Huge Western Caribbean low bringing heavy rains; Wisconsin levee failing

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 12:26 PM GMT on September 27, 2010

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Today, for the first day since August 20, the National Hurricane Center will not be issuing any advisories for an Atlantic named storm. Thus ends a remarkably active 36-day period that saw the formation of ten named storms, six hurricanes, and five intense hurricanes--an entire hurricane season's worth of activity, compressed into just five weeks of the six-month season. This season is not done yet, as we still have three more weeks of peak hurricane season left to go, and the Western Caribbean is looking poised to generate a tropical storm sometime in the next ten days.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of the Western Caribbean and Central America, showing the remains of Matthew over Mexico, and a large area of disturbed weather beginning to develop over the Western Caribbean.

A wet week ahead for the Western Caribbean, Florida, and the Western Bahamas
Pressures are falling over the Western Caribbean today as a large area of low pressure develops over the region. This low is bringing heavy rains across a huge area, from the Pacific shores of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Mexico, to eastern Cuba and Haiti. All of Central America, eastern Mexico, the western 2/3 of the Caribbean, plus the Bahamas and Florida can expect sporadic periods of very heavy tropical rains over the coming week, with peak amounts of 3 - 6 inches per day possible. In the Western Caribbean, a few hundred miles east of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, a region of concentrated thunderstorms has built this morning, and has the potential to develop into a tropical depression by Wednesday. A large trough of low pressure over the Eastern U.S. is producing steering currents that will pull this area of disturbed weather to the north-northeast across western Cuba on Tuesday and Wednesday. The disturbance should move over Florida on Wednesday and Thursday, and over North Carolina by Thursday and Friday. All of these regions can expect very heavy rains from the disturbance, and NHC is giving a 30% chance that the disturbance will develop into a tropical depression by Wednesday. The Hurricane Hunters are on call to investigate the disturbance this afternoon, if necessary.

Once the disturbance moves out of the Caribbean, the GFS and NOGAPS models predict that the Western Caribbean will "reload" and produce another tropical disturbance capable of developing into a tropical depression late this week or early next week. The steering currents are not expected to change over the coming ten days, and Florida and western Cuba can expect to see this second disturbance potentially bring a second round of heavy rain late this week and early next week.

Levee failing in Wisconsin due to rains from Hurricane Karl's moisture
In Portage, Wisconsin, about 25 miles north of Madison, a sub-standard 120-year-old levee is failing, thanks to flood waters 3.5 feet above flood stage on the Wisconsin River. The river was swollen last week by heavy rains of up to seven inches that fell in its watershed to the northwest. The rains were generated by a plume of very moist air associated with what was Hurricane Karl. This moisture was lifted over a warm front draped over Minnesota and Wisconsin on Wednesday and Thursday. These types of rain events are called Predecessor Rain Events (PREs), because they typically precede the actual arrival of the rain shield of a tropical storm.


Figure 2. Rainfall over Minnesota and Wisconsin for the seven-day period ending 8pm EDT Sunday 9/26/10. Heavy rains to the northwest of Portage, Wisconsin led to flooding along the Wisconsin River in Portage. Image credit: NOAA.

Canadian Military responds for Hurricane Igor relief
At least twenty communities in Newfoundland, Canada are still cut off from civilization after Tuesday's rampage by Hurricane Igor. The Canadian military has sent three warships and a number of helicopters into the disaster zone to deliver food, fuel, and medical supplies to those communities still cut off. Igor killed one person and caused over $100 million in damage to the island.


Figure 3. Miniature golf anyone? A house in St. John's Newfoundland now has a very three-dimensional front yard, thanks to Hurricane Igor's winds and rain. Image credit: Zach Goudie.

I'll have an update Tuesday morning.

Jeff Masters

Wisconsin River Flooding in Wisconsin Rapids September 2010 (LadyWriter)
Jackson Street Bridge late Saturday afternoon at cresting.
Wisconsin River Flooding in Wisconsin Rapids September 2010
Wisconsin River Flooding in Wisconsin Rapids September 2010 (LadyWriter)
Taken from First Avenue while looking eastward toward Grand Avenue Bridge/Elks Club when the flooding was at its worst
Wisconsin River Flooding in Wisconsin Rapids September 2010

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Late Nite Tropical Update Sept. 27th. 2010
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting kmanislander:


Yes, its been bouncing up and down all day like that
East End still showing 1004 mb.Link
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8392
Quoting kmanislander:


6 mph on my end of the island out of the South, Pressure 1005.4 and steady


Link Please?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting anyotherliestotell:


katrina in so fl was a joke. i sat on my porch for that one. one tree down per block at most. no electrical for 24 hours. hardly worth a 'cane party.
There were 14 fatalities reported in Florida as a result of Hurricane Katrina.[2]Does this look like a joke to you ? I try to ignore most of the BS you put out there but when you say things like that you really test me.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8392
Quoting hunkerdown:
your pressure has come up about 1 mb, weren't you at 1004.4 earlier ?


