Tropical Storm Agatha one of the top ten deadliest Eastern Pacific storms on record

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:56 PM GMT on May 31, 2010

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The Eastern Pacific hurricane season of 2010 is off to a bad start. The mounting death toll from Central America's Tropical Storm Agatha has made that storm one of the top ten deadliest Eastern Pacific tropical cyclones on record. Agatha was a tropical storm for just 12 hours, making landfall Saturday on the Pacific coast of Guatemala as a 45 mph tropical storm. However, the storm brought huge amounts of moisture inland that continue to be wrung out as heavy rains by the high mountains of Guatemala and the surrounding nations of Central America. So far, flooding and landslides have killed at least 83 people in Guatemala, 13 in neighboring El Salvador, and one in Honduras. Guatemala is also suffering from the Pacaya volcano in Guatemala, which began erupting four days ago. At least three people have been killed by the volcano, located about 25 miles south of the capital, Guatemala City. The volcano has destroyed 800 homes with lava and brought moderate ash falls to the capital.


Figure 1. Flood damage in Zunil, Quetzaltenango, in Guatemala on May 29, 2010, after heavy rains from Tropical Storm Agatha. Image credit: Sergio Huertas, climaya.com

Agatha is the deadliest flooding disaster in Guatemala since Hurricane Stan of 2005, which killed 1,513. In a bizarre coincidence, that storm also featured a major volcanic eruption at the same time, when El Salvador's Santa Ana volcano blew its top during the height of Stan's rains in in that country on October 1. The eruption killed two and injured dozens, and worsened the mud flow damage from Stan's rains. The deadliest Eastern Pacific tropical cyclone on record for Guatemala was Hurricane Paul of 1982, which made landfall in Guatemala as a tropical depression. Flooding from Paul's rains killed 620 people in Guatemala.


Figure 2. Two-day rainfall totals for Central America as estimated by satellite, for the period 7pm EDT Friday May 28 - 7pm EDT Sunday May 30, 2010. Rainfall amounts of 350 mm (14 inches, orange colors) were indicated for portions of Guatemala. The Guatemala government reported that rainfall exceeded 36 inches in some regions. Image credit: Navy Research Lab, Monterey.

Oil spill update
Light onshore winds out of the south to southwest are expected to blow over the northern Gulf of Mexico all week, resulting increased threats of oil to the Alabama and Mississippi barrier islands, according to the latest trajectory forecasts from NOAA. These persistent southwesterly winds will likely bring oil very close to the Florida Panhandle by next weekend.

Oil spill resources
My post, What a hurricane would do the Deepwater Horizon oil spill
My post Wednesday with answers to some of the common questions I get about the spill
My post on the Southwest Florida "Forbidden Zone" where surface oil will rarely go
My post on what oil might do to a hurricane
Gulf Oil Blog from the UGA Department of Marine Sciences
NOAA trajectory forecasts
Deepwater Horizon Unified Command web site
Oil Spill Academic Task Force
University of South Florida Ocean Circulation Group oil spill forecasts
ROFFS Deepwater Horizon page
Surface current forecasts from NOAA's HYCOM model
Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery from the University of Miami
The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and its Aftermath
What You Need to Know about Mercury in Fish and Shellfish

Jeff Masters

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Quoting KoritheMan:


2007 had two named storms in June, and we had a ridiculously strong La Nina that year. That season turned out to be one of the quietest on record.


ORLY??





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1399. scott39
Quoting KoritheMan:


2007 had two named storms in May, and we had a ridiculously strong La Nina that year. That season turned out to be one of the quietest on record.
Do you know of any Atlantic storms that were named on June 1st?
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Quoting weathersp:
MJO Impulse JFV...
http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/MJO/mjo.shtml

LOL.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194


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A total of 150 fatalities so far associated with Agatha.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
That trough is persistant over the central US...

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yea I was looking at that area too atmoaggie
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Quoting scott39:
Ok, thanks


2007 had two named storms in May, and we had a ridiculously strong La Nina that year. That season turned out to be one of the quietest on record.
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A re-post of mine from earlier. Just my way of saying Thank You.

Quoting Floodman:
Good morning folks...I want to join Grothar in a few minutes quiet reflection on those who have gone before us to protect our freedom...

We can never repay those that gave the last full measure of devotion so that we might enjoy the lives we've lived but we do honor their memory and we are grateful, truly, for the sacrifices they made...


Memorial Day - To those that gave the ultimate sacrifice

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Agreed atmo, Then you can come to Keesler Air Forse Base for one of the best Met. training facilities.
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1390. scott39
Quoting KoritheMan:


It's not unusual to have an early start to the East Pacific season, even during La Nina. It will slow down eventually.
Ok, thanks
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Quoting wunderkidcayman:
hey guys I am thinking about going to the army what do you think besides I must be crazy

Here in the US, one might get more opportunities to be involved in the weather with the Air Force or Navy (especially the Air Force). Something to consider if you want something like that.
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1388. scott39
Quoting wunderkidcayman:
hey guys I am thinking about going to the army what do you think besides I must be crazy
Know what your getting into! The service is good for young men and women for many reasons, but just like any job there are things that suck about it. The main thing is Uncle Sam owns you until your time is up. If you can deal with that thought, go for it!
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Cyclone Three has really exploded in the past few hours. I can see this being a major threat to the Indus Delta-Gujarat-Karachi region.

