Act I, Scene I, Tropical Depression One of the Hurricane Season of 2010

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 12:57 AM GMT on June 26, 2010

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Act I, Scene I, Tropical Depression One of the 2010 hurricane is at hand. The storm is already bringing heavy rains to northern Honduras, where 3.78" fell at Puerto Lempira, on the coast near the Nicaragua border. Recent satellite images show continued development of TD 1's heavy thunderstorm activity, and this depression appears to be a lock to intensify into Tropical Storm Alex by Saturday morning. I'll save a more detailed analysis for Saturday morning, and merely post some historical data on how similar storms have behaved over the past twenty years.

History of storms similar to TD 1
Dr. Jonathan Vigh of the National Center for Atmospheric Research has put together a brief synopsis of tropical cyclones (1989-2008) which formed near NW Honduras or east of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula or developed while over the Yucatan, or storms which were already formed but later hit the Yucatan Peninsula. Storms which formed late in the season and recurved into Cuba were not examined. Out of the 19 storms which hit the Yucatan, 8 went on to make a second Gulf Coast landfall in Mexico, 5 hit the U.S. Gulf Coast, and 6 died after hitting the Yucatan. A few storms formed while over the Yucatan and went in various directions. He makes a few notes about how passage over the Yucatan changed the radius of maximum winds (RMW) of the storms.

Storms that hit the Yucatan, then hit Mexico on the west side of the Gulf of Mexico:
Diana 1990: Developed E of Nicaragua, hit Yucatan as tropical Storm (TS), hit near Tampico as a hurricane. Normal decrease in RMW during intensification to hurricane: RMW droped from ~40 n mi to 15 n mi.



Gert 1993: Traveled as TD over Nicaragua, became a TS and then hit Belize, hit near Tampico as a hurricane. RMW 30-35 n mi during intensification.

Roxanne 1995: Formed east of Nicauragua, hit near Cozumel as hurricane, did some loops and then died in Bay of Campeche. RMW dropped from 30 n mi to 10 n mi before first Yucatan hit, then became very large for a day or two, then contracted down to 3 n mi, then became large again (>50 n mi), then contracted once more before storm died. Was doing several loops in Bay of Compeche during this time.

Dolly 1996: Formed west of Jamaica, hit south of Cozumel as hurricane, then hit MX as a hurricane. RMW increased from 7 to 40 n mi before Yucatan landfall, then afterwards decreased to 13 n mi as the storm intensified before 2nd landfall.

Keith 2000: Developed off NE Honduras, hit Belize as major hurricane, weakened to TD, then redeveloped and hit MX coast as hurricane. RMW decreased to 9 n mi before the rapid intensification, then increased to about 25 nm mi before landfall. Increased to 30 n mi by second landfall.

Emily 2005: Hit Yucatan as major hurricane, hit S of Brownsville as a hurricane. RMW increased from ~10 n mi before landfall, to about 30 n mi after Yucatan crossing, then decreased back down to 10-15 n mi by second landfall.

Stan 2005: Formed just SE of Cozumel, hit near there as TS, weakend to TD then shifted S and hit Bay of Campeche coast as hurricane, caused massive flooding. After Yucatan crossing, RMW decreased from ~40 n mi to about 5 n mi before 2nd landfall - normal progression.

Dean 2007: through Caribbean as hurricane, hit just N of Belize as major hurricane, hit near Tampico as hurricane. RMW was about 13 n mi before Yucatan landfall, then >40 n mi after before shrinking to 28 n mi by 2nd landfall.

Storms that hit the Yucatan, then hit the U.S. Gulf Coast:
Isidore 2002: Hurricane south of Cuba, hit W tip of Cuba then deflected into N Yucatan, inner core wiped out, then hit LA as a gigantic TS. RMW ~7 n mi before
Yucatan landfall, then off the scale afterward.

Bill 2003: Formed after traveling over Yucatan, hit LA as TS. Large RMW dropped to 12 n mi by LA landfall.

