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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Quoting StormW:
Not good...hot towers



Hot towers mean no so strong? Right, so you mean it's a good thing. Or am I once again totally off base.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting FLWeatherFreak91:
It's because all of the convection at this time is only being supported by convergence. If the storm wants to develop, it better form a surface low before losing the convergence.


A surface low should form within the next 12-36 hours.
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Quoting IKE:


Why? Short-term none of the 4 develop this....GFS,CMC,NOGAPS and ECMWF don't for at least 3-4 days.



It's current.



well it may be but too me it looks hrs old
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115456
Looks like it has about 25knt shear in the Northwest Carribean. This shear should relax some before 93 gets there. that is where I feel we will have T.S. status. Depending on where it crosses the yukatan will depend on how fast it gets its act together
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1124. IKE
Quoting xcool:
TAKE ALL MODELS RIGTH NOW throw it out the DOOR


Why? Short-term none of the 4 develop this....GFS,CMC,NOGAPS and ECMWF don't for at least 3-4 days.

Quoting Tazmanian:




that looks hrs old


It's current.
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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.
Haha. Well, I hope that doesn't happen because the beautiful half of the island (Dominican Republic) doesn't need any kudzu all over its palm trees ;)
Member Since: December 1, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 3634
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Western side is void of convection.

It's because all of the convection at this time is only being supported by convergence. If the storm wants to develop, it better form a surface low before losing the convergence.
Member Since: December 1, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 3634
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Western side is void of convection.



Still becoming organized, note the spiral banding starting to become evident. Loss in convection is expected as the day goes on.. no dry air or shear to impede its development.

ECMWF may have backed off some, but it still shows a strong TS towards Texas. NOGAPS is still with us.
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1120. Levi32
Quoting MississippiWx:


I noticed you said earlier that the winds under 93L are still easterly, but cloud-wise, it looks like 93L is slowly but surely bending the flow around it. To the east, clouds are moving to the north and on the west side, the clouds are starting to take on a southerly hint.


They are, but it usually starts at the mid-levels and that's what we're seeing. Surface winds may start to turn later, but I expect gradual, not rapid, organization of the system over the next couple days.
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Quoting smarterthanyou:
a nice summer blow
wiping Florida away
could be a blessing


Why would you even say that? Anyway, until there is a COC, I am not relying much on what the models' solutions are to-date.
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1117. bjdsrq
Quoting Tazmanian:



nop he is right hot towers


Had one of those this morning... too many tacos last night.
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1115. 7544
93l could be a fla strom imo the models will go more east looks like 93l is starting to inch n ne at this hour
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6874
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Western side is void of convection.





that looks hrs old
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115456
Quoting FLWeatherFreak91:
Storm, wouldn't you say there is a difference between "hot towers" and overshooting tops? Because I would tend to reserve the term "hot tower" to what occurs inside the eyewall of a strong hurricane due to the friction between two different area of the eyewall


Exactly.
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1112. Levi32
Look at how light the winds are in the western Caribbean. There is major potential for piling up of air here as the fast-moving trades slam the brakes. This increases surface convergence and forces the air to rise. The monsoon trough is also farther north than normal and is over the Caribbean rather than over Panama. This is another feature getting involved in this situation. It's complex, and is a big reason why the ECMWF is jumpy.

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Western side is void of convection.

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Quoting Stormchaser2007:


Is that a joke?



nop he is right hot towers
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115456
Quoting StormW:
Not good...hot towers

Storm, wouldn't you say there is a difference between "hot towers" and overshooting tops? Because I would tend to reserve the term "hot tower" to what occurs inside the eyewall of a strong hurricane due to the friction between two different area of the eyewall
Member Since: December 1, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 3634
TD by tuesday AM
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5091 Comments: 115456
I think this might be a panhandle threat, DONT HIT THE PANIC BUTTON, im a nobody, just a wild GUESS
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1105. Drakoen
Quoting Levi32:


Partly associated with an old low that got stuck over Venezuela and is now drifting north towards 93L's area. That's the other thing that's making the situation more complicated.


850MB vort is south and east of those islands
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30833
Quoting Levi32:


These swings should be fully expected. We can't expect the ECMWF to be consistent on anything other than development at this point. The ECMWF can't even initialize the center on every run without a center to initialize. It has the vort max doing different things on every run because the system hasn't figured itself out yet. It's a complex situation with 3 different systems in the mix.


I noticed you said earlier that the winds under 93L are still easterly, but cloud-wise, it looks like 93L is slowly but surely bending the flow around it. To the east, clouds are moving to the north and on the west side, the clouds are starting to take on a southerly hint.
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1103. xcool
TAKE ALL MODELS RIGTH NOW throw it out the DOOR
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1102. bjdsrq
Quoting Patrap:
..Hi, Dozo..

"Oil-Zilla"



Category 10W-30 by Sunday.
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Quoting Drakoen:


Safe to say that it's a wet one!
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Quoting StormW:
Not good...hot towers



Is that a joke?
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Quoting Drakoen:
That isn't a true rainband...
Member Since: December 1, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 3634
1097. Patrap
93L Mamasan Models 18Z

Someone say Hot Towers..?

