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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1047. WxLogic
Good Morning...

Interesting how 00Z ECMWF speed up development into a sheared type system which is typical for this time of the year too.
Member Since: August 14, 2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4972
Quoting StormW:
Good morning!

Good Morning/evening Sir
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
BBL

Blog Update

Atlantic tropics liven up
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting aquak9:
g'morning auusie- was tuesday a good day?

I still have to live thru it, it's only 6:30am here.

Was Tuesday a good day, well, not really. Almost got stuck in my car on my way to work due to back spasms. I am currently sitting on my butt at work.

I am preying that Lupit does what Parma did just before it got to the Philippines, have it's circulation disrupted by the high mountains of Northern Luzon.
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Quoting IKE:
SYNOPSIS FOR CARIBBEAN SEA AND TROPICAL N ATLC FROM 07N TO 22N
BETWEEN 55W AND 65W
530 AM EDT TUE OCT 20 2009

.SYNOPSIS...
STATIONARY FRONT OVER THE CARIBBEAN FROM HAITI TO CABO GRACIAS A
DIOS NICARAGUA WILL GRADUALLY DISSIPATE. BROAD AREA OF LOW
PRESSURE OVER THE SOUTHWESTERN CARIBBEAN SEA. SLOW DEVELOPMENT
OF THIS SYSTEM IS EXPECTED DURING THE NEXT SEVERAL DAYS AS IT
DRIFTS NORTHWESTWARD.
WEAK TROPICAL WAVE ALONG 65W WILL ENTER
THE CENTRAL CARIBBEAN TUE MORNING AND WILL BE ABSORBED BY THE
LOW PRES OVER THE SW CARIBBEAN LATE THU. A SECOND TROPICAL WAVE
WILL REACH THE TROPICAL N ATLC LATE WED AND THE E CARIBBEAN LATE
THU.



lol, if the low moves northwest from its current position, it would be located just NE of Honduras/Nicaragua tip.
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1030. IKE
SYNOPSIS FOR CARIBBEAN SEA AND TROPICAL N ATLC FROM 07N TO 22N
BETWEEN 55W AND 65W
530 AM EDT TUE OCT 20 2009

.SYNOPSIS...
STATIONARY FRONT OVER THE CARIBBEAN FROM HAITI TO CABO GRACIAS A
DIOS NICARAGUA WILL GRADUALLY DISSIPATE. BROAD AREA OF LOW
PRESSURE OVER THE SOUTHWESTERN CARIBBEAN SEA. SLOW DEVELOPMENT
OF THIS SYSTEM IS EXPECTED DURING THE NEXT SEVERAL DAYS AS IT
DRIFTS NORTHWESTWARD.
WEAK TROPICAL WAVE ALONG 65W WILL ENTER
THE CENTRAL CARIBBEAN TUE MORNING AND WILL BE ABSORBED BY THE
LOW PRES OVER THE SW CARIBBEAN LATE THU. A SECOND TROPICAL WAVE
WILL REACH THE TROPICAL N ATLC LATE WED AND THE E CARIBBEAN LATE
THU.


SYNOPSIS FOR THE GULF OF MEXICO
430 AM CDT TUE OCT 20 2009

.SYNOPSIS...HIGH PRES OVER SE U.S. WILL SHIFT E INTO THE W ATLC
THROUGH FRI. A NEW COLD FRONT WILL MOVE SE INTO THE NW GULF THU
EVENING AND EXTEND FROM SE LOUISIANA TO THE NEAR TAMPICO MEXICO
FRI MORNING AND FROM NW FLORIDA TO THE YUCATAN PENINSULA SAT.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
1028. RJT185
Morning!
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I suggest some of you go and read the blog from last night. The blog was very peaceful with a healthy discussion between myself, Drak and others and I feel with the admins monitoring the blog, there will not be any chaos over the next 5 or 7 days.
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Good Morning

Blog Update

Atlantic tropics liven up
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1025. IKE
Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:


It will, but get your stash of popcorn and sodas ready. If people would just use the ignore function between their ears and agree to disagree. I have seen it happen occasionally.