Claudette 2003: TS south of Hispianola, grazed tip of Yucatan as TS, hit near Corpos Christi as hurricane. RMW increased to >40 n mi BEFORE Yucatan landfall, then dropped to 20 - 35 n mi range afterward.

Cindy 2005: Hit Yucatan as TD, became TS day later, hit LA as hurricane. Little data, but RMW was 15-30 n mi by landfall.



Wilma 2005: Spent about a day over Yucatan, weakened and became very large, but RMW was little changed: 30-35 n mi before and after (eventually with much larger outer RMW).

Storms which died after hitting the Yucatan:
TD 8 1994 Formed near NE Honduras coast, hit Belize, died

Kyle 1996 Hit Belize as TS, died.

Katrina 1999 Developed E of Nicaurgua, hit as TS, hit Belize as TD, died

Chantal 2001 TS across Caribbean, hit Yucatan, deflected southward and died.

Iris 2001 Hurricane across Caribbean, hit Belize and died.

Arthur 2008 Formed just before hitting Belize as TS, died.

Storms that developed over the Yucatan:
Opal 1995: Developed over Yucatan, underwent rapid intensification, got a tight inner core, then weakened and hit FL as major hurricane of normal size. RMW was actually very small (5 n mi) a day after coming off the Yucatan, but increased to be quite large (25-35 n mi) before the rapid intensification period commenced and brought it back down to 7 n mi. RMW increased rapidly to >40 n mi right before landfall.



Gordon 2000: Developed over Yucatan, became hurricane then hit FL as TS north of Tampa. RMW increased from 5 n mi before Yucatan landfall, to 40 n mi afterward, then decreased back to 3 n mi during the subsequent intensification. Made landfall with RMW of 35 n mi.

Larry 2003: Formed after crossing top of Yucatan, hit south shore of Bay of Campeche as TS, died.

Gert 2005: Formed in Bay of Campeche after traveling over Honduras and Yucatan, hit MX as TS.

Jeff Masters

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1968. hulakai
10:56 AM GMT on August 02, 2010
According to NOAA's historical tool a dozen August storms passed through 91L's current vicinity. 2 Fizzled and the rest went on to become majors. 2 W Gulf, 2 N Gulf (Andrew 2nd landfall), 4 Fla.(Frances, Andrew, David, Dora), 3 fish (one of which was last year's Bill, a memorable event for e coast surfers).

If any of you mets have any pull, would appreciate an encore of Bill
Member Since: August 5, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 98
1967. weathermancer
5:43 PM GMT on June 27, 2010
Quoting oceanblues32:
I do hope someone answers me today :( I was wondering about this second invest over by the leeward islands any thoughts on where that one might be heading


Bermuda needs to watch...
Go Deutschland
Member Since: August 29, 2009 Posts: 12 Comments: 483
1966. dsenecal2009
4:27 AM GMT on June 27, 2010
cmc 12z puts a cat 2 on port aransas. but we know to take this model with a grain of salt

http://moe.met.fsu.edu/cgi-bin/cmctc2.cgi?time=2010062612&field=Sea+Level+Pressure&hour=Animation
Member Since: September 25, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 119
1965. oceanblues32
5:24 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Hello anyone out there
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 207
1964. oceanblues32
4:58 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
I do hope someone answers me today :( I was wondering about this second invest over by the leeward islands any thoughts on where that one might be heading
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 207
1963. aspectre
4:37 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Copy then paste 28.7n88.4w, TAM, MOB, PBI, SAL, 16.5N83.5W, 16.6N83.7W, 16.7N84.4W, 16.5N84.5W, 16.9N84.9W, 17.0N85.3W-17.3N86.1W
into the GreatCircleMapper. The red line shows the heading based on the last two positions. Scrolling below the map shows TSAlex was heading 291.4degreesWestSouthWest
and traveled a distance of ~57miles* (~91.7kilometres)over three 3hours;
ie TropicalStormAlex's center moved at a rate of ~19mph (30.6kph).