Yes, its been bouncing up and down all day like that
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting centex:
They don't want to hear 1003, unchanged since invest has been tracked.

Link


Really? I see 1003 listed, SSD has it listed at 1000, which is it? Don't blame the users for inaccurate information, it could be either.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting kmanislander:


6 mph on my end of the island out of the South, Pressure 1005.4 and steady
your pressure has come up about 1 mb, weren't you at 1004.4 earlier ?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
I really think the COC at this time is located at 18.4N 86.1W but broad yes deep but still broad
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
This is awesome!

When I come to Wunderground, my account is already signed in.

When I go to Wikipedia, I'm already signed in.

When I go to my school's website, I'm already signed it.

I dont know what I did, but i like it.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- ------------------------------------------

In other news, Invest 96L is gaining strength at a pretty steady rate. Development on the 29/30th (Wednesday/Thursday) is likely in my opinion. I believe it will cross Western Cuba, make landfall in South FLorida, then come up for another landfall on the outerbanks of NC, or shoot the gap between the East Coast and Bermuda. I give 96L a 50% chance of development within the next 48 hours.

Image of 96L

Ex-Julia was firing good convection yesterday and this morning. I have no clue what happened, but she looks pitiful right now. Julia should continue to move to the west until the same trof that picks up "Nicole", will come and pick Julia's remnants up. I give Ex-Julia a Near 0% chance of development within the next 48 hours.

Image of Ex-Julia

We have a Tropical Wave near 50W 10N. ASCAT from late last night, or early this morning revealed a well-defined circulation, but weak winds. Convection has been flucating throughout the day, but overall, the system is slowly organizing. I give this system a 20% chance of development within the next 48 hours.

Image of TW (97L?)
firefox
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting stormwatcherCI:
It's weird though since the winds just died down to 5 mph and just about 15-20 minutes ago was at 25-30 mph.


6 mph on my end of the island out of the South, Pressure 1005.4 and steady
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting CyclonicVoyage:



You have a broad LP center just to your west or it's a tight center that has just passed and slightly N of your location.
It's weird though since the winds just died down to 5 mph and just about 15-20 minutes ago was at 25-30 mph.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8392
Quoting CyclonicVoyage:



You have a broad LP center just to your west or it's a tight center that has just passed and slightly N of your location.


I did notice on P451's awesome model layout that the center may actually be forming right on top of you and the 1000 or 1003 low center is drawn in.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting NRAamy:
Presslord.....come again?
Quoting presslord:


...you wish...

What you mean you can't .....
and I was told you were the "Man"

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2050. leo305
Quoting quante:
Not to be cavalier. But a Cat 1 in So. Fla not such a big deal. Now if it spins up to something more, different story. It is those Cape Verde Cat 5 that are SCARY!! ala Andrew.

Wilma was bad, but not like Andrew.


tell that to katrina when it hit SFL
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2049. Seastep
Will be back to check out the weather when I am done (priorities), but my A/C went kaput last night, so have been researching and found this on an HVAC forum that I thought most would get a kick out of:

"As the only person in Florida that is a licensed state AC contractor & Professional Engineer, my experience and credentials are far superior than anyone's on this site."

"Geez don't be afraid to tell us what you really think."
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2048. centex
They don't want to hear 1003, unchanged since invest has been tracked.

Link
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting CyclonicVoyage:



You have a broad LP center just to your west or it's a tight center that has just passed and slightly N of your location.
Thanks.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8392
2046. quante
Not to be cavalier. But a Cat 1 in So. Fla not such a big deal. Now if it spins up to something more, different story. It is those Cape Verde Cat 5 that are SCARY!! ala Andrew.

Wilma was bad, but not like Andrew.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting uncwhurricane85:


yeah weve received 8 inches of rain the past 36 hours, and are expecting another 1-2 tonight and early morning, then this cluster of tropical moister that may become nicole is going to move over our area thursday! nothing we are not used to here in hurricane prone eastern NC!
Quoting mcluvincane:


Its been quite a while since our last storm though. Way overdue


Not knowing what or if is why I'm here. Looks like a center is trying to develop around cayman but its not a "hot tower", it's barely got it together. I feel like you may see something out from OBX sometime, still unsure of intensity and track. SST's hot enough to blow it up
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2044. Ron5244
Quoting Grothar:


What link are you using? The HWRF runs more than one model. Maybe I can help.


I am using this one.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting stormwatcherCI:
Winds have shifted here to wsw. What does that signify ? Grothar, no smart answers please.



You have a broad LP center just to your west or it's a tight center that has just passed and slightly N of your location.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting A4Guy:


please look up the definition of "hot tower" before you use the term....


