely to be affected by such a storm would be Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Cayman Islands, and it is possible that such a storm may stay trapped in the Western Caribbean for many days (as predicted by the GFS model). Alternatively, the storm could move steadily northwards after formation, affecting western Cuba, the Cayman Islands, Jamaica, South Florida, and the Bahamas. This is the solution preferred by the ECMWF model. In either case, a long period of disturbed weather is likely for the Western Caribbean. Heavy rains will affect northeast Honduras, eastern Nicaragua, and the Cayman Islands this week, and could spread to adjacent countries as the area of disturbed weather evolves.

Jeff Masters

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burned stan beta kieth mitch thats just 4 off the top of my head and in my earlier post i was referring to jfv student met 101 aka nut.
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have to respectfully disagree burned, but i respect your opinion have a nice day.
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Quoting SAINTHURRIFAN:
more move from the carrib to the epac or fizzle over the central yuc then take the northerly route. but hey you are young met 101 probably dont have any hurricane history before 2004.and sorry you are having health issues i understand you suffer from multiple personality disorders thats why you have such trouble remembering your name you have been through at least 3that i know of.


actually wrong, more storms move north or northeast this time of the year then move west into the EPAC or Central America

for every Beta (2005), there are about 4 or 5 others storms that moved northward
Quoting SAINTHURRIFAN:
well i have to lean toward ike on this one. if you look at the last frame on the cmc 144 hrs you can see a turn toward the west toward the central yucatan.this time of year the majority of these storms that form in this part of the carrib due tend to bury themselves into the southern carrib and central yuc.yes there have been some ohter examples such as wilma and irene, but most do not taake the notherly route. juan which is the only hurricane in recent memory that hit the northern gulf coast this late in the year its in early oct thats more typical for the northern gulf coast ala opal and lili hilda.in closing though thier always is that remote late nov hurricane ala kate 1985.


Models can be very wrong, they've done a horrible job of predicting storm formation, models predicted a few storms to form in the gom and the only one that formed wasnt even forecasted to form by the models. I wouldnt even look at models there worthless this early in the game.
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I'm leaning towards the ECMWF and CMC. The GFS has the maximum going to the EPAC and back to the Caribbean where it develops it.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30823
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Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30823
Quoting SAINTHURRIFAN:
well i have to lean toward ike on this one. if you look at the last frame on the cmc 144 hrs you can see a turn toward the west toward the central yucatan.this time of year the majority of these storms that form in this part of the carrib due tend to bury themselves into the southern carrib and central yuc.yes there have been some ohter examples such as wilma and irene, but most do not taake the notherly route. juan which is the only hurricane in recent memory that hit the northern gulf coast this late in the year its in early oct thats more typical for the northern gulf coast ala opal and lili hilda.in closing though thier always is that remote late nov hurricane ala kate 1985.


actually most of the storms in the SW Caribbean in this time of season do not go west into Central America

Most come north and affect Cuba, Florida and the Bahamas
well i have to lean toward ike on this one. if you look at the last frame on the cmc 144 hrs you can see a turn toward the west toward the central yucatan.this time of year the majority of these storms that form in this part of the carrib due tend to bury themselves into the southern carrib and central yuc.yes there have been some ohter examples such as wilma and irene, but most do not taake the notherly route. juan which is the only hurricane in recent memory that hit the northern gulf coast this late in the year its in early oct thats more typical for the northern gulf coast ala opal and lili hilda.in closing though thier always is that remote late nov hurricane ala kate 1985.
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Going into the EPAC is not common for October storms, especially with the depth of the troughs we have had this year. Looking at the steering direction alone isn't enough; the speed of the steering is very low: 0-10 knots. This is favorable for a system stalling until a deep-layered trough advects eastward from the central United States pushing back the high pressure.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30823
Quoting leftovers:
record cold weather e coast florida last night 3 degrees difference in melb.! doubt if we will get a wilma out of this one. the weather to the north of the disturbance is too much like winter


Well no one forecasts a storm as strong as Wilma, just like no one predicted a 59-0 drubbing by the Patriots yesterday.

