Tropical Storm Alex's Yucatan Landfall

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 8:52 AM GMT on June 27, 2010

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Update: Here's the 500AM EDT radar image from Belize. Alex's eye is roughly 150 km NW of the radar.


This Animated loop shows the development of Alex's eye. The page for Belize's radar is here.

The 500AM EDT forecast is a bit different than the previous forecast. Essentially, it looks like the area of high pressure in the northern Gulf of Mexico will weaken due to a trough over the eastern US. This will weaken the steering currents and slow's Alex's motion over the Gulf of Mexico. The reduced storm motion will give Alex more time to intensify in a a warm SST/weak shear environment. The current forecast calls for Alex to become a category 2 storm before making landfall north of Tampico, MX late Wed. night/early Thursday morning.

The $64,000 question is "Will the ridge continue to weaken, allowing Alex to move north and continue intensification?" The 12Z global model runs will have more accurate forecasts than the the 6Z runs thanks to the presence of radiosonde data, so hopefully they'll provide an answer. It's still my opinion that Alex will not directly impact the oil spill recovery efforts, but I can't say that the chances of it doing so are getting smaller now.

This is Dr. Rob Carver, filling in for Jeff during the late shift. Tropical Storm Alex is currently moving over the Yucatan peninsula. Alex's intensity has dropped to 50 knots in the latest advisory with further weakening expected as the storm moves over land. After Alex moves into the Gulf of Mexico, intensification is expected because of warm sea-surface temperatures and weak vertical wind shear. An area of high pressure in the northern Gulf of Mexico will guide Alex into a WNW-NW track. The 200AM EDT forecast calls for Alex to intensify into a category 1 hurricane before making landfall just north of Tampico, MX.

In my judgement, the chances of Alex moving northwards and directly interfering with the Deepwater Horizon oil spill recovery efforts are small and getting smaller with time. I agree with Jeff's assessment that Alex will generate 2+ foot swells that would interfere with skimming operations

Currently, the main threat from Alex is flooding due to heavy rains. NHC is forecasting rainfall amounts from 4 to 8 inches with higher amounts over mountainous terrain, causing flooding and possibly mudslides.


Fig. 1Forecast of 24-hour accumulated precipitation from TS Alex.

Alex's Belizean Landfall
Jeff saved this radar image of Alex making landfall.

Fig. 2Base reflectivity at 2315Z 26 June 2010 at Philip Goldson Airport

There isn't much storm structure apparent in the reflectivity data, just widespread areas of showers. Data from a nearby PWS shows that the peak windspeed was 43 mph. You can clearly see the circulation move past the station with changes in the wind direction and speed. You can also see when the rainbands passed over the station.

Invest 94L
Invest 94L is still out there, but it's not looking healthy. It's currently in an area unfavorable for tropical cyclogenesis and NHC thinks it has a 0% chance of becoming a tropical storm in the next two days. Current forecast models have 94L moving northwards and making a pass by Bermuda.

If things don't change significantly, Jeff is thinking about taking Sunday off. However, rest assured that if Alex starts charging towards the US, Jeff or I will put up a new entry. In any event, I'm planning on posting an update sometime late Sunday evening.

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Quoting WinterAnalystwx13:


I say this is a Brownsville, TX to Port Aurthur, TX event. Port Aurthur, TX is a city right on the TX/LA border.

Man, I hope it isn't near PA. That's close enough for an 01L problem, here.

And not to make light of what anyone else might have to endure, but that would mean at least a few days of MIL and her 5 little ugly-cats (small, yappy dogs) under-foot. Not cool.
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Alex's core is moving WNW. The exact center is now hard to pinpoint and thus an exact movement cannot be given, but look at the overall cloud field of the core and note the WNW direction. That is the rough estimate of the overall movement, and is for the moment still closely in line with the NHC track.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26594
3847. HIEXPRESS 1:14 PM GMT on June 22, 2010

"Houston, we have a problem..."
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Quoting tornadodude:



"Dont tase me bro"


I purposely left out the t, because that is how they pronounce it, peeshwank :P LOL
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948. 7544
watching the ne side fillin going north and how will this be for fla weather some heavy rain maybe at the least ?
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Quoting PanhandleChuck:


I think we're on the same page brother!


Its a bigger circ than he's getting credit for PC.

But datsa gonna change as we get to Sunset.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 127807
.
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13707
Quoting Patrap:
"Dont Taze me Bro"..

LOL


Imagine if we all got tazed at Home or at work when we got a Minus for a comment.





I would stop playing The Game!
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Quoting Ivanhater:
Some of you are looking at the old center rotating around the broader center that is taking over...solid wnw motion and gaining latitude
That is exactly what I was trying to explain, just didn't do it too well. But yes, you're 100% correct.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21113
Quoting WinterAnalystwx13:


I say this is a Brownsville, TX to Port Aurthur, TX event. Port Aurthur, TX is a city right on the TX/LA border.
point of impact for second landfall will be north of tampico to just south of cuidad victoria mexico
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Some of you are looking at the old center rotating around the broader center that is taking over...solid wnw motion and gaining latitude
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940. xcool
all models further north
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Quoting Grothar:
Could be!

