Long range oil spill forecast

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:02 PM GMT on June 04, 2010

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Onshore winds out of the south, southwest, or west are expected to blow over the northern Gulf of Mexico over through Tuesday, resulting in a continued threat of landfalling oil to Alabama, Mississippi, and the Florida Panhandle, according to the latest trajectory forecasts from NOAA and the State of Louisiana. The latest ocean current forecasts from the NOAA HYCOM model show that these winds will generate a 0.5 mph current flowing from west to east along the Florida Panhandle coast Sunday through Tuesday. If this current develops as predicted, it will be capable of bringing light amounts of oil as far east as Panama City, Florida, by Wednesday. Long range surface wind forecasts from the GFS model for the period 8 - 14 days from now predict a return to a southeasterly wind regime, which would bring the oil back over Louisiana by mid-June. If you spot oil, send in your report to http://www.gulfcoastspill.com/, whose mission is to help the Gulf Coast recovery by creating a daily record of the oil spill.

Long range oil spill outlook
The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) issued a press release yesterday showing 4-month model runs (Figure 1) of where the Deepwater Horizon oil spill might go. The model runs show that given typical ocean currents in the Gulf of Mexico, we can expect the oil to eventually affect most of the Florida Panhandle, Keys, and Florida East Coast, as well as coastal areas of South Carolina and North Carolina. Very little oil makes it to the West Florida "Forbidden Zone", where offshore-moving surface currents dominate. The oil may eventually affect three foreign countries: Mexico along the northern tip of the Yucatan Peninsula, Cuba near Havana, and the Bahamas in the Bimini Islands and along the western side of Grand Bahama Island. Once oil does get into the Loop Current, it will probably reach the coasts of France, Spain, and Portugal in about a year. The oil will be too dilute by then to be noticeable, though.

The present ocean current configuration in the Gulf features a newly formed Loop Current Eddy (dubbed "Franklin"), which will tend to capture the majority of oil that flows southwards from the Deepwater Horizon spill site. A plot of drifting buoys (drifters) launched into the Gulf May 19 - 24 (Figure 2) reveals how this clockwise-rotating eddy has been capturing southward-moving surface water. Eddy Franklin will move slowly west-southwest at 2 - 3 mph in the coming weeks. By August or September, the eddy will have moved far enough west that the Loop Current will be able to push northwards towards the spill location again, increasing the chances of oil getting into the Loop Current and being advected through the Florida Straits and up the U.S. Southeast Coast. Between now and mid-August, I doubt that a significant amount of oil will get into the Loop Current, unless a hurricane or tropical storm goes through the Gulf of Mexico. I put the odds of this happening by mid-August at 50%. The odds of a named storm in the Gulf of Mexico will increase sharply after mid-August, when the peak portion of hurricane season arrives. Past history shows a 95% chance of getting two or more named storms in the Gulf of Mexico during hurricane seasons with above-normal activity.


Figure 1. Animation from the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) showing one scenario of how oil released at the location of the Deepwater Horizon disaster on April 20 in the Gulf of Mexico may move in the upper 65 feet of the ocean.


Figure 2. During the R/V Bellows 19-24 May 2010 Cruise into the Loop Current, drifters were dropped on the eastern edge of the Loop Current. These drifters have all been caught in Loop Current Eddy "Franklin", and are orbiting the central Gulf of Mexico in clockwise loops. Additional drifters deployed by the Coast Guard over the past few weeks (orange colors) are also shown. The colored balloons show the starting location of the drifters. Image credit: University of South Florida.

Oil spill resources
My post, What a hurricane would do the Deepwater Horizon oil 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
Oil trajectory forecasts from NOAA
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


Figure 2. Visible satellite image of Tropical Cyclone Phet on Friday, June 4, 2010.

