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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Nice wave over central Africa, should be emerging over the Atlantic waters sometime in 72+ hours.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting msgambler:
where is that at wxmobilejim

In semmes AL tight outside of Mobile AL
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting 850Realtor:
You would think with a tornado like that it would be easy to find info on the internet, like a live broadcast or something. And yes, TWC is awful. Can't believe they are not cutting into programming for that. Maybe they are in that area, just not here.


All the network news have gone into their evening programs, expect news reports soon.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
A Peoria traffic cam that was operating an hour ago is suddenly knocked out. This looks bad!

Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
You would think with a tornado like that it would be easy to find info on the internet, like a live broadcast or something. And yes, TWC is awful. Can't believe they are not cutting into programming for that. Maybe they are in that area, just not here.
Member Since: September 14, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 283
TORNADO WARNING
ILC063-099-105-060230-
/O.NEW.KLOT.TO.W.0007.100606T0146Z-100606T0230Z/

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

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN CHICAGO HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
SOUTHERN GRUNDY COUNTY...
SOUTHEASTERN LA SALLE COUNTY...
NORTHERN LIVINGSTON COUNTY...

* UNTIL 930 PM CDT

* AT 842 PM...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR WAS TRACKING A
CONFIRMED TORNADO 6 MILES NORTHEAST OF WENONA...OR 7 MILES WEST OF
STREATOR. DOPPLER RADAR SHOWED THIS TORNADO MOVING EAST AT 45 MPH.

AT 840 PM CDT...SPOTTERS AND LAW ENFORCEMENT HAVE REPORTED A LARGE
CONFIRMED JUST WEST OF STREATOR
.

* THE TORNADO WILL BE NEAR...
DWIGHT AROUND 920 PM.
GARDNER AROUND 925 PM.

OTHER LOCATIONS IMPACTED BY THIS TORNADIC THUNDERSTORM INCLUDE
RANSOM...KINSMAN...CAMPUS...EAST BROOKLYN AND SOUTH WILMINGTON.

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 4122 8826 4095 8826 4102 8882 4121 8879
TIME...MOT...LOC 0146Z 271DEG 39KT 4111 8891

$$

IZZI
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
2500. Makoto1
Quoting MrstormX:


Yes according to NWS, it cut across the interstate which is really bad. i have been to Peoria before and it is a very dense city.


Yeah, I remembered it being quite dense as well... This isn't going to be good when we start hearing the damage reports, though I doubt anything will be totally certain until daylight.
2499. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Makoto1:
The tornado seems to be last reported in East Peoria, meaning it just went right through the city... Waiting to see how bad it was there now.


Yes according to NWS, it cut across the interstate which is really bad. i have been to Peoria before and it is a very dense city.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
2497. Makoto1
The tornado seems to be last reported in East Peoria, meaning it just went right through the city... Waiting to see how bad it was there now.
Quoting Grothar:


No one has left, I was actually looking for some maps of the area and listening for the news, It is a very serious situation.


Good im glad, you guys had me worried lol.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Quoting AllStar17:


Good! They need to go back to the TWC Old ways! 24/7 of live weather shows....not crap!


Yah allstar, and a tornado just cut through a city of 100,000 and metro of 300,000 while they played their crappy shows.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
2493. Grothar
Quoting MrstormX:
Everyone leaves when I start talking about tornadoes lol, for those who actually care the tornado went through Peoria and are approaching the suburbs.


No one has left, I was actually looking for some maps of the area and listening for the news, It is a very serious situation.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Tornado is cutting a swath across Illinois, just like the Yazoo City Tornado.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Quoting MrstormX:
Okay im done with TWC forever, instead of covering the tornado outbreak they are playing some sh**y show with hippies talking about Hurricane Bill, and there are still 2 more hours of them. Actually they have been doing storm stories reruns as well the past 2 hours so thats 4 hours straight of crap. Im calling and making a complaint.


