Intensifying Hermine closes in on the Texas/Mexico coast

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 9:47 PM GMT on September 06, 2010

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Steadily intensifying Tropical Storm Hermine is closing in on the coast near the Texas/Mexico border, and should move ashore late tonight. Hermine became a tropical depression at 11pm last night, and could become a minimal hurricane by 11 pm tonight. Hermine's rate of intensification from nothing to a strong tropical storm is one of the fastest on record. It turns out that the extreme southwestern Gulf of Mexico's Bay of Campeche, where Hermine formed, is prone to these sort of rapidly intensifying tropical storms. The curvature and topography of the land help induce a counter-clockwise spin to the air over the region, which helps get tropical storms spinning up unusually quickly. Helping the spin-up process are the very warm 30°C waters, low 5 - 10 knots of wind shear, and moist atmosphere. Hermine promises to be a very wet storm, and latest long range radar out of Brownsville, Texas shows a large area of heavy rain has been drenching southern Texas and northern Mexico all afternoon, with radar estimated rainfall amounts exceeding two inches in a few areas along the coast. Radar loops show that an eyewall is attempting to form, but a region of dry air from over land spiraled into Hermine's core between 4 - 5pm EDT, disrupting eyewall formation. However, it now appears that Hermine has closed off its eye from this dry air, which should aid in intensification. Satellite imagery shows Hermine has vigorous thunderstorms with very cold tops, and improving low-level spiral banding.

Forecast for Hermine
Hermine doesn't have much time over water before it comes ashore, which is a good thing. The storm is steadily organizing, and has a shot at reaching hurricane strength before the center moves ashore late tonight, near midnight. Heavy rain will be the main threat from Hermine, though isolated tornadoes may also cause damage, particularly over South Texas. Hermine is expected to accelerate through Central Texas Tuesday and Wednesday, and the storm's rains will help alleviate moderate to severe drought conditions affecting Central Texas.


Figure 1. Late afternoon radar image of Tropical Storm Hermine. Note the band of dry air spiraling into the core of the storm from the north.

Gaston continues to suffer from dry air
An Air Force Hurricane Hunter aircraft spent the afternoon in Gaston's remains, and found a weak 1012 mb center of low pressure with only a limited region of westerly winds on the south side of the center of circulation. Top surface winds uncontaminated by heavy rain seen by their SFMR instrument were in the 30 - 35 mph range. The airplane found plenty of dry air in the storm's environment, and there are not enough heavy thunderstorms in ex-Gaston's circulation for it to qualify as a tropical depression. The remains of Gaston are now approaching the northern Lesser Antilles, and residents can expect a few heavy rain showers and wind gusts up to 40 mph beginning early this evening and continuing into the night. Latest radar out of Martinique doesn't show much in the way of heavy rain, and satellite imagery confirms that the thunderstorm activity associated with Gaston's remains is quite sparse. A large amount of dry air surrounds Gaston's remains on all sides, as seen on water vapor satellite loops.


Figure 2. Afternoon satellite image of the remains of Gaston, approaching the Lesser Antilles Islands.

Forecast for Gaston
There is little change to the forecast for Gaston's remains. Dry air will continue to be the major impediment to development, and the system is unlikely to become a tropical depression today. However, wind shear, which is currently a moderate 10 knots, is forecast by the latest SHIPS model run to fall very low, 0 - 5 knots, tonight through Wednesday. With almost no wind shear affecting it, Gaston will a better chance of keeping the moisture from its heavy thunderstorms near its core on Tuesday. This will insulate the storm from the dry air surrounding it. The atmosphere is also moister in the eastern Caribbean, further increasing the chances of development. I believe it is probable Gaston will become a tropical depression again on Tuesday. NHC is currently giving Gaston a 70% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Wednesday, which is a reasonable forecast.

