Bonnie barely alive

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 12:58 PM GMT on July 24, 2010

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Tropical Depression Bonnie is barely clinging to life. Wind shear of 25 knots and dry air from an upper-level low pressure system over the Gulf of Mexico are taking their toll on Bonnie, which is now just a swirl of low clouds accompanied by a small clump of heavy thunderstorms on the north side of the center of circulation. These thunderstorms are now visible on New Orleans long range radar, and will arrive in coastal Louisiana early this afternoon, well ahead of the center. The Hurricane Hunters are in Bonnie, and have found a much weaker storm with top winds of just 30 mph.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Tropical Depression Bonnie. At the time, Bonnie had sustained winds of 30 mph.

Forecast for Bonnie
The current NHC forecast for Bonnie looks good, with the storm making landfall in Louisiana near 9pm CDT Saturday night. According to the latest tide information, this will be near the time of low tide. This will result in much less oil entering the Louisiana marshlands than occurred during Hurricane Alex in June. That storm brought a storm surge of 2 - 4 feet and sustained winds of 20 - 30 mph that lasted for several days, including several high tide cycles. Bonnie will be lucky to be a tropical depression at landfall, and should only create a storm surge of 1 - 2 feet that will come at low tide. This will result in a storm tide level that will inundate land to at most one foot above ground level.

Resources for the BP oil disaster
Map of oil spill location from the NOAA Satellite Services Division
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 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

Elsewhere in the tropics
There are no other threat areas of concern today. The only model calling for possible tropical development in the next week is the NOGAPS model, which predicts a strong tropical disturbance could form off the coast of Nicaragua in the Southwest Caribbean about a week from now.

Next update
The next updates will be by wunderground meteorologists Rob Carver and Shaun Tanner. I'm taking advantage of a break in the tropical action to take a few days away. I'll be back blogging on Friday, at the latest.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting southlouisiana:
CanesfanatUT> I work for XOM - Gustav was a major surprise to the BR complex.

What do you mean stay level?


Yeah Rita was the same surprise for us. And I didnt quite mean "stay level". Maybe I just didnt express myself well. I am surprised that the prices aren't more volatile than they are given how delicate and how easily disrupted the supply chain is...and the precautions needed as a margin of safety at all times but especially during hurricane season. That would have been a better way of saying it. Or as you put it...



CanesfanatUT> I don't think people realize how close this country was to having a significant portion of the population with little to no access to motor fuel.

Exactly! Given the tight supplies, the dangers to and of production, transporting and then refining oil it is either stand amazed or worry yourself sick at the narrow margin between society and huge energy disruptions. It wouldn't take much to start the dominoes toppling.



Well the market definitely moves with a tropical system in the Gulf. It's not a huge move upward in normal years (2008 with 147$ crude isn't normal) if it's a relatively minor system. But given the right path - from Corpus to, say NOLA - and a major system, prices would jump pretty significantly because now you aren't just shutting in production offshore (so crude inventories go down) but you are also shutting down refineries (so mogas and diesel inventories go down). So it's a double whammy to the entire market structure.

Really anything in the Gulf north of Mexico will have a real impact to crude supplies. But a storm would have to make landfall in a pretty clustered part (north TX and Looziana) to really impact any significant amount of refineries. A Mississippi or AL or FL landfall would really only impact Chevron's refinery (unless NO floods again...).

You've mention something that I'm not sure anyone really knows - that's how important it is to evacuate all your employees if you are offshore or right on the coast. Our Beaumont chemical plant was flooded to the tune of 10 to 12 feet during Ike. If we had kept anyone in there - people would have died.

So I know people b*tch about gas prices when companies shut stuff down, but you gotta think of the employees. We don't want anyone "cowboyin' up" and having people injured or dead, do we?
No one really thinks about that side - they just see the price at the pump.


