Asia records its hottest temperature in history; Category 4 Phet threatens Oman

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:47 PM GMT on June 02, 2010

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A hellish heat wave hit Pakistan last week, sending the mercury to an astonishing 53.5°C (128.3°F) at the town of MohenjuDaro on Wednesday May 26, reported the Pakistani Meteorological Department. While this temperature reading must be reviewed by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) for authenticity, not only is the 128.3°F reading the hottest temperature ever recorded in Pakistan, it is the hottest reliably measured temperature ever recorded on the continent of Asia. This information comes to me courtesy of Chris Burt, the author of Extreme Weather, who is probably the world's foremost expert on extreme weather records. In a collaborative effort with weather record researchers Maximiliano Herrera and Howard Rainford, Mr. Burt has painstakingly researched the extreme weather records for every country on Earth. They list the previous reliable record high for Asia as the 52.7°C (127°F) temperature measured on June 12, 1919, in the Sindh province of Pakistan. Temperatures exceed 120°F in this region of Pakistan nearly every year, in the late May/early June time frame before the monsoon arrives. Last week's heat wave killed at least 18 Pakistanis, and temperatures in excess of 50°C (122°F) were recorded at nine Pakistani cities on May 26, including 53°C (127.4°F) at Sibi.

All-time hottest temperature for Southeast Asia this month
Record heat also hit Southeast Asia in May. According to the Myanmar Department of Meteorology and Hydrology, Myanmar (Burma) had its hottest temperature in its recorded history on May 12, when the mercury hit 47°C (116.6°F) in Myinmu. Myanmar's previous hottest temperature was 45.8°C (114.4°F) at Minbu, Magwe division on May 9, 1998. According to Mr. Burt, the 47°C (116.6°F) measured on May 12 this year is the hottest temperature measured in Southeast Asia in recorded history.

Bogus extreme temperature records
I'm pleased to say that Chris Burt will be joining wunderground.com as a featured blogger later this year to discuss his work. He's working on a great new website that features weather records for each country of the world, complete with footnotes on disputed records. For example, many record books list Israel as the site of Asia's all-time maximum temperature. Mr. Burt comments: "54°C (129.2°F) has widely been quoted as the highest temperature ever recorded in Israel (and Asia) but there exist serious issues with this record. The temperature was recorded on a thermograph at Tirat Zvi on 21 June 1942. Examination of a copy of this trace (see Bio-Climatic Atlas of Israel by Dr. D. Ashbel, Central Press, Jerusalem, 1950, p.125, Figure 1) actually shows a maximum temperature of 53°C (127.4°F). No explanation is known for this 1°C discrepancy. In comparison with surrounding stations, it is likely that the actual temperature recorded at Tirat Zvi on this data was probably no higher than 52°C (125.6°F), which would be a record high temperature for Israel. Temperatures have reached or exceeded 50°C (122°F) in Israel only during this one episode in 1942.


Figure 1. Temperature trace from Bio-Climatic Atlas of Israel by Dr. D. Ashbel, Central Press, Jerusalem, 1950, p.125 for Tirat Zvi, Israel, the week of June 21, 1942.


Figure 2. Zoom of temperature trace from Bio-Climatic Atlas of Israel by Dr. D. Ashbel, Central Press, Jerusalem, 1950, p.125, for Tirat Zvi, Israel, the week of June 21, 1942. The temperature clearly only reached 53°C, if one reads the graph properly. Thus the 54°C temperature labeled on the graph is not correct.

Mr. Burt comments in his Extreme Weather book that every temperature record for the planet in excess of 129°F can be disputed. All of these records, except for the 134°F recorded at Greenland Ranch in Death Valley, California, were made by French colonial era instruments which were found to be irregular as far as the exposure of the screens used to house the temperature instruments. In some cases, the temperature instrument was housed closer to the ground than it should have been. Mr. Burt will have an in-depth analysis of the evidence later this summer when he begins blogging for us.


Figure 3. Visible satellite image of Tropical Cyclone Phet on Wednesday, June 2, 2010.

