Globe has 3rd consecutive warmest month on record

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:24 PM GMT on June 17, 2010

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The globe recorded its warmest May since record keeping began in 1880, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA's) National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). The May temperature anomaly of 0.69°C (1.24°F) beat the previous record set in 1998 by 0.06°C. We've now had three consecutive warmest months on record, the first time that has happened since 1998. NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies also rated May 2010 as the warmest May on record, tied with May 1998. Both NOAA and NASA rated the year-to-date period, January - May, as the warmest such period on record, and the last 12-month period (June 2009 - May 2010) as the warmest 12-month period on record. May 2010 global ocean temperatures were the second warmest on record, while land temperatures were the warmest on record. Global satellite-measured temperatures for the lowest 8 km of the atmosphere were the 2nd warmest on record in May, according to both the University of Alabama Huntsville (UAH) and Remote Sensing Systems (RSS) groups.

For those interested, NCDC has a page of notable weather highlights from May 2010.


Figure 1. Departure of temperature from average for May 2010. Image credit: NOAA National Climatic Data Center (NCDC).

Asia and Southeast Asia record their hottest temperatures in history
The mercury hit an astonishing 53.5°C (128.3°F) at MohenjuDaro, Pakistan, on May 26. 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. The evidence for this record is detailed in a post I made earlier this month. The Pakistan 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. 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 Chris Burt, author of Extreme Weather, the 47°C (116.6°F) measured on May 12 this year is the hottest temperature measured in Southeast Asia in recorded history.

An average May for the U.S.
For the contiguous U.S., it was the 50th coldest (66th warmest) May in the 116-year record, according to the National Climatic Data Center. Idaho had its second coolest May on record, while it was Montana's fourth coolest, Wyoming's and Oregon's seventh coolest, Utah's eighth, California's ninth, and Nevada's tenth coolest such period. Rhode Island observed its second warmest May on record and Florida tied for its second warmest. Other states much warmer than normal during May included: Louisiana (4th warmest), Massachusetts (5th warmest), Connecticut (6th warmest), New Hampshire (7th warmest), Mississippi and New York (each 8th warmest), and New Jersey (9th warmest).

NCDC's Climate Extremes Index (CEI) for spring (March-May) was about 5 percent higher than average. The CEI measures the prevalence of several types of climate extremes (like record or near-record warmth, dry spells, or rainy periods). Factors contributing to spring's elevated values: widespread (2-3 times larger than average) coverage of anomalously warm daily max and min temperatures, and above-average extent of extreme one-day precipitation events. According to NOAA's Storm Prediction Center, tornadic activity in May was near normal with 290 preliminary tornado reports.

U.S. precipitation and drought
For the contiguous U.S., May 2010 ranked as the 35th wettest May in the 116-year record. The state of Washington had its third wettest May on record and extreme precipitation events in Tennessee and Kentucky contributed to their sixth and seventh wettest such period, respectively. It was the tenth wettest May in North Dakota. At the end of May, approximately 3% of the contiguous United States was in severe-to-exceptional drought. This is a very low amount of drought for the U.S.

La Niña likely by July
El Niño rapidly dissipated in May, with sea surface temperatures (SSTs) over the tropical Eastern Pacific in the area 5°N - 5°S, 120°W - 170°W, also called the "Niña 3.4 region", falling to 0.50°C below average by June 14, according to NOAA.. The Australian Bureau of Meteorology is reporting that this number was 0.31°C below average (as of June 13.) Since La Niña conditions are defined as occurring when this number reaches 0.50°C below average, we are right at the threshold of a La Niña. NOAA's Climate Prediction Center has issued a La Niña watch, and it is likely that a full-fledged La Niña will emerge by July. Ten of the 23 El Niño models (updated as of May 19) are predicting La Niña conditions for hurricane season. However, as NOAA's Climate Prediction Center commented in their June 3 advisory, a number of the more reliable models are now calling for La Niña to develop this summer. They comment, "there is an increasing confidence in these colder model forecasts, which is supported by recent observations that show cooling trends in the Pacific Ocean and signs of coupling with the atmospheric circulation."

It is interesting to note that the last time we had a strong El Niño event, in 1998, El Niño collapsed dramatically in May, and a strong La Niña event developed by hurricane season. History appears to be repeating itself, and the emergence of La Niña will likely occur by July. The demise of El Niño, coupled with sea surface temperatures in the tropical Atlantic that are currently at record levels, suggest that a much more active Atlantic hurricane season that usual likely in 2010. The 1998 Atlantic hurricane season was about 40% above average in activity, with 14 named storms, 10 hurricanes, and 3 intense hurricanes. The season was relatively late-starting, with only one named storm occurring before August 20.


