Hurricane Ida hits Nicaragua

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:31 PM GMT on November 05, 2009

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Hurricane Ida intensified at one of the fastest rates on record, and plowed ashore this morning in central Nicaragua as a Category 1 hurricane with 75 mph winds. It took just 24 hours from when the first advisory was issued for Tropical Depression Eleven until Ida reached hurricane strength. Since reliable satellite measurements began in 1970, Hurricane Humberto holds the record for fastest intensification from first advisory issued to hurricane strength--18 hours. (Actually, Humberto did the feat in 14 1/4 hours, but this was rounded off to 18 hours in the final data base, which stores points every six hours). There have been six storms that accomplished the feat in 24 hours--Hurricane Florence of 2000, Hurricane Erin of 1995, Hurricane Bonnie of 1992, Hurricane Earl of 1986, Hurricane Kate of 1985, and Hurricane Kendra of 1978. Ida now joins that short list of rapidly intensifying storms.

Ida will dump very heavy rains of 10 - 15 inches over northern Nicaragua and northeastern Honduras over the next two days, which will likely make it the deadliest storm of the 2009 hurricane season. However, Ida is a relatively small storm, and has not tapped the Pacific Ocean as a source of moisture. I think the NHC forecast of 15 - 20 inches of rain is overdone. The greatest rainfall disasters in Honduras history--caused by Hurricane Fifi of 1974 and Hurricane Mitch of 1998--were caused because these were large storms that were able to pull in moisture from both the Atlantic and Pacific. Ida will not approach these disasters in magnitude.


Figure 1. Microwave "weather radar in space" image of Ida at landfall this morning, at 6:17 am EST. Image credit Navy Research Lab, Monterey.

The forecast for Ida
Ida will likely spend a full two days over Nicaragua and Honduras, and there is a chance that Ida will dissipate. The HWRF and ECMWF don't show much surviving of Ida after crossing into the Western Caribbean. However, the other models like Ida's chances of surviving, and it is the case that the storm's core will be tracking over relatively low elevation land (Figure 2), increasing the chances that Ida can survive the crossing intact. If Ida survives the crossing and emerges into the Western Caribbean on Saturday, moderate wind shear of 15 - 20 knots and warm waters await it, and some modest strengthening is likely. A trough of low pressure in the Gulf of Mexico this weekend should be able to propel Ida northwards into the Gulf of Mexico. The long-term fate of Ida if it reaches the Gulf of Mexico is hard to guess at this point, though the odds are against Ida hitting the U.S. as a hurricane, due to high wind shear.


Figure 2. Projected track from the 10am EST NHC advisory from Thursday, 11/05/09, overlaid on a topographical map of Central America. Image credit: Wikipedia.

Looking at the past to predict the future
Perhaps the best way to estimate the chances of Ida surviving the crossing of Nicaragua and Honduras is to look at past storms that have followed similar tracks, to see if they dissipated or not. History favors Ida surviving the crossing. The two best analogue storms occurred in 1906 and 1908. Hurricane Eight of October 10, 1906, hit Nicaragua as a Category 3 hurricane, spent two days over land, weakening to a tropical storm, then emerged into the Western Caribbean and re-intensified into a Category 3 hurricane that hit Cuba and South Florida. On the other hand, Hurricane Nine of October 18, 1908, which hit Nicaragua as a Category 2 hurricane, dissipated after spending 1.5 days over land. Three other weaker systems have followed paths similar to Ida's, and all survived the crossing and re-intensified once over the Western Caribbean. Tropical Storm Gert of 1993 hit as a 40 mph tropical storm, spent two days over land, and survived to re-intensify to a tropical storm before hitting the Yucatan Peninsula. Hurricane Alma of June 1996 hit Nicaragua as a tropical depression, spent two days over land, and survived. Alma later intensified into a major Category 3 hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico. Tropical Storm Six of 1940 hit Nicaragua as a 45 mph tropical storm, spent 1.5 days over land, and survived the crossing. So, of the five storms to follow a path similar to Ida's projected path, four survived to re-intensify over the Western Caribbean.

I'll have an update Friday morning.

Jeff Masters

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Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service New Orleans la
715 am CST Thursday Nov 5 2009

Long term...
the short version of the extended forecast is increasing rain
chances Sunday night through Tuesday. The problem that the forecast
is much more complicated than that. A piece of an upper trough off
the coast of California is breaking off. This low will swing across
the mex/US border towards the Gulf Coast. A weakness will develop
between this low and upper ridge that will be moving eastward. This
will allow plume of moisture to move into the area beginning Sunday
evening. Started ramping up probability of precipitation during this time. At this time...stayed
relatively close to mex with likely probability of precipitation Sun night through Monday night
but may need to go even higher as the event nears. Then...the
question of how much influence will come from Ida or remnants of
it. Run to run constancy has been low on this aspect and therefore
confidence is not too high.