So if you feel yourself starting to get PO'ed in whatever part of the country you are in when prices rise ahead of landfall of a major - think of this dude or me, we are down there trying to get the hell out.
We'll get our plants back up as soon as possible. But if we get flooded - expect it to take a while, sea water and electronics don't mix.
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829. xcool
tkeith :( .
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Quoting xcool:
tkeith .chances for rain .nothing to major .;)
not one drop in Kenner so far X...
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SW carribean looks like upper divergence triggered.... the Boc on the other hand is starting to have clockwise turning at the upper levels as the ULL pulls north. That needs to be watched
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
AOI/XX/XL
MARK
12.4N/80.3W
Good evening KOG. Do you think there is any possibility for development there ?
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AOI/XX/XL
MARK
12.4N/80.3W
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 178 Comments: 55984
Quoting stormpetrol:

That sure blew up suddenly looking more compact than the disorganized showers earlier, might be our next AOI, not to mention the BOC/GOM, not sure which would qualify.
I know. I didn't see anything like that there this a.m. but was surprised when I looked at it this evening.
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821. xcool
clwstmchasr 11. ULL.
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Quoting stormwatcherCI:

That sure blew up suddenly looking more compact than the disorganized showers earlier, might be our next AOI, not to mention the BOC/GOM, not sure which would qualify.
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Quoting stormpetrol:
SW Caribbean starting to look interesting!


And another one...Bay of Campeche RGB...looks like a mid level swirl...maybe even lower...on this imagery

Link
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SW Caribbean starting to look interesting!
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Any idea on the direction of the low pressure?
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Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 178 Comments: 55984
Quoting ackee:
question FIMZ that new model can some one tell me more about this model thanks


You can read about it on the FIM Model Page
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Quoting bappit:
You need to look more at the CMC and FIMZ to see systems

Don't know about FIMZ, but CMC was new and improved last year. See the page on the models on the WU tropical weather link page. It is labeled "last updated in 2007" but actually was last updated in July 2009. The CMC is not supposed to spin 'em up so easily anymore.


The basis that the CMC did not spin 'em up was based on one year experience with the model. So far this year it seems to be up to it's old tricks, just my opinion.
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811. SLU
Quoting StormW:


Welcome, thanks for reading!


Fabulous downcaster eye opener Storm. Keep it up!

With the amount of crow that's going to be eaten at the end of this hurricane season, black birds will be an endangered species.
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Storm, you still on??


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809. xcool
tkeith .chances for rain .nothing to major .;)
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807. ackee
question FIMZ that new model can some one tell me more about this model thanks
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AOI/XX/XL
MARK
12.4N/80.3W
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 178 Comments: 55984
799. xcool 6:25 PM CDT on July 24, 2010

Bonnie has a huge eye...

IWRC?

fallinstorms, what are your thoughts on this?
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You need to look more at the CMC and FIMZ to see systems

Don't know about FIMZ, but CMC was new and improved last year. See the page on the models on the WU tropical weather link page. It is labeled "last updated in 2007" but actually was last updated in July 2009. The CMC is not supposed to spin 'em up so easily anymore.
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Quoting StormW:


Welcome, thanks for reading!


I want to thank you also, Storm, for providing lots of info. You along with Levi and others are a joy to read and learn from.

Thanks:)
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799. xcool
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Quoting IKE:


If anyone came on here and just read the posts without knowledge of who was posting them, we would be up to the K storm by now and half of the Atlantic would have been blown off of the map.

..............................................


Here's the parallel 18Z GFS through 264 hours. What I see is little to nothing...Link


Parallel GFS has been consistent in the longer term developing a system. Once it starts showing on the higher resolution timeframe (<192 hours) I'll pay more attention to it. By that time the parallel GFS should be known as just the GFS (changeover Wed 7-28).

You need to look more at the CMC and FIMZ to see systems :)
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Thanks StormW for your lastest blog update.

To bad that you have to keep answering the same questions & provide backup for your outlook over and over! I'm pretty new here but I know to go back and read the previous couple of pages on the blog when I get on so that I am up to date with the current dialog and trends. I'll get the hang of this at some point lol.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


But there are those (fallingstorms, hurrkat, jasoniscool, ect) who just completely and outright ignore the facts when its posted again and again, and constantly kill the season off. I say 17-18, I stick by that.

Thats a very reasonable forecast. If we pick up 5 in August 6 In september 3 in october and 2 in november plus the two already, thats 18 and not that far fetched. I think we may even get one in early december.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


But there are those (fallingstorms, hurrkat, jasoniscool, ect) who just completely and outright ignore the facts when its posted again and again, and constantly kill the season off. I say 17-18, I stick by that.


I agree with you on the outlandish predictions, I think they are more on purpose to "yank the blog's chain", which they generally succeed in doing. I predicted 14 before the season started and will stay with it, come the end of the year I'll see how I did.
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Quoting IKE:


LOL!