Heavy rain showers and gusty winds from the storm will affect Puerto Rico Tuesday morning through Wednesday afternoon. This activity will spread to the Dominican Republic Tuesday afternoon through Thursday morning. Assuming dry air and an encounter with Hispaniola's high mountains do not destroy Gaston, heavy rain from the storm should move over Haiti, eastern Cuba, and Jamaica Wednesday night and Thursday morning. The models don't give much support for Gaston surviving past Wednesday. The ECMWF, GFS, NOGAPS, Canadian, and HWRF models all dissipate Gaston. However, two models--the GFDL and UKMET--predict that Gaston will survive the dry air and an encounter with Hispaniola, and pass far enough south of the island to find a favorable environment in the Central Caribbean for development on Wednesday. Wind shear will be low, water temperatures will be hot, and the atmosphere will be plenty moist. Gaston could intensify into a hurricane in the Western Caribbean by the end of the week, as predicted by the latest run of the GFDL model.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The models are fairly unanimous in predicting development late this week of a tropical wave expected to emerge from the coast of Africa on Tuesday or Wednesday. The next storm will be called Igor.

Next post
I'll have an update in the morning.

Jeff Masters

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Hermine is treating me with Heavy Rains here in Fort Worth this morning :)
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1635. smuldy
Quoting FLdewey:

I don't flag people... so no worries.

I wish I could understand your Apple rant... but I've failed after 3 reads.

Apple TV isn't a TV... you know that right? It's not a TV tuner and it has no rabbit ears. For $99 I can stream all of the content from my media server, AND netflix, etc to my TVs. It connects your home TVs to your network. Google it... it's cool ;-)
i know it does what win7 has been doing, which is to say allows you, with additional purchase, to stream content to your TV if properly licensed; my rant is based off of owning an 07 1st gen macbook pro core duo and a 1st gen iphone 4; mbp had battery die, followed by keyboard, neither of which warranty covered at 16 months, despite recall for same overheating problem on previous gen macbook pro; iphone 4 had ghosting on screen, which samsung galaxy did not; so now on acer ferrari and samsung galaxy and both make me much happier than either apple related product; not to get into the longer debate of single device usage that apple initiated via itunes drm. and oh i see a cloud and we had great tstorms the last 2 days
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The flattening out of the TPW gyre associated with Gaston is moving at a fast clip and will make it difficult for Gaston to organize, imo, until somewhere southeast or just south of Jamaica - that is, if there's any circulation left by the time it reaches that area.

M I M I C imagery
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Hurricane Janice - 1958

The last tropical cyclone of the season formed on October 5 from a westward moving tropical wave, south of Cuba. It strengthened to a 50 mph (80 km/h) tropical storm before crossing the island, and remained intact, becoming a hurricane over the Bahamas on the 7th. A cold front pulled Janice northward, and the hurricane became extratropical on the 12th, after causing between $200,000-$300,000 in damage (1958 dollars) in the Bahamas and one death. An early report indicated 18 Haitians died when their raft capsized in the Bahamas, though that was later proven false. Heavy flooding occurred in Jamaica and Haiti as well.
Link
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11099
I was just going to ask was anyone still keeping track of Gaspton nice job record season.
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Someone mentioned that this season has been a "bust"? To me a hurricane season that is a "bust" is the best thing that can happen
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Keeper, that image looks like it's straight from an early 90s' video game.

It's cool.
Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 7 Comments: 5300
lord who thought to put Igor on the list of names. There should be a rule against naming hurricanes after characters in horror films. and i dont think there has ever been a hurricane season with my name for the J, janice. Wonder why some names are used over and over and some never? Saw a thing on tv that dr lyons named a hurricane after his daughter and it was a bad one and thge name was retired but cant remember which one. just musing aloud today. its hard to be at work today. i feel like I am "Milton" in the movie Office Space.
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Can someone explain with a brief synopsis the developement of Hermione??? I have been watching the tropical waves and lows carefully and really didn't see this one coming. It's like God mixed up a cup of instant Hurricane. How do these storms form??
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1625. smuldy
Quoting Relix:
Next wave has potential. Still not trusting the recurve, let's see how it goes =P
globals will be wrong about that eventually, but haven't been yet, until these trofs stop coming i believe they will be there, that said despite model agreement, as with Danielle, I'm not even renting the idea storm #2 recurves before 40w, doesn't mean I dont think it will recurve, just thats a shade early
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Good morning.