Figure 2. Ice extent through June 15, 2010 in the Arctic, compared to the record low years of 2006 and 2007. Record low Arctic ice extent began about June 1, and has remained at record low extent for the first half of June. Image credit: National Snow and Ice Data Center.

Arctic sea ice extent reaches a record low at end of May
Northern Hemisphere sea ice extent in May 2010 was the 9th lowest since satellite records began in 1979, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center. Ice extent was near average at the beginning of May, but thanks to the fastest rate of decline ever observed during the month of May (50% faster than average), ice extent reached a record low by the end of May. Ice extent has remained at record low levels throughout the first half of June, as well. Ice volume was also at a record low at the end of May, according to University of Washington Polar Ice Center, due to the fact the Arctic is now dominated by thin first and second-year ice.

Record low Northern Hemisphere snow extent in May
For the second consecutive month, the Rutgers Snow Lab reported that the snow cover footprint over North America was the smallest on record for the month. A record-small snow footprint was also observed over Eurasia and the Northern Hemisphere as a whole.

The Atlantic is quiet
The 92L low pressure system, now located about 300 miles east of the northern Lesser Antilles Islands, has been completely disrupted by wind shear and dry air, and is no longer a threat to develop. The remnants of 92L, which are currently kicking up some strong thunderstorms due to interaction with an upper-level trough of low pressure, will bring heavy rain showers and wind gusts up to 35 mph to the northern Lesser Antilles Islands tonight through Friday, and into Puerto Rico Friday night through Saturday. On Sunday, the disturbance could bring heavy rains to northern Haiti. The earthquake zone in southern Haiti may also receive heavy enough rains to be of concern for the 1.5 million people living in tents and under tarps.

None of the reliable computer models is predicting formation of a tropical cyclone in the Atlantic over the next seven days, though the GFS model was suggesting a weak development moving through the southern Lesser Antilles Islands seven days from now.

Oil spill wind and ocean current forecast
Light and variable winds less than 10 knots will blow in the northern Gulf of Mexico for the next five days, according to the latest marine forecast from NOAA. The winds will tend to have a westerly component through Sunday, which will maintain a slow (1/4 mph) eastward-moving surface ocean current that will transport oil eastwards along the Florida Panhandle coast, according to the latest ocean current forecast from NOAA's HYCOM model. These winds and currents may be capable of transporting oil east to Panama City, Florida, and oil will continue to threaten the coasts of Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi for the remainder of the week as well, according to the latest trajectory forecasts from NOAA and the State of Louisiana. Ocean current forecasts for early next week show a weakening of the eastward-flowing currents along the Florida Panhandle, which would limit the eastward movement of oil so that it would not move past Panama City. The long range 8 - 16 day forecast from the GFS model indicates a typical summertime light wind regime, with winds mostly blowing out of the south or southeast. This wind regime will likely keep oil close to the coastal areas that have already seen oil impacts over the past two weeks.

NOAA has launched a great new interactive mapping tool that allows one to overlay wind forecasts, ocean current forecasts, oil location, etc.

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
NOAA great new interactive mapping tool that allows one to overlay wind forecasts, ocean current forecasts, oil location, etc.
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 have an update on Friday.

Jeff Masters

Tar Goobers on Okaloosa Island (Beachfoxx)
Tar & Oil from the DWH spill spoil our beaches - it hit shoreline about 11:30 am CST today
Tar Goobers on Okaloosa Island

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2552. calder
Quoting DestinJeff:
worse than any iteration of JFV, is the relentless individual forecasts for activity that get repeated over and over and over ...

just like once it gets started it takes at least 100 comments to subside.


did follow mine with a pretty legimate question however...
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Believe it or not wind shear over 92L is just 20-30 knots due to an upper level ridge to the south. There is also a small area of 40 knot upper level winds on the extreme northern quadrant. I have to go for a bit, be back in 1 hour.

Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Quoting DestinJeff:


great ... now I don't know what to expect. NHC always seems to be right in the end, but sure fun to create our own reality in between updates!

Looking all the way back to Monday the models have really called this one even though it really appeared they would be wrong and it would become a storm. The first couple track had it re-curving early but since they have taken it about right where it is at the intensities it's been at.
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Good morning everyone,

Well, so much for this 92L disappearing today; looks strong to me.

and I will continue to keep my April prediction that the first named Atlantic Hurricane will happen on June 21st! (not Tropical storm but hurricane)


So now the models have this developing??? Is that what I am seeing from your previous few posts this morning?

