New Caribbean disturbance 93L a major concern; flooding in Asia kills over 200

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:50 PM GMT on June 21, 2010

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A concentrated region of intense thunderstorms associated with a tropical wave has developed in the central Caribbean, a few hundred miles south of Puerto Rico. This disturbance was designated Invest 93L by NHC this morning, and has the best chance to become Tropical Storm Alex of any system we've seen so far this year. The disturbance is located near Buoy 42059, and this buoy has been reporting winds of 5 - 15 knots this morning. So far, pressures are not falling. Water vapor satellite loops show that 93L is embedded in a large region of moist air. Some dry continental air from North America is over the western Caribbean, but this dry air is too far away to interfere with development today and Tuesday. Wind shear is a low 5 - 10 knots. The high wind shear associated with the strong winds of the subtropical jet stream are over the northern Caribbean, too far north to interfere with development. Sea Surface Temperatures are plenty warm, a record 29 - 30°C. The Madden-Julian oscillation currently favors upward motion over the Caribbean, which will act to increase the chances of tropical storm formation this week. The Madden-Julian oscillation is a pattern of enhanced rainfall that travels along the Equator from west to east. The pattern has a wet phase with large-scale rising air and enhanced thunderstorm activity, followed by a dry phase with large-scale sinking air and suppressed thunderstorm activity. Each cycle lasts approximately 30 - 60 days. When the Madden-Julian oscillation is in its wet phase over a hurricane-prone region, the chances for tropical storm activity are greatly increased. The only negative for 93L would seem to be the lack of spin; the University of Wisconsin 850 mb relative vorticity analysis is showing only meager amounts of spin at 850 mb (roughly 5,000 feet in altitude.)


Figure 1. Morning visible satellite image of the central Caribbean disturbance 93L.

Forecast for 93L
NHC is giving 93L a 20% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Wednesday morning, which is a reasonable forecast. With wind shear expected to drop to low values less than 10 knots over the central and western Caribbean this week (Figure 2), I don't see any major impediments to the storm becoming a tropical depression by Friday. The ECMWF model is the most aggressive in developing this system, taking it into the Gulf of Mexico as a hurricane next week. The NOGAPS model keeps the storm weak and farther south, predicting that 93L will bring heavy rains to northern Honduras as a tropical disturbance or tropical depression on Friday and Saturday. The GFS model does not develop 93L. Expect 93L to bring flooding rains of 3 - 6 inches to Jamaica, eastern Cuba, and extreme southwestern Haiti on Wednesday. These rains will spread to the Cayman Islands and central Cuba by Thursday.


Figure 2. Predicted wind shear for Friday, June 25, as forecast by this morning's 2am EDT run of the GFS model. Shear is given in meters per second; multiply by about two to convert to knots. Low wind shear values less than 6 m/s (12 knots) are predicted for much of the Western Caribbean this week.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The tropical wave (92L) that brought heavy rains of 2 - 5 inches to Puerto Rico on Saturday has weakened and is no longer a threat to bring flooding rains to the Caribbean.

Floods in China and Burma kill over 200
The deadliest and most destructive weather-related disaster on the planet so far this year is occurring in southern China and northern Burma, where a week of heavy rains has caused flooding that has claimed over 200 lives. The death toll stands at 175 in China and 63 in Burma, with more than 100 people still missing in China. Damage so far in China has been estimated at $4.3 billion.


Figure 3. Tree branches hung on a bridge at Taining County, southeast China's Fujian Province, June 19, 2010. Taining recorded 225 mm (9 inches) of rain in six hours on Friday. Image credit: Xinhua/Jiang Kehong.

Montana tornado rips roof off entertainment complex
A EF-2 tornado with winds of at least 100 mph ripped the roof of an entertainment complex in Billings, Montana on Sunday, causing up to $15 million in damage. No injuries were reported. It was the strongest tornado to hit the Billings area since 1958.


Figure 4. Video of the Billings tornado shows an impressive debris cloud (and a few expletives not deleted!) The clear slot on the right of the tornado is likely associated with the parent thunderstorm's rear flank downdraft.

Wind and ocean current forecast for the BP oil disaster
Southeast to east winds less than 10 knots will blow in the northern Gulf of Mexico today through Friday, according to the latest marine forecast from NOAA. The resulting weak ocean currents should cause little motion of the oil slick, according to the latest trajectory forecasts from NOAA and the State of Louisiana. The long range outlook is uncertain, as the tropical wave over the central Caribbean could enter the Gulf of Mexico early next week and develop into a tropical storm.