* A bit less if calculated for a perfectly spherical Earth -- 56.33miles -- but the Earth is actually an oblate spheroid (a "squashed ball"). And the site uses the official navigational template before rounding.
Member Since: August 21, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 4860
1962. portcharlotte
4:34 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Here's Bastardi's Comments at 9 AM

SATURDAY 9 AM
WHY IS TPC SO SLOW TO REACT.

I think its because they try to self verify. This is obviously stronger than they have. They get glued to models and dont react to the obvious. So what is probably already a 60 mph storm that may be a hurricane is still be called a 40 mph storm. There is ship 120 north of the center with sustained winds of 39kts. Right off the bat if you are paying attention, you up the winds. The look of the storm.. you up the winds.

One of these days, something is going to pop, bigger than Humberto on 07, in someones back yard. Actually the last Alex was fiasco on the outer banks as its intensity went through the roof relative to their forecast. Once a storm is a cat 3 or 4 or big, then its shooting fish in a barrel with the models, but this is like so many other weaker systems we see starting to wrap up, where good old fashioned synoptic sense and the willingness to look whips the other ideas

Member Since: September 7, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 703
1961. portcharlotte
4:03 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
StormW, I can not agree with you more..Today's NHC boys go over board in their analysis and need every parameter to fall in place with their formula. The old group used common sense
and their eyes!
Member Since: September 7, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 703
1960. Hhunter
3:32 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
There is ship 120 north of the center with sustained winds of 39kts. Right off the bat if you are paying attention, you up the winds.
Member Since: August 19, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 2974
1959. Hhunter
3:24 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Member Since: August 19, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 2974
1958. SomeRandomTexan
3:19 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Yes and it is taking the longest track over the Yucatan... I guess he is stocking up on his food source now.
Member Since: August 30, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1857
1957. IKE
3:17 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Not that anyone cares...but...Man it is hot outside. I just got through vacuuming my car and mowing my front yard. I'm soaked in sweat!

Looks like Alex will be onshore shortly....10:00 AM CDT Sat Jun 26
Location: 17.3°N 86.1°W
Max sustained: 45 mph
Moving: WNW at 9 mph
Min pressure: 1003 mb
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37860
1956. Hhunter
3:12 PM GMT on June 26, 2010


Allen Sattelite picLink
Member Since: August 19, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 2974
1955. SomeRandomTexan
3:07 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Looks to be heading in a WNW direction with a strong implication to the West... It is feeling that ridge...

I agree I think Recon will find that.
Member Since: August 30, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1857
1954. Hhunter
3:05 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting StormW:


Reminds me of ALLEN

those are scary words in these parts...
Member Since: August 19, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 2974
1953. txsweetpea
2:54 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Good Morning All!!!!!Woke up to find Tropical Storm Alex was born!!!
Member Since: June 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 546
1952. portcharlotte
2:50 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Not buying the 11AM position and movement..
Recon will find this to be so
Member Since: September 7, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 703
1951. Stormchaser2007
2:48 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
This CDO is crazy, looks like a WPAC storm:

Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15947
1950. stormpetrol
2:38 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
I estimate we have 30-35mph wind gusts here in South Sound,Grand Cayman
Member Since: April 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 8134
1949. weatherwatcher12
2:37 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Recon has just taken off
Member Since: May 16, 2009 Posts: 1 Comments: 1231
1948. cg2916
2:36 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
NEW BLOG!!!
Member Since: December 21, 2007 Posts: 13 Comments: 3046
1947. AstroHurricane001
2:31 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Some interesting things that the models do:

CMC crosses Darby over Mexico, then Alex absorbs it while making landfall on northeastern Mexico.

GFS splits Alex into two parts, one sinking southwest like Lorenzo 2007, and the other making landfall on the Florida Panhandle before intensifying in the Gulf Stream to hit Nova Scotia while three smaller vorticies trail behind it, and it also forecasts the wave over the Sahel to develop into a CV wave.