Hope Dr Master's put up a new blog soon.

Enjoy your Friday tracking this system!

Gamma
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Quoting calder:
My guess:

16 named systems
10 hurricanes
4 majors
My forecast released on June 1st called for 19 named storms, 11 hurricanes, 7 major hurricanes.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Shear still decreasing, and decreasing at a faster rate, over the system.
Member Since: June 29, 2009 Posts: 13 Comments: 5315
2544. calder
What do the different IR channels show exactly? Obvs different wavelengths/frequencies but what does the rainbow IR show as opposed to the greens and blues in the 13 channel?
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2543. calder
My guess:

16 named systems
10 hurricanes
4 majors
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I have a funny feeling 92L might end up being annihilated shortly in a somewhat anti-climactic finale.
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Quoting sailingallover:
Convection is down and ASCAT's 11:00 pass, although it missed where the center would be, shows an open wave configuration on both sides of where it would be. NE on the leading edge and SE on the trailing eastern edge It also showed 35knot SE winds between 15-16N on the east side.
Antillies radar is not showing looking like a Tropical circulation.

So no TD for now. We will have to see how 92L and the upper level high interact.
92L has been interacting with upper level winds since yesterday. And ASCAT completely missed the COC yesterday.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
2538. IKE
Quoting DestinJeff:
06 GFDL doesn't even pick it up.


You can see it takes it into the SE GOM...Link
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Disappointed?

Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Convection is down and ASCAT's 11:00 pass, although it missed where the center would be, shows an open wave configuration on both sides of where it would be. NE on the leading edge and SE on the trailing eastern edge It also showed 35knot SE winds between 15-16N on the east side.
Antillies radar is not showing looking like a Tropical circulation.

So no TD for now. We will have to see how 92L and the upper level high interact.
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2534. IKE
Miami,FL. extended....

"THE POTENTIAL FOR A MORE ACTIVE WEATHER PATTERN EXISTS IN THE
EXTENDED FORECAST...AS THE GFS/ECMWF BOTH INDICATE THAT THE
SOUTHERN PLAINS MID-LEVEL RIDGE WILL GRADUALLY BUILD EASTWARD FROM
THE CENTRAL PLAINS TO THE TENNESSEE VALLEY NEXT WEEK...AS A PAIR
OF UPPER LOWS MOVE ONSHORE ALONG THE PACIFIC COAST. THIS WILL SET
UP A STRONGER/DEEPER EASTERLY FLOW ACROSS SOUTH FLORIDA...ALLOWING
FOR A CONTINUAL INCREASE IN THE AMOUNT OF SHOWER/STORM ACTIVITY AT
NIGHT ALONG THE EAST COAST...AND DURING THE AFTERNOONS ALONG THE
WEST COAST. RAIN/THUNDERSTORM CHANCES MAY INCREASE FURTHER
BEGINNING ON TUESDAY...AS MODELS CONTINUE TO INDICATE A WELL-
DEFINED INVERTED TROUGH PASSING SLOWLY WESTWARD ACROSS THE AREA...
ACCOMPANIED BY A SURGE OF RICH/TROPICAL MOISTURE.
WILL INCREASE
POPS/CLOUD COVER DURING THIS PERIOD...BUT AWAIT MORE CONSISTENCY
IN MODELS BEFORE ADDRESSING HEAVY RAINFALL/SEVERE WEATHER
POTENTIAL WHICH COULD OCCUR WITH THIS WEATHER SYSTEM."


Key West,FL. extended....

"LONG TERM (MONDAY THROUGH THURSDAY)...
ITS THAT TIME OF YEAR WHEN CONFIDENCE IS NOT VERY HIGH DURING THE
EXTENDED TEMPORAL PERIOD...AS THE OPERATIONAL GFS AND GEM ARE THE
MOST AGGRESSIVE WITH MAINTAINING THE INTEGRITY OF THE TROPICAL
WAVE...WITH SOME INTENSIFICATION NEAR OUR LONGITUDE AND INTO THE
SOUTHEAST GULF OF MEXICO.
CONVERSELY...THE GFS ENSEMBLE KEEPS THIS
SYSTEM AS AN OPEN AND CLANDESTINE WAVE...AND THE UKMET/ECMWF KEEP IT
TUCKED IN THE NORTHWEST CARIBBEAN. FROM EXPERIENCE AND WITH THE
TROPICAL WAVE SO FAR AWAY FROM OUR REGION...THE TROPICAL WAVE COULD
SPLIT...SHEAR OUT...DAMPEN OUT...GET SHUNTED SOUTHWARD BY THE
WESTERN RIDGE OR SHARPEN SIGNIFICANTLY...SO POPS AND CLOUD COVER
WILL LIKELY CHANGE ACCORDINGLY. HENCE...ITS WAY TOO EARLY TO
PINPOINT CLOUD COVER AND PIN-POINT POPS. ALSO THE BACK SIDE (WESTERN
PERIPHERY) OF THE WAVE AXIS IS NORMALLY MORE ACTIVE. FOR NOW..WILL
INDICATE THE HIGHEST 40 PERCENT CHANCE POPS BEGINNING MONDAY NIGHT
THROUGH WEDNESDAY...WITH QUESTIONABLE TRIMMING TO 30 PERCENT
THEREAFTER. AND FINALLY...ENOUGH INSOLATION SHOULD ALLOW
TEMPERATURES TO CLIMB INTO THE UPPER 80S TO NEAR 90 WITH OVERNIGHT
LOWS AVERAGING NEAR 80 DEGREES."

