Category 3 Earl Continues Moving Towards the East Coast

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:13 AM GMT on September 01, 2010

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Hi, Dr. Rob Carver with your evening blog update. It's a busy night in the tropics with Hurricane Earl and Tropical Storm Fiona in the Atlantic, and 3 named storms in the western Pacific. Tonight, though, we'll focus on Earl.

As of 11PM EDT, Earl is still a Category 4 storm with sustained winds of 130 mph and gusts of 160 mph. From the advisory, Earl is located at 23.0 N, 69.9 W, 910 miles south-southeast of Cape Hatteras, NC. On average, Earl is currently moving towards the northwest at 14 mph. Remember, large storms are known for having wobbly tracks. Aircraft observations and microwave imagery (Fig. 1) indicate that the eyewall is reforming.


Fig. 1 Estimated rain-rate of Earl taken at 2332Z 31 Aug 2010. Image courtesy of the Naval Research Lab

Earl is passing near buoy 41046 and is generating some large waves as shown by Figure 1.


Fig. 2Plot of wave heights observed at buoy 41046. Data courtesy of the National Data Buoy Center

Earl is a large storm. Hurricane force winds extend 90 miles from the storm center and tropical storm force winds can be found 200 miles away. This means Earl will have an impact on areas well away from the center's track

Track Forecast
NHC has not really altered their track forecast for this update. Thanks to the subtropical high, Earl will continue a slight turn to the right as it moves around the subtropical high. Then when a trough in the jet stream comes out on Thursday, Earl will accelerate quickly to the northeast. The timing of the trough's arrival will determine Earl's impact on the East Coast. The current forecast still holds that Earl's center will stay out to sea, and I don't see any reason to disagree. Most of the computer model guidance supports this forecast (except for NOGAPS and NGFDL, and they have Earl only crossing the Outer Banks). It is worth noting that the ECMWF global model (the best global model) does bring Earl close to the Outer Banks. Earl will make his closest approach to the Outer Banks sometime early Friday morning.

Winds Forecast
Earl's size and track will likely produce tropical-storm force winds somewhere along the East Coast this weekend. From the wind probability product issued by NHC, Cape Hatteras has a 63% chance of tropical-storm force winds sometime this weekend. There is a wide swath of 30% chance of TS winds from Virginia north towards Maine. New York City has a 20% chance of TS winds, and Nantucket, MA has a 50% chance.

When Earl hooks on to the trough and starts accelerating to the northeast, it will start transitioning from a tropical system to an extratropical low. This means it will start weakening.

Current Watches
As of 1045PM EDT, a hurricane watch is in effect for the coastal US from Surf City, NC to the NC/VA border. Remember, this means tropical-storm force winds are expected within 48 hours. A tropical storm warning has been issued for the Turks and Caicos islands. A tropical storm watch is also in effect from Cape Fear to Surf City and for the southeastern Bahama islands. For the latest information on watches and warnings for Earl, visit our Tropical Alerts page.

Impacts
It's too early to be specific. That said, the local NWS office in Morehead City, NC thinks that with the combination of tides and winds, a storm surge of 4 feet is possible along the Outer Banks with moderate coastal flooding possible. They also think rip currents are a likely threat at the beaches.

What to do
People living in areas covered by the hurricane watch should start following their hurricane preparation plans now. You have less than 48 hours to complete your preparations. Be sure to listen to local media for statements from emergency management agencies and the local NWS. If you live in areas prone to flooding, evacuate to a hurricane shelter or a place outside evacuation zones. If an evacuation order is given, please follow it.

People living from Virginia to New England should monitor the progress of Earl and think about their hurricane preparations.

Fiona
Fiona stayed too close to big brother Earl and is paying the price. Outflow from Earl is expected to create shear, transforming Fiona into an open trough. It's forecast to dissipate in 2-3 days.

600AM EDT UPDATE
Earl has weakened to a category 3 storm with maximum winds of 125 mph. NHC has extended the hurricane watch from the NC/VA border to Parramore island. The track forecast has shifted a bit to the west, so the chance of tropical-storm force winds in the New England area has gone up. For example, Eastport ME has a greater than 50% chance of tropical storm force winds now. For more cities, take a look at the wind probabilities product. Intensity forecast is relatively unchanged.

Fiona is starting to build a little more space between herself and Earl. If this keeps up, Fiona might have a shot at survival. This is worth keeping an eye on.

Next update
Dr. Jeff Masters will have an update Wednesday morning.

