Igor delivers punishing blow to Newfoundland; 95L growing more organized

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:21 PM GMT on September 22, 2010

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Hurricane Igor delivered a punishing blow to Newfoundland Canada, which suffered one of its worst poundings by a hurricane in the past century. Igor made it all the way to southeast Newfoundland yesterday as a Category 1 hurricane, bringing a peak wind gust of 107 mph to Cape Pine in Southeast Newfoundland. Igor brought sustained winds of 58 mph, gusting to 85 mph, to Newfoundland's capital, St John's. The city recorded a remarkably low pressure of 958 mb, and picked up 3.99" of rain during Igor's passage. Widespread rain amounts of 5 - 9 inches fell over much of southeast Newfoundland's rocky terrain, which is unable to absorb so much water. The resulting severe flooding washed out hundreds of roads, collapsed several major bridges, and forced numerous rescues of people trapped on the second stories of their homes by flood waters. Igor generated swells of 6 - 8 meters (20 - 26 feet) that pounded the southern coast of Newfoundland last night and this morning; significant wave heights reached 39 feet at the Newfoundland Grand Banks Buoy, and a storm surge of a meters (3.28 feet) hit the northeast shores of Newfoundland last night. Igor is now a large and powerful extratropical storm off Greenland and Labrador, and continues to generate hurricane force winds over water--winds at Angisoq, Greenland were sustained at 66 mph this morning.

It is not that unusual for hurricanes to penetrate as far north as Newfoundland's latitude; over 40 hurricanes have done so. The last time this occurred was in 2003, when Hurricane Fabian made it to latitude 48.7°N as a hurricane. The all time record is held by Hurricane Faith of 1966, which followed the Gulf Stream and maintained hurricane status all the way north to latitude 61.1°N, just off the coast of Norway.


Figure 1. Little Barsway bridge 10 km north of Grand Bank, Newfoundland, after floodwaters from Hurricane Igor swept it away. Image credit: George J.B. Rose.


Figure 2. Hurricane Igor at 11:47am EDT on Wednesday, September 21, as it pounded Newfoundland as a Category 1 hurricane with 75 mph winds. Image credit: Environment Canada.


Figure 3. Video of impressive flooding on Newfoundland's Burin Peninsula, whose 20,000 residents were cut off from the rest of the province by flooded roads and closed bridges.

Dangerous Caribbean disturbance 95L growing more organized
A tropical wave (Invest 95L) moving westward at 15 mph though the south-central Caribbean is bringing gusty winds and heavy rain to the northern coast of Venezuela and the islands of Curacao, Aruba, and Bonaire this morning. A wind gust of 38 mph was recorded at Curacao last night. Radar from Curacao and satellite loops show that 95L's thunderstorms have a pronounced rotation, with a center of circulation located just off the coast of South America. Thunderstorm activity is fairly limited, but is slowly increasing in areal coverage and intensity. Wind shear over the Caribbean is low, 5 - 10 knots, and is forecast to remain low to moderate, 5 - 15 knots, for the rest of the week. NHC is giving the disturbance a 60% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Thursday. I'd put the odds higher, at 70%. The Hurricane Hunters are scheduled to investigate 95L this afternoon.

The wave should continue moving westward near 15 mph through Friday afternoon, when it will arrive near the northern coast of Nicaragua. Most of the models show some development of 95L by Thursday or Friday, and the disturbance will bring heavy rains to the Netherlands Antilles Islands and north coast of South America on today and Thursday as passes to the north. Heavy rains may also spread to Southwest Haiti and Jamaica on Thursday, and the Cayman Islands, Cuba, Honduras, and Nicaragua on Friday. When 95L moves over or just north of Honduras on Saturday, a trough of low pressure diving southwards over the Eastern U.S. will weaken the steering currents over the Western Caribbean and cause 95L to turn more to the northwest and slow. If the center of 95L remains over water, the storm could easily develop into powerful and dangerous Hurricane Matthew over the Western Caribbean early next week. Even if the center stays over land, the circulation of the storm may be capable of generating dangerous flooding rains over Central America. Steering currents will be weak over the Western Caribbean through the middle of next week, and 95L may spend up to a week over the Western Caribbean, drenching the region with very heavy rains. Another possibility is that the trough of low pressure over the Eastern U.S. will be strong enough to draw 95L northwards across western Cuba and into the Gulf of Mexico 6 - 8 days from now. This solution is not being emphasized as much in today's model's runs as yesterday's, and the danger to the U.S. is uncertain at this point.