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2533. SLU
CSU is predicting an Accumulated Cyclone Index of 55 for the Caribbean alone. To put that into persective:

2004 - 51
2005 - 58
2007 - 47
2010 - 55?








All three seasons had Caribbean Cat. 5 hurricanes. The water is even warmer this year. We are definitely in for some major activity in the Caribbean this year.
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2532. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
504

WHXX01 KWBC 180622

CHGHUR

TROPICAL CYCLONE GUIDANCE MESSAGE

NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL

0622 UTC FRI JUN 18 2010



DISCLAIMER...NUMERICAL MODELS ARE SUBJECT TO LARGE ERRORS.

PLEASE REFER TO NHC OFFICIAL FORECASTS FOR TROPICAL CYCLONE

AND SUBTROPICAL CYCLONE INFORMATION.



ATLANTIC OBJECTIVE AIDS FOR



DISTURBANCE INVEST (AL922010) 20100618 0600 UTC



...00 HRS... ...12 HRS... ...24 HRS. .. ...36 HRS...

100618 0600 100618 1800 100619 0600 100619 1800



LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON

BAMS 16.1N 60.6W 16.7N 63.5W 16.9N 66.5W 17.5N 69.3W

BAMD 16.1N 60.6W 16.5N 61.9W 16.8N 63.2W 17.0N 64.6W

BAMM 16.1N 60.6W 16.6N 62.7W 17.1N 64.8W 17.4N 66.8W

LBAR 16.1N 60.6W 16.3N 62.7W 16.8N 65.3W 17.2N 68.1W

SHIP 25KTS 25KTS 25KTS 28KTS

DSHP 25KTS 25KTS 25KTS 28KTS



...48 HRS... ...72 HRS... ...96 HRS. .. ..120 HRS...

100620 0600 100621 0600 100622 0600 100623 0600



LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON

BAMS 17.4N 71.8W 17.8N 76.6W 17.9N 80.7W 17.9N 83.9W

BAMD 17.2N 66.2W 18.4N 69.1W 20.3N 72.2W 22.4N 75.2W

BAMM 17.6N 68.8W 18.3N 72.2W 19.4N 75.3W 21.1N 78.2W

LBAR 17.8N 70.9W 19.5N 75.5W 22.2N 79.0W 23.5N 81.3W

SHIP 31KTS 36KTS 45KTS 55KTS

DSHP 31KTS 29KTS 41KTS 33KTS



...INITIAL CONDITIONS...

LATCUR = 16.1N LONCUR = 60.6W DIRCUR = 270DEG SPDCUR = 11KT

LATM12 = 16.0N LONM12 = 58.3W DIRM12 = 279DEG SPDM12 = 10KT

LATM24 = 15.5N LONM24 = 55.4W

WNDCUR = 25KT RMAXWD = 60NM WNDM12 = 25KT

CENPRS = 1011MB OUTPRS = 1013MB OUTRAD = 125NM SDEPTH = M

RD34NE = 0NM RD34SE = 0NM RD34SW = 0NM RD34NW = 0NM



$$

NNNN


Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 175 Comments: 54847
Wow. See that thing pop? Literally within one frame...
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2528. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)


image centred at 16n/66w
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 175 Comments: 54847
2527. IKE
UPPER-LEVEL WINDS
ARE EXPECTED TO REMAIN UNFAVORABLE FOR DEVELOPMENT
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2526. WxLogic
Still sticking with my April 12 Forecast:

18 Tropical Storm(s)
12 Hurricane(s)
7 Major Hurricane(s)
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2525. pottery
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
Still 20%.

