TD 16 organizing; Mexican landslide kills hundreds; hottest day ever in Los Angeles

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:25 PM GMT on September 28, 2010

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The large area of low pressure centered just south of Cuba's Isle of Youth has developed enough of a well-defined circulation to be classified as Tropical Depression Sixteen, and is likely to become Tropical Storm Nicole by Wednesday. The depression has a very broad center, with little heavy thunderstorm activity near the center, and is this very dissimilar to the usual types of tropical depressions we see in the Atlantic. The large size, broad center, and lack of heavy thunderstorm activity near the center of TD 16 will limit the storm's ability to rapidly intensify. TD 16 resembles the "monsoon depressions" common in India's Bay of Bengal or the Western Pacific. A monsoon depression is similar to a regular tropical depression in the winds that it generates--about 30 - 35 mph near the outer edges (and usually stronger on the eastern side of the circulation.) Monsoon depressions have large, calm centers, and can evolve into regular tropical storms, if given enough time over water to develop a tight, closed circulation. Today's monsoon-like depression in the Caribbean was able to form because the atmospheric flow pattern of the Eastern Pacific has shifted eastwards into the Western Caribbean, bringing in the Eastern Pacific ITCZ (Intertropical Convergence Zone, a region of converging surface winds that creates a band of strong thunderstorms). This unusual flow pattern is forecast to remain in place for at least the next ten days.

An Air Force hurricane hunter aircraft has been flying at 700 feet in TD 16 since 1:30pm EDT, and has thus far found a central pressure of 999 mb. The strongest winds at flight level seen as of 3:20pm EDT were 32 mph, located about 100 miles east of the center of TD 16. Surface observations show that the strongest winds at any surface station continue to be at Buoy 42057, several hundred miles to the southeast of TD 16's center. Winds were 27 mph, gusting to 34 mph at 2:43pm EDT this afternoon. Rotation of TD 16 can be seen on radar loops out of Pico San Juan, Cuba, and well as satellite imagery. The heavy thunderstorms are currently quite disorganized, but a curved band is beginning to wrap around the north side of the center, signaling that TD 16 is growing more organized. TD 16 has brought torrential rains to the Cayman Islands, Jamaica, Cuba, and Honduras today.


Figure 1. Radar-estimated precipitation for South Florida and Cuba. TD 16 has brought 2 - 4 inches of rains to the region.

Forecast for TD 16
Because TD 16 is so large, it will take more time than a typical depression for it to spin up into a strong tropical storm. Given that the steering currents are expected to pull TD 16 north-northeastwards over Cuba and into South Florida and the western Bahamas on Wednesday, the storm lacks sufficient time over water to be any stronger than a 50 mph tropical storm for Florida. TD 16 is organizing pretty slowly this afternoon, and I think the top winds in Southeast Florida are most likely to be in the 25 - 35 mph range on Wednesday. Winds are likely to be stronger in the western Bahamas, perhaps 30 - 40 mph, since they will be in the stronger right front quadrant of the storm. By the time TD 16 makes landfall in South Carolina or North Carolina on Thursday morning, it could be as strong as a 50 - 60 mph tropical storm. However, wind shear will increase sharply on Thursday as TD 16 gets caught in an upper-level trough of low pressure, and NHC is giving TD 16 only a 9% chance of making it to hurricane strength before it becomes an extratropical storm on Thursday. The primary danger from TD 16 is not wind, but heavy rainfall. A potent upper-level low and stationary front over the U.S. East Coast have been pulling moist, tropical air from the Caribbean northwards over the past few days, bringing heavy rains that have saturated the soils. This is called a Predecessor Rain Event, or PRE, since it comes in advance of the actual rain shield of the storm. (A PRE from Hurricane Karl brought southern Wisconsin the heavy rain that caused the levee on the Wisconsin River to fail yesterday.) Wilmington, NC received 10.33 inches of rain yesterday, its second greatest one-day rainfall since record keeping began in 1871. Only the 13.38" that fell during Hurricane Floyd on September 15, 1999 beat yesterday's rainfall total. With TD 16 expected to bring another 6 - 8 inches of rain to the region later this week, serious flooding is likely, and flash flood watches are posted for the North Carolina/ South Carolina border region. South Florida is also under a flood watch, for 3 - 5 inches of rain. Flooding rains of similar magnitude can also be expected in Cuba, the Cayman Islands, and the Western Bahamas through Wednesday night. Both the GFDL and HWRF models are predicting that TD 16 will dump rains in excess of eight inches along narrow portions of its path in eastern Florida, South Carolina, and North Carolina.