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129903
Quoting smarterthanyou:
By Christmastime the
Gulf will be a vile cesspool
unfit to visit


Poof
Member Since: April 26, 2009 Posts: 3 Comments: 3667
1093. Drakoen
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30833
1092. Levi32
Quoting stillwaiting:




what about the consistant west winds along venezuala's NE coastline???


Partly associated with an old low that got stuck over Venezuela and is now drifting north towards 93L's area. That's the other thing that's making the situation more complicated. The westerly winds are also partly due to 93L as it is part of a broad low pressure belt extending from the western Caribbean, but that doesn't indicate a closed low.
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1091. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)

108

WHXX04 KWBC 211719

CHGQLM

ATTENTION...NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER



NCEP COUPLED GFDL HURRICANE MODEL FORECAST MADE FOR



TROPICAL DEPRESSION INVEST 93L



INITIAL TIME 12Z JUN 21



DISCLAIMER ... THIS INFORMATION IS PROVIDED AS GUIDANCE. IT

REQUIRES INTERPRETATION BY HURRICANE SPECIALISTS AND SHOULD

NOT BE CONSIDERED AS A FINAL PRODUCT. PLEASE SEE THE TPC/NHC

OFFICIAL FORECAST.





FORECAST STORM POSITION



HOUR LATITUDE LONGITUDE HEADING/SPEED(KT)



0 13.0 67.3 280./13.0

6 12.8 68.6 258./12.7

12 11.8 67.7 137./12.9

18 12.1 67.7 351./ 3.3

24 12.1 67.9 254./ 1.7

30 11.8 68.1 209./ 3.5



STORM DISSIPATED AT 30 HRS AT THE ABOVE PSN.
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 178 Comments: 56141
Quoting animalrsq:


You can accomplish almost anything with zip ties and duct tape! Lots and lots of paper plates/bowls and plastic silverware.


One of the most handy things is a small propane camping stove. You can either buy new or get an old used one on Craigslist. That's perfect for cooking meals for a small family.

If you've got a generator, remember to get a small window air conditioner. It can be used and doesn't have to look good, just be sure it works. If you lose electricity for several days, you can pick one room in your house that you can isolate for air conditioning.

If you live in a neighborhood and have your own yard... Tiki torches and fuel is a great thing to have. Neighborhoods can get really dark at night with no electricity. After Rita, I had 4 tiki's in the yard at night. A tiki torch in front yard and one in back provides some light, lets people know you're home and keeps the looters away. They can't see if you're sitting in the window watching or not, or if you're armed or not. They won't want to find out.

Lastly... take pictures of your home before the storm comes. Digital pictures will have the date & time on them. Take pictures of the exterior on all 4 sides, then take pictures of each room in the house. It doesn't take as long as you'd think. That will help enoromously when dealing with some insurance adjusters.

After the storm, it is typical not to be able to call out using your cell phone. Sometimes they shut down non-emergency calls. Remember... even if you can't call out, you can often send text messages to let people know you're OK.

If you choose to evacuate, bring a road map of your county that shows all the side streets. In case you need to get back in, national guard normally only blocks off the main roads and highways. You can sneak in past them, even if turned away at first, by taking the small residential side streets. Once you're in the county, they aren't authorized to kick you back out... even if they saw you sneak by on the side streets. The road map may also save you 1-2 hours during evacuation if you take roads other than the highways for as long as possible.
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1089. IKE
Quoting Hurricanes101:


nothing more than a moderate TS making landfall in Texas on this run

00Z run had a 950mb storm hitting Mobile and New Orleans; the 2 runs couldn't be anymore different


I've seen the ECMWF do that before. I don't trust any model 8-10 days out. I might jump on board what it's saying, but I wouldn't bet my paycheck on it happening with ANY model that far out.

ECMWF may have been more reliable when it only went out 5 days. If it still went out only 5 days, very little of 93L would have ever shown up on the ECMWF.
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Quoting Tazmanian:
93L today cat 5 by tuesday night
Taz, sometimes you can be a troll, sometimes you happen to be right. But THIS, is not right.
Member Since: December 1, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 3634
1086. Patrap
..Hi, Dozo..

"Oil-Zilla"

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129903
Starting to bend the clouds around it.

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1083. trey33
Don't forget to factor in the fun of full moon high tides on Saturday, if 93L is near some land.
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Quoting Levi32:


These swings should be fully expected. We can't expect the ECMWF to be consistent on anything other than development at this point. The ECMWF can't even initialize the center on every run without a center to initialize. It has the vort max doing different things on every run because the system hasn't figured itself out yet. It's a complex situation with 3 different systems in the mix.


yea true
Member Since: March 10, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 7874
1079. Levi32
Quoting Hurricanes101:


nothing more than a moderate TS making landfall in Texas on this run

00Z run had a 950mb storm hitting Mobile and New Orleans; the 2 runs couldn't be anymore different


These swings should be fully expected. We can't expect the ECMWF to be consistent on anything other than development at this point. The ECMWF can't even initialize the center on every run without a center to initialize. It has the vort max doing different things on every run because the system hasn't figured itself out yet. It's a complex situation with 3 different systems in the mix.
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Quoting Levi32:


Yes...wild swings expected. Heck we have nothing but easterly winds running underneath 93L. Not even a hint of a surface circulation yet. It will get played around with a lot by the ECMWF.




what about the consistant west winds along venezuala's NE coastline???
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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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