Resources for the BP oil disaster
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's interactive mapping tool allows one to overlay wind and ocean current forecasts, oil locations, 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

Jeff Masters

Billings, MT tornado (StormTeam)
Photo taken from approx. 5-6 miles east. Video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8429C0-LSlo
Billings, MT tornado

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1228. IKE
Quoting CaneWarning:


I bet you'd be happy to do so based on the model runs from earlier today!


There was only the ECMWF and that was over a week away. I didn't board up any windows.
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1227. Drakoen
The temperature at the tropopause is -70C based on this skew-t, when we start seeing cloud top temperatures that cold then we have hot towers.

Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30841
I have usually just watched this blogg for the past years and havnt wrote too much. But Im suprised at how some of the more trusted and knowledgable bloggers on here are jumping the gun with this. I truly think everyones knows that its just a guessing game until we have a closed low for the models to go by.
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Quoting IKE:


Give it another 24 to 48 hours and someone will. Heck, I might be one of em.



I bet you'd be happy to do so based on the model runs from earlier today!
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


So we do or don't have hot towers?


No, just cold convection at the moment.
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Link
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Quoting StormW:
And the plot thickens:



Wow!
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
Quoting Drakoen:
The temperature at the tropopause is -80C based on this skew-t, when we start seeing cloud top temperatures that cold then we have hot towers.



So we do or don't have hot towers?
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Given such a favorable environment, once 93L is able to establish a closed circulation (and one that is not too broad), it should have little trouble intensifying at a decent pace.
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1215. IKE
Quoting CaneWarning:
I just waiting for someone to RIP 93L.


Give it another 24 to 48 hours and someone will. Heck, I might be one of em.

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Huge storms are blowing up in Florida.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
You mean to tell me that Taz has the power to ban people? Wow! and lol. Who get's to ban him?
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Quoting CaneWarning:
I just waiting for someone to RIP 93L.


haha you know it's coming
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1211. 47n91w
Eucalyptus species grow in tropical climates (at least 12°S in central Africa) and take up a very large supply of groundwater. I heard stories of stumps still squirting water after the tree was cut down. They're also a fast-growing timber tree, so a source of income/revenue.

...gum trees [eucalyptus] and so on, they are mostly evergreen, so they suck water from the ground - depending on the size of the tree from 80 liters a day to 200 hundred liters a day, depending on the size of the tree," said Concilense Sambo. -- (source here)

Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:


I do remember a story about cottonwood trees in Arizona deserts. They are spreading around absorbing water from intermittent streams, growing on banks and sometimes in the streambeds themselves. The figure given was that each cottonwood tree on average absorbed and released through evapotranspiration about 200 gallons of water per tree per day. Their roots would hold wet soil together, so they would hold more than that, but not 60,000 I think.

The story said that cottonwood trees were a weed species causing big problems because they slurp up so much water with deep roots, compared to desert plants that conserve water. Causing water tables to fall and streams to flow less. I don't have a link to the story, it was a long time ago, so my figures may be wrong.

Who knows, maybe planting cottonwood trees in Haiti would help, although I don't know if they would grow in a tropical climate. They are native to the southwest USA, among other places. Back in the 30s the WPA planted them all over the place by watercourses in the southwest as an erosion control measure. But like kudzu it became too much of a good thing.


Kudzu might work in Haiti too.
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It's getting dark here in Puerto Rico, I just checked out the local radar, the northern end of invest 93 looks to be headed towards the southern part of our island.
Link
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I'm just waiting for someone to RIP 93L.
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
Actually, the more I think about it, planting kudzu all over Haiti might be a good idea. Plant trees and they'll just be chopped down for firewood.


Haven't those people been punished enough?
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1205. xcool
Floodman llolol
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Quoting belizeit:
Link Latest Model run from Wunderground is looking absolutely like someone does not no were he is going


That particular graphic shows quite the opposite. It shows a consistent WNW motion through most of the forecast period, with none of the BAM deviating with any significance.
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1203. unf97
I also have paid some attention to the area in the NE GOM today. That area is associated with a surface low pressure trough extending down from Southern GA into the Central GOM. It is a curious feature to note, with our main focus on 93L obviously.
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Plan of the Day
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


000
NOUS42 KNHC 211400
WEATHER RECONNAISSANCE FLIGHTS
CARCAH, NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER, MIAMI, FL.
1000 AM EDT MON 21 JUNE 2010
SUBJECT: TROPICAL CYCLONE PLAN OF THE DAY (TCPOD)
VALID 22/1100Z TO 23/1100Z JUNE 2010
TCPOD NUMBER.....10-021

I. ATLANTIC REQUIREMENTS
1. NEGATIVE RECONNAISSANCE REQUIREMENTS.
2. SUCCEEDING DAY OUTLOOK: POSSIBLE LOW LEVEL
INVEST NEAR 16.ON 77.0W AT 23/1800Z.