Headin to town this mornin. Will pick up a big stash of microwave popcorn.


Quoting tornadofan:


Well, at least it should keep "climate change" talk to a minimum on this blog.


You're right. Great news!
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Quoting IKE:


7 days(LOL).

Will this blog survive 7 days of a spin in the NW Caribbean?


Well, at least it should keep "climate change" talk to a minimum on this blog.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting IKE:


7 days(LOL).

Will this blog survive 7 days of a spin in the NW Caribbean?


It will, but get your stash of popcorn and sodas ready. If people would just use the ignore function between their ears and agree to disagree. I have seen it happen occasionally.
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 11158
1022. aquak9
Quoting leftovers:
who will get the i?


Ida'know...no one does.
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1021. aquak9
g'morning auusie- was tuesday a good day?

I still have to live thru it, it's only 6:30am here.
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Good evening one and all.
Whats the latest on blob watch, oh and also TY Lupit? Has Lupit found his world map yet?
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1018. aquak9
Hi ike...as if ericka did not cause us to lose all our hair. 7 days of slow development??

no, we can't handle it.
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1017. IKE
Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:
HPC Preliminary Extended Forecast Discussion


FOR A NUMBER OF DAYS ECMWF RUNS HAVE BEEN INDICATING VARYING
DEGREES OF TROPICAL DEVELOPMENT OVER THE NWRN CARIBBEAN WITH A
WELL DEFINED SYSTEM TRACKING OVER OR NEAR FL. REMAINING GUIDANCE
SEEMS TO BE HINTING A LITTLE MORE AT SUCH A SYSTEM NOW BUT AT A
MUCH SLOWER SPEED THAN ECMWF RUNS. EARLY PRELIM FCST MAINTAINS
CONTINUITY WITH YDAYS TPC/HPC COORDINATION THAT KEEPS ANY ACTIVITY
OVER THE NWRN CARIBBEAN THRU DAY 7 TUE.


HPC Preliminary Graphics


7 days(LOL).

Will this blog survive 7 days of a spin in the NW Caribbean?
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
HPC Preliminary Extended Forecast Discussion


FOR A NUMBER OF DAYS ECMWF RUNS HAVE BEEN INDICATING VARYING
DEGREES OF TROPICAL DEVELOPMENT OVER THE NWRN CARIBBEAN WITH A
WELL DEFINED SYSTEM TRACKING OVER OR NEAR FL. REMAINING GUIDANCE
SEEMS TO BE HINTING A LITTLE MORE AT SUCH A SYSTEM NOW BUT AT A
MUCH SLOWER SPEED THAN ECMWF RUNS. EARLY PRELIM FCST MAINTAINS
CONTINUITY WITH YDAYS TPC/HPC COORDINATION THAT KEEPS ANY ACTIVITY
OVER THE NWRN CARIBBEAN THRU DAY 7 TUE.


HPC Preliminary Graphics
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 11158
1015. aquak9
G'morning WU-bloggers
we have an invest?
it's not what we
expected
Will we ever get some rest...
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1014. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
Typhoon "RAMIL" has maintained its strength as it continues to move towards Northern Luzon.

Tropical Cyclone Bulletin #11
===============================
At 5:00 PM PhST, Typhoon Ramil (Lupit) located at 20.4ºN 129.4ºE or 750 kms east northeast of Aparri, Cagayan has 10 minute sustained winds of 195 km/h (105 kts) with gustiness up to 230 km/h (125 kts).