Obvious WNW motion there.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21113
A newer Coc seems to be taking over on the direct N of the Older decaying one as it swings almost into the drink proper.

Now the Afternoon is going to bring some changes big time.

Floater - Rainbow Color Infrared Loop

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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Impressive...

HWRF 12z 96 hours



A south Texas landfall?
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Quoting RecordSeason:
Yes, strong storms can greatly alter the steering mechanisms of the atmosphere.

The eye of a strong storm will also tend to "dodge" islands, regardless of steering, which is known as the "island effect".


Very large storms can even temporarily alter the quasi-stationary positions of highs and lows, sea surface temperature patterns, and steering currents across an entire ocean.
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Impressive...

HWRF 12z 96 hours

A few days back that model along with only a few others had the storm doing some crazy east turns in the gulf. Who knows. Crazier things have happened in the past.
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Atmo....don't know how to quote yet....but i also worked at Mr. Gattis as a teen.....i'm 42 now. my husband and i take our kids there to eat now! small world.
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Could be!

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Quoting Patrap:
Note the Bigger developing envelope leaving that swirly old decaying CoC behind.



Floater - Dvorak Infrared Loop



I think we're on the same page brother!
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Quoting WinterAnalystwx13:


Alex is definitely not moving west, and it will be in th e GOMEX in less than 4 hours....
Actually in less than 2 hours.
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Quoting Hardcoreweather2010:
COC is clearly moving due west right now and may spend a little longer overland than I expected this morning
Clearly? I don't think so. Visible imagery clearly displays WNW motion with some slight NW jogs. There is absolutely no W motion.


Levi you here?
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21113
you cant see a pronounced direction shift off of a couple frames off a loop...wobbles, sure....wait and watch a few hours...then we will see...
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I'm looking at the Ull north of Puerto Rico that's heading westward look's like it is trying to work to the surface.
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Quoting help4u:
Hwrf at 96 hours has storm off coast of texas,run is not finished.
Impressive...

HWRF 12z 96 hours

Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21113
COC is clearly moving due west right now and may spend a little longer overland than I expected this morning
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12Z HWRF further north.
http://www.coaps.fsu.edu/~maue/extreme/hwrf/alex01l.2010062712_wind.png
Member Since: August 23, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 164
Quoting WinterAnalystwx13:


I say this is a Brownsville, TX to Port Aurthur, TX event. Port Aurthur, TX is a city right on the TX/LA border.


Ah, that seems reasonable to me.

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Quoting tornadodude:



"Dont tase me bro"


Florida...
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Quoting WinterAnalystwx13:
It looks like Alex just took a turn to the Northwest...
Just as predicted by nhc.
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Hwrf at 96 hours has storm off coast of texas,run is not finished.
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Quoting hydrus:
.


Image not visible...
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Quoting WinterAnalystwx13:
It looks like Alex just took a turn to the Northwest...
Levi was explaining earlier about the smaller COC of Alex rotating around a broader circulation, or something like that. Point is, Alex is moving towards the WNW, with possible NW jogs.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21113
"Dont Taze me Bro"..

LOL


Imagine if we all got tazed at Home or at work when we got a Minus for a comment.



Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 127807
Quoting Grothar:


What about the "Tase of Louisiana" um m!



"Dont tase me bro"
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Quoting WinterAnalystwx13:
It looks like Alex just took a turn to the Northwest...


I think that this recent NW turn will lead Alex to Northern Mexico/Southern Texas, and I predict Brownsville TX to be Ground-Zero for Alex. What are your predictions?
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
It would be impossible for the wave behind the one we were watching yesterday to be that far west. They have to be the same ones, and they actually are, take a look at the loop.


Link
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Quoting UpperLevelLOL:


Alex is a large, pink male symbol?
LOL! Well I like the contrast of pink on visible satellite imagery so I just went with that color. I'll be sure to use blue on the next one.
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21113
Note the Bigger developing envelope leaving that swirly old decaying CoC behind.



Floater - Dvorak Infrared Loop

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 127807
Quoting CycloneUK:
I am lost for words at Englands performance... Thank God it's over with.


At least, we credit England one goal in the future ...
Back to lurking, as interesting as watching the WC. All the best for all of you in the GOM.
Barbara from Germany
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Quoting tornadodude:


they have mr gattis down there?


What about the "Tase of Louisiana" um m!
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Good morning all. A little surprised to see how much real estate Alex traversed last night and this morning. Should be offshore in the next 6 hours. Considering it's forward speed and westerly direction I see this as more of a BOC, southern GOM event. With weak steering currents in the BOC, I see a persistent westerly track taking Alex no more north than say 23-24 deg. N. As to whether the retreating upper ridge and the weakness entering NW Texas will be strong enough and linger long enough to impact Alex is anyone's guess. Having lived in Texas for 30 years, this is a favored time for upper air ridges not weaknesses.
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:


Alex is a large, pink male symbol?
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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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