Good! They need to go back to the TWC Old ways! 24/7 of live weather shows....not crap!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Everyone leaves when I start talking about tornadoes lol, for those who actually care the tornado went through Peoria and are approaching the suburbs.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
000
NWUS53 KILX 060138
LSRILX

PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LINCOLN IL
838 PM CDT SAT JUN 05 2010

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

0831 PM TORNADO 7 W PEORIA 40.74N 89.74W
06/05/2010 PEORIA IL BROADCAST MEDIA

TORNADO AT HWY 116.


&&

$$

JRP
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
2488. Levi32
SSTs over the last 10 days have been increasing across most of the Atlantic but have been cooling in the eastern Pacific. This is very significant considering that this is the time of year when they should be warming up, and is indicative of the cold PDO pattern in the north Pacific. This focuses the heat in the Atlantic.

Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26700
000
NWUS53 KILX 060133
LSRILX

PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LINCOLN IL
833 PM CDT SAT JUN 05 2010

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

0830 PM TORNADO PEORIA 40.74N 89.61W
06/05/2010 PEORIA IL EMERGENCY MNGR

TORNADO AT ROUTE 150 AND INTERSTATE 74. DAMAGE UNKNOWN BUT PROBABLE


&&

$$

JRP
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
The tornado is going through Downtown Peoria Right Now, this is what the area looks like from this Free non-copyright image:

Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Densely populated area tornado still on the ground, death is extremely possible.

Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Quoting 850Realtor:
Anyone have a link for a local TV station reporting on that tornado right now?


Try WEEK in Peoria, last I heard there are two tornadoes now. Part of a family heading straight towards the 3rd largest metropolitan area in Illinois.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
2482. Levi32
SSTs from another satellite AVHRR source:


Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26700
Anyone have a link for a local TV station reporting on that tornado right now?
Member Since: September 14, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 283
Quoting Levi32:


An early start would be defined as getting our first named storm before July 10th, and in that case I believe we will.
Oh... Thanks for clearing that up, I didn't know that.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2479. hydrus
Quoting Grothar:
On a serious note, how many of you are of the opinion, there will at least be an early start to the season, based on the information we currently have?
I believe we will have a named storm in June. Even with the M.J.O ,s downward motion.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 22683
Quoting Grothar:
On a serious note, how many of you are of the opinion, there will at least be an early start to the season, based on the information we currently have?
Early start? We are already in the hurricane season. If you mean systems in June, I think we will get one maybe two if conditions permit.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2477. Levi32
Quoting Grothar:
On a serious note, how many of you are of the opinion, there will at least be an early start to the season, based on the information we currently have?


An early start would be defined as getting our first named storm before July 10th, and in that case I believe we will.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26700
SEVERE WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LINCOLN IL
822 PM CDT SAT JUN 5 2010

ILC143-060145-
/O.CON.KILX.TO.W.0011.000000T0000Z-100606T0145Z/
PEORIA IL-
822 PM CDT SAT JUN 5 2010

...A TORNADO WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR CENTRAL PEORIA COUNTY
UNTIL 845 PM CDT...

AT 820 PM CDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR WAS TRACKING A LARGE
CONFIRMED TORNADO
. THIS TORNADO WAS LOCATED NEAR HANNA CITY...OR 10
MILES WEST OF PEORIA...MOVING EAST AT 40 MPH.

LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE...
PEORIA...WEST PEORIA...NORWOOD AND ALTA.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

MOTORISTS SHOULD NOT TAKE SHELTER UNDER HIGHWAY OVERPASSES. AS A LAST
RESORT... EITHER PARK YOUR VEHICLE AND STAY PUT...OR ABANDON YOUR
VEHICLE AND LIE DOWN IN A LOW LYING AREA.

&&

LAT...LON 4068 8963 4074 8986 4080 8984 4083 8956
4077 8959
TIME...MOT...LOC 0122Z 285DEG 36KT 4076 8978

$$

CHURCHILL
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
2474. hydrus
Quoting Grothar:


1949. But verrrrrrrry good. She was on a TV show which aired most of the day. Very few shos in those days.
Very few televisions in those days. Ya had to be semi-rich to purchase one.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 22683
000
NWUS53 KILX 060125
LSRILX

PRELIMINARY LOCAL STORM REPORT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LINCOLN IL
825 PM CDT SAT JUN 05 2010

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

0825 PM TORNADO PEORIA 40.74N 89.61W
06/05/2010 PEORIA IL EMERGENCY MNGR

TORNADO 4 MILES NORTHWEST OF THE PEORIA AIRPORT. TAKE SHELTER NOW!