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Nice to see you back Marine.
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Link

Sorry, that was just an example
link to source
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AL, 07, 2010090112, , BEST, 0, 245N, 716W, 110, 943, HU, 50, NEQ, 120, 120, 75, 90, 1008, 225, 20, 0, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, EARL, D,

AL, 08, 2010090112, , BEST, 0, 182N, 609W, 50, 998, TS, 50, NEQ, 45, 45, 0, 0, 1010, 150, 30, 0, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, FIONA, S,

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Atlantic GOES-13 Large Scale Loop
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817. ackee
when will we see new model runs on 98L seem like the CMC may be right about developing 98L into cane or strong TS
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DestinJeff,

Is that thing really that close? ugh!!
Tell it to go away!

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Hurricane Preparation 2010

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Last night almost everyone on this blog had written off Fiona as being absorbed, eaten, sheared by Earl, but surprising this morning she is still around and getting stronger it seems!!!! Actually looks like the interaction between the two storms was a positive for each of them, Earl got a little push and stole some of Fiona's moisture, Fiona lightened her load and is ready to have a go at it now.

Keep an eye on this one, not so sure I buy into her current forecast.
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01/1145 UTC 12.4N 35.1W T2.0/2.0 98L -- Atlantic


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OMEGA BLOCK

*It resembles the Greek letter Omega and is best analyzed at 500-mbs are adjacent pressure surfaces. The basic pattern of the Omega block is show below:
Air over the Southwest U.S. in forced to the north into Canada and then back south into the Southeast U.S. by the huge high-pressure ridge in the center of the country. The region under the omega block experiences dry weather and light wind for an extended period of time while rain and clouds are common in association with the two troughs on either side of the omega block. Omega blocks make forecasting easier since you can pinpoint areas that will be dominated by dry or rainy weather for several days. The right side of the omega block will have below normal temperatures while the region to the left will have above normal temperatures in this case.

Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 1918
Good morning, Wunderbloggers!

So, where are the folks who prophesied certain doom for Florida yesterday? You know the folks who were dead on sure that the Governor was holding a phone conference with all the counties?

Guess they are busy with their breakfast of crow.

Looks like Earl is going to swing close to the OBX and points NE... Everyone up there had best pay attention to the local authorities. When the word to evacuate comes down, that's the time to move, not start getting ready.
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Quoting 900MB:
Okay, I know it is 60 hours out, not 48, but I see no reason why a hurricane watch would not be posted from East End of Long Island and up!?!


I think they will issue Hurricane Warnings in the current Hurricane Watch areas, then issue Hurricane Watches from Long Island to Maine. Maybe TS Watches from Delaware to NYC.. maybe..
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Quoting blsealevel:


Awesome sat pic BL.
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Quoting NplzJayhawk:
What is an "omega block" scenario? Trying learn all - TIA
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Block_%28meteorology%29#Omega_blocks
Member Since: February 27, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 482

(Redirected from Omega block)
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An example of an omega block over western North America in May 2006

Blocks in meteorology are large scale patterns in the atmospheric pressure field that are nearly stationary, effectively "blocking" or redirecting migratory cyclones. They are also known as blocking highs or blocking anticyclones.[1] These blocks can remain in place for several days or even weeks, causing the areas affected by them to have the same kind of weather for an extended period of time (e.g.- precipitation for some areas, clear skies for others).[2] In the Northern Hemisphere, extended blocking occurs most frequently in the spring over the eastern Pacific and Atlantic oceans. [1]
Contents
[hide]

* 1 Omega blocks
* 2 Rex blocks
* 3 Cut off Highs and Lows
* 4 See also
* 5 References

[edit] Omega blocks

Omega blocks are so-named because the height fields associated with them resemble an Ω, the uppercase Greek letter omega. The typical pattern for this is low-high-low, arranged in the west-east direction.[2]
Member Since: August 18, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3109
Please, everyone in the ne stay safe!!!!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I think we have really lucked out so far in south florida!! I hope that you all do too!! Storms are no fun at all!!
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What is an "omega block" scenario? Trying learn all - TIA
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803. MahFL
Earl seemed to wobble left a again for a few frames.
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802. 900MB
Okay, I know it is 60 hours out, not 48, but I see no reason why a hurricane watch would not be posted from East End of Long Island and up!?!
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800. SeVaSurfer
12:14 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting reedzone:


I'm not an expert, just a 21 year old fascinated with the weather ever since Floyd came through Long Island in 1999. I would think it would be a bad thing, but waiting on a response from StormW, if he's still in here.


