Igor spares Bermuda; Fanapi hits China; exceptionally quiet in the Pacific

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:29 PM GMT on September 20, 2010

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The core of Category 1 Hurricane Igor passed approximately 40 miles west of Bermuda at 11 pm AST last night, bringing winds just below hurricane force to the island. Winds at the Bermuda Airport peaked at 68 mph, gusting to 93 mph, at 11:22 pm AST last night. Tropical storm force winds of 39 mph began at 10 am AST on Sunday, and were still present as of 9:38 am AST (44 mph, gusting to 53 mph.) Bermuda radar shows that the core of Igor is now well past Bermuda, with only a few spiral bands to the south that will bring occasional rain squalls to the island this morning. Pressures are rising rapidly, and the storm is almost over for Bermuda. No injuries or major damage has been reported from Bermuda thus far, though Igor's waves are being blamed for two deaths in the Caribbean, one on Puerto Rico and one on St. Croix.

Igor is headed northeastward, out to sea, but will pass close enough to southeast Newfoundland to bring tropical storm force winds there on Tuesday night. Rainfall amounts of 3 - 5 inches are possible for the capital of St. Johns.


Figure 1. The eye of Hurricane Igor as seen by the International Space Station at 9:56 am EDT September 14, 2010. At the time, Igor was a Category 4 hurricane with 135 mph winds. This image ranks as one of the top-five most spectacular hurricane images ever taken from space, in my mind. To see the full-size image, visit the NASA Earth Observatory web site.

94L
A tropical wave (Invest 94L) off the coast of Africa, a few hundred miles west of the Cape Verdes Islands, has developed a well-defined surface circulation and is threat to develop into a tropical depression. The wave is under a low 5 - 10 knots of wind shear, and is over warm 28°C waters. Dry air from the Sahara is interfering with development, and downdrafts created by mid-level dry air getting ingested into the storm are creating surface arc clouds on the west side of the storm, as seen in recent visible satellite loops. 94L only has a modest amount of heavy thunderstorm activity associated with it, and the amount of thunderstorm activity will have to increase in order for this system to be considered a tropical depression. Shear is expected to be low for the next four days, and most of the major forecast models develop 94L into a tropical depression 1 - 4 days from now. NHC is giving the wave a 80% of developing into a tropical depression by Wednesday.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of Invest 94L.

Julia
Tropical Storm Julia is being ripped apart by wind shear from Igor, and will likely dissipate on Tuesday.

Typhoon Fanapi hits China
Typhoon Fanapi made landfall in mainland China about 150 miles east-northeast of Hong Kong this morning as a Category 1 storm with 75 mph winds. Fanapi was the strongest typhoon so far this season, peaking at Category 3 strength with 120 mph winds shortly before weakening to a Category 2 storm with 105 mph winds when it hit northern Taiwan early Sunday morning, local time. Fanapi killed three people on the island, and brought rains of up to 1400 mm (4.6 feet) to mountainous regions in the interior. Taipei 101, the second tallest building in the world with more than 100 stories, reportedly swayed some 15 cm in Fanapi's winds.

A remarkably quiet Western Pacific typhoon season and Eastern Pacific hurricane season
It has been an exceptionally quiet Western Pacific typhoon season. Before Fanapi, the strongest typhoon this season was Typhoon Kompasu, a low-end Category 3 storm with 115 mph winds that hit South Korea in early September. According to statistics forwarded to me by NOAA meteorologist Paul Stanko on Guam, by this point in an ordinary typhoon season, we should have had 17 named storms, 11 typhoons, and 2 super supertyphoons (winds of 150+ mph.) This year, we've had just 11 named storms, 5 typhoons, and no supertyphoons. The record low for a typhoon season was 18 named storms (set in 1998), 9 typhoons (set in 1998), and no supertyphoons (set in 1974.) We have a chance of beating all of these records this year. The peak date for the Western Pacific typhoon season is August 28, so we are well past the peak.

It's a similar story out in the Eastern Pacific, where a near-record quiet hurricane season is occurring. So far there have been 6 named storms, 3 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricanes. Ordinarily, we should have had 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricane by this point in the season. Since reliable satellite records of Eastern Pacific hurricane activity began in 1970, the quietest season on record was 1977, when just 8 named storms occurred. The fewest hurricanes occurred in 2007 (four), and there have been two years with no intense hurricanes. The peak of Eastern Pacific hurricane season is around August 25, and on average we can expect just 3 more named storms this year. Thus, we could set records for the fewest named storms and hurricanes this year.