NOGAPS merges Alex and Darby over Mexico, and develops a second Atlantic low in Alex's footsteps from one of its current spiral bands.
Member Since: August 30, 2008 Posts: 8 Comments: 2835
1946. Fl30258713
2:26 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting jpsb:
"Efforts to siphon oil from the ruptured well in the Gulf of Mexico will be put on hold for the next five days. A storm, bringing with it gale-force winds, is threatening the area and the U.S. Coastguard are saying the time is needed to shut down the operation. While work is stopped, the oil could flow into the sea unchecked for the next two weeks."

Very bad news.


Thanks. Nothing about it in local paper. I found the link though.
http://www.euronews.net/2010/06/26/operation-to-stop-oil-leak-in-gulf-of-mexico-halted/
Member Since: July 24, 2006 Posts: 1 Comments: 987
1945. Progster
2:26 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
GFSE (extended ensemble)shows an approach to the SW TX coast followed by a coast-hugging ENE drift with eventual landfall near Galveston on the third, as a TS. Of course, who knows. Uncertainty is all we can be certain of.
Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 491
1944. Grothar
2:25 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting weatherwatcher12:
Why hasn't recon take off yet?


The flight attendants are still on a break.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27114
1943. weatherwatcher12
2:24 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Why hasn't recon take off yet?
Member Since: May 16, 2009 Posts: 1 Comments: 1231
1942. Grothar
2:21 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
I still say my image has more detail, Storm. And mine is bigger than yours. More people can see it better. (Thanks for the update)


Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27114
1941. sailingallover
2:21 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting scott39:
Ok, So you think developement will be slow, do you still think Alex is a TD?

Based on the Flight data yes. Now it is probably a TS but not a very well organized one.
It got lopsided convection, wind field. water vapor, cloud coverage. No eye. But it is organizing a bit more over the last few hours. It does have good outflow.
AND it is not that big. There is a lot of clouds and outlying convection but the wind .field over 35knts is only 30nm acoss

Now what's good about it??
Member Since: September 1, 2009 Posts: 23 Comments: 1007
1940. AstroHurricane001
2:19 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting StormW:


Look at that wave on the border of Burkina Faso, Niger, Nigeria and Benin!
Member Since: August 30, 2008 Posts: 8 Comments: 2835
1939. weathersp
2:19 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting wunderkidcayman:
All I see is a northward movement and maybe a tad bit of a western movement if ALEX gets any stronger we might see a NEward movement


The only problem I have with the GFDL and HWRF is the fact that if it does get that strong, its going to have poleward pull.
Member Since: January 14, 2007 Posts: 17 Comments: 4140
1938. Grothar
2:18 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting extreme236:


I don't think it's quite as large as a 25% reduction. I always thought you reduce that number by 10-15%.


Actually it is between 15% and 25%. I always use the higher percentage, because it tends to be closer to what actual occurs. Also, it scares people less when you say 98mph than 115mph. No reason to alarm people unnecessarily. They do well enough by themselves.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27114
1936. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
2:17 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
XXX
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 176 Comments: 55665
1935. Hurricanes12
2:17 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting StormW:
img src="Photobucket" alt="" />

That wave looks impressive.
Member Since: June 21, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 528
1933. weatherwatcher12
2:16 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
During a Hurricane:

If a hurricane is likely in your area, you should:

Listen to the radio or TV for information.

Secure your home, close storm shutters, and secure outdoor objects or bring them indoors.

Turn off utilities if instructed to do so. Otherwise, turn the refrigerator thermostat to its coldest setting and keep its doors closed.

Turn off propane tanks.· Avoid using the phone, except for serious emergencies.

Moor your boat if time permits.

Ensure a supply of water for sanitary purposes such as cleaning and flushing toilets. Fill the bathtub and other large containers with water.

You should evacuate under the following conditions:

If you are directed by local authorities to do so. Be sure to follow their instructions.

If you live in a mobile home or temporary structure—such shelters are particularly hazardous during hurricanes no matter how well fastened to the ground.

If you live in a high-rise building—hurricane winds are stronger at higher elevations.

If you live on the coast, on a floodplain, near a river, or on an inland waterway.