Figure 2. Forecast precipitation for the 5-day period from 8am today through 8am EDT Sunday, October 3, 2010. Image credit: NOAA Hydrometeorological Prediction Center.

Up to 1,000 feared dead in Mexican landslide
Mexico has taken the brunt of the devastation from the hurricane season of 2010, thanks to the landfalls of this year's two deadliest and most damaging storms, Hurricanes Alex and Karl. But Mexico's worst blow yet hit this morning, when heavy rains from the remnants of Tropical Storm Matthew triggered a landslide in Mexico's mountainous Oaxaca state that buried as many as 1,000 people in Santa Maria Tlahuitoltepec, a town of 9,000. Rescuers have not reached the area yet, but hundreds are feared dead in the 300 homes that were buried by the early morning landslide. Matthew hit Belize on Saturday as a minimal tropical storm with 40 mph winds, and dissipated Sunday over southern Mexico. However, Matthew's remains stalled out over the region of Mexico that had already received torrential rains from Hurricane Karl, which hit on September 18. Satellite estimates of Matthew's rains over southern Mexico (Figure 3) show that a foot of rain may have fallen in the landslide area. Matthew's remains still linger over the region, but are probably only capable of bringing 1 - 2 inches of additional rain through Thursday.


Figure 3. Satellite-estimated rainfall for the five-day period ending at 8pm EDT Monday September 27, 2010. The dark green colors show where rainfall amounts of 300 mm (about 12 inches) fell, due to the remnants of Tropical Storm Matthew. Image credit: Navy Research Lab, Monterey.

Elsewhere in the tropics
Once TD 16 moves out of the Caribbean, the GFS model predicts that the Western Caribbean will "reload" and produce another tropical disturbance capable of developing into a tropical depression early next week. The GFS also predicts a tropical or subtropical storm will form over the Bahamas late this week, and move north-northeast along the U.S. East Coast, missing hitting land. The NOGAPS model hints at the Bahamas storm, and also predicts development of a tropical wave a few hundred miles northeast of the Lesser Antilles Islands, about a week from now.

Hottest day in Los Angeles history
The mercury hit a blistering 113°F (45.0°C) at 12:15 pm PDT yesterday in downtown Los Angeles, making it the hottest day in Los Angeles history. It may have gotten hotter, but the thermometer broke shortly after the record high was set. The previous record in Los Angeles was 112°F set on June 26, 1990; records go back to 1877. Nearby Long Beach tied its hottest all-time temperature yesterday, with a scorching 111°F. And Christopher C. Burt, our new featured blogger on weather records, pointed out to me that a station in the foothills at 1260' elevation near Beverly Hills owned by the Los Angeles Fire Department hit 119°F yesterday--the hottest temperature ever measured in the Los Angeles area, tying the 119°F reading from Woodland Hills on July 22, 2006. Yesterday's record heat was caused by an unusually large and intense upper-level high pressure system centered over Nevada that generated winds blowing from the land to the ocean, keeping the ocean from exerting its usual cooling influence. Remarkably, Los Angeles had its second coldest summer on record this year, and temperatures just five days ago were some the coldest September temperatures in the region for the past 50 years.

The remarkable summer of 2010
Wunderground is pleased to welcome a new featured blogger--weather historian Christopher C. Burt. Chris is a leading expert in the U.S. on weather records, and is author of the world's most popular weather records book published to date, Extreme Weather: A Guide and Record Book. He's spent a lifetime collaborating with like-minded individuals from around the world, and no one--including official sources such as the National Climatic Data Center and the National Extremes Committee--has done as thorough a job correlating the various weather records available and determining the most accurate extreme values of such. Each month he'll be reporting on the notable records for heat, cold, and precipitation set world-wide, and his first post takes a look at the remarkable summer of 2010. It's great to have someone like Chris who stays on top of weather extremes, and I hope you'll pay a visit to his blog and welcome him to the wunderground site!