Figure 4. Morning satellite image of 95L.

Tropical Storm Lisa
Tropical Storm Lisa continues to churn the waters of the far Eastern Atlantic. By Friday night, upper level winds out of the west are expected to increase, bringing high wind shear of 20 - 45 knots over Lisa. The high shear may be capable of destroying the storm by early next week. It appears unlikely that Lisa will affect any land areas.

Georgette headed towards Arizona
Tropical Depression Georgette hit the tip of Baja California as a weak tropical storm with 40 mph winds yesterday, but dropped little rain. Georgette is in the Gulf of California, headed northwards, and could bring heavy rains to Arizona on Thursday.

Hurricane Karl's aftermath
Mexico continues to clean up from Hurricane Karl, which made landfall last Friday in Veracruz state as a Category 3 hurricane with 115 mph winds. Karl dumped approximately one foot of rain in the Sierra Madre Oriental Mountains, which cause some rivers to rise to unprecedented levels. The death toll from Karl's flooding and mudslides stands at 16, and ten of thousands remain in shelters after being displaced from their flooded homes. Insurance company AIR Worldwide is estimating insured losses at $100 - $200 million. Actual damage is estimated to be as much as $3.9 billion, since insurance take-up rates are low in Mexico. Karl is the second billion-dollar hurricane to hit Mexico this year; in June, Hurricane Alex hit just south of the Texas border as a Category 2 storm, killing 51 and doing $1.9 billion in damage.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The GFS model predicts a new tropical depression might develop in the Central Caribbean about seven days from now. The NOGAPS model predicts a new tropical depression will form off the coast of Africa about seven days from now.

My next post will be Thursday morning.

Jeff Masters

Uprooted Buoy (Maciejewski)
A buoy is left stranded on the beach from the storm waves of Hurricane Igor...
Uprooted Buoy

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what kind of a threat could we face on the north gulf coast with 95l?
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Quoting Cotillion:
Actually a question on the East Pacific:

Why is TD Georgette - whilst about to dump rains on Mexico - without an Aviso Publico when it is going to be directly affecting an Hispanophone country?

Did I miss it or something?
Maybe because it is expected to impact Mexico directly, and Mexican authorities are handling advisories on their own... also, maybe because its a TD?
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Quoting scott39:
Update to post 37 I went back 30 years this time to 1980. This is only TCs that made LANDFALL on the GulfCoast from Late September/thru mid October.

West/SW FL. Gulf Coast 4

N/NE Gulf Coast 9



AHH!So your saying there is a chance??
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Too bad we cant ask the great Cuban forecaster "Father Benito Vines" i just learned of him.. Link

I wonder what he would think of Global Models and vorticity maps.
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Hi all,

This is my first post, although I've read this blog since about Katrina.

Here in Newfoundland, no one recalls a storm quite like this one (and we get a lot of storms). In addition to the flooding caused by the intense rains, the wind damage here in St. John's was very high. Thousands of trees are down throughout the city, and the power is still off in many areas. And as one person mentioned, there was one fatality. I hope there aren't more caused by fact that most of the traffic lights in the city aren't working.
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Update to post 37 I went back 30 years this time to 1980. This is only TCs that made LANDFALL on the GulfCoast from Late September/thru mid October.