Tropical Storm Ida is currently near the coast of Nicaragua and
moving northwest at 7 miles per hour. Official forecast from NHC depicts a wider Cone
of uncertainty than normal due to the lack of model consensus in the
extended. The latest model runs 06z show similar spread in model
tracks. In general...Ida or the remnants of should be near the
southern Gulf of Mexico early next week. From that point...upper
level trough evolution will determine its movement. Refer to
www.NHC.NOAA.Gov for more information.


Meffer
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Blog Update

Hurricane Ida
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
there's only one person on my ignore list and it ain't tacomeat :)
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Quoting P451:


Probably not until Sunday/Monday, the generally predicted time Ida could re-emerge into the NW Caribbean. (Althought I question the forward movement, I think it would be sooner)

Your next flight might actually investigate the BOC where a disturbance is expected to spin up in about 24-36 hours time.



TY - I have to be parochial and honest - anything that forms in BOC (unless tracking SE or SSE) tends to be "off my horizon" - IDA is where my eyes are on.
All that said, I just want the Atlantic Season to be over for all of us with minimum damage, death and destruction - we have seen enough of that in PAC this year.
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So, of the five storms to follow a path similar to Ida's projected path, four survived to re-intensify over the Western Caribbean.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting P451:


Why do you talk to Stormtop/stormno/stormmasterg/etc?

He's just trolling. He's on dozens of people's ignore lists for it. Please add him to yours.

Seriously lol...


Plus, Ida ain't gonna rip apart and get absorbed, it's on FLAT TERRITORY lol, it'll weaken, but likely get into the Western Carribean as a TD and could strengthen given the possible conditions. Tacoman is all talk/nonsense, surprised he was never banned for his actions.
Member Since: July 1, 2008 Posts: 13 Comments: 7439
Quoting P451:
CNN talks IDA:


Miami, Florida (CNN) -- Hurricane Ida made landfall Thursday morning over east central Nicaragua, pelting the Central American nation with heavy rain.

Ida, a Category 1 hurricane, had maximum sustained winds of 75 mph (120 kph) and gusts up to 90 mph (145 kph), the National Hurricane Center said.

Flash floods and mudslides in Nicaragua and Honduras are expected. Because Ida is a slow-moving storm, rainfall totals could approach 30 inches in some locations, meteorologists said.

The storm is expected to weaken as it moves over Nicaragua and into Honduras, the National Hurricane Center said.

Ida is forecast to emerge into the western Caribbean Sea on Saturday morning and then slowly move toward the north-northwest, brushing past Cancun, Mexico, on Monday afternoon. After that, forecast models offer a variety of possibilities as to which way the storm could head and how intense it could be. Ida, or remnants of the storm, could make landfall anywhere along the U.S. Gulf Coast late next week. It is too early to pinpoint a specific location.

Coastal flooding and dangerous riptides will be possible this weekend along coastal Louisiana and Mississippi because of an area of low pressure in the western Gulf of Mexico and a strong area of high pressure over the mid-Atlantic Ocean. Ida may contribute to the abnormally high tides early next week.

Ida is the Atlantic region's ninth named storm. The Atlantic hurricane season ends November 30.


Thank you for post, as I was engaged in pretty fruitless search on LA and TX emergency management pages. I was looking specifically for this info.
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Thanks for the update Dr. Masters
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
GMZ089-052130-
SYNOPSIS FOR THE GULF OF MEXICO
930 AM CST THU NOV 05 2009

.SYNOPSIS...HIGH PRES WILL PREVAIL OVER THE GULF COAST STATES
THIS AFTERNOON WITH LOW PRES LOCATED TO THE S. THE PRES GRADIENT
WILL STRENGTHEN AND AS A RESULT WINDS WILL INCREASE ACROSS THE
GULF WATERS TODAY THEN WILL PERSIST THROUGH THE WEEKEND. LOW
PRESSURE IS EXPECTED TO FORM IN THE BAY OF CAMPECHE BY FRI AND
THEN MOVE N THROUGH MON. MEANWHILE T.S. IDA WILL APPROACH THE
YUCATAN CHANNEL BY LATE MON.

Everyone but my local NWS seems to know about this. Euro has been showing for a while now.
Member Since: August 15, 2008 Posts: 10 Comments: 3665
Quoting SSideBrac:
Anyone know when next HH Sortie is planned?


Saturday afternoon


2. SUCCEEDING DAY OUTLOOK: PROBABLE 12 HRLY
FIXES BEGINNING AT 07/1800Z NEAR 16.5N 84.5W


Link
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Love the Now Coast Page..I gotta use that more,thanx 81
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Anyone know when next HH Sortie is planned?
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NOAA NOWCOAST

This really shows how the storm will travel over some of the warmest water in the Caribbean. On the left of this map you'll see surface water currents, this will show you the main flow through the Caribbean. Notice the storm will be passing over one of the stronger currents and this current is to great depths with warm water.
Member Since: August 11, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 2315
Quoting IKE:
Dr. Lyons just said it could be weakening as it comes into the GOM due to a trough of low pressure to it's west.

He said it could dissipate in the GOM. Said if it didn't, it's most likely area to affect would be Florida.