"Hurricane Haven" airing this afternoon
My live Internet radio show, "Hurricane Haven", will be airing again today at 4pm EDT. The call in number is 415-983-2634, or you can post a question to broadcast@wunderground.com. Be sure to include "Hurricane Haven question" in the subject line.

Today's show will be about 30 minutes, and you can tune in at http://www.wunderground.com/wxradio/wubroadcast.h tml. The show will be recorded and stored as a podcast.

I'll have updates as the situation with TD 16 requires.

Jeff Masters

Alone again, naturally (ftogrf)
Lonely Seagull, as a storm associated with TD 16 is approaching.
Alone again, naturally

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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Wonder if that 51mph wind is valid.

Pretty odd.



not tagged as suspect
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Quoting kmanislander:


Conditions at our international airport


How often do they zero it out? Shows 80+ winds max with current around 6.
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TORNADO WARNING
FLC097-282200-
/O.NEW.KMLB.TO.W.0033.100928T2112Z-100928T2200Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MELBOURNE FL
512 PM EDT TUE SEP 28 2010

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN MELBOURNE HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
SOUTHERN OSCEOLA COUNTY IN FLORIDA...
THIS INCLUDES LAKE MARIAN...

* UNTIL 600 PM EDT.

* AT 507 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE METEOROLOGISTS DETECTED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO 13 MILES SOUTH
OF LAKE MARIAN...MOVING NORTH AT 30 MPH TOWARD STATE ROAD 60 AND
THE FLORIDA TURNPIKE BETWEEN MILE MARKERS 195 AND 210.

* THE TORNADO WILL OTHERWISE REMAIN OVER MAINLY RURAL AREAS OF THE
INDICATED COUNTY.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

IF IN MOBILE HOMES OR VEHICLES...EVACUATE THEM AND GET INSIDE A
STURDY SHELTER. IF NO SHELTER IS AVAILABLE...LIE FLAT IN THE NEAREST
DITCH OR OTHER LOW SPOT AND COVER YOUR HEAD WITH YOUR HANDS.

HEAVY RAINFALL MAY OBSCURE THIS TORNADO. TAKE COVER NOW! IF YOU WAIT
TO SEE OR HEAR IT COMING...IT MAY BE TOO LATE TO GET TO A SAFE PLACE.

THE SAFEST PLACE TO BE DURING A TORNADO IS IN A STRONG BUILDING ON
THE LOWEST FLOOR...IN AN INTERIOR ROOM SUCH AS A BATHROOM OR CLOSET.
KEEP AWAY FROM WINDOWS. GET UNDER A WORKBENCH OR OTHER PIECE OF
STURDY FURNITURE. USE BLANKETS OR PILLOWS TO COVER YOUR BODY.

EVACUATE MOBILE HOMES OR VEHICLES FOR MORE SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER. IF NO
SHELTER IS AVAILABLE...LIE FLAT IN THE NEAREST DITCH OR OTHER LOW
SPOT AND COVER YOUR HEAD WITH YOUR HANDS. ABANDON YOUR VEHICLE IF THE
TORNADO IS NEARBY.

&&

LAT...LON 2804 8100 2764 8102 2764 8114 2767 8114
2768 8116 2772 8116 2773 8118 2777 8118
2779 8120 2782 8122 2784 8125 2801 8127
TIME...MOT...LOC 2111Z 178DEG 27KT 2772 8112
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Wilmington, NC has picked up over 12 inches of rain.

I used to live in the area, I know how easily the city floods.