If you feel you are in danger.
If you are unable to evacuate, go to your safe room. If you do not have one, follow these guidelines:

Stay indoors during the hurricane and away from windows and glass doors.

Close all interior doors—secure and brace external doors.

Keep curtains and blinds closed. Do not be fooled if there is a lull; it could be the eye of the storm - winds will pick up again.

Take refuge in a small interior room, closet, or hallway on the lowest level.

Lie on the floor under a table or another sturdy object.

*tips from FEMA*
Member Since: May 16, 2009 Posts: 1 Comments: 1231
1931. AstroHurricane001
2:16 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Good morning, everyone.

Alex is an impressively large system. Currently, its spiral bands are gathering heat from the Caribbean, GOM, and East Pacific, and even the Gulf Stream. It is so large that much stronger Darby will likely be pulled to the east by the storm's circulation, and I expect a category one landfall on Guerro State, Mexico.



Although Alex is now forecast by most models to hit Mexico and not the CONUS, it could, like the remnants of Dolly 2008, track across the Mideastern States, bringing thunderstorms, and into the open Atlantic (a slight chance of tropical or extratropical development). Remember what flooding can do in Mexico, especially with such a large storm. Link Link
Member Since: August 30, 2008 Posts: 8 Comments: 2835
1930. Ameister12
2:15 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Whoever made Alex mad this morning, fess up!
Member Since: August 9, 2009 Posts: 10 Comments: 5080
1929. portcharlotte
2:15 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
I would not be too sold on Alex crossing Yucatan. It may hug the coast or just clip the northeast corner. I've seen this before..
Member Since: September 7, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 703
1928. scott39
2:14 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting StormW:


Pure NW motion.
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6912
1927. EasttexasAggie
2:14 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting jpsb:
"Efforts to siphon oil from the ruptured well in the Gulf of Mexico will be put on hold for the next five days. A storm, bringing with it gale-force winds, is threatening the area and the U.S. Coastguard are saying the time is needed to shut down the operation. While work is stopped, the oil could flow into the sea unchecked for the next two weeks."

Very bad news.



Darnit.
Member Since: June 25, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 42
1926. animalrsq
2:14 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Question...CNN mets keep saying that if the storm passed directly over the oil spill it would be a better case scenario than if the storm passed to the west of it. I understand the argument they're using, but any opinions on this? TIA.
Member Since: August 4, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 223
1925. Cavin Rawlins
2:13 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
I suspect a 45 mph TS at 11am
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
1924. nrtiwlnvragn
2:13 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
NEW BLOG
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 11307
1923. weatherwatcher12
2:13 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
For those in the Yucatan and Belize here are more tips from NOAA:

If Staying in a Home...

Turn refrigerator to maximum cold and keep closed.

Turn off utilities if told to do so by authorities.

Turn off propane tanks.

Unplug small appliances.

Fill bathtub and large containers with water in case tap
water is unavailable. Use water in bathtubs for cleaning
and flushing only. Do NOT drink it.

Tropical Storm Watches and Warnings: Take these
alerts seriously. Although Tropical Storms have
lower wind speeds than hurricanes, they often bring
life-threatening flooding and dangerous winds. Take
precautions!
Member Since: May 16, 2009 Posts: 1 Comments: 1231
1921. StormJunkie
2:13 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Hey smmc ;) I think you're right...We have seen each other around here before. Hope you and the fam are doing well.
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 16874
1920. WeathermanAG
2:13 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
Quoting EasttexasAggie:


Howdy weatherman!

Why do you think this?

I think its being pulled farther northwest by the recent burst of convection.
Member Since: April 23, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 49
1919. jpsb
2:13 PM GMT on June 26, 2010
"Efforts to siphon oil from the ruptured well in the Gulf of Mexico will be put on hold for the next five days. A storm, bringing with it gale-force winds, is threatening the area and the U.S. Coastguard are saying the time is needed to shut down the operation. While work is stopped, the oil could flow into the sea unchecked for the next two weeks."

Very bad news.
Member Since: June 30, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 1262

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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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