Good work, Neo. Yup, lots of season left yet.

Vorticity is hanging, barely with Gaston. He's in ZERO shear. If he's gonna make a move, not sure conditions will ever be any more conducive.

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Ahh...thanks for the explanation Kristina.
Wish I didn't have to work today but had best get it in gear. Have a good one every1.
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1621. Relix
Next wave has potential. Still not trusting the recurve, let's see how it goes =P
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Quoting Chicklit:
good morning.
Surprised NHC has ex-Gaston at 10% but what do I know...
Incredible amount of rain getting dumped on TX this a.m.
That's quite a view Keeper (#1613).


I figure they believe he will regenerate eventually, just not in 48 hours so they are leaving him with a small percentage chance so they don't drop him to zero and have to jump him back up again.
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good morning.
Surprised NHC has ex-Gaston at 10% but what do I know...
Incredible amount of rain getting dumped on TX this a.m.
That's quite a view Keeper (#1613).
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ACE doesn't say that much about activity per se.

It measures intensity and time. If you wish to use the ACE comparisons as a means of determining activity, you run the risk of making seasons like 2007 a 'bust'. It wasn't.

It also says nothing for the human impact. In fact, it can even be the opposite. 1950 was a massive ACE year, taking into account that there was no satellite and radar was rare, it probably exceeded 2005 in ACE. Despite the intensity of those storms, only 20 lives were lost and the damage was dwarfed by previous and subsequent seasons.

Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 7 Comments: 5300
1617. smuldy
Quoting Kristina40:


That is sadly true. I hear the locals here talk about how the NHC hypes seasons and how we haven't had any hit in years here. They seem to not count all those storms that hit other countries or go out to sea.
and guys it is CONUS impacts, so, no Alex doesn't count in many minds, after all i'm pretty sure that fence we are debating is to try and keep hurricanes out
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Guys, ladies and Others:

For weather conditions in Puerto Rico.


Link

Member Since: August 1, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 257
1615. smuldy
Quoting FLdewey:
The remnants of Gaston will devastate anyone foolish enough to enter it in a Kayak... made of cardboard.

Ugggg it's Monday for use office monkeys... but at least it's a 4 day week. New Apple TVs are just weeks away. Good times.
entirely joking so please don't flag, but im not sure what is worse the typo use office monkeys, as though the world were a my cousin vinny remake :P or the fact that you praised an apple product, actually joking aside the latter, if apple made it first gen will be bad, always is, and no one needs some lame tv tuner for a monitor when better actual tv's are cheaper; and to stay topical it sure is sunny here in the tropics today
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Quoting IKE:
Neopolitan...what matters to most on here is impacts...major impacts. Some are looking for that....some are hoping for that...most of us hope it doesn't happen...and so far in 2010...major impacts of the Atlantic season........

(1)Alex.

And also...it didn't hit the USA(lower 48), as a major impact. I'm talking Ike kind...or Katrina...or Hugo....or Camille....Ivan....Georges...Wilma.


That is sadly true. I hear the locals here talk about how the NHC hypes seasons and how we haven't had any hit in years here. They seem to not count all those storms that hit other countries or go out to sea.
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1613. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
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1612. smuldy
Quoting stormwatcherCI:


Don't know whether it is closed or not but looks like the coc is just north of 16 and west of 62. IDK maybe he is still making a slight effort.
i really dont think it is closed and so i would fully expect it to jog if it does close; where who knows, but there will be no pinpoint track until it does for a closed center, if it does; i personally think it has no chance for at least 36 hours until it's energy settles to the north or south of Cuba, and if it settles on Cuba it dies; but I have been wrong before plenty
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Quoting Neapolitan:
I just want to go on record again as stating that those calling this season a bust are, not to put too fine a point on it, ignorant. Everyone likes to point at 2005 as an amazing year, but did you guys know that this year's Hurricane Earl would rank as the number three most powerful storm of the year ACE-wise had it happened in 2005? Did you know that Hurricane Danielle would rank as number four? Were you aware that this year's almost-forgotten Hurricane Alex was more powerful than a full 17 of 2005's 28 named storms? Did you know that even this year's Colin was stronger than nine of 2005's storms, or that our one-day-old TS Hermine is already more energetic than six of them were?