Tropical Cyclone Phet the 2nd strongest Arabian Sea storm on record
The record heat over southern Asia in May has helped heat up the Arabian Sea to 2°C above normal. The exceptionally warm SSTs have helped fuel a rare major hurricane in the Arabian Sea today, as Tropical Cyclone Phet underwent an impressive bout of rapid intensification this morning to become a Category 4 storm with 145 mph winds. Phet is a Thai word pronounced as Pet, meaning "Diamond". Intense hurricanes are rare in the Arabian Sea, due to the basin's small size, the interference of the summer monsoon, and the frequent presence of dry air and dust from the Arabian Peninsula. Phet is now the second strongest tropical cyclone ever recorded in the Arabian Sea, behind Category 5 Cyclone Gonu of 2007, which devastated Oman. Third place is held by the 2001 India Cyclone 01A and Very Severe Cyclonic Storm ARB 01 (02A), which were Category 3 storms with 125 mph winds.

Phet is over some of the warmest ocean waters on the planet, 30 - 31°C (86 - 88°F), and warm waters in excess of 26.5°C (80°F) extend to a depth of at least 50 meters (165 feet), resulting in a Tropical Cyclone Heat Potential high enough to allow Phet to attain Category 5 status. Phet is under moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots. The Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) is forecasting Phet to become a Category 5 storm later today. The storm is moving slowly north-northwest towards Oman, and could ingest dry air from the Arabian Peninsula on Thursday, resulting in weakening. It now appears likely that Phet will make landfall in Oman before recurving to the northeast and hitting Pakistan. The region of Oman likely to get hit is sparsely populated, so wind and storm surge damage will not be the main concerns. Phet will spread heavy rains over the heavily populated northern regions of Oman, which will likely cause extreme flooding. Phet has the potential to be worse for Oman than Tropical Cyclone Gonu, which did $4.2 billion in damage and killed 50 people in June 2007.

Impact on Pakistan
Phet is on track to make landfall in Pakistan or Iran after hitting Oman. Phet will be much weakened by passage over Oman, and may only be a tropical storm after crossing the Gulf of Oman and arriving at the Iran/Pakistan coast. Still, Phet's rains could easily cause destructive floods in Iran and Pakistan.

The strongest tropical cyclone on record to hit Pakistan was Very Severe Cyclonic Storm ARB 01 (02A), which hit near Karachi on May 20, 1999, as a Category 3 storm with 125 mph winds. According to Wikipedia, 02A killed 700 people did $6 million in damage (1999 USD). I've also found references to a December 15, 1965 cyclone that killed 10,000 near Karachi, Pakistan.

Oil spill update
Moderate onshore winds of 10 - 20 knots out of the southeast to southwest are expected to blow over the northern Gulf of Mexico over most of the next week, resulting increased threats of oil to Alabama, Mississippi, and the Florida Panhandle, according to the latest trajectory forecasts from NOAA. These persistent southwesterly winds will likely bring oil as far east as Fort Walton Beach, Florida, by Monday.

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
Oil Spill Academic Task Force
University of South Florida Ocean Circulation Group oil spill forecasts
ROFFS Deepwater Horizon page
Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery from the University of Miami

I'll be back Thursday with more on Phet and an analysis of the new Colorado State University hurricane forecast issued by Phil Klotzbach and Bill Gray issued today.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting scott39:
Future, What do you think the future of the wave coming off of Africa is?


I don't think it has good chance to develop. According to satellite imagery, this system has great outflow. However, its outflow is mostly enhance by the ITCZ. It is also slightly below 10N, which makes it harder but not impossible for it acquire a cyclonic signature.

The models are also expecting the subtropical jet stream to kink a little farther south at the eastern Caribbean next week.
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**IMAGE MADE BY CYCLONEKID**
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618. Ossqss 3:58 PM EDT on June 02, 2010

If you look at Page 57, with the recent verifications on their early season numbers for years 2004-2009, with the exception of 2005/2006 when they "blew" the forecast so to speak, they came very close in the rest of the years.........As such, a current forecast of 18 is close to the norm with room to increase again in early August if need be.......If a full blown La Nina is in place by early August, they may increase the numbers at that time.
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Quoting CycloneOz:


Those are great lines! Can I borrow them! ;)


if you pronounce "Lo-Ward!" right. You cant pronounce it like a yankee. it has to be Awww LO-WARD!! you can holler it while you tumble by with your umbrella all upside down.
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i founbd that blue marble imagery right here on wunder ground ....its nice satellite pics...Link
Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 1386
Quoting weathersp:


Oh boy... thats alot of activity..