Wilmington is in serious trouble right now, I bet.
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Quoting TropicalMan2010:

ok how many times do u need repost this everyone saw it lol


Read one post below yours ;)
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Quoting KanKunKid:


I haven't seen any of that. Perhaps it was a perception amplified by someone that doesn't like kids and acted on by someone already in a bad mood. (Had to sit next to Aunt Martha with the gas problem). At least most parents warn their kids before beating them and the kids know exactly what they did to warrant it. I know the humor lovers here have nothing but respect for the Doctor and the blog and most of the respected bloggers such as yourself.
But cherished perceptions can be impossible to change, even in the face of factual evidence to the contrary. At least when the last witch is burned at the stake, someone will be resting easy, until another one is accused and sentenced and burned.
I think someone is overreacting and your choice of words (metaphorically) confirms my suspicions.
So apparently fun and learning about tropical weather and exchanging information can exist in the same medium. But now the question arises: Whose concept of fun is allowed? Obviously, it is that of the admin and the little helpers. Unfortunately, those concepts aren't published and the only way to find the boundaries is to cross them and get whacked. Seems rather uncivilized for a blog with such intelligent people in it. Then again, so is allowing trolls. I'm not complaining about the free food, I'm saying there's a roach in mine.

By the way, I have a front seat to the developing TD which in the latest Dvorak frames seems to lessening. Our winds here are still 180 @ about 12 gusting to 20.
I would be interested in your opinion on the Dvorak graphic depiction.


The OP took offense at the weekly note from admin which stated--and I'm paraphrasing here--"Tune in to hear Dr. Masters on Hurricane Haven today at four. If you have questions, call this number or send an email to blah-blah-blah" Apparently, it wasn't filled with enough instances of "please" and "thank you", so he thought it was rude and presumptious. A few of us reminded him that was normal, and that he was being a bad guest. He took even greater offense at that, and escalated his rhetoric, only to admit that he was intentionally engaging in trollish behavior. That's all.

I believe this will be Nicole not at 7PM but at 11PM.
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13471
Nicole's rains could give parts of Florida more flooding than Fay.
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Quoting RobbWilder:


My Bluejays were just squaking for peanuts and I had to chase Blackbird/Greckels out of my orange trees. They have ruined my oranges again. It has currently started raining here. Oh Im in Sunrise BTW.


yeah, my blue jays squak for peanuts all the time. Hopefully this (system that shall be named later) will stay weak, as I don't want them blown away! Or any of us in S Florida either.
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Wonder if that 51mph wind is valid.

Pretty odd.



This system such a mess...

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Quoting will40:
20:56:30Z 17.967N 79.117W 977.9 mb
(~ 28.88 inHg) 204 meters
(~ 669 feet) 1001.5 mb
(~ 29.57 inHg) - From 224° at 21 knots
(From the SW at ~ 24.1 mph) 19.1°C*
(~ 66.4°F*) -* 26 knots
(~ 29.9 mph) 55 knots
(~ 63.2 mph) 33 mm/hr
(~ 1.30 in/hr) 44.4 knots (~ 51.1 mph)
Tropical Storm





ok all how many time do we need too keep posting the same info
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Wonder if that 51mph wind is valid.

Pretty odd.



not if this is broad and somewhat subtropical

winds can be well away from the center and still be valid
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Quoting CosmicEvents:
This is probably the most important thing that I've heard all day. I've been waiting for that statement. Do you have a link?


They announced on local news while ago they have been drawing down the drainage canal water for 24 hours now.. I posted this on prev page... yes that is good news.
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Sorry computer got screwy, didn't mean to post the recon data 3 times.
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Wonder if that 51mph wind is valid.

Pretty odd.

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I believe we will have Tropical Storm Nicole at 8PM.
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Quoting seflagamma:


Yes, Dade and Broward as of 5pm are scheduled to stay open.





Chanel 7 new/Met... forgot his name..


eh that's now what CBS4 said..

they said if the center is west of dade county goes through western dade, it's likely miami will receive 40-60mph winds, and the heaviest weather, but if the center is east of south florida, miami wont see any tropical storm force winds.. sustained at least..
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Quoting srada:


thats landfall right at Wilmington..