Well, they have been mostly wrong with every other forecast with 92L...
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2524. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting DestinJeff:
llc might dip as far as 15N sometime today ...
no its heading to 16n66w to lay south of PR from there it begins
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 175 Comments: 54847
2523. IKE
Quoting DestinJeff:
Ike how did we get two different maps with the same time/date? At least it looks that way.


I zoomed in.
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2522. pottery
Quoting StormW:


StormW from June 01, 2010:

Total Named Storms: 17-19
Hurricanes: 9-11
Intense Hurricanes: 4-5

WOW!!
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Still 20%.
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2520. SLU
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:


KOTG ATLANTIC SEASON NUMBER OUTLOOK posted april 15 2010

TOTAL STORMS 21 TO 23
TOTAL HURRICANES 11 TO 14
TOTAL MAJORS 5 TO 7
TOTAL CAT 5's 1 TO 3



I believe we may see multiple cat 5's especially in the Western Caribbean with that oceanic heat potential in the Caribbean sea.
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2516. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting SLU:


Translating this to English pretty much means that he thinks that only ONE storm will recurve east of 55W and that the others will track west of 55W. Amazing. It really is.

ECMWF - 23
UKMET - 20 (July - November)
CSU - 18
TSR - 18
ACCUWEATHER - 18 - 21
NOAA - 14 - 23
who else?

1950 - 2000 Average: 10.6

When this season really gets going ... no one's gonna be able to stop it.


KOTG ATLANTIC SEASON NUMBER OUTLOOK posted april 15 2010

TOTAL STORMS 21 TO 23
TOTAL HURRICANES 11 TO 14
TOTAL MAJORS 5 TO 7
TOTAL CAT 5's 1 TO 3

Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 175 Comments: 54847
Well, I t hink those models suck.

The CoC is clearly just now broken past the islands to the west, which you can definitely see on LSU's 10:45 product and the RAMMB products. So why are the models initialized like 200 miles back to the east?
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2513. IKE
Quoting msphar:
Anybody have a synopsis of what is happening in the islands ? I am just waking up here and much removed from the region, so no sense for what is going on...

My focus = is Eastern Puerto Rico far enough North to be unaffected now ???


Nope...no way.
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2512. pottery
Quoting ShenValleyFlyFish:


Sounds like a 2 for one sale.

Well, I'm getting desperate.
I will throw in a Hen...
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2511. msphar
Anybody have a synopsis of what is happening in the islands ? I am just waking up here and much removed from the region, so no sense for what is going on...

My focus = is Eastern Puerto Rico far enough North to be unaffected now ???
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2510. IKE
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Quoting CyclonicVoyage:
Morning All. Shall I say POOF.



Latest model runs. I see the GFDL and HWRF & TCVN are back, lol.




That's the second time the BAMS has pointed at me.
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2507. SLU
Quoting IKE:
I've seen estimates of possibly 23...up to 27 named storms. Bastardi is now picking 18-21. Storms west of 55W...seventeen!

Day 18 of 183 day season...0-0-0.

It has to start soon.


Translating this to English pretty much means that he thinks that only ONE storm will recurve east of 55W and that the others will track west of 55W. Amazing. It really is.

ECMWF - 23
UKMET - 20 (July - November)
CSU - 18
TSR - 18
ACCUWEATHER - 18 - 21
NOAA - 14 - 23
who else?

1950 - 2000 Average: 10.6

When this season really gets going ... no one's gonna be able to stop it.
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2506. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting IKE:
I've seen estimates of possibly 23...up to 27 named storms. Bastardi is now picking 18-21. Storms west of 55W...seventeen!

Day 18 of 183 day season...0-0-0.

It has to start soon.
it will and when it does you will beg it to stop
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 175 Comments: 54847
2505. WxLogic
92L still fighting... but it has been lucky enough to be on the outer edge of a retreating shear which has been helping it maintain convection all this time.

If 92L is indeed strong enough, it will then be able to generate its own convection instead of relying on the outflow flow being generated by being on the SE quadrant of the retreating TUTT. For now it appears that not even with DMAX it was able maintain/generate its own convection in the last couple hours.
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gez i am going over to Jamaica on Sat and return GCM on thurs i wonder what 92L has in store for me??? cus cus cus words i dont think any one wants to hear "bleep bleep"
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Quoting pottery:

I could send you an annoying Rooster with an annoying Crow!
Would that help?


Sounds like a 2 for one sale.
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2502. IKE
Looks like the center is going to go south of PR unless it turns more WNW. Maybe clips southern DR/Haiti or even goes south of there.
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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.