Ah Gotch ya!
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799. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
12:13 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
08L/98L/07L
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798. Engine2
12:13 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting reedzone:


I'm not an expert, just a 21 year old fascinated with the weather ever since Floyd came through Long Island in 1999. I would think it would be a bad thing, but waiting on a response from StormW, if he's still in here.
I think he is putting the kids on the bus - then he usually works on his analysis.
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797. MoltenIce
12:12 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Looks like I underestimated the demise of Fiona, I thought she was going to get absorbed by mighty Earl earlier today.
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796. GeoffreyWPB
12:12 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
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795. reedzone
12:12 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting SeVaSurfer:


Ok now this sounds like a wrench in the forecast and computer model tracks I assume? Pumping up the ridge? you guys are the experts,,,why would this a bad thing for us in SE VA and OBX??


I'm not an expert, just a 21 year old fascinated with the weather ever since Floyd came through Long Island in 1999. I would think it would be a bad thing, but waiting on a response from StormW, if he's still in here.
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794. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
12:11 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
National Hurricane Center
Tropical Cyclone Outlook
12:00 PM UTC September 1 2010
=======================================

Showers and thunderstorm activity is currently limited in association with a well defined area of low pressure located about 250 miles southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico. Upper-level winds are forecast to become more conducive for development during the next couple of days as the system moves northwestward at about 10 MPH.

Tropical Cyclone Formation Potential
======================================
There is a HIGH chance of this disturbance to form into a significant tropical cyclone within the next 48 hours
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793. aimetti
12:10 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting breald:


Aimetti, our local news here in southeastern Ma/Rhode Island are all over this story today.


It seems our local news are picking up on it finally. Judging from posts from local websites and chatter around town etc most people have the mentality of "oh its just another fizzler and going out to sea like the rest of them" The majority definitely arent prepared.
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792. LightningCharmer
12:10 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting wayfaringstranger:
NHC just upgraded invest behind Fiona. 80%...
'Just noticed that myself; 'Definitely a Chicklit-psr.
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791. SeVaSurfer
12:09 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting reedzone:


Whats interesting, and StormW pointed this out, the trough is pumping up the ridge, so the ridge is building more. This is terrible news for the East Coast. Looking at the animation on the model runs from last night to this morning. The models have indeed shifted a good 100 miles west. Wonder if these trends will continue?


Ok now this sounds like a wrench in the forecast and computer model tracks I assume? Pumping up the ridge? you guys are the experts,,,why would this a bad thing for us in SE VA and OBX??
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790. gordydunnot
12:09 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
This season is a bust all right, as in it just busted out.We are officially of the chain now. That includes all horses, dogs, cats and even ants.It's everyone man for himself now.
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788. 900MB
12:09 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting reedzone:


What does this mean to you StormW? Thanks in advance.


Ditto Storm, Omega Block? Sounds ominous!!!
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787. CycloneUK
12:09 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Good afternoon


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786. blsealevel
12:09 PM GMT on September 01, 2010


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785. breald
12:07 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting aimetti:
Watching closely on south eastern CT shoreline.

It seems no one really cares about the storm up here.


The models are really starting to move west.

Hoping it just goes out to sea.


Aimetti, our local news here in southeastern Ma/Rhode Island are all over this story today.
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784. wayfaringstranger
12:06 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
NHC just upgraded invest behind Fiona. 80%...
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783. LightningCharmer
12:05 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Wunderground Lexicon – New Word Alert!

Chicklit-psr --> Ominous Invest
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782. scCane
12:03 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
...Fiona intensifying as it approaches the northern Leeward
Islands...





summary of 800 am AST...1200 UTC...information
----------------------------------------------
location...18.2n 60.9w
about 70 mi...110 km NE of Barbuda
about 145 mi...235 km E of the northern Leeward Islands
maximum sustained winds...60 mph...95 km/hr
present movement...WNW or 295 degrees at 15 mph...24 km/hr
minimum central pressure...998 mb...29.47 inches

watches and warnings
--------------------
changes with this advisory...

none.
Summary of watches and warnings in effect...
a Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for...
* St. Martin and St. Barthelemy

a tropical storm watch is in effect for...
* Antigua...Barbuda...Montserrat...St. Kitts...Nevis...and Anguilla
* St. Maarten...Saba...and St. Eustatius

interests elsewhere in the northern Leeward Islands should monitor
the progress of Fiona.

For storm information specific to your area in the United
States...including possible inland watches and warnings...please
monitor products issued by your local National Weather Service
forecast office. For storm information specific to your area outside
the United States...please monitor products issued by your National
meteorological service.

Discussion and 48-hour outlook
------------------------------
at 800 am AST...1200 UTC...the center of Tropical Storm Fiona was
located by radar and reconnaissance aircraft to be near latitude
18.1 north...longitude 60.9 west. Fiona is moving toward the
west-northwest near 15 mph...24 km/hr. A gradual turn toward the
northwest is expected to occur later today. On the forecast
track...the center of Fiona should pass near or just north of the
northernmost Leeward Islands later this morning and afternoon.

