97L gets disrupted by Hispaniola

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 12:53 PM GMT on July 21, 2010

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A tropical wave (Invest 97L) near the north coast of Hispaniola has been disrupted by interaction with the island, plus the effects of moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots. The storm is no longer a threat to develop into a tropical depression today, and the Hurricane Hunter flight that was scheduled for today has been postponed until Thursday. The disturbance has brought heavy rains of 8+ inches to Culebra, Vieques, the Virgin Islands, and some of the northern Lesser Antilles Islands. Wunderblogger Weather456 reported that the power was knocked out on the island of St. Kitts for about 24 hours, due to the intense lightning associated with 97L. All of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands are under flash flood watches today.

Satellite images of 97L show a relatively meager number of heavy thunderstorms that are not well-organized. The curved bands to the north and east of the center have disappeared, and there is no evidence of low-level spiral banding or of a surface circulation. Surface observations over the northern Dominican Republic show only light winds, with no westerly winds indicating that a surface circulation is forming. Long-range radar loops from San Juan show a much reduced amount of thunderstorm activity.


Figure 1. Total radar-estimate rainfall for 97L.

Track Forecast for 97L
The storm is in a fairly straightforward steering current environment, and 97L should progress steadily to the west-northwest through Saturday. The rains from 97L's thunderstorms will bring the threat of isolated flooding to the Dominican Republic today, and to Haiti on today and Thursday. Heavy rains from 97L will affect eastern Cuba, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and the eastern Bahamas Thursday, and South and Central Florida can expect heavy rains to arrive Thursday night or Friday morning. The latest suite of model runs from 2am EDT this morning (6Z) foresee 97L making landfall on the Florida coast somewhere between Miami and Cape Canaveral on Friday, then continuing into the Gulf of Mexico on Saturday. Only the Canadian model foresees a threat to Texas, and the other models predict a second landfall between eastern Louisiana and the Florida Panhandle.

Intensity Forecast for 97L
The primary detriment to development of 97L today will be its close proximity to the landmass of Hispaniola. Once the storm pulls away from the island tonight, 97L has a better chance of development. Also hindering development over the next two days will be the presence of dry, stable air in its path over the Bahamas, thanks to the upper-level low to the north of the Dominican Republic. The SHIPS model predicts shear will stay in the moderate range, 10 - 20 knots, over the next three days, which should allow for some steady development of 97L on Thursday and Friday before it reaches Florida. NHC is giving 97L a 60% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Friday, which is a reasonable forecast. I think there is a 70% chance 97L will eventually become Tropical Storm Bonnie, sometime in the next five days. Sudden rapid development before 97L reaches Florida is unlikely, due to the storm's current state of disorganization and the dry air over the Bahamas. It's very unlikely that 97L has time to organize into a hurricane before hitting Florida. I put the odds of 97L making it to hurricane strength before reaching Florida at 5%, and I give a 20% chance it will be a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico. The probability of 97L being a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico will depend heavily upon how long the storm spends over water in the Gulf, which is very uncertain. The environment in the Gulf of Mexico should be favorable for intensification, if passage over Florida does not disrupt the storm too much.

I'll have a new post Thursday morning, or earlier if there's a major change to 97L.

Famed climate scientist Steven Schneider dies
Steven Schneider, one of the most influential and talented climate scientists of our time, died on Monday. Ricky Rood has a tribute to Dr. Schneider in today's blog. Ricky comments, "He is known for feistiness. His last book was Science as a Contact Sport: Inside the Battle to Save Earth's Climate. He was a man who was, bluntly, harassed and threatened by those who did not like his message. He never shrank from the battle."

Jeff Masters

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Quoting wfyweather:


Yeah.. It does have the potential to be a big problem.... and yes.... there have been horrible looking invests... much much worse than this.... and yeah sometime between now and Sat I expect Bonnie from this... heck... maybe even Hurricane Bonnie


Well I wouldn't expect a Hurricane by Saturday. If anything, by Saturday we'll see a weak TS at most. I do feel that Friday afternoon is when this will become TD3 if it does. Once it gets into the Gulf though.. check out the shear.



Certainly does have the potential to cause headaches. What I find interesting is that the ECMWF predicts the ULL to head SW and hamper development. Yet the past few hours the ULL has been moving west at a quick speed.

Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23011
Just trying to be helpful Viking... sometimes posts get missed in all this chaos.
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1510. xcool
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15603
Quoting lickitysplit:
If that thing in the BOC develops (I give it a 40% chance) and 97L develops (70% chance) we'll have two good sized storms running thru the GOM about the same time!



are you a wishcaster ??? P
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Quoting Thaale:
97L has been slower to develop than many of the models called for. As later model runs incorporated the slow development, tracks have shifted W and S. If the system gets into Cuba before getting organized, it might never do so. Look at the ensemble of 18Z GFS runs:



Good assesment but try looking at dynamic and statistical models.... just incorporate the gfs ensemble members dont use just them
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1507. Patrap
18z Early Cycle NHC model tracks
Invest97
Statistical/Simple Models (CLIPER,BAMs,LBAR,other Statistical Models)





Dynamic Models (More sophisticated models)



Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 414 Comments: 125476
Quoting smmcdavid:
unf... maybe you should try asking Storm questions on HIS blog. Just a thought. I've seen you post this several times and I think he is just missing it. I think he tries to answer all the questions on his blog though. ;-)


Are you his personal secretary LOL!
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Quoting weathermanwannabe:


That must be a joke as there are no "hills" in the Bahamas and South Florida.....Right?



yes its a joke


i was trying too be funny and see what evere one would say
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Quoting redUK:
Been lurking for a long while here, but must say that recently the signal/noise ratio of the comments has reached ridiculous levels! 8)

For what it's worth, it looks to me like the upper low will track parallel to 97L for duration of the storm. Can't see it ever making hurricane strength.

Really hoping that this doesn't hit the oil spill at anything higher than TD !


It appears that the ULL will outstrip the feature moving forward...projected track of the feature versus projected position of the ULL seems to diverege starting at about 60 hours
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1503. unf97
Quoting StormW:


No...haven't had time yet.


OK. That's fine. I 'll wait for your update later. Thanks!
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If that thing in the BOC develops (I give it a 40% chance) and 97L develops (70% chance) we'll have two good sized storms running thru the GOM about the same time!
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Quoting TampaSpin:


Ya ya i know.....hehehehe.....be very very quite ...i'm hunting wabbit.....LOL

We really need 97L to intensify some so it goes North some......if it goes thru the Strait and misses Florida......She will be a much more dangerous Storm down the road with a lot of GOM for her viewing and digesting.....we need 97L to gain some lattitude and not pass south of Florida as that could be very ugly for Texas / Louisiana!!!


and besides, we NEED the rain. At least here in N. Ft. Myers, we've had yet another dry rainy season thus far. Seems when I was a kid and up until recently, every day between 3 and 5 pm the thunderboomers and heavy rains would come.
Not anymore...weirdness...
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Quoting Tazmanian:
i am forcasting 97L too be a cat 5 in 12hrs


you better run for the hills


That must be a joke as there are no "hills" in the Bahamas and South Florida.....Right?
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1499. Thaale
97L has been slower to develop than many of the models called for. As later model runs incorporated the slow development, tracks have shifted W and S. If the system gets into Cuba before getting organized, it might never do so. Look at the ensemble of 18Z GFS runs:

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1491. divdog 8:27 PM GMT on July 21, 2010 Hide this comment.

Quoting TampaSpin:
For the sake of Texas / Louisiana areas...they better start wishcasting that 97L gets a little stronger and then goes North some....if 97L misses Florida as a weak storm, that may just be the worst case scerino for Texas/Louisiana area IMO!

its a blob invest nothing else may never be anything else quit scaring people




POOF
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1497. xcool
Tazmanian cat5 huh
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:

By "lopsided", you mean sheared , right?


Yes, a sheared TS.. Especially if the storm remains pretty close to the ULL.
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unf... maybe you should try asking Storm questions on HIS blog. Just a thought. I've seen you post this several times and I think he is just missing it. I think he tries to answer all the questions on his blog though. ;-)
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


97L is a persistent little bugger.. these little buggers usually develop into a serious headache for someone. I've seen far worse looking invests at this stage that have become powerful systems. Whether or not conditions are going to favorable for that to happen we'll wait and see. I do see a 40 mph TS by Saturday though.