West/SW FL. Gulf Coast 4

N/NE Gulf Coast 9


Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6875
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Actually a question on the East Pacific:

Why is TD Georgette - whilst about to dump rains on Mexico - without an Aviso Publico when it is going to be directly affecting an Hispanophone country?

Did I miss it or something?
Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 7 Comments: 5300
Quoting StormJunkie:
12z GFS @ 48hrs


Hey SJ, Good (checks time), Morning.
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12z GFS @ 48hrs

Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 16874
2010 Storms
All Active Year


Atlantic
95L.INVEST
14L.LISA
12L.JULIA

East Pacific
97E.INVEST
12E.GEORGETTE

Central Pacific
97C.INVEST

West Pacific
13W.MALAKAS

Indian Ocean
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248. Kearn
Quoting hydrus:
The NCEP has a big storm over the Bahamas after the Gulf system lifts out. It seems to be coming from the east.,,Link


interesting

but like many others feel, it is still too early to put our faith in models
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Quoting KanKunKid:


Will it snow in Chicago on Thanksgiving?



Only if we "bust the trough" and "pump the" well you know....
Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 590
Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:
New East Pacific invest


EP 97 2010092212 BEST 0 135N 960W 20 0 DB




Took their sweet time with it.
Member Since: August 23, 2008 Posts: 7 Comments: 5300
Quoting jeffs713:

Interesting that the operational GFS is south of all the ensemble members from 48-hours on.
The NCEP has a big storm over the Bahamas after the Gulf system lifts out. It seems to be coming from the east.,,Link
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21704
New East Pacific invest


EP 97 2010092212 BEST 0 135N 960W 20 0 DB
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 11251
Who's knows. There might only be one target zone. That's Central America. Who's to say that this thing won't die off after significant interaction w/ the rugged terrain? If it doesn't get it's act together by tmrw nite, that is becoming increasingly likely IMO. Timing could be key.

High TCHP's, low shear, lack of dry air...all that is great, sure. But I'm not too impressed w/ imagery of this thing the past 12 hrs.

Furthermore, NHC is giving it a 60% chance by Saturday morning (48hrs).
Member Since: August 17, 2010 Posts: 21 Comments: 6939
242. Kearn
Quoting Hurricanes101:


Have no clue where you are getting that from, South America is having some effects on the system now, but 95L will be moving away from there over the next few days and there is very little out there to stop it from becoming a storm


if he winds up too far south he's going to drag over the mountains, and if he gets too close to the GOM he's going to have some shear to deal with

the only way he can go is back east, but he's going to get slammed into the yucatan
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Link


This is very interesting link....

Its from the UCF weather site...
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Quoting Kearn:
if he was 100 or so miles north we would have more to worry about, but it appears that the equator is going to have some prohibiting effects on this system if it gets any farther south

most likely a hit in the yucatan and maybe a depression in FL/cuba


Have no clue where you are getting that from, South America is having some effects on the system now, but 95L will be moving away from there over the next few days and there is very little out there to stop it from becoming a storm
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Quoting Bordonaro:
This is NOT good!!!!!

Interesting that the operational GFS is south of all the ensemble members from 48-hours on.
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Quoting NOLALawyer:


It's all about having good sources and how you use them to display information.
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Quoting Kearn:
hi all

no need to worry about this

most models are now showing a max wind speed of 80-95 MPH, that's a cat 1-2

this thing is headed west too fast to be able to become a major hurricane, it's most likely going to drag over the yucatan and dissipate


Brilliant!!!!!
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236. Kearn
if he was 100 or so miles north we would have more to worry about, but it appears that the equator is going to have some prohibiting effects on this system if it gets any farther south

most likely a hit in the yucatan and maybe a depression in FL/cuba
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Quoting notverylikely:


Reply

Charging the bull are we? Not wise.
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Quoting FSUCOOPman:
I keep reading all of this stuff about how 95L is getting more organized, but it doesn't even look like a mass of T-storms. What's the map called that shows vorticity? Can someone post it?