You cant predict things like that lol
231. IKE
StormW said there was a possibility it may wind up in the eastern-PAC...

At the moment, I have two scenarios on this which are going to be based on steering and wind shear:

1.) The steering pattern remains as such that this disturbed weather remains basically stationary during the next 72 hours, taking advantage of what reduced wind shear there may be, and taking on a more northerly component or,

2.) The steering changes somewhat, and this takes a SW dive into the EPAC.



Latest 12Z GFS shows it going into the eastern-PAC...

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BBL,

Tropical depression may form later this week
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quasi stationary means...

"development of a tropical depression in the Western Caribbean becomes a more real possibility."

as opposed to a "less real" possibility
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Joe B needs to look further than the Tropical Weather Outlook and Tropical Weather Discussion from NHC/TPC. The area in the SW Carribean has been covered in the High Seas Forecast, Offshore Waters Forecasts and the Marine Weather Discussion. Of course then he would not be able to be so critical and how would he sell subscriptions?
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Quoting Weather456:


Post some evidence, otherwise these are hunches. I could understand if there is some evidence so just drop a link and we will follow. Also, we know this is not 2005 but did Grace knew that when she broke Vince's record. Not calling another Wilma but the heat content is higher now that 2005 before Wilma, since Wilma took out alot so comparisons would not be fair after 19 October.


exactly
Quoting CosmicEvents:
So, the NHC says the low center is quasi-stationary...or is it stationary?
And what exactly is quasi-stationary?


Quasi stationary is like meandering.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30823
Quoting markymark1973:
IMO this system in the Caribbean is not going to do much. I will believe it when i see it. This is not 2005. If it does form it will most likely head into Nicaragua and end up in the EPAC.


Post some evidence, otherwise these are hunches. I could understand if there is some evidence so just drop a link and we will follow. Also, we know this is not 2005 but did Grace knew that when she broke Vince's record. Not calling another Wilma but the heat content is higher now that 2005 before Wilma, since Wilma took out alot so comparisons would not be fair after 19 October. There is no year like 2005, does not justify no development in this case.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting CosmicEvents:
So, the NHC says the low center is quasi-stationary...or is it stationary?
And what exactly is quasi-stationary?


I know,terms like that drive me qwazy, too!
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27208
So, the NHC says the low center is quasi-stationary...or is it stationary?
And what exactly is quasi-stationary?
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The NHC is doing the right thing. They are being cautious until things become more obvious. Models are forecasting for development now compared to yesterday. The TWD says they expect the low to be stationary and convection to deepen.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30823
Surface obs also agree

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting markymark1973:
IMO this system in the Caribbean is not going to do much. I will believe it when i see it. This is not 2005. If it does form it will most likely head into Nicaragua and end up in the EPAC.


While I respect your opinion, using the "this is not 2005" as a reason is really a bad idea.

Newsflash, NO season was like 2005 and NO season will be like 2005. So just because it is 2009 doesn't mean we can't get a late season storm out of this.
Quoting IKE:
From the 2:05 PM EDST TWD....