Yeah.. It does have the potential to be a big problem.... and yes.... there have been horrible looking invests... much much worse than this.... and yeah sometime between now and Sat I expect Bonnie from this... heck... maybe even Hurricane Bonnie
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1491. divdog
Quoting TampaSpin:
For the sake of Texas / Louisiana areas...they better start wishcasting that 97L gets a little stronger and then goes North some....if 97L misses Florida as a weak storm, that may just be the worst case scerino for Texas/Louisiana area IMO!
its a blob invest nothing else may never be anything else quit scaring people
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1490. leo305
The area in the BOC is organizing
Member Since: April 17, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1753
Thanks storm!
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23011
1488. redUK
Been lurking for a long while here, but must say that recently the signal/noise ratio of the comments has reached ridiculous levels! 8)

For what it's worth, it looks to me like the upper low will track parallel to 97L for duration of the storm. Can't see it ever making hurricane strength.

Really hoping that this doesn't hit the oil spill at anything higher than TD !
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i am forcasting 97L too be a cat 5 in 12hrs


you better run for the hills
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1486. scott39
Hey StormW, Whats your short and long term assesment of 97L battle with the ULL?
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6706
For the sake of Texas / Louisiana areas...they better start wishcasting that 97L gets a little stronger and then goes North some....if 97L misses Florida as a weak storm, that may just be the worst case scerino for Texas/Louisiana area IMO!
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Quoting reedzone:
Again, itr is more likely we will be dealing with a lopsided TD/TS tomorrow.. Sort of like Danny from last year..

By "lopsided", you mean sheared , right?
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1480. unf97
StormW, I wanted to get your thoughts on the wave currently in the eastern Carribean SE of Puerto Rico. There have been some impressive convective bursts during the past 12 hours with this wave. Have you had time to analyze that wave? I know all of the focus is on 97L as it should be, but I wanted your thoughts about that system.
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Quoting wfyweather:


plausible.. so I take it your thinking the straits?



yup lol
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Quoting hydrus:
While puffin the prehistoric ganj....I know...I was born at night, but not last night...


You have a very low opinion of me...you're not far wrong, but still...
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Quoting wfyweather:


has quite a way to go... Yes... it is gaining some "organized convection".... But its going to have to work really hard to be able to develop


97L is a persistent little bugger.. these little buggers usually develop into a serious headache for someone. I've seen far worse looking invests at this stage that have become powerful systems. Whether or not conditions are going to favorable for that to happen we'll wait and see. I do see a 40 mph TS by Saturday though.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23011
Quoting Tazmanian:



yup


TD thursday

TS thursday night


and hurricane by friday AM



my forcast


plausible.. so I take it your thinking the straits?
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Again, itr is more likely we will be dealing with a lopsided TD/TS tomorrow.. Sort of like Danny from last year..
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Quoting smmcdavid:
I don't see how comparing tracks of different storms matters at all. There is so much that has to be taken into consideration... so much that affects the track. Ten storms could start in the same location and make landfall in ten different locations, all at different intensity levels. Seriously?!


Wow, somebody finally said what I was thinking. I think that climatology suggests where storms may form, but as far as track, it's pointless to bring up past storms.
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Quoting StormW:
Greetings again!

Hi. What's your take on 97L?
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Quoting lickitysplit:
convection is better organized now - TD tomorrow?



yup


TD thursday

TS thursday night


and hurricane by friday AM



my forcast
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1469. IKE
Quoting CybrTeddy:
MLC exposed.. but the system itself is starting to gain organized convection.



I agree with you on that...it's exposed. Near about 21.8N and 72.4W.
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Quoting StormW:
Greetings again!
Hello again
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See what you've gone and done:
Quoting CybrTeddy::




Looking ahead now on the ECMWF.. it has continued to show a strong tropical wave off Africa and a system in the Gulf. It kills off the system off Africa and look what's inland over Louisiana at 192 hours.


You;ve scared Taz

Quoting Tazmanian:



eeeeeeek
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Quoting StormW:
Greetings again!


Storm, take a look at my post at 1421. What are you thoughts?
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23011
1465. xcool
Floodman :) lol
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15603
Quoting CybrTeddy:
MLC exposed.. but the system itself is starting to gain organized convection.



has quite a way to go... Yes... it is gaining some "organized convection".... But its going to have to work really hard to be able to develop
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1463. 7544
97l getting ready for ashow just like t6he cmc has showed all along 4or 5 mb pres drop in the last hour ?
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6617
Quoting flsky:

Any way to slow this graphic down a bit?


I dont know about slowing it... but you could just move your mouse over the hours at the top of the screen and look at it frame by frame..
Member Since: July 1, 2005 Posts: 10 Comments: 1681

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About JeffMasters

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.