850MB


500MB
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still visible
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231. Kearn
hi all

no need to worry about this

most models are now showing a max wind speed of 80-95 MPH, that's a cat 1-2

this thing is headed west too fast to be able to become a major hurricane, it's most likely going to drag over the yucatan and dissipate
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Quoting kshipre1:
that's what I thought but according to Dr. Masters, the models overall are a little less bullish on a florida and US hit than yesterday even though the GFS ensembles show this

I am not sure what to think or feel right now. maybe see how the storm system gets ramped, it's pace of intensification and let the models do their magic.

for the first time this year, I am not saying, "it all depends on the High". Now, it really depends on the timing and strength of the trough
Look at post 37
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 6875
Quoting FSUCOOPman:
I keep reading all of this stuff about how 95L is getting more organized, but it doesn't even look like a mass of T-storms. What's the map called that shows vorticity? Can someone post it?
The GEM model shows a threat to the Florida west coast..Link
Member Since: September 27, 2007 Posts: 1 Comments: 21704
that's what I thought but according to Dr. Masters, the models overall are a little less bullish on a florida and US hit than yesterday even though the GFS ensembles show this

I am not sure what to think or feel right now. maybe see how the storm system gets ramped, it's pace of intensification and let the models do their magic.

for the first time this year, I am not saying, "it all depends on the High". Now, it really depends on the timing and strength of the trough
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Here is a link to all the models on Google Earth, this does NOT look good!!!!
Link
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting nrtiwlnvragn:


Maybe this webpage will answer your questions.


Thanks. That explains why they are calling for possible spotter activation this afternoon in my area.
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I keep reading all of this stuff about how 95L is getting more organized, but it doesn't even look like a mass of T-storms. What's the map called that shows vorticity? Can someone post it?
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Quoting P451:


Too early to put any faith in the models. We need a well defined depression and we need several model runs on it.

Until then...it's all a guess. Two target zones of course are Central America/Yucatan/Cuba - and the second is Cuba/Florida. When we get to that point then we can see if it's going to be a coastal rider (east coast) or cross Florida and head out to sea.

Way too early. We don't even know when it will develop and how strong it can get.


very good and correct post!
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220. HCW
Quoting Bordonaro:
This is NOT good!!!!!


That is just one of many models :)
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219. P451
Quoting scott39:
How are you feeling about the Current ECMWF and GFS going towards S Fl. and up the E Coast?


Too early to put any faith in the models. We need a well defined depression and we need several model runs on it.

Until then...it's all a guess. Two target zones of course are Central America/Yucatan/Cuba - and the second is Cuba/Florida. When we get to that point then we can see if it's going to be a coastal rider (east coast) or cross Florida and head out to sea.

Way too early. We don't even know when it will develop and how strong it can get.
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seems strange that the models are less bullish than yesterday especially when the GFS ensembles are all almost pointing at Florida.

I know they are just models but I would think there is some truth to this
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Quoting breald:


For all weather situations?


Maybe this webpage will answer your questions.
Member Since: September 23, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 11251
This is NOT good!!!!!
Member Since: August 25, 2009 Posts: 20 Comments: 6785
Quoting breald:


For all weather situations?

In florida it's not like the midwest... we typically activate for cold fronts moving through if severe weather is expected, or for tropical landfalls.

I'm not sure but it most likely varies by location.
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 42 Comments: 6269
Northern portion of the low is starting to consolidate on Radar.

Link
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Station 42058 stopped transmitting 11/22/2009. This buoy will be restored to service when it can be worked into the schedule

Hate it when that happens...Go fix your toys :)
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 16874
211. HCW
Quoting StormChaser81:


Spotters are trained weather spotters people by the NWS.

Just letting them know to keep a look out and report anything important.


Speaking of that the BMX NWS will offer advanced spotter training online NOV 30th


The next Graduate Spotter Class (GSC) has been scheduled for November 30th at 6 pm.**
To sign up for the GSC, please send an email to john.deblock@noaa.gov . John is our Warning Coordination Meteorologist

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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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