Maybe we'll get lucky and they'll all be fish storms.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
Quoting Ossqss:
Hot off the press from today. In PDF form.

EXTENDED-RANGE FORECAST OF ATLANTIC SEASONAL HURRICANE ACTIVITY AND LANDFALL STRIKE PROBABILITY FOR 2010
We foresee a very active hurricane season in 2010. We have increased our forecast from early April, due to a combination of a transition from El Niño to currently-observed neutral conditions and the continuation of unusually warm tropical Atlantic sea surface temperatures. We anticipate a well above-average probability of United States and Caribbean major hurricane landfall. All factors are lining up for a very active 2010 hurricane season.
(as of 2 June 2010)
By Philip J. Klotzbach1 and William M. Gray2



Oh boy... thats alot of activity..
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Quoting cg2916:


It won't, it's too far south.
What AOI are you talking about?
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That satellite pic of cyclone Phet Dr. masters posted today, Is there a site for that blue marble imagery?? Or is that not for public use??
Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 1386
Quoting Snowlover123:


Which means... it could develop? Is 10-15 kts. of shear enough to tear apart a TC?


It won't, it's too far south.
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Quoting twhcracker:
I want to be in your video cycloneoz!! I could be like the ones in the tornado videos in the background bellering "Awww LO-WARD It's COMIN RIGHT HERE!! Oh GAWD OH LO-WARD GIT UNDER THE BRIDGE GIT IN THE BATHTUB" while you tumble by in the rain like a blur


Those are great lines! Can I borrow them! ;)
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Shear seems to be 5-15knots over it.

SAL is to the north of it.


Which means... it could develop? Is 10-15 kts. of shear enough to tear apart a TC?
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Future, What do you think the future of the wave coming off of Africa is?
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Daily update

CSU predicts 'hell of a year'
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Quoting twhcracker:
I want to be in your video cycloneoz!! I could be like the ones in the tornado videos in the background bellering "Awww LO-WARD It's COMIN RIGHT HERE!! Oh GAWD OH LO-WARD GIT UNDER THE BRIDGE GIT IN THE BATHTUB" while you tumble by in the rain like a blur


lmao
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Oz, if a hurricane heads to Tampa you can shoot from my property on Davis Islands if you want. It will be under water with a Cat 1 though, so you may want to consider wearing a life vest.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
I want to be in your video cycloneoz!! I could be like the ones in the tornado videos in the background bellering "Awww LO-WARD It's COMIN RIGHT HERE!! Oh GAWD OH LO-WARD GIT UNDER THE BRIDGE GIT IN THE BATHTUB" while you tumble by in the rain like a blur
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thank u all... nice lookin wave off african coast now.. I dare think how those waves will look another 6 weeks or so
Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 1386
Quoting twhcracker:
have you noticed those bp guys... the chief operating officer or whatever he's called, the one who made that asinine remark about how he wanted his life back, he seems beleagured and beset upon at every turn, while the head guy with the white hair, is like the ice man, he has reptilian eyes. he probably stabs sea turtles that somehow escaped the oil. i bet he is richer'n sin. he is like that guy on tv said, sitting around going "we need to put a containment dome over the entire GOM and figure out a way to get the saltwater and fish out of it so we can use the oil"


I hope those two go to jail.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
Any new info the EATL tropical wave, it seems like the GFS model's are down right now!
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Cool Oz - good luck with that. I'll watch your show!
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have you noticed those bp guys... the chief operating officer or whatever he's called, the one who made that asinine remark about how he wanted his life back, he seems beleagured and beset upon at every turn, while the head guy with the white hair, is like the ice man, he has reptilian eyes. he probably stabs sea turtles that somehow escaped the oil. i bet he is richer'n sin. he is like that guy on tv said, sitting around going "we need to put a containment dome over the entire GOM and figure out a way to get the saltwater and fish out of it so we can use the oil"
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608. IKE
Quoting ElConando:
hes trying but he ain't hiding.


He's hiding and I'm laughing.....

img src=>
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History Channel may be a good place.
Member Since: September 6, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 3757
Quoting futuremet:


This is great news. From which channel will your show be aired?


We'll be shopping it towards the end of the season.

If I could "landfall" on the Discovery Channel on Wednesdays after "Mythbusters" I'd be most pleased.