Anytime anybody comes on here and says....

(1)I've been lurking for years....
(2)Thought I would finally join in on the blog....

Sorry...it raises an eyebrow.


I can imagine why after reading on here for so many years but I guess some of us just never joined and continued to just lurk. I learn more that way instead of rattling away so I just continued to read since '05.

I started posting late last night. I did post a few times in '08 but could not recall my username plus it was an old email address I had in Texas.

So...not everyone is up to "mischief"...:)
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Havent posted here in years but will try to do it more. Reporting from Warehouse District in NOLA!

Bonnie is the sunniest storm ever!
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Quoting SouthALWX:
lol Canes I think he/she was saying telling storm not to bother responding to them because they were trolling, not that storm himself was a troll


Ah I see now SouthAL lol. But thanks Storm for the very informational post.
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791. IKE
Quoting atmosweather:


Agree 100%...these people are foolish but this is a public forum and some people are going to think they know what they are talking about...I always want to make sure that bad info doesn't spread around.


If anyone came on here and just read the posts without knowledge of who was posting them, we would be up to the K storm by now and half of the Atlantic would have been blown off of the map.

..............................................


Here's the parallel 18Z GFS through 264 hours. What I see is little to nothing...Link
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Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:


Not just downcasting but normalcasting is not well tolerated either. If your not for a near record season, you are downplayed. My current favorite is the posts with the 100 year climatological graph of activity, it shows a normal season, 11 NS 6 hurricanes.


But there are those (fallingstorms, hurrkat, jasoniscool, ect) who just completely and outright ignore the facts when its posted again and again, and constantly kill the season off. I say 17-18, I stick by that. The wishcasteres and downcasters go in the same boat for me.. the ignore boat.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24574
789. xcool
I'm a pretty laid-back guy in here.
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Quoting IKE:


What I've noticed.....it's a lot harder to downcast on here vs. wishcasting.

You can come on here and say...this season will heat up soon(which...by the way...that's a given...it happens almost every season in August and September!). Death and destruction will follow. I would never come on here and say that unless I followed it with....but I hope it doesn't.




Not just downcasting but normalcasting is not well tolerated either. If your not for a near record season, you are downplayed. My current favorite is the posts with the 100 year climatological graph of activity, it shows a normal season, 11 NS 6 hurricanes.
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Quoting Hurricanes101:


Only problem I have though is that if some of us want to make sure that those lurking know who to trust, then we are bashed for not allowing others to have an opinion

Then again when you have so many people on a blog, you are going to get disagreements and drama no matter what.

Opinions are fine... but there are some on here, especially Stormtop, who know just enough to be dangerous. On purpose. He puts his "forecasts" from his "office" in a format imitating an official ledger and has enough jargon and meteorological know how to say something dangerous.
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Quoting TexasHurricane:


really, I guess I'm a weird one. I don't have anyone on ignore. Not sure if I am on anyone's or not, but no one is on mine. If I don't want to read it I go past it.

Yah, I don't have anyone on ignore either. Not exactly anyway.
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Quoting SouthALWX:
I'm too paranoid to put anyone on ignore ... It seems like it's the internet equivalent of plugging my ears and going "lalalalala" ... If they are putting out bad information I feel I need to be there to correct them for the sake of those who would be fooled. Ergo those few who were screaming intensification last night and trying to startle people.


I am at 40 on ignore... I have no time for damsels in distress or know-it-alls....just the facts ma'am.. although... giggles come back remembering chinacohen's posts.
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Quoting atmosweather:


Agree 100%...these people are foolish but this is a public forum and some people are going to think they know what they are talking about...I always want to make sure that bad info doesn't spread around.


Only problem I have though is that if some of us want to make sure that those lurking know who to trust, then we are bashed for not allowing others to have an opinion

Then again when you have so many people on a blog, you are going to get disagreements and drama no matter what.
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Looks like there is a weak surface trough from SE Cuba to N of Hispanola...almost in between the two ULL's...the interaction between the ULL in the Bahamas and the trough seems to be helping any showers and storms that fire here.
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Storm thanks for all the information! All the people that say this season is a bust need to take a look at the date 07/24!! We are just getting into the heart of the season. I have lived on the Gulf coast all of my 56 years and a Year where we do not have a Storm before August is not that unusuall,and this year we have had one hurricane and one storm!!!!
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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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