Figure 3. Typhoon Fanapi at landfall in China at 5:15 UTC on September 20, 2010. Image credit: NASA.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The NOGAPS, ECMWF, and GFS models have been predicting development of a strong tropical disturbance or tropical depression in the Central Caribbean 6 - 9 days from now. However, the timing, location, and track of the potential development have been inconsistent from run to run. We should merely take note of the fact that these models predict that the Caribbean will be ripe for tropical storm development late this week and early next week, and not put much faith in the specifics of these highly unreliable long-range forecasts.

I'll have a new post on Tuesday morning.

Jeff Masters

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95L will be a tropical storm in 2 days.
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Looks like 95L will be the talk of the town for a while.

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2479. scott39
Quoting kmanislander:
Good morning all

With 95L on the cards now the next few days will be very interesting. The GFS and Euro still take it into Nicaragua as a cyclone and then it ejects to the N out of Honduras where it pretty much stalls for a while in the far NW Caribbean with a very large windfield.

The current steering flow would seem to favour a more WNW track than due West into Nicaragua but the models obviously believe that the evolution of the steering will basically push this system on a course close to 270 or 275 to the West. I would have thought more like 280 to near the border of Honduras and Nicaragua but time will tell.

I sure hope it doesn't sit and spin in the NW Caribbean.
Goodmorning, So the models are showing it hit land?
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Quoting Jeff9641:


you are so wrong there my friend. Tampa is on a bay and has no protection from a storm surge. I did a study in college and found out that a Cat. 3 or higher would flood all of downtown Tampa by several feet of water. TWC has done a study on this as well and I believe the NHC. This was a big to do when Charley was coming because Charley was supposed to hit north of Tampa.


I think you missed my point. I didn't sday it wouldn't be bad; in fact, I stated the opposite. What I'm saying, though, is that because of geography, geology, and politics, it'd be very unlikely we'd see an aftermath rivalling Katrina's in terms of human misery and suffering. Yes, dollar losses could easily top Katrina's...but there's simply no large areas for muddy, oily water to sit unabated for days or weeks or months.
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Quoting belizeit:
Good Morning We are celebrating 29 years of Independence today here in Belize .
Happy Independence Day! Have fun.
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Good morning all

With 95L on the cards now the next few days will be very interesting. The GFS and Euro still take it into Nicaragua as a cyclone and then it ejects to the N out of Honduras where it pretty much stalls for a while in the far NW Caribbean with a very large windfield.

The current steering flow would seem to favour a more WNW track than due West into Nicaragua but the models obviously believe that the evolution of the steering will basically push this system on a course close to 270 or 275 to the West. I would have thought more like 280 to near the border of Honduras and Nicaragua but time will tell.

I sure hope it doesn't sit and spin in the NW Caribbean.
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15850
Quoting stillwaiting:
....remember it vividly,they were forecasting pinellis county to be 2 islands(the most densely populated county in fl)....tampa bay area has a extreme risk to surge from any tc striking just north,piling water from the sw into the bay and flooding the entire downtown area....
It's really just a disaster waiting to happen IMO
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any spaghetti models for 94l?
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2472. Jax82
Pretty darn scary.
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Quoting Jeff9641:


you are so wrong there my friend. Tampa is on a bay and has no protection from a storm surge. I did a study in college and found out that a Cat. 3 or higher would flood all of downtown Tampa by several feet of water. TWC has done a study on this as well and I believe the NHC. This was a big to do when Charley was coming because Charley was supposed to hit north of Tampa.
....remember it vividly,they were forecasting pinellis county to be 2 islands(the most densely populated county in fl)....tampa bay area has a extreme risk to surge from any tc striking just north,piling water from the sw into the bay and flooding the entire downtown area....
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2468. divdog
Quoting GS121:
no facts at the moment but it seems disney world has escaped almost any moderate to significant damage since they opened in the early 1970s. kinda hard to believe isn't it?
for one thing orlando is 77 miles inland from the gulf and 42 miles inland from the atlantic. When I went thru IVAN, major damage on the beaches. My parents live less than 10 miles inland and suffered very little damage. If you are inland like orlando you are much less vulnurable than being on the coast.
Member Since: August 22, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 755
Quoting Jax82:
I predict a storm will form by the end of October in the Caribbean and make its way into the Gulf, and threaten anywhere from Brownsville to Key West. :) It could be a tropical storm, a Cat 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5. It may get picked up by a trof, it may not. The name of it may be Matthew, Nicole, Otto, Paula, Richard, Shary, Tomas, Virginie or Walter. Chances are it will spin counter-clockwise. There will be east-casters, west-casters, north-casters and dooms-casters. But one thing is for sure, and that is Jim Cantore will be there, and everyone will be saved!
think you just about nailed it there! lol
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2465. FLdewey
Quoting Cotillion:


What's Thursday?