As I posted just a short while ago: We've seen the birth of five named storms in just the last 14-days, we had a landfalling high-end tropical storm only nine hours ago, our ACE is well over half of long-term normal, and there's a very vigorous wave rolling off of Africa this morning with more behind it. Throw in what's left of Gaston, which still has a chance (albeit ever-so-slight)...so why are we back to the silly bustcasting?

Finally, two reminders: 1) the season is not halfway over climatologically-speaking...and this fall promises to be very much backloaded; 2) there's still much more to come from Africa, but even were the CV train to stop right this minute, that doesn't mean we'd be safe or that the season would be over. Remember that Katrina, Wilma, Mitch, the 1935 Labor Day Storm, and Camille--among many others--were homegrown.

It's September 7th, guys.


Wow!

I was not aware of most of this. I haven't commented on the pace of the season, but this is certainly an eye opener.

Awesome job!
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1609. IKE
Neopolitan...what matters to most on here is impacts...major impacts. Some are looking for that....some are hoping for that...most of us hope it doesn't happen...and so far in 2010...major impacts of the Atlantic season........

(1)Alex.

And also...it didn't hit the USA(lower 48), as a major impact. I'm talking Ike kind...or Katrina...or Hugo....or Camille....Ivan....Georges...Wilma.
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Quoting smuldy:
exGaston has no CoC yet, as of now, he is nowhere, and the two degrees change in where his energy sits now will have far less to do with where it ends up than the steering if it reforms in a day or two


Don't know whether it is closed or not but looks like the coc is just north of 16 and west of 62. IDK maybe he is still making a slight effort.
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AL, 09, 2010090712, , BEST, 0, 168N, 624W, 20, 1011, LO, 34, NEQ, 0, 0, 0, 0, 1013, 110, 60, 0, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, GASTON, S,

Lowest he's ever been.
Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 7 Comments: 5300
Quoting RecordSeason:
Gaston appears to have drifted SW:

It's hard to tell, but as of 1145, he is either at

16.7N 62.5W

or

16.2N 62.8W


right now I'm going with 16.7N 62.5W
Looks closer to 16.N and lots of moisture on the eastern side but nothing much on the western side. I guess there is still a slim chance he regenerates.
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1605. smuldy
Quoting RecordSeason:
Gaston appears to have drifted SW:

It's hard to tell, but as of 1145, he is either at

16.7N 62.5W

or

16.2N 62.8W


right now I'm going with 16.7N 62.5W
exGaston has no CoC yet, as of now, he is nowhere, and the two degrees change in where his energy sits now will have far less to do with where it ends up than the steering if it reforms in a day or two


ok edit to ur edit lol
the CoC is not settled it will redefine/move IF gaston does redevelop in 48 hours
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1603. smuldy
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
Could it be this Friday, the dreaded Sept. 10, there will not be a named tropical system in the Atlantic basin?
to keep the ridiculous Igor=doom trend because of some Mary Shelley book trend going: the next day will spell trouble somewhere in the CONUS from a flareup far worse than Hermine; in seriousness the energy from Gaston could flare up if it holds together and hits the Caribbean
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I just want to go on record again as stating that those calling this season a bust are, not to put too fine a point on it, ignorant. Everyone likes to point at 2005 as an amazing year, but did you guys know that this year's Hurricane Earl would rank as the number three most powerful storm of the year ACE-wise had it happened in 2005? Did you know that Hurricane Danielle would rank as number four? Were you aware that this year's almost-forgotten Hurricane Alex was more powerful than a full 17 of 2005's 28 named storms? Did you know that even this year's Colin was stronger than nine of 2005's storms, or that our one-day-old TS Hermine is already more energetic than six of them were?