&&

$$

JRP
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Quoting Levi32:


There is no way to predict that.
But it is unlikely.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2471. Grothar
On a serious note, how many of you are of the opinion, there will at least be an early start to the season, based on the information we currently have?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2470. Levi32
Quoting MrstormX:


No Emily's this year?


There is no way to predict that.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26700
2468. hydrus
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
anyone notice the semi-closed surface low associated with the tropical wave around 43%u02DAW 5%u02DAN?



They mentioned it in the TWD today.
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 22683
2467. Levi32
Quoting atmoaggie:

Or the color scale is likely dynamic, based on the values in the plot (most code I write is). Clearly errors in there...would have caused my code to do just that (if I didn't write in checks to not consider the errors)


The color-scale has been exactly the same every time I looked at it all winter long, with 26C at yellow and 30C at the top of the scale. This is the first change of the year as far as I know.

If it was truly dynamic it wouldn't have let the images go so red (almost completely red on my first image)
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26700
Guys take a break from tropical things for a moment, a deadly tornado is moving towards a city of 100,000 plus people. Spotters have confirmed a massive, deadly tornado about to strike the city.


Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
2465. Grothar
Quoting hydrus:
1948?


1949. But verrrrrrrry good. She was on a TV show which aired most of the day. Very few shos in those days.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Grothar:


Close, the first vivid memory I have of a hurricane was in 1948 in Hollywood , FL. I remember our neighbors taking us around by boat, there was such flooding.
Wow.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2463. Grothar
Quoting WinterAnalystwx13:
Grothar, your not that old!!!!


Hey, winter, how are you. Haven't seen any of your blogs lately. Still doing them?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2462. hydrus
Quoting Grothar:


Let me put it this way; the first time I saw Betty White she was 26 years old. You figure it out.
1948?
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 22683
anyone notice the semi-closed surface low associated with the tropical wave around 43˚W 5˚N?



Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MyrtleCanes:


You are just now realizing how bad TWC sucks??


No ive known for a while, this was my last straw.
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
Quoting MrstormX:
Okay im done with TWC forever, instead of covering the tornado outbreak they are playing some sh**y show with hippies talking about Hurricane Bill, and there are still 2 more hours of them. Actually they have been doing storm stories reruns as well the past 2 hours so thats 4 hours straight of crap. Im calling and making a complaint.


You are just now realizing how bad TWC sucks??
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
SEVERE WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LINCOLN IL
815 PM CDT SAT JUN 5 2010

ILC143-060145-
/O.CON.KILX.TO.W.0011.000000T0000Z-100606T0145Z/
PEORIA IL-
815 PM CDT SAT JUN 5 2010

...A TORNADO WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR CENTRAL PEORIA COUNTY
UNTIL 845 PM CDT...

AT 811 PM CDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR AND STORM
SPOTTERS WERE TRACKING A LARGE AND EXTREMELY DANGEROUS TORNADO. THIS
TORNADO WAS LOCATED ABOUT 2 MILES SOUTH OF BRIMFIELD...OR 15 MILES
WEST OF PEORIA...MOVING EAST AT 40 MPH.

LAW ENFORCEMENT AND SPOTTERS HAVE REPORTED DAMAGE IN ELMWOOD.

LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE...
PEORIA...WEST PEORIA...KICKAPOO...NORWOOD AND ALTA.

THIS INCLUDES INTERSTATE 74 BETWEEN MILE MARKERS 74 AND 91.

THIS INCLUDES INTERSTATE 474 BETWEEN MILE MARKERS 0 AND 3.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

TO REPEAT...A LARGE...EXTREMELY DANGEROUS AND POTENTIALLY DEADLY
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 4083 8995 4084 8956 4068 8962 4075 8996
TIME...MOT...LOC 0114Z 285DEG 36KT 4076 8986

$$

CHURCHILL
Member Since: May 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 4438
2456. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

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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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