Tropical Upper Tropospheric Trof Thursday may be superseded by Florida forecast Friday.

Only time will tell.
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Quoting weatherman12345:

I must say, florida is a bit overdue for a hurricane. it has been five years. knock on wood
very scary, but very true.
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2463. mbjjm
HWRF 126hrs

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2462. srada
Quoting WXTXN:
I have a hard time believing that sucha radical patternchange is about to occur the last frame has cross polar flow connecting with the low that ejects the two systems after the double east coast hit.


Its funny that the GFS performed so well with the Cape Verde storms but the ones that are close to home, it goes back to performing crappy again? Lets see if it holds to this scenario on the the 11:30 run..will probably have it heading back to Africa
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2461. scott39
Didnt the GFS do the same thing with Karl when he was in the SE Carribean forecasting a more poleward movement?
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Quoting FLdewey:

Just bringing it fresh from the Melbourne Harbor Humor Headquarters.

Great, one more acronym to remember...MHHH....sheesh!
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Quoting Jax82:
I predict a storm will form by the end of October in the Caribbean and make its way into the Gulf, and threaten anywhere from Brownsville to Key West. :) It could be a tropical storm, a Cat 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5. It may get picked up by a trof, it may not. The name of it may be Matthew, Nicole, Otto, Paula, Richard, Shary, Tomas, Virginie or Walter. Chances are it will spin counter-clockwise. There will be east-casters, west-casters, north-casters and dooms-casters. But one thing is for sure, and that is Jim Cantore will be there, and everyone will be saved!

and CycloneOz...LMAO
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Quoting weatherman12345:

what do you think of a hurricane king situation if the weakness becomes more pronounced?


I agree with any scenario. Could do a king and miss the trough and move NNW. Very plausible scenario.
Member Since: November 4, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6577
2452. Jax82
I predict a storm will form by the end of October in the Caribbean and make its way into the Gulf, and threaten anywhere from Brownsville to Key West. :) It could be a tropical storm, a Cat 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5. It may get picked up by a trof, it may not. The name of it may be Matthew, Nicole, Otto, Paula, Richard, Shary, Tomas, Virginie or Walter. Chances are it will spin counter-clockwise. There will be east-casters, west-casters, north-casters and dooms-casters. But one thing is for sure, and that is Jim Cantore will be there, and everyone will be saved!
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2451. GS121
no facts at the moment but it seems disney world has escaped almost any moderate to significant damage since they opened in the early 1970s. kinda hard to believe isn't it?
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Quoting Cotillion:


What's Thursday?


Troll Thursday
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2449. scott39
Quoting kshipre1:
thanks Scott. yes, I understand the weather pattern is changing but maybe I misunderstood the guy at crown weather. I know he was indicating from New Orleans and points eastward at more risk than west of New Orleans. However, interestingly enough, he favors more of a northward to northwest movement rather than a northeasterly turn

am I not understanding something? sorry
To the point in his discussion for a more NW to N movement. I believe he is referring to going against the GFS models timing of the NE turn. Hes not saying it wont turn more NNE or NE later.
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Quoting StormChaser81:


Strong tropical storm will flood St. Petersburg, FL. Pinellas county.

My condo parking lot is 3 feet above sea level and I can see water in the mangroves 30 ft from the back of the building.

Only thing I got going for me is I'm on the third floor. =)


People who don't live in Tampa don't realize just how vulnerable they are. You made a great point. Thanks buddy.
Member Since: November 4, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6577
2447. mbjjm
We are talking about a system that has not formed yet. So, for now, we should just monitor this potential system closely and look for model trends and consistency in the model guidance. Once this system develops into a tropical cyclone, we should be able to get a much better idea on where it may track.
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2446. FLdewey
Quoting KeysieLife:


LOL morning Dewey, glad to see we're off on the right foot already =)

Just bringing it fresh from the Melbourne Harbor Humor Headquarters.
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Hell has already frozen over, which is proved by the Bucs being 2-0, so there should be no reason why a hurricane shouldn't strike there this year.
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Quoting sammywammybamy:


I Just got on? Im Currently at School Working on Java.


So Now we Have Invest 95L... Cant wait to see the model plots
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Quoting Jeff9641:


you are so wrong there my friend. Tampa is on a bay and has no protection from a storm surge. I did a study in college and found out that a Cat. 3 or higher would flood all of downtown Tampa by several feet of water. TWC has done a study on this as well and I believe the NHC. This was a big to do when Charley was coming because Charley was supposed to hit north of Tampa.


