Polish president dies in plane crash during heavy fog

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:06 PM GMT on April 10, 2010

Share this Blog
3
+

Always obey your air traffic controllers. That's the cardinal rule of of aviation, and one apparently violated by the pilot of the aircraft carrying the Polish president and dozens of the country's top political and military leaders, which crashed in heavy fog this morning near Smolensk, Russia. All 96 people aboard perished. According to the New York Times, air traffic controllers had recommended the president's jet land in nearby Minsk because of bad visibility, but the crew decided to land anyway. The Polish news channel TVN24 reported that moments before the crash, air traffic controllers had refused a Russian military aircraft permission to land, but that they could not refuse permission to the Polish plane. Russian media reported that the airplane's crew made several attempts to land before a wing hit the treetops and the plane crashed about half a mile from the runway.


Figure 1. a large patch of fog covers the Russian city of Smolensk and regions to the east in this visible light image captured by NASA's Terra satellite between 08:00 - 11:15 UTC Saturday, April 10, 2010. Image credit: NASA MODIS Rapid Response System, visualized using Google Earth.

At 10 am local time, near the time of the crash, the Smolensk airport reported heavy fog with visibility 0.5 km (3/10 of a mile). As seen in the satellite image taken near this time (Figure 1), a large bank of fog covered Smolensk and neighboring regions of Russia and Belarus.

Jeff Masters

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 328 - 278

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14Blog Index

A positive NAO would allow for some cooling in the Caribbean. The NCEP/NCAR reanalysis of April 1-9 reveals anomalously higher tradewind speeds over the Caribbean. The forecast is for a negative NAO as we head into mid April which will resume the warming.


Figure 1. Surface Vector Wind (m/s) Composite Anomaly




Figure 2. Ensemble Forecast of the North American Oscillation

Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 29714
Quoting Jeff9641:
I would watch an area just north of the Yucatan as an area of low pressure that may begin to organize later next week and this could be a huge rain event for the Florida penisula next weekend. The NAM shows numerous thunderstorms in the S GOMEX by day four with a low trying to form. It will be interesting to see how this will evolve over the next several days.


Looks like a prime set-up for a good Gulf Gale. High pressure off of the SE coastline and a developing Low over the SW GOM will set up a E to NE flow across the entire GOM.

It'll be a good rainmaker and it will also slightly delay the inevitable warming of the GOM. No worries, by mid-late May 2010, the GOM should be "normal" near bathtub temperatures!!!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Caribbean still significantly cooling.
For the first time this year we are below 2005.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Skyepony:
Bord~ I have that one.. they all seem to be working now. yay..

Spathy~ At least you reminded me to clean mine. Pollen is like a carpet here.

Good, glad the links are back up and working!!

The pollen count here in Dallas-Ft Worth, TX on Fr 4-9-10 was over 5000. People are suffering really bad. After a super cold winter, spring arrived all at one time and all the trees bloomed at once!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
323. Skyepony (Mod)
Bord~ I have that one.. they all seem to be working now. yay..

Spathy~ At least you reminded me to clean mine. Pollen is like a carpet here.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 29714
The GFS 12z is showing rainfall totals anywhere from an a half an inch to an inch and locally higher amounts around the southern treasure coast. This moisture is due to a mid to upper level shortwave trough and the retrogression of the frontal boundary that passed through yesterday.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 29714
Well, just got our first little spot of rain.... hope that's it for a few more hours... But geez. It seems even the MENTION of washing the car will trigger a shower... lol

Would u believe that little teeny-tiny spot o' cloud is what finally brought a sprinkle with it? LOL

Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20742
Quoting AussieStorm:

washing the car will bring the rain, It always does when i wash my car and when my neighbour does.
LOL better save that for last, then...
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20742
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 29714
Afternoon All.

It's been a long time since we've had showers move in off the Atlantic in SECF. Times a changing for sure, finally. Surely not going to miss the cold after this year.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:


Halie and Matthew is just to the SE of that lat/long cross @ 25 / 75, I'm assuming heading SW along the outside of the Bahamas chain (a really good idea, considering the ridiculous reef / shoal combinations up and down these lovely isles lol). Looks like they may outrun the worst of this afternoon's weather. We live in hopes!
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20742


PSU Steering (Low)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Thanks for background on how The Hailie and Matthew got commissioned for the humanitarian trip to Haiti. That has to be the 'feel good' story of the week. Overcast and mild temps here in ECFl today. I hope the GOM blob NNW of Yucatan peninsula migrates southeast into Caribbean.
We are feeling the urgency!
C'mon skies, cooperate!

PennStateGOMLoop
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting BahaHurican:
If it does, should get there around the "normal" p.m. shower time, too... 3 - 4 p.m...... Hope it either stays N of 25, or doesn't get here til evening hours. I have a lot of stuff to do outside this p.m., including wash the car, and I'd hate to get interrupted.... lol

washing the car will bring the rain, It always does when i wash my car and when my neighbour does.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting weatherbro:


It's definately not not the old frontal boundary since that's(or what's left of it) is straddled over Cuba and expected to stay and dissipate well south of Florida.