"CARIBBEAN SEA...
A TROPICAL WAVE IS ALONG 62W/63W PRODUCING CONVECTION NEAR
TRINIDAD AND NE VENEZUELA. SEE ABOVE. A SLOW MOVING COLD FRONT
EXTENDS FROM E CUBA TO NE HONDURAS ALONG 20N74W 18N82W 15N85W.
WIDELY SCATTERED MODERATE CONVECTION IS WITHIN 60 NM OF THE
FRONT. 25 KT NORTHERLY WINDS ARE OVER THE YUCATAN CHANNEL AND NW
CARIBBEAN N OF THE COLD FRONT. GENTLE BREEZE TRADEWINDS ARE JUST
S OF THE COLD FRONT. FRESH TRADEWINDS ARE OVER THE CENTRAL AND E
CARIBBEAN E OF 80W. SCATTERED MODERATE TO ISOLATED STRONG
CONVECTION IS S OF JAMAICA FROM 13N-18N BETWEEN 77W-81W. A
QUASI-STATIONARY 1009 MB LOW IS CENTERED OVER THE SW CARIBBEAN
NEAR 11N81W. SCATTERED MODERATE TO STRONG CONVECTION IS FROM
8N-13N BETWEEN 80W-83W. ISOLATED SHOWERS ARE S OF HISPANIOLA AND
PUERTO RICO FROM 14N-18N BETWEEN 64W-74W. IN THE UPPER LEVELS...
AN UPPER LEVEL TROUGH IS OVER THE NW CARIBBEAN N OF 17N AND W OF
80W. AN UPPER LEVEL RIDGE IS OVER THE SW CARIBBEAN W OF 70W. AN
UPPER LEVEL LOW IS CENTERED OVER THE LESSER ANTILLES NEAR
15N61W. SIGNIFICANT UPPER LEVEL MOISTURE IS OVER THE W CARIBBEAN
W OF 70W. STRONG SUBSIDENCE IS OVER THE E CARIBBEAN.
EXPECT...THE FRONT TO BECOME STATIONARY AND DISSIPATE OVER THE
NEXT 24 HOURS. EXPECT THE TROPICAL WAVE TO MOVE W AND PRODUCE
MORE CONVECTION OVER THE SW CARIBBEAN. ALSO EXPECT THE SURFACE
LOW TO BE STATIONARY OVER THE SW CARIBBEAN AND DEEPEN SLIGHTLY
WITH CONVECTION."


NHC is surely watching and interested based on the last few sentences
IMO this system in the Caribbean is not going to do much. I will believe it when i see it. This is not 2005. If it does form it will most likely head into Nicaragua and end up in the EPAC.
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217. IKE
From the 2:05 PM EDST TWD....

"CARIBBEAN SEA...
A TROPICAL WAVE IS ALONG 62W/63W PRODUCING CONVECTION NEAR
TRINIDAD AND NE VENEZUELA. SEE ABOVE. A SLOW MOVING COLD FRONT
EXTENDS FROM E CUBA TO NE HONDURAS ALONG 20N74W 18N82W 15N85W.
WIDELY SCATTERED MODERATE CONVECTION IS WITHIN 60 NM OF THE
FRONT. 25 KT NORTHERLY WINDS ARE OVER THE YUCATAN CHANNEL AND NW
CARIBBEAN N OF THE COLD FRONT. GENTLE BREEZE TRADEWINDS ARE JUST
S OF THE COLD FRONT. FRESH TRADEWINDS ARE OVER THE CENTRAL AND E
CARIBBEAN E OF 80W. SCATTERED MODERATE TO ISOLATED STRONG
CONVECTION IS S OF JAMAICA FROM 13N-18N BETWEEN 77W-81W. A
QUASI-STATIONARY 1009 MB LOW IS CENTERED OVER THE SW CARIBBEAN
NEAR 11N81W. SCATTERED MODERATE TO STRONG CONVECTION IS FROM
8N-13N BETWEEN 80W-83W. ISOLATED SHOWERS ARE S OF HISPANIOLA AND
PUERTO RICO FROM 14N-18N BETWEEN 64W-74W. IN THE UPPER LEVELS...
AN UPPER LEVEL TROUGH IS OVER THE NW CARIBBEAN N OF 17N AND W OF
80W. AN UPPER LEVEL RIDGE IS OVER THE SW CARIBBEAN W OF 70W. AN
UPPER LEVEL LOW IS CENTERED OVER THE LESSER ANTILLES NEAR
15N61W. SIGNIFICANT UPPER LEVEL MOISTURE IS OVER THE W CARIBBEAN
W OF 70W. STRONG SUBSIDENCE IS OVER THE E CARIBBEAN.
EXPECT...THE FRONT TO BECOME STATIONARY AND DISSIPATE OVER THE
NEXT 24 HOURS. EXPECT THE TROPICAL WAVE TO MOVE W AND PRODUCE
MORE CONVECTION OVER THE SW CARIBBEAN. ALSO EXPECT THE SURFACE
LOW TO BE STATIONARY OVER THE SW CARIBBEAN AND DEEPEN SLIGHTLY
WITH CONVECTION."
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Quoting Weather456:


you are not wishcasting

From my blog

Upper level winds are forecasted to be light with high ocean heat content and deep layer moisture along the projected path so there is a possibility of rapid growth.