Strong tropical storm will flood St. Petersburg, FL. Pinellas county.

My condo parking lot is 3 feet above sea level and I can see water in the mangroves 30 ft from the back of the building.

Only thing I got going for me is I'm on the third floor. =)
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Quoting Jeff9641:


you are so wrong there my friend. Tampa is on a bay and has no protection from a storm surge. I did a study in college and found out that a Cat. 3 or higher would flood all of downtown Tampa by several feet of water. TWC has done a study on this as well and I believe the NHC. This was a big to do when Charley was coming because Charley was supposed to hit north of Tampa.
EXACTLY. I absolutely dread even a mid-level cat 2 making a perpedicular landfall & riding directly up that bay! Look at the shallow continental shelf...just a perfect set-up for mass amounts of water piling up.
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Complete Update


AOI
AOI AOI AOI

AOI AOI AOI

TS BUSTED FORECAST ALIBI
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Quoting GS121:
was just wondering how orlando would fare if tampa had a direct hit by something in the next 2 weeks


We would definitely get hurricane force winds in Orlando. Worst scenario for Orlando as Orlando would be in the RFQ.
Member Since: November 4, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6577
2437. FLdewey
Quoting SuperYooper:
What is this, crabby tuesday?

Had a nice thunderstorm this morning and temperatures above average. Forcast to reach 70!

No apparently wish cast Wednesday came early this week.

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Quoting divdog:
most overused phrase already this morning.


I Just got on? Im Currently at School Working on Java.
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Quoting GS121:
was just wondering how orlando would fare if tampa had a direct hit by something in the next 2 weeks


a lot of people left the Bay Area for Orlando when Charley was coming. It didn't rain here; they got the crap beat out of them over there.

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2433. SLU
433

WHXX01 KWBC 211307

CHGHUR

TROPICAL CYCLONE GUIDANCE MESSAGE

NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL

1307 UTC TUE SEP 21 2010



DISCLAIMER...NUMERICAL MODELS ARE SUBJECT TO LARGE ERRORS.

PLEASE REFER TO NHC OFFICIAL FORECASTS FOR TROPICAL CYCLONE

AND SUBTROPICAL CYCLONE INFORMATION.



ATLANTIC OBJECTIVE AIDS FOR



DISTURBANCE INVEST (AL952010) 20100921 1200 UTC



...00 HRS... ...12 HRS... ...24 HRS. .. ...36 HRS...

100921 1200 100922 0000 100922 1200 100923 0000



LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON

BAMS 12.2N 62.8W 12.7N 65.1W 13.0N 67.7W 13.5N 70.4W

BAMD 12.2N 62.8W 12.5N 64.8W 12.7N 67.1W 12.9N 69.4W

BAMM 12.2N 62.8W 12.5N 64.9W 12.9N 67.4W 13.2N 69.8W

LBAR 12.2N 62.8W 12.8N 65.2W 13.4N 67.7W 13.8N 70.4W

SHIP 20KTS 26KTS 34KTS 49KTS

DSHP 20KTS 26KTS 34KTS 49KTS



...48 HRS... ...72 HRS... ...96 HRS. .. ..120 HRS...

100923 1200 100924 1200 100925 1200 100926 1200



LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON LAT LON

BAMS 13.6N 73.3W 14.4N 78.8W 15.7N 84.1W 17.0N 87.8W

BAMD 13.0N 71.9W 13.6N 77.1W 15.3N 82.3W 17.6N 86.5W

BAMM 13.5N 72.5W 14.3N 78.0W 15.8N 83.7W 17.3N 88.2W

LBAR 14.2N 73.5W 14.9N 80.0W 13.9N 85.6W 15.0N 87.8W

SHIP 66KTS 92KTS 109KTS 120KTS

DSHP 66KTS 92KTS 109KTS 120KTS



...INITIAL CONDITIONS...

LATCUR = 12.2N LONCUR = 62.8W DIRCUR = 275DEG SPDCUR = 12KT

LATM12 = 12.0N LONM12 = 60.4W DIRM12 = 275DEG SPDM12 = 12KT

LATM24 = 11.8N LONM24 = 58.0W

WNDCUR = 20KT RMAXWD = 60NM WNDM12 = 20KT

CENPRS = 1009MB OUTPRS = 1011MB OUTRAD = 150NM SDEPTH = S

RD34NE = 0NM RD34SE = 0NM RD34SW = 0NM RD34NW = 0NM



$$

NNNN
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2432. divdog
Quoting sammywammybamy:


I Have a Feeling that the System will take a Wilma like Track.

most overused phrase already this morning.
Member Since: August 22, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 755

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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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