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1386. hydrus
Quoting wunderkidcayman:
hey guys I am thinking about going to the army what do you think besides I must be crazy
There is nothing crazy about joining the military.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21432
Quoting scott39:
Is the Epac expected to be slower later on in the season, because it isnt listening to forecasts right now?


It's not unusual to have an early start to the East Pacific season, even during La Nina. It will slow down eventually.
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May 31, 2010
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Quoting msgambler:
I say a prayer for the soldiers every day. I have a nephew in Afganistan right now. I pray they all come home safe and I Bless and Thank the ones that gave their lives for us. But we not only need to think of them but for the Loved ones they left behind ie: Mothers, Fathers, Wives, Husbands, Sons, Daughters, and Grandchildren. Let none of us forget THESE BRAVE SOULS.

I have 2 cousins in the British navy and 1 SAS. I think about them alot, especially when I hear there have been coalition casualties.
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MJO Impulse JFV...
http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/MJO/mjo.shtml

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hey guys I am thinking about going to the army what do you think besides I must be crazy
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1379. scott39
Is the Epac expected to be slower later on in the season, because it isnt listening to forecasts right now?
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Quoting Ocean24:
a cordial good evening, levi, good to see you on this evening. thanks, i want to know, when is the next strong impulse gonna enter our basin?
We are currently under a strong upward motion MJO at the moment the next one will usually be here in 40 days.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
1377. Levi32
Quoting Ocean24:
a cordial good evening, levi, good to see you on this evening. thanks, i want to know, when is the next strong impulse gonna enter our basin?


The current upward motion burst won't really want to go away, but the next big one may not be until the last week of June.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26661
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Ask me, JFV.

Ask me JFV
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Quoting wunderkidcayman:
By the way I was looking at the track plot of ex-Agatha and I was wondering what this meant "PT".


Post-Tropical, new term this year.
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I am sorry that you ain't going wild it is just it is not really expected thats all really
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I say a prayer for the soldiers every day. I have a nephew in Afganistan right now. I pray they all come home safe and I Bless and Thank the ones that gave their lives for us. But we not only need to think of them but for the Loved ones they left behind ie: Mothers, Fathers, Wives, Husbands, Sons, Daughters, and Grandchildren. Let none of us forget THESE BRAVE SOULS.
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Quoting Ocean24:
is levi still on? i need to ask him a question about the mjo.
Ask me, JFV.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
1369. Makoto1
PT Probably means Post-tropical, since they just added that this year.
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Quoting wunderkidcayman:
WTF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! EVERYONE GO WILD

BEGIN
NHC_ATCF
invest_ep912010.invest
FSTDA
R
U
040
010
0000
201006010003
NONE
NOTIFY=ATRP
END
INVEST, EP, E, , , , , 91, 2010, DB, O, 2010060100, 9999999999, , , , , , METWATCH, , EP912010
EP, 91, 2010053100, , BEST, 0, 92N, 1154W, 20, 1010, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0,
EP, 91, 2010053106, , BEST, 0, 93N, 1158W, 20, 1010, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0,
EP, 91, 2010053112, , BEST, 0, 94N, 1162W, 20, 1010, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0,
EP, 91, 2010053118, , BEST, 0, 95N, 1166W, 20, 1010, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0,
EP, 91, 2010060100, , BEST, 0, 96N, 1170W, 20, 1010, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1012, 150, 60, 0, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, M,


It's an invest, I aint going wild. I don't even go wild over a Cat 1-3.
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1367. Levi32
Quoting Ocean24:
is levi still on? i need to ask him a question about the mjo.


Sure, ask away.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26661
By the way I was looking at the track plot of ex-Agatha and I was wondering what this meant