In addition, Dr. Masters pointed to the possibility that this might get stuck in the Caribbean

The regions most likely to be affected by such a storm would be Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Cayman Islands, and it is possible that such a storm may stay trapped in the Western Caribbean for many days (as predicted by the GFS model).


Thanks, there were no storms in that area so far this year, I feel if anything gets going, it could be rapid.
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Wind shear can take down even the biggest of the beasts..look at Rick decouple.

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
NHC still "appear" not to be too impressed with the Caribbean Disturbance
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Quoting Drakoen:


That is very accurate, that's where I see the most rotation also.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Joe B @ accuweather

The mystery of what TPC acknowledges and what they wont continues, though perhaps at 8 am they will awaken to the fact there is a heck of a lot of disturbed weather in the very area one looks for development at this time of the year. Folks in Florida and the Southeast should keep a close watch on this. With Typhoon Lupit moving westward now in the Pacific, the southwest Atlantic ridge will do better than forecast. The stage is set, if this can get away from Central America, for the classic endgame storm from the western Caribbean to evolve as the week goes on and probably be forced fairly far west as the trough barreling through with Rick should lift out early next week.

A side issue is in the Bahamas on the old front over the next few days as that may have a chance to spin. Remember, the MJO pulse is now getting to our side of the world.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting reedzone:
Not wishcasting this but do to the current water temps and heat potential, it would not surprise me if this disturbance rapidly develops when or if it does. Conditions are expected to become favorable in a few days. Arapid intensification like Wilma, Beta (2005), or Paloma (2008) is possible.


you are not wishcasting

From my blog

Upper level winds are forecasted to be light with high ocean heat content and deep layer moisture along the projected path so there is a possibility of rapid growth.

In addition, Dr. Masters pointed to the possibility that this might get stuck in the Caribbean

The regions most likely to be affected by such a storm would be Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Cayman Islands, and it is possible that such a storm may stay trapped in the Western Caribbean for many days (as predicted by the GFS model).
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting Weather456:
Good afternoon all
Good afternoon.
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Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30823
Not wishcasting this but do to the current water temps and heat potential, it would not surprise me if this disturbance rapidly develops when or if it does. Conditions are expected to become favorable in a few days. A rapid intensification like Wilma, Beta (2005), or Paloma (2008) is possible.
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205. IKE
12Z UKMET.
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Quoting dolphingalrules:
HEY THAT WAS "WILMA"...SUCH A POWERFUL STORM THAT DID ALOT OF DAMAGE IN SFLA..


Ummm...duh!
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Quoting Weather456:
October 19 2005 - 1:15 PM EDT



48 hr 17-19 October 2005.



HEY THAT WAS "WILMA"...SUCH A POWERFUL STORM THAT DID ALOT OF DAMAGE IN SFLA..
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Moments during Wilma freak intensification

...AIR FORCE RECONNAISSANCE PLANE REPORTED 884 MB...THE LOWEST
MINIMUM PRESSURE EVER MEASURED IN A HURRICANE IN THE ATLANTIC
BASIN...THIS VALUE SHOULD BE USED WITH CAUTION UNTIL CALIBRATED...
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
ok -Wilma was BAD.
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200. xcool
Weather456 wow i remember that ?
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15684
New (at least to me) cyclone specific model, COAMPS-TC webpage. This is an experimental model and is not timely. It does have multiple forecast fields. Also once in a while shows the track of the experimental HWRF model. Tied to the HFIP.
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198. xcool
keep an eye on it!!!
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15684
I beleive the track will be similar to the ECMWF. Let's remember the accuracy of this model witl BILL. It has not been too consistent with the strength of the system but yes with the track.
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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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