Tropical Cyclone Phet unleashes heavy rains on Oman
Tropical Cyclone Phet hit the northern tip of Oman yesterday as a Category 2 storm, bringing torrential rains and killing at least two people. Masirah, Oman recorded sustained winds of 74 mph yesterday, and Sur, Oman on the northeast coast has received 3.25 inches of rain so far. Phet was the 2nd strongest tropical cyclone ever recorded in the Arabian Sea, when it peaked at Category 4 strength with 145 mph. Only Category 5 Cyclone Gonu of 2007, which devastated Oman, was stronger. Phet has emerged from the coast of Oman this morning, but is likely to weaken over the next day due to increased wind shear. Phet should hit Pakistan as a tropical storm on Saturday, bringing heavy rain and serious flooding.

Next update
I'll probably have one update over the weekend. The tropical Atlantic is quiet right now, with no models predicting tropical cyclone development over the next seven days.

Jeff Masters

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TORNADO WARNING
ILC039-107-113-179-060345-
/O.NEW.KILX.TO.W.0017.100606T0317Z-100606T0345Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LINCOLN IL
1017 PM CDT SAT JUN 5 2010

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN LINCOLN HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
NORTHWESTERN DE WITT COUNTY IN CENTRAL ILLINOIS...
NORTHEASTERN LOGAN COUNTY IN CENTRAL ILLINOIS...
SOUTHWESTERN MCLEAN COUNTY IN CENTRAL ILLINOIS...
SOUTHEASTERN TAZEWELL COUNTY IN CENTRAL ILLINOIS...

* UNTIL 1045 PM CDT.

* AT 1015 PM CDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE METEOROLOGISTS DETECTED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO. THIS DANGEROUS
STORM WAS LOCATED NEAR ARMINGTON...OR 15 MILES NORTH OF LINCOLN...
AND MOVING EAST AT 50 MPH.

* LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE...
MCLEAN AND HEYWORTH.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

TAKE COVER NOW. MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A
STURDY BUILDING. AVOID WINDOWS. IF IN A MOBILE HOME...A VEHICLE OR
OUTDOORS...MOVE TO THE CLOSEST SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER AND PROTECT
YOURSELF FROM FLYING DEBRIS.

&&

LAT...LON 4039 8882 4024 8892 4028 8924 4034 8948
4045 8943
TIME...MOT...LOC 0318Z 280DEG 44KT 4036 8931

$$

HJS
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Quoting Bordonaro:

Did he lose his picnic basket in severe weather.

JUST reported!!! Confirmed tornado in Cullam, IL (Ford, Livingston and Iroquois Co)..


yup
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting GatorWX:
I am surprised there are no news reports that I can find at least covering damage in Peoria. If it is as bad as some think in here, it would be very hard to believe their is no news coverage.


Remember this is a small market city, they probably don't even have anybody there ready for a cut in.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
My cousin who lives in Michigan says he is under a tornado warning.
Member Since: August 9, 2009 Posts: 10 Comments: 5085
Quoting Tazmanian:
isnt Yogi Bear a tv show

A cartoon from the 1960's and 1970's!!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
2700. xcool





wowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Quoting atmoaggie:

Well, the clouds in this pic from Peoria are peculiar...


But I didn't find Peoria all that peculiar the couple of times I've been there...normal midwest small-city.


Hmmmm.....Could it be a .....Funnel Cloud.....
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
The warnings are now expiring in the Bloomington/Normal Area. The storms which passed through Kankakee and those between Springfield IL and and I74 on the North are still dangerous.
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isnt Yogi Bear a tv show
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Quoting Tazmanian:
POOR Yogi Bear

Did he lose his picnic basket in severe weather.

JUST reported!!! Confirmed tornado in Cullam, IL (Ford, Livingston and Iroquois Co)..
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
2694. xcool
tropical weather,plz
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2693. Drakoen
Quoting Levi32:


Being in Alaska I always get the 0z GFS in the evening (7:15pm here right now).

But I would never lose sleep over the GFS, ever. The only model I have ever stayed up for is the ECMWF, which is the only model I truly respect.