Hot tower means different things to different people.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
LOOKS LIKE A 1003MB LOW ON THE 00Z MAP

leo D-Max don't start till mid-night or atleast till 11 and over by sunrise or just after
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
This is awesome!

When I come to Wunderground, my account is already signed in.

When I go to Wikipedia, I'm already signed in.

When I go to my school's website, I'm already signed it.

I dont know what I did, but i like it.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- ------------------------------------------

In other news, Invest 96L is gaining strength at a pretty steady rate. Development on the 29/30th (Wednesday/Thursday) is likely in my opinion. I believe it will cross Western Cuba, make landfall in South FLorida, then come up for another landfall on the outerbanks of NC, or shoot the gap between the East Coast and Bermuda. I give 96L a 50% chance of development within the next 48 hours.

Image of 96L

Ex-Julia was firing good convection yesterday and this morning. I have no clue what happened, but she looks pitiful right now. Julia should continue to move to the west until the same trof that picks up "Nicole", will come and pick Julia's remnants up. I give Ex-Julia a Near 0% chance of development within the next 48 hours.

Image of Ex-Julia

We have a Tropical Wave near 50W 10N. ASCAT from late last night, or early this morning revealed a well-defined circulation, but weak winds. Convection has been flucating throughout the day, but overall, the system is slowly organizing. I give this system a 20% chance of development within the next 48 hours.

Image of TW (97L?)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2038. Grothar
Quoting stormwatcherCI:
Winds have shifted here to wsw. What does that signify ? Grothar, no smart answers please.


When you throw them out there, storm, I just can't help myself sometime. I'll hold back, though for the sake of the blog. We may be talking some serious business here in the next few days.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26479
Quoting Grothar:


That's OK, I was just sitting here waiting for you to answer. LOL


What have I missed?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2036. Grothar
Quoting Ron5244:


I am getting a much weaker system than this when I run the 18z HWRF...interesting.


What link are you using? The HWRF runs more than one model. Maybe I can help.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26479
Quoting CyclonicVoyage:


Most models are predicting a strong TS, some minimal hurricane. Looking at the current satellite trends pay close head. I was TD/TS at best earlier but, not so much anymore. Cat 1 cannot be ruled out ATM if the current 1000mb pressure is valid.
Winds have shifted here to wsw. What does that signify ? Grothar, no smart answers please.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8392
Quoting P451:
Good Evening.


CMC 144 Hour - 12Z Run



ECMWF 144 Hour - 12Z Run



GFS 168 Hour - 18Z Run





From MOE


Nice job posting the models! That's a very compact and useful way to see the model runs. Please keep on doing it.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting naplesdreamer28:
From what it looks like, can S FL see a Hurricane or is that pretty much out of the question (hopefully).


Most models are predicting a strong TS, some minimal hurricane. Looking at the current satellite trends pay close head. I was TD/TS at best earlier but, not so much anymore. Cat 1 cannot be ruled out ATM if the current 1000mb pressure is valid.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting naplesdreamer28:
From what it looks like, can S FL see a Hurricane or is that pretty much out of the question (hopefully).


Its possible that S FL could see a hurricane, but this is not imminent. If this highly broad system takes its diddly-daddly time to organize a tighter center, then it'll be a tropical storm. But if it gets a tighter center early, then it could strengthen beyond that.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting CaptainSluggo:


I'm new here, but I have a life already. Somewhere.
if you are here at this hour you better turn in your "life card"
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2028. Grothar
Quoting wunderkidcayman:
LOL Grothar we have a West Bay on Grand Cayman and West End on Cayman Brac by the way sorry for posting this so long I got busy and just got back


That's OK, I was just sitting here waiting for you to answer. LOL
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 26479


Latest surface analysis.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8392
What's the possibility of 96L just lingering down there for a day or two allowing for more intensification?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2024. A4Guy
Quoting P451:
Good Evening.


CMC 144 Hour - 12Z Run



ECMWF 144 Hour - 12Z Run



GFS 168 Hour - 18Z Run





From MOE




at least they're all consistent
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting P451:
Good Evening.


CMC 144 Hour - 12Z Run



ECMWF 144 Hour - 12Z Run



GFS 168 Hour - 18Z Run





From MOE


This displeases me.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
From what it looks like, can S FL see a Hurricane or is that pretty much out of the question (hopefully).
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2020. NRAamy
Presslord.....come again?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Our local meteorologist in Tampa Bay (Baynews9) seem certain that it (96L) will impact south Florida but not the Tampa Area. He says the ULL over North Carolina will block it and pulled NE rather than North.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2016. leo305
so two models take it as a HURRICANE over SFL..
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
2015. Ron5244
Quoting Grothar:


I am getting a much weaker system than this when I run the 18z HWRF...interesting.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

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About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.