AGATHA, EP, E, , , , , 01, 2010, TD, O, 2010052518, 9999999999, , , , , , WARNING, 1, EP012010
EP, 01, 2010052706, , BEST, 0, 126N, 954W, 25, 1006, LO, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1009, 180, 75, 0, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, D,
EP, 01, 2010052712, , BEST, 0, 125N, 952W, 25, 1006, LO, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1009, 180, 75, 0, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, D,
EP, 01, 2010052718, , BEST, 0, 125N, 950W, 25, 1006, LO, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1010, 200, 60, 0, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, D,
EP, 01, 2010052800, , BEST, 0, 125N, 948W, 25, 1006, LO, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1010, 200, 60, 0, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, D,
EP, 01, 2010052806, , BEST, 0, 126N, 947W, 25, 1006, LO, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1010, 200, 60, 0, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, D,
EP, 01, 2010052812, , BEST, 0, 127N, 946W, 25, 1006, LO, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1010, 200, 60, 0, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, D,
EP, 01, 2010052818, , BEST, 0, 128N, 944W, 30, 1005, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1010, 200, 85, 40, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, D,
EP, 01, 2010052900, , BEST, 0, 128N, 941W, 30, 1005, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1010, 200, 80, 40, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, D, 12, NEQ, 0, 60, 0, 0
EP, 01, 2010052906, , BEST, 0, 130N, 936W, 30, 1005, TD, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1010, 200, 60, 40, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, D,
EP, 01, 2010052912, , BEST, 0, 133N, 931W, 35, 1003, TS, 34, NEQ, 70, 70, 0, 60, 1010, 200, 60, 45, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, ONE, D, 12, NEQ, 70, 70, 0, 60
EP, 01, 2010052918, , BEST, 0, 139N, 925W, 40, 1000, TS, 34, NEQ, 60, 70, 0, 50, 1010, 200, 60, 50, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, AGATHA, D,
EP, 01, 2010053000, , BEST, 0, 146N, 918W, 30, 1003, TD, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1010, 200, 60, 40, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, AGATHA, D,
EP, 01, 2010053006, , BEST, 0, 149N, 917W, 25, 1006, TD, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1010, 120, 60, 35, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, AGATHA, D,
EP, 01, 2010053012, , BEST, 0, 148N, 919W, 20, 1009, PT, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0,

I know that DB is disturbance and TD is tropical Depression and TS is tropical storm and H is hurricane but what in the world is PT
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Quoting AussieStorm:

I thought it was a bi-plane so he can take his own measurements and do his own forecasts.
I thought it was his bathtub with jim cantore...
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1364. JLPR
Quoting bappit:


Oh, ok. So how can I be sure?


its coming from Africa? XD
Also you can kinda see the SAL on this true color picture
Link
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Quoting Tazmanian:
SO WHEN DO WE SEND JFV IN IS ROW BOAT

I thought it was a bi-plane so he can take his own measurements and do his own forecasts.
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1362. JLPR
Quoting scott39:
Hey guys, whats going on with Ex-Agatha? What direction is she going? I just know she is an invest by now! How strong will she get in the GOM? Im just kidding,put your guns away! LOL On a serious note our there any AOI in the Atlantic any time soon?


Soon, nope
everything is quiet, the most intense convection in the Atlantic is over me -.-
I have a little light show outside
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Why is it a shock we have a second Invest in the East Pacific?
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1360. Ossqss
With all do respect to the blog, please permit me to honor those who deserve the holiday we have in the US. Thank you all that have served for our freedom and given the biggest human sacrifice possible. Regardless of today's lack of formal events by our leadership!

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1359. bappit
Quoting JLPR:


I believe it also depicts dry air, but the one in the CATL is SAL


Oh, ok. So how can I be sure?
Member Since: May 18, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 6061
1358. scott39
Hey guys, whats going on with Ex-Agatha? What direction is she going? I just know she is an invest by now! How strong will she get in the GOM? Im just kidding,put your guns away! LOL On a serious note our there any AOI in the Atlantic any time soon?
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1357. JLPR
Quoting bappit:


Exactly what does that graphic measure? It depicts SAL conditions where the SAL definitely is not. How can I be sure all that area in the tropical Atlantic really is SAL?


I believe it also depicts dry air, but the one in the CATL is SAL
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1355. bappit
Quoting JLPR:
Here comes the allergies -.-
SAL


Exactly what does that graphic measure? It depicts SAL conditions where the SAL definitely is not. How can I be sure all that area in the tropical Atlantic really is SAL?
Member Since: May 18, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 6061
I have been having problems with a lot of redirects. I have Google search…and when I click on a link, it takes me someplace else, unless I hold down the Control key.
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1353. JLPR
Quoting wunderkidcayman:
WTF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! EVERYONE GO WILD

BEGIN
NHC_ATCF
invest_ep912010.invest
FSTDA
R
U
040
010
0000
201006010003
NONE
NOTIFY=ATRP
END
INVEST, EP, E, , , , , 91, 2010, DB, O, 2010060100, 9999999999, , , , , , METWATCH, , EP912010
EP, 91, 2010053100, , BEST, 0, 92N, 1154W, 20, 1010, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0,
EP, 91, 2010053106, , BEST, 0, 93N, 1158W, 20, 1010, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0,
EP, 91, 2010053112, , BEST, 0, 94N, 1162W, 20, 1010, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0,
EP, 91, 2010053118, , BEST, 0, 95N, 1166W, 20, 1010, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0,
EP, 91, 2010060100, , BEST, 0, 96N, 1170W, 20, 1010, DB, 0, , 0, 0, 0, 0, 1012, 150, 60, 0, 0, E, 0, , 0, 0, INVEST, M,



Yeah 91E why would I go wild? O_o?
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SO WHEN DO WE SEND JFV IN IS ROW BOAT
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Quoting JLPR:


Once it gets here I better start with the Claritin XD

I'm just getting in early. I have the same problem here in spring/summer.
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Alright going to call it a night see you all tomorrow.
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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.