I highly value the ECMWF as well. If I had to put the models in order of value I would say:

1. ECMWF
2. GFS
3. UKMET
4. CMC
5. NOGAPS
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2692. Makoto1
Quoting Ameister12:

What part of Ohio do you live in?


Near Dayton.
About 10 years ago I realized that TWC wasn't offering me anything useful.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting tropicaltank:
We need our own tropical weather underground channel,without fat albert,derailed trains,dolphins stuck in the mud or hippies on a psychotic voyage.I wonder if anybody was watching "Storm Stories" in Peoria,when the Tornados hit.


That would be ironic.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
2689. GatorWX
I am surprised there are no news reports that I can find at least covering damage in Peoria. If it is as bad as some think in here, it would be very hard to believe their is no news coverage.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
The Yogi Bear Park has a few hundred trailers on a given summer night. It is popular for many of the locals as a get away and for families.
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Quoting TropicalWave:
be more curteous and please stop screaming, taz. also, what's nado?


YOUR NOT MY BOSS
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting hydrus:
It might be even more peculiar now.

Well, the clouds in this pic from Peoria are peculiar...


But I didn't find Peoria all that peculiar the couple of times I've been there...normal midwest small-city.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
We need our own tropical weather underground channel,without fat albert,derailed trains,dolphins stuck in the mud or hippies on a psychotic voyage.I wonder if anybody was watching "Storm Stories" in Peoria,when the Tornados hit.
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Baking bread tonight so it's a late one for me...whoo hoo!
Dr. Masters lives in Ann Arbor.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2682. Ossqss
2576. Patrap 10:35 PM EDT on June 05, 2010

Interesting stuff going on for sure :)

As the Sun Awakens, NASA Keeps a Wary Eye on Space Weather


Hummm,

""The sun is waking up from a deep slumber, and in the next few years we expect to see much higher levels of solar activity. At the same time, our technological society has developed an unprecedented sensitivity to solar storms. The intersection of these two issues is what we're getting together to discuss."

and

"Space weather forecasting is still in its infancy, but we're making rapid progress,"
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Tornado Warnings in effect in the Detroit, MI Metro area, folks watch these storms closely..
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
POOR Yogi Bear
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
TORNADO WARNING
ILC075-091-INC111-060400-
/O.NEW.KLOT.TO.W.0010.100606T0309Z-100606T0400Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CHICAGO/ROMEOVILLE IL
1009 PM CDT SAT JUN 5 2010

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN CHICAGO HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
EXTREME NORTHEASTERN IROQUOIS COUNTY...
SOUTHEASTERN KANKAKEE COUNTY...
NORTHERN NEWTON COUNTY...

* UNTIL 1100 PM CDT

* AT 1005 PM...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR WAS TRACKING A
CONFIRMED LONG TRACK AND EXTREMELY DANGEROUS TORNADO NEAR
CHEBANSE...OR 5 MILES SOUTHWEST OF KANKAKEE. DOPPLER RADAR SHOWED
THIS TORNADO MOVING EAST AT 40 MPH.

* LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE...
ENOS...CONRAD...LAKE VILLAGE...ROSELAWN...AROMA PARK...ST. ANNE AND
HOPKINS PARK.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

TORNADOES ARE DIFFICULT TO SEE AND CONFIRM AT NIGHT. TAKE COVER NOW.
TO REPEAT A TORNADO IS ON THE GROUND. TO PROTECT YOUR LIFE...TAKE
COVER NOW. MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A STURDY
BUILDING. AVOID WINDOWS. IF IN A MOBILE HOME...A VEHICLE OR
OUTDOORS...MOVE TO THE CLOSEST SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER AND PROTECT
YOURSELF FROM FLYING DEBRIS.

&&

LAT...LON 4116 8729 4094 8731 4102 8797 4110 8798
TIME...MOT...LOC 0308Z 269DEG 34KT 4107 8790

$$

IZZI
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Quoting Makoto1:
I'm thinking of staying up late tonight because of the storms expected to reach all the way here... Big outbreak going on.