As I posted just a short while ago: We've seen the birth of five named storms in just the last 14-days, we had a landfalling high-end tropical storm only nine hours ago, our ACE is well over half of long-term normal, and there's a very vigorous wave rolling off of Africa this morning with more behind it. Throw in what's left of Gaston, which still has a chance (albeit ever-so-slight)...so why are we back to the silly bustcasting?

Finally, two reminders: 1) the season is not halfway over climatologically-speaking...and this fall promises to be very much backloaded; 2) there's still much more to come from Africa, but even were the CV train to stop right this minute, that doesn't mean we'd be safe or that the season would be over. Remember that Katrina, Wilma, Mitch, the 1935 Labor Day Storm, and Camille--among many others--were homegrown.

It's September 7th, guys.
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TropicalStormHermine passes west of CorpusChristi, heading toward SanAntonio

06Sep . 12pmGMT - - 22.4n95.3w - - 45mph - - - 995mb - - NHC.Adv.#2A
06Sep . 03pmGMT - - 23.4n95.8w - - 50mph - - - 998mb - - #3
06Sep . 06pmGMT - - 24.1n96.5w - - 60mph - - - 995mb - - #3A
06Sep . 09pmGMT - - 24.5n97.0w - - 60mph - - - 992mb - - #4
07Sep . 12amGMT - - 24.8n97.1w - - 65mph - - - 991mb - - #4A
1:30amGMT landfall on 25.3n97.4w @ 65mph & 991mb (not used on the plot chart)
07Sep . 03amGMT - - 25.5n97.5w - - 60mph - - - 991mb - - #5
07Sep . 06amGMT - - 26.1n97.7w - - 60mph - - - 991mb - - #5A
07Sep . 09amGMT - - 27.0n98.0w - - 50mph - - - 993mb - - #6
07Sep . 12pmGMT - - 27.7n98.2w - - 45mph - - - 995mb - - #6A

Copy and paste 22.4n95.3w, 23.4n95.8w, 24.1n96.5w, 24.5n97.0w, 24.8n97.1w-25.5n97.5w, 25.5n97.5w-26.1n97.7w, 26.1n97.7w-27.0n98.0w, 27.0n98.0w-27.7n98.2w, crp, mam, sat into the GreatCircleMapper for a look at the last 12hours.
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1600. IKE
I think I see the caboose on the Cape Verde train...over central Africa....

Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Quoting pottery:

Way to GO!
It's always good to see a good balance of views on the blog.


LMAO...Stick a fork in him and a nuke bomb. Pretty much covers all the bases.
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11099
check back in later...
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Corpus Christi here (11 miles from GOM, 1.5 from bay) at the house we have had 3 inches and just got a wind gust of 46. Thankfully, nothing more than what would we could typically see on a normal day! I hope all our friends down south have fared just as well!
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All at 10%

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1594. pottery
Quoting wunderkidcayman:
if any thing guys gaston may stay weak for the next couple of days but after that it will explode likt a nuke bomb anyway I have to run now see ya all later around 4

Way to GO!
It's always good to see a good balance of views on the blog.
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This is truly an enormous tropical wave.

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1592. DDR
Quoting pottery:

Strange contradiction, that.
What a weird season this has been....

Yea there should be more AOI out there
I'm out ttyl
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if any thing guys gaston may stay weak for the next couple of days but after that it will explode likt a nuke bomb anyway I have to run now see ya all later around 4
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Gaston is pretty much gone folks!

Next on the list is Igor.
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Quoting futuremet:


The models show nothing through November 30th...


You forgot to add 2011. :)
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11099
1588. pottery
Quoting TexasHurricane:


well, that don't seem right.....but, then considering we are days away from peak, there isn't much to talk about.

Strange contradiction, that.
What a weird season this has been....
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Who's downcasting?
Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 7 Comments: 5300
Quoting futuremet:


It was meant to be taken seriously...


I think you meant wasn't? :)
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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.