I think this cluster of thunder-boomers are caused by a combination of an upper-level shortwave and a tight easterly gradient from high pressure to the north. The combination has caused instability and steep lapse rates I believe.

Looks like it's headed for Miami if it holds together...
If it does, should get there around the "normal" p.m. shower time, too... 3 - 4 p.m...... Hope it either stays N of 25, or doesn't get here til evening hours. I have a lot of stuff to do outside this p.m., including wash the car, and I'd hate to get interrupted.... lol
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20742

Schooner helps with Haiti relief deliveries


Posted: 12:00 AM
Updated: 1:00 AM
Maine Reports


EASTPORT - A schooner familiar to Eastporters has been chartered to bring relief supplies to earthquake victims in Haiti.

The Halie & Matthew is assisting the relief vessel Liberty in delivering nearly 45,000 pounds of needed food and medical items. The Liberty, docked in Miami, could take only about a quarter of that amount, so her owners looked around for help and noticed the Halie & Matthew in its Key West winter quarters, preparing to sail back to Maine.

"They contacted my partner Pat Driscoll," said Butch Harris of Eastport. "There was no hesitation saying yes, just as long as they bring her back to Eastport afterward."

The Halie & Matthew, which can carry 100 passengers, is being rented out at a nominal cost to cover dock fees, food and other basic expenses.

Harris spent four days in Florida helping to prepare his vessel, which was still waiting for good weather before sailing to Haiti.

Harris described the Halie & Matthew's captain, Jared Talarski, and the crew on the humanitarian voyage as "experienced. They come from all over the country -- Oregon, Alaska, New Jersey, Texas. And most all of them are commercial boat people. There is one guy who is a rigger for tall ships."

"I would have liked to go, too," he said. "But there's too much going on at home."

-- The Quoddy Tides

http://www.quoddytides.com

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 415 Comments: 125715
Quoting weatherbro:


It's definately not not the old frontal boundary since that's(or what's left of it) is straddled over Cuba and expected to stay and dissipate well south of Florida.

I think this cluster of thunder-boomers are caused by a combination of an upper-level shortwave and a tight easterly gradient from high pressure to the north. The combination has caused instability and steep lapse rates I believe.

Looks like it's headed for Miami if it holds together...


Right now, the front that came through in the early morning hours Saturday has begun to transition into a warm front and is migrating slowly northward. At the same time, the subtropical jet across the Gulf of Mexico has produced two distinct disturbances, one of which is currently pressing into Florida. And to add to the brew is a weak easterly flow coming across adding more moisture to the atmosphere. So pretty much expect a pretty wet pattern over the next couple days across South Florida.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

photo uploaded by portlight
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 415 Comments: 125715
Re: 218 Presslord.

Hmmmm... this is a cool feature. Wonder if I could use it as a train-tracking device... lol

Looks like they may be out of the worst of it. Where are they gonna cut south, I wonder - between Long Island and Crooked Island, or through the more commonly used Mayaguana Passage to the east?
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20742
Hello Everyone, just praying for some rain here in The Caymans we need it real bad.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting fmhurricane2009:
I live in SWFL, in the fort myers area, and I got 2.6 inches of rain and it poured .9 inches in 15 minutes. It is still raining pretty hard. No one of the mets saw this coming


It's definately not not the old frontal boundary since that's(or what's left of it) is straddled over Cuba and expected to stay and dissipate well south of Florida.

I think this cluster of thunder-boomers are caused by a combination of an upper-level shortwave and a tight easterly gradient from high pressure to the north. The combination has caused instability and steep lapse rates I believe.

Looks like it's headed for Miami if it holds together...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Given current radar trends across South Florida, I would not be surprised if a Flood Watch could be issued as showers and storms continue to build and are exhibiting little in terms of motion due to a weak low level flow. Some western areas around Ft. Myers have already picked up a radar-estimated 3 inches plus and the rains continue.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Thanks CCHS and unfriendly. Had a mind block on the technical terms of DMAX and DMIN.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting presslord:
Having cleared Spanish Wells in the Bahamas to port, the schooner Halie & Matthew is well on her way to Haiti. The crew is well. They were becalmed until about 2pm today, and used the time to clean the boat, and go for a swim. With the wind filling in, they are happy to be sailing once again.

The weather was great here yesterday... lol

Hope they're further south, like past Ragged Island and down toward Inagua today. The wx in the NW Bahamas is not quite as balmy today...
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20742
Quoting tornadofan:
KOG - if my memory stands correct - t-storms over the ocean tend to build at night, not the day, right?


That would be correct. In the diurnal cycle, thunderstorms usually develop and maintain themselves over water during the night hours towards sunrise which is known as diurnal maximum while thunderstorms usually tend to weaken during the daytime hours towards sunset which is known as diurnal minimum.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting tornadofan:
KOG - if my memory stands correct - t-storms over the ocean tend to build at night, not the day, right?


i think you are thinking of DMAX and DMIN - on a small scale, these two have less of an effect.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
KOG - if my memory stands correct - t-storms over the ocean tend to build at night, not the day, right?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
168. TampaSpin 7:56 PM EDT on April 10, 2010

Gee, just saw this. My prayers are with your family at this time, esp. your wife.