What part of Ohio do you live in?
Member Since: August 9, 2009 Posts: 10 Comments: 5085
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
TWC is using radar from an hour ago and the storms are already closing on Bloomington/Normal and the areas West of Champaign IL. These are approaching the I57/I74 junction. Uncertain if there is still a tornado on the ground.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2674. Levi32
Quoting TropicalWave:
levi, you staying up to catch the next GFS?


Being in Alaska I always get the 0z GFS in the evening (7:15pm here right now).

But I would never lose sleep over the GFS, ever. The only model I have ever stayed up for is the ECMWF, which is the only model I truly respect.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2673. MrsOsa
Hi, Lurker who posted some last year.

I'm listening to Tazewell County Sheriff's Office. Where are yall getting the State Police feed?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MrstormX:
Toledo under Tornado Warning

Severe threat now shifting towards IN and N OH and S MI. Keep a battery powered NOAA Weather Radio on or on Alert Mode!!

Night time tornadoes are VERY dangerous, as you cannot see them coming, they can be devastating!!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
there more thinngs too talk about CAN WE NOW DROP THE TWC THING AND GET BACKK TOO THE NADOS THANK YOU
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Reports of mobile home RV parks hit at Dwight IL which is the location of a huge Yogi Bear RV park.
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2668. Makoto1
I'm thinking of staying up late tonight because of the storms expected to reach all the way here... Big outbreak going on.
CNN reporting

http://www.cnn.com/2010/US/06/05/illinois.tornado/

They claim no injuries, but for those of us listening to radio or police feed that is hard to believe.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Toledo under Tornado Warning
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Al Roker,the Cantori cam.Im done with them.Its true ever since John Hope died they have been terrible!
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For those who still need the live coverage here it is Link
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Aside from Peoria, a nasty cell is currently moving through Ann Arbor, MI. Doppler is not currently reporting tornado for the cell just south of Ann Arbor, although it did earlier. This cell however just blew up in intensity in the last couple frames. Nasty night for the Midwest!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
000
NWUS53 KLOT 060305
LSRLOT

PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE CHICAGO/ROMEOVILLE IL
1005 PM CDT SAT JUN 05 2010

..TIME... ...EVENT... ...CITY LOCATION... ...LAT.LON...
..DATE... ....MAG.... ..COUNTY LOCATION..ST.. ...SOURCE....
..REMARKS..

1001 PM TORNADO 2 E HERSCHER 41.05N 88.06W
06/05/2010 KANKAKEE IL TRAINED SPOTTER

ON RT 115. SPOTTER REPORTS TORNADO KEEPS TOUCHING DOWN
AND LIFTING.


&&

$$

ACS

Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Quoting clwstmchasr:
Just heard a girl call into the radio station and she saw the tornado and reported that a subdivision was destroyed.

thats just sad.. but hey lets talk about the hotness instead of whats actually damaging cities and possibly a few casualties or more.. No more TWC for me, after they did that. That i hate to say it.. Im praying that these tornadoes dont hit anymore cities like this or anymore ppl get hurt..
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Quoting Bordonaro:

I agree, save the stories when things are really quiet, not now, 27 tornado reports and counting!!!


This rivals the outbreak of April 20, 2004... and more tornadoes are possible and probable.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Quoting SiestaCpl:


That is what makes these so dangerous in the Summer evenings..people are enjoying the summer cool evening and are no where near the TV that could warn them.

I live in Tornado Alley, Arlington, TX, we really pay close attention to storms.

Local meteorologists in IL need to be on the ball and get word out when a Moderate Risk is issued by the SPC in Norman, OK.
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Those dumb idiots on TWC hardly mentioned the damage in Peoria, its a shame. And now whe have reports of a massive subdivision destroyed GOSH.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Dr. Masters would be an excellent person to create a real weather channel."The Tropical Weather Underground Channel"
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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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