Signal Warnings
================

Signal Warning #2 (60-100 km/h winds)

Luzon Region
-----------
1.Batanes Gr of Islands
2.Cagayan
3.Calayan Island
4.Babuyan Islands
5.Isabela

Signal Warning #1 (30-60 km/h winds)

Luzon Region
------------
1.Ilocos Norte
2.Ilocos Sur
3.Apayao
4.Abra
5.Kalinga
6.Mt. Province
7.Benguet
8.La Union
9.Ifugao
10.Nueva Vizcaya
11.Quirino
12.Aurora
13.Northern Quezon
14.Polillo Island

Additional Information
======================
Residents in low-lying areas and near mountain slopes under signals #2 and #1 are advised to take all the necessary precautionary measures against flashfloods and landslides.

Those living along the coast in areas under signal #2 are advised to be on alert against big waves generated by the typhoon.

The public and the disaster coordinating councils concerned are advised to take appropriate actions and watch for the next bulletin to be issued at 11 PM today.
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BahaHurican I do now and good morning also
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Good Morning.





Anybody notice that area between 20N, 30N, 40W, and 50W? Obvious sign of MJO uptick....
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Current Information as of 0900 UTC
*Tropical Storm Neki (45 mph)
*Tropical Storm Rick (65 mph)
*Typhoon Lupit (110 mph/95 mph)
-Typhoon Lupit's sustained winds both in 1 minute and 10 minute sustained.
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1010. ackee
think SW carrb system willbe an invest sometime today
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00Z ECMWF takes a moderate system into south florida next Tuesday

shows the system weaker, but track still somewhat similar

so that is now 5 out of 6 that take it over Florida
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1008. xcool
DAM
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93L isnt our SW Caribbean disturbance, it is the area in the CATL

again unless they made a mistake
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1006. xcool
yay 93
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Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:
AL, 93, 2009102006, , BEST, 0, 126N, 351W, 20, 1009, DB,

93L is born


well it is tomorrow. as suggested :P. onward to more blob watching.

nvm lol maybe is Grace BAP????
Member Since: September 6, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 3720
well i'll see how this looks when i wake up. Though I doubt it will become a depression before Friday.
Member Since: September 6, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 3720
AL, 93, 2009102006, , BEST, 0, 126N, 351W, 20, 1009, DB,

93L is born

whoa wait lol, they put it on the area in the CATL, unless that is a mistake
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Quoting KoritheMan:


Ever since its extraordinary performance with Bill, I've been giving a lot of credence to the ECMWF. We'll see.


yea same here, outside of the one model run that completely dropped development, it has been consistent in developing the system and bringing it northward
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Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:


yup and only 1 model hasnt flip flopped to this degree

the ECMWF

we will see if that changes with the new run coming out soon


Ever since its extraordinary performance with Bill, I've been giving a lot of credence to the ECMWF. We'll see.
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Quoting BurnedAfterPosting:


guess we will see


Well, another thing we need to be monitoring is the evolution of the front. This means carefully analyzing water vapor imagery, soundings, etc., each day until the forecast time of the front on the models.

Sometimes, what's actually there and what the models forecast are two completely different things.

Right now, I think the timing and the amplitude of the trough are not certain.
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Quoting KoritheMan:


It is this flip flopping that always makes me skeptical of track and intensity forecasts beyond five days out.


yup and only 1 model hasnt flip flopped to this degree

the ECMWF

we will see if that changes with the new run coming out soon
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Quoting homelesswanderer:


Looks like the CMC did a 180. Last night took it over Fl. Now I think that is the system in BOC? Can't be sure though.



It is this flip flopping that always makes me skeptical of track and intensity forecasts beyond five days out.
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Quoting KoritheMan:


Looking at the graph of the CMC at 144 hours that you posted, I see no evidence of said front over Florida, which makes me inclined to believe that the weakness as shown by that particular model during that time is overdone.


guess we will see, but every discussion here in Central and South Florida talk about a front coming through here on Saturday and Sunday, it shows up in the temps

It isn't a strong front, but it is there

So really I am not sure what the CMC is showing
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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.