Data from an Air Force Reserve hurricane hunter indicate that
maximum sustained winds have increased to near 60 mph...95
km/hr...with higher gusts. Some slight strengthening is possible
during the next 24 hours...followed by little change in intensity
after that.

Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 140 miles...220
km...mostly to the northeast of the center.

The minimum central pressure recently measured by reconnaissance
aircraft was 998 mb...29.47 inches.

Hazards affecting land
----------------------
wind...tropical storm conditions could spread over portions of the
northern Leeward Islands later this morning and afternoon.

Rainfall...Fiona is expected to produce rainfall accumulations of
1 to 3 inches...with isolated maximum amounts of 5 inches...over
portions of the northern Leeward Islands.

Next advisory
-------------
next complete advisory...1100 am AST.

$$
Forecaster Blake/Avila




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781. CoopsWife
12:02 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
765 - Yes, CRS - absolutely folks should prep for a +1 event. Local mets are predicting 35 mph here after midnight Thursday and early Friday. I have blowables stowed away already, and the heavy wrought iron/cast aluminum furniture in the garage.

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780. LADobeLady
12:01 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting CoopsWife:


I'll add a note to this - check out your state parks - many here in VA have cabins, not just campgrounds, and they do allow 2 pets in most of them- no size restrictions, but must stay on leash outside.


For Katrina I evacuated with 4 Dobermans, 1 lab and 2 cats. Talk about fun trying to sneak them into the hotel room. They allowed 2, but it was the only rooms we could find. Luckily we got a ground level room with windows that opened. We put them through the window
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779. reedzone
12:01 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting StormW:
You can see how the water vapor resembles almost an Omega Block

Omega Block out west in this graphic, AUG 2006


WATER VAPOR (CURRENT)


What does this mean to you StormW? Thanks in advance.
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778. Chicklit
12:01 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Hi Jeff, I think Gaston will arrive sooner than that. Anyway, enough gloom and doom.
The dog wants out.
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777. 900MB
12:00 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting Bonedog:
NGFDL is a worst case East Coast Scenario. Would keep all the beaches on the NW quad for the ride. Smacks NC and rides the I-95. Not being a doomer here but if it actaully did that track NYC is underwater. The topography of the NY Bight would cause a surge far worse then the catagory calls for. It is almost a perfect right angle thus the surge would pile up then unfortunatly the only way it has to go is up... up the Hudson, East and Raratan Rivers. Dont look for help from LI Soinds. Winds out of the E and NE would cause the Sound to drian into the east River and down into lower Hudson Bay thus creating again, a larger surge.

Uggg this stinks.

(notice one thing, I didnt say it would happen, I just spoke about topography and wind direction following the NGFDL model as per the WU site. No doom casting here)


Worse in my opinion is that much of Long Island is 0-6ft above see level. The "Long Island Express" brought water in as many as 3 miles and made Montauk an island.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_England_Hurricane_of_1938
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776. wayfaringstranger
12:00 PM GMT on September 01, 2010
I guess I have been so busy lately working that I havent had the time to respond but I can report that supplies are being sent over to NC and MA. FEMA is prepared and so far they are on top of it. I'm pretty proud of there response so far.

I really dont see Fiona moving the same track as Earl for some pretty obvious reasons and I dont really buy into the whole "rapid acceleration north" thing either with Earl. There are too many tools at our disposal to think otherwise.

Fiona hasnt gained hardly any lattitude at all. She is pretty much moving west. Earl has gained some lattitude but is still stair stepping towards the coast so the trac keeps shifting some west.

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775. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
11:59 AM GMT on September 01, 2010


first vis still image of the day
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774. Engine2
11:58 AM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting StormW:
You can see how the water vapor resembles almost an Omega Block

Omega Block out west in this graphic, AUG 2006


WATER VAPOR (CURRENT)
Quite interesting LHL
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773. CoopsWife
11:58 AM GMT on September 01, 2010
Quoting LADobeLady:
Having had to evacuate 3x in the past 6 years I thought I would share this link again for anyone thinking of evacuating with animals. This link is a life saver for me because you can search for hotels that accept large breed dogs. Remember just because it says it's "dog friendly" doesn't mean they accept large breed dogs. Many have weight restrictions of 25-50# and a restriction on how many animals you can bring. http://www.bringfido.com/


I'll add a note to this - check out your state parks - many here in VA have cabins, not just campgrounds, and they do allow 2 pets in most of them- no size restrictions, but must stay on leash outside.
Member Since: June 19, 2006 Posts: 63 Comments: 4175

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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.

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