Quoting alexhurricane1991:
Well the weather channel have to find someone quick or else your going to get the tropical update with mike bettes oh no!
[shudders] NO!!! Not Mike Bettes!!

(Why does his last name always feel like a weird compression of "Betty-Davis-Eyes" to me???)

Quoting tornadofan:


If you believe internet rumors, Dr. Rick Knabb from the National Hurricane Center will be taking Lyons' spot at TWC.
REALLY?!?!?! I've been thinking he'd like to get out of NHC for personal reasons. At least he would be a respectable source. How well do u think he'd come across to TV audiences, though?
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20742


here is a zoom out of area that hopefully gets to pottery to give him some rain that he's been asking for
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 165 Comments: 52383
I live in SWFL, in the fort myers area, and I got 2.6 inches of rain and it poured .9 inches in 15 minutes. It is still raining pretty hard. No one of the mets saw this coming
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting wunderkidcayman:


it just needs to start moving northwestward now not to hit land yet




here is your little area
nothing more but daytime induced heat thunderstorms nothing more
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 165 Comments: 52383
Quoting stoormfury:
Storm W area of disturbed weather in the central atl 6n 48 w looks rather interesting this morning. convection has increased and there is a mid level spin. although nothing is expected out of this system, it is only a matter of interest this early in the season


it just needs to start moving northwestward now not to hit land yet
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 165 Comments: 52383
hey guys what up I say we might have some early season systems for april the one in the cen. atl and east pac
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Storm W area of disturbed weather in the central atl 6n 48 w looks rather interesting this morning. convection has increased and there is a mid level spin. although nothing is expected out of this system, it is only a matter of interest this early in the season
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Here in tampa we may get a shower or thunderstorm this afternoon but most of the action as you see now will be south of us.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Tropical Link Garden dujour
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 415 Comments: 125715
Morning everybody. Anybody in South FL getting wet because of this system so far? (Trying to decide whether to cancel / postpone some outdoor activities today)
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 20742
Quoting Skyepony:
None of the .colostate.edu sites seem to be working.

New link is http://rammb.cira.colostate.edu/ramsdis/online/tropical.asp. Link below:

Link
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting AussieStorm:
Fort Myers and east could be in for some action today.



The SPC (Storm Prediction Center) out of Norman, OK has W TX under a slight risk and a special note that heavier thunderstorms may develop over S FL.
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Second STS-131 Spacewalk Complete
Sun, 11 Apr 2010 09:10:13 AM EDT

STS-131 Mission Specialists Rick Mastracchio and Clay Anderson completed a seven-hour, 26-minute spacewalk at 8:56 a.m. EDT.

Using a combination of robotics and spacewalking expertise, Discovery’s crew members installed a new Ammonia Tank Assembly (ATA) on the International Space Station’s Starboard 1 truss. Mission Control verified that electrical connections with the ATA are working. Because of a troublesome bolt, the spacewalkers fell behind the timeline and were unable to complete all the scheduled work. Tasks that were deferred from today’s spacewalk include fluid connections to the ATA and the retrieval of two micrometeoroid debris shields for return to Earth.

This was the second of three STS-131 spacewalks, the 235th conducted by U.S. astronauts and the fifth for both Mastracchio and Anderson. It was the 142nd in support of International Space Station assembly and maintenance, totaling 887 hours, 9 minutes. It was the 114th spacewalk based out of the space station, totaling 699 hours, 54 minutes.

Mastracchio’s five spacewalks total 32 hours, 6 minutes and Anderson’s five spacewalks total 32 hours, 4 minutes.

NASA Television airs a Mission Status Briefing at 11 a.m. with STS-131 Lead Space Station Flight Director Ron Spencer and STS-131 Lead Spacewalk Officer David Coan.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 415 Comments: 125715
Fort Myers and east could be in for some action today.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:


AOI

AOI

AOI

AOI

Humor in Comments
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
281. Skyepony (Mod)
Thanks ya'll, hadn't been able to get into their real time or any of there weather sites for a few days now.

I was eyeing that EPAC blob too. Pretty far south.


moisture is somewhat plentiful


MJO is moving through there. Unforchanately for the Caribbean (who wants it) & South America (who doesn't need it)..it seems to have taken a dip south as it moves toward the Atlantic. Maybe it will change course.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Blob watching! In the east pacific between 5-10N 110W-120W, a double surface trough is causing an area of disturbed weather enhanced by the ITCZ, lower right in the image:


The area is located underneath an upper level anticyclone and low wind shear of 5-10knots. SST's are favourable for development at 28-29C. The area of disturbed weather is large, but if it can consolidate it has a slight chance of becoming a tropical depression. Something to keep an eye on while we wait patiently for real stuff to come along ;).
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Skyepony:
I still can't get in there..someone try this one..

http://rammb.cira.colostate.edu/ramsdis/online/tropical.asp


The webpage "rammb.cira.colostate.edu" cannot be found
DNS error occurred. Server cannot be found. The link may be broken.

Sky, this is what I get in CF.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Sky,
I can't get in either !!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 328 - 278

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14Blog Index

Top of Page

About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.