I would almost be willing to pay for such a slot!
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hes trying but he ain't hiding.
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Quoting CycloneOz:


Oh yes sir. Live on the internet.

There is one caveat, and I might as well share it now with you folks. My team already knows.

I probably won't be producing any HD "experience" videos for YouTube this year.

My goal is to get my own cable-TV show this fall, and I will insist that our footage from 2010 be used to produce the first season of shows.

Of course, should I not get picked up for network broadcast, I will go ahead and make some nice YouTubes for you all.


Just don't send any kids up in UFO-shaped balloons, okay?
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Quoting CaneWarning:
From CNN: BP has freed the snared diamond wire cutting saw that was being used to cut off the damaged riser pipe.


and they are no doubt busy as little bees cutting a big gash in a hydraulic line leading to a robot arm with it as we speak.
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Sees the CSU came out with 18/10/5. Historic activity on pair with 1995.
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Quoting CycloneOz:


Oh yes sir. Live on the internet.

There is one caveat, and I might as well share it now with you folks. My team already knows.

I probably won't be producing any HD "experience" videos for YouTube this year.

My goal is to get my own cable-TV show this fall, and I will insist that our footage from 2010 be used to produce the first season of shows.

Of course, should I not get picked up for network broadcast, I will go ahead and make some nice YouTubes for you all.


This is great news. From which channel will your show be aired?
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Quoting futuremet:
CycloneOz, are you going to chase any hurricanes this season?


Oh yes sir. Live on the internet.

There is one caveat, and I might as well share it now with you folks. My team already knows.

I probably won't be producing any HD "experience" videos for YouTube this year.

My goal is to get my own cable-TV show this fall, and I will insist that our footage from 2010 be used to produce the first season of shows.

Of course, should I not get picked up for network broadcast, I will go ahead and make some nice YouTubes for you all.
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Quoting TropicalWave:


hmmmm, that's quite low, given the dire circumstances up to parr. conversely, hopefully you'll end up being right. thanks, ikester, sir good buddy.


Yup, nail on the head.
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Quoting stormhank:
anyone have a animated satellite view of eastern atlantic/ africa?? thanks so much!!!



Link
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Quoting hurricanejunky:


I think we both got the weight going for us. Jim Edds is only a buck thirty? Heck, I'm almost double that! My height may increase the wind resistance but oh well. I think we're pretty well prepared going into this season. Only time will tell...



I met him and Jeff Priotosky (sp?) at the Cabo San Lucas airport after Jimena.

Jim is a man of slight build. I'm really surprised that he will get out in a hurricane.

I'm sure he subscribes to the axiom, "When out in a hurricane, the ground is your friend."
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CycloneOz, are you going to chase any hurricanes this season?
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Navy site

here is a link for the East Atlantic loop
Member Since: March 10, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 7816
Quoting CycloneOz:


Man, you know that the "extra" weight I wear is as good as gold if you stand in hurricane winds.

Poor Jim Edds, all 130 pounds of him, almost got sucked into Charley. But I've reviewed his footage when all hell was breaking out around him, and there's nothing I saw that my suit and extra weight around the middle could not handle! :)


I think we both got the weight going for us. Jim Edds is only a buck thirty? Heck, I'm almost double that! My height may increase the wind resistance but oh well. I think we're pretty well prepared going into this season. Only time will tell...

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Quoting stormhank:
anyone have a animated satellite view of eastern atlantic/ africa?? thanks so much!!!


I've been working trying to find one, too.

I can't stand the suspense. I want to see if it's holding together under the current conditions of dry air to the north.
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anyone have a animated satellite view of eastern atlantic/ africa?? thanks so much!!!
Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 1386
588. IKE
Quoting TropicalWave:


thanks, hey ike, what are your numbers for the seeassoonn?


13-7-4.
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With all this discussion about JFV,you are aware you are making him either a martyr, or a center of circulation (attention).
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Quoting IKE:


Hmmm.


511. :'( oh god no...
Member Since: September 6, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 3757
Quoting TropicalWave:


you should report him for that, futuremet. the doc did not create this blog with that mindset. as well as anyone else who posts pics of that character on here. on a lighter note, how are you? are you all pumped for the season, yet? lol.


Love ya, man! I am not worthy!
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Jeff, the picture worked.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667

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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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