I agree with DR. Lyons.....the front is on the West coast now and a big one...it will make it to the GOM area in about 5 days....
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 179 Comments: 20450
Quoting NRAamy:
54. HurricaneNewbie 7:56 AM PST on November 05, 2009
Quoting Jeff9641:
JB thinks everything is going to hit NYC.

NYC will be hit.. Higher taxes. Rut Roe. that opens up an entirley new can of worms.



can I just go on the record that I have absolutely no connection to this person whatsoever....

back to Ida....


Oops...you just made one (lol)
Member Since: October 18, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
Hurricane IDA 12 Z
Statistical/Simple Models (CLIPER,BAMs,LBAR,other Statistical Models)



12Z Dynamic Models (More sophisticated models)



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54. HurricaneNewbie 7:56 AM PST on November 05, 2009
Quoting Jeff9641:
JB thinks everything is going to hit NYC.

NYC will be hit.. Higher taxes. Rut Roe. that opens up an entirley new can of worms.



can I just go on the record that I have absolutely no connection to this person whatsoever....

back to Ida....
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"Give this thing the day - it's not worth hourly assessments at this time IMO."


Yeah, like that's gonna happen...
Member Since: October 18, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
Quoting P451:


I don't think that will occur unless it starts to meander/wobble again.

This AM it slowed down considerably as it reached the coast and it wobbled on and off the coast north-ward-like.

It has since clearly resumed a NW course and at an accelerated rate.

Whether or not that is a trend or yet another temporary track - I don't know.

Give this thing the day - it's not worth hourly assessments at this time IMO.

very true 12 to 18 hours should tell the tale, 24 hours for safe measure.
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all the tracks now show it coming here toward panama city/pensacola/ft walton area. maybe lots of cool blustery wind and rain. that would be nice. hope for that for wherever it goes! Is the GOM real warm?
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I'm pretty sure this will hit Florida. If one looks at climatology, especially this late in the season, Ida will surely turn NE or ENE by a trough. I think the most far north it may be able to go is the Big Bend area or the Panhandle, especially if Ida redevelops once in the NW Caribbean.

I think a central/south Florida hit is most likely. The models are slowly showing a NE turn at the end of their forecast. If this was September or early October I may have thought otherwise, but there is no escaping the troughs this late in the season.

Also, as far as intensity goes, I think it's very possible Ida may become a major hurricane. It's in the same hot waters Paloma was in last year if not hotter.
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1249. stormpetrol 3:30 PM GMT on November 05, 2009
If you see the center cross offshore where the coastline curves slightly inward , then thats a whole other ball game imo.
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To further Dr. Masters point, if I may - I think he's sticking till after 1970 for the fastest intensifying storms. I wrote about this back in September using the entire database (1851) if anyone is interested.
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Howdy IKE...
Like these words! Dissipate!
Quoting IKE:
Dr. Lyons just said it could be weakening as it comes into the GOM due to a trough of low pressure to it's west.

He said it could dissipate in the GOM. Said if it didn't, it's most likely area to affect would be Florida.
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Quoting Jeff9641:
JB thinks everything is going to hit NYC.

NYC will be hit.. Higher taxes. Rut Roe. that opens up an entirley new can of worms.
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So far 12Z GFS (78HR) is not holding back:

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Thanks Dr. M.

Hi everyone.... its the watch, wait and see that gets to me! Sounds like, looks like the current thoughts keep it east of us. But Mother Nature is unpredictable, just like most women I know!

Blog is gonna be crazy over the next couple of days.

Flood - You have a fork handy? I'd like to poke a couple of folks..... hehehe
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Remember the aftermath...
Link
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Quoting HurricaneNewbie:


The folks in that discussion need not be told about the availability and application of satellite data nor the lacking availability of surface obs and the caveats that come with them.
Can you please restate that in layman english?



I'll translate.."skewish type retort".

But I avoid Lawyer talk like da plague.
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47. IKE
Dr. Lyons just said it could be weakening as it comes into the GOM due to a trough of low pressure to it's west.

He said it could dissipate in the GOM. Said if it didn't, it's most likely area to affect would be Florida.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37860
45. LBAR
Quoting BobinTampa:
does Bastardi think Ida will affect NYC??



HA!
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Dr. Masters didnt mention any more on a Possible GOM STS...wonder if that forecast has eroded some?
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Must be using those forks stuck in the end of the season to eat their crows...
Member Since: October 18, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
Quoting Floodman:
Hey, wait a minute...has anyone seen any of the "the season's over, stick a fork in it" crowd this morning?
no not this morning but i got a feeling the ripping crowd will be here soon
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The folks in that discussion need not be told about the availability and application of satellite data nor the lacking availability of surface obs and the caveats that come with them.
Can you please restate that in layman english?
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Quoting Floodman:
Hey, wait a minute...has anyone seen any of the "the season's over, stick a fork in it" crowd this morning?



Nope,they missing like a Sports car parked on a Parade Route on Mardi Gras day..
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Link
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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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