II. PACIFIC REQUIREMENTS
1. NEGATIVE RECONNAISSANCE REQUIREMENTS.
2. OUTLOOK FOR SUCCEEDING DAY.....NEGATIVE.
JWP




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Quoting StormW:
Anybody have any idea what's up with the satellite pics? Keep cutting out portions...not making for very good loops.


I was having the same problems, i thought it was a satellite blackout but it's the flash player. Try purging the page (Ctrl F5) or using good old java.
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1200. 7544
everyone should not be joking and should watch the progross of 93l it not like its coming from africa and u have time to sit and wait and watch and crack jokes this is reallly close to home and when the nhc says gradual development things could ramp up faster thank u think just be on the safe side imo this could be a real big deal for someone ty
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1199. Drakoen
The temperature at the tropopause is -80C based on this skew-t, when we start seeing cloud top temperatures that cold then we have hot towers.

Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30841
Quoting Floodman:


The correct idiom is "throw it out the window"...also, did your hand cramp, or something?


Well if you throw them out the window you might need to replace the window after it shatters. At least the door, you can open. Lol :]
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Quoting Floodman:


The correct idiom is "throw it out the window"...also, did your hand cramp, or something?


LMAO
Member Since: March 10, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 7874
Well most models don't show this developing for another 2 to 3 days...Relax guys...go out get in the pool....play some golf...take some RR...it doesn't look like its in a hurry to develop into anything major :) Bye Gang
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From hurricane city - Jim Williams:

UPDATE BY:Jim Williams..... Invest 92L has been taken off the map & we now have invest 93L in the S.E Caribbean. 92L has combined with another wave in the S.E Caribbean and will eventually move into the Gulf of Mexico. Some models are showing development over the weekend in the gulf,so residents in the northern gulf states need to pay close attention.

interesting..
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Quoting Unfriendly:


Taz, I've seen you call people an idiot on here... don't you think pressing the report button is a bit hypocritical? Especially since there is not a named storm?


Taz, I like you alot man..I think your a great blogger here and all. However it's not really a "Busy part of the hurricane season" right now. Also the administrators are doing there job, they will take neccesary measures to keep this blog as civil as possible.
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Quoting xcool:
TAKE ALL MODELS RIGTH NOW throw it out the DOOR


The correct idiom is "throw it out the window"...also, did your hand cramp, or something?
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we may have 94L be for too long
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115456
I see a large area of high pressure settling over Louisiana/Texas and central gulf, keeping us protected... how long should this HIGH be in place protecting central gulf coast? anybody know?
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Quoting CyclonicVoyage:
Didn't the models have a tough time with Felix too? Some not even picking it up when it was a Major hurricane?


Ya, some of the models had trouble with Felix. GFS had it as a 1000 mb low when it was at Cat 5.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


That wave is the same wave some models are developing such as the NOGAPS.


Lol right now I think 93L has all eyes, but your right that system is rather interesting to.
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Link Latest Model run from Wunderground is looking absolutely like someone does not no were he is going
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Once 93L does close off a surface circulation, It's going to be one of those storms to take off and nothing at all is going to stop it from quickly becoming a category 1 hurricane at the least before getting to the Western Caribbean. I've seem systems take a little while to establish a closed circulation but once it has it, it's like the damn space shuttle.
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Quoting Levi32:
Rotation is becoming more apparent with the tropical wave along 57W east of Trinidad. Don't forget to keep an eye on this. Visible Loop

Back later.



That wave is the same wave some models are developing such as the NOGAPS.
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Quoting StormW:


Nice divergence.
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Didn't the models have a tough time with Felix too? Some not even picking it up when it was a Major hurricane?
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1182. IKE
Quoting TerraNova:
Anybody else noticing a slight spin in the NE Gulf? Guess it's just early season fever.


I saw that.
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Quoting Tazmanian:




in joy the 24hr banned


During active periods of hurricane season, these rules will be strictly enforced. Violations will be met with a minimum 24 hour ban



see you in 24hrs








Taz, I've seen you call people an idiot on here... don't you think pressing the report button is a bit hypocritical? Especially since there is not a named storm?
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All and all this season gives me the creeps. Conditions are too close to perfect for me..and then the steering mechanisms, that's another scary thought.
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Anybody else noticing a slight spin in the NE Gulf? Guess it's just early season fever.
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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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