We are screwed here in Wilmington. All that rain is going to drown us.
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20:56:30Z 17.967N 79.117W 977.9 mb
(~ 28.88 inHg) 204 meters
(~ 669 feet) 1001.5 mb
(~ 29.57 inHg) - From 224° at 21 knots
(From the SW at ~ 24.1 mph) 19.1°C*
(~ 66.4°F*) -* 26 knots
(~ 29.9 mph) 55 knots
(~ 63.2 mph) 33 mm/hr
(~ 1.30 in/hr) 44.4 knots (~ 51.1 mph)
Tropical Storm
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411. mbjjm
pressure steadily declining in Montego Bay near second center.

SPECI MKJS 281943Z 22004KT 1000 SHRA BKN016 OVC070 25/23 Q1003

METAR MKJS 282000Z VRB02KT 9999 -SHRA SCT016 OVC080 24/22 Q1002 RERA

METAR MKJS 282100Z 09004KT 9999 -RA FEW020 OVC070 25/22 Q1001
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Quoting weatherman12345:
was it near the coc


No, but as Doc said, the strongest winds will be "near the outer edges" on a system like this.
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Wow...

20:56:30Z 17.967N 79.117W 977.9 mb(~ 28.88 inHg) 204 meters(~ 669 feet) 1001.5 mb(~ 29.57 inHg) - From 224° at 21 knots(From the SW at ~ 24.1 mph) 19.1°C*(~ 66.4°F*) -* 26 knots(~ 29.9 mph) 55 knots(~ 63.2 mph) 33 mm/hr(~ 1.30 in/hr) 44.4 knots (~ 51.1 mph)Tropical Storm 211.5%
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Quoting sammywammybamy:
South Florida Water Distirct Opening Flood Gates.

This is probably the most important thing that I've heard all day. I've been waiting for that statement. Do you have a link?
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Quoting TropicalMan2010:

yes but note where the coordinates where they found it.


Those higher winds are in the squalls between the Cayman Islands and Jamaica.
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Quoting TropicalMan2010:

yes but note where the coordinates where they found it.


does not matter much to me, I think this system is somewhat subtropical and broad, so finding those winds there still means it is co-located with the system and therefore valid
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Wow patrap, convection completely dying.
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Quoting ecflweatherfan:


In fact there are areas here in Brevard County, FL that have received 6" of rainfall... and the bulk of the activity has not even arrived

All due to that stalled front hanging over the center part of the state.

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when is someone going to tell me to run for my life
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Wow...

20:56:30Z 17.967N 79.117W 977.9 mb
(~ 28.88 inHg) 204 meters
(~ 669 feet) 1001.5 mb
(~ 29.57 inHg) - From 224° at 21 knots
(From the SW at ~ 24.1 mph) 19.1°C*
(~ 66.4°F*) -* 26 knots
(~ 29.9 mph) 55 knots
(~ 63.2 mph) 33 mm/hr
(~ 1.30 in/hr) 44.4 knots (~ 51.1 mph)
Tropical Storm 211.5%
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398. GoWVU
Quoting cat5hurricane:
Not any good news I can give you thus far. Market street is sure gonna be in jeopardy if these precipitation forecasts are anywhere near accurate.


How much in rain totals? What about winds?
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Quoting weatherman12345:
was it near the coc


no, south and east of it
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Quoting leo305:
david brenard just said.. its more likely that NICOLE moves east of SOUTH FLORIDA and that the heaviest weather will be well off shore..

...

I guess he ignored the models which is shocking for him.. based on what I've seen from him..



Maybe he meant most of the weather from Nicole is offshore. Mike Lyons in WPB noted that the models shifted west which would give us more rain while Steve Weagel didn't seem that concerned minus the potential flooding.
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Quoting weatherman12345:
any news on the schools yet?


Yes, Dade and Broward as of 5pm are scheduled to stay open.



Quoting leo305:


who's they?


Chanel 7 new/Met... forgot his name..
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391. srada
Quoting Patrap:


Second landfall right at Wilmington..
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Wow,
talk about amazing Lat/Longitude predictions. I went to this site,

http://itouchmap.com/latlong.html
(great site by the way, pretty cool stuff)

Typed in my address in Boynton Beach, FL., and the points showed for my address: 26.50N/80.06W
The 11AM 24 hour forcast position for TD16 showed: 26.5N/80.00W

That's amazingly close to my rooftop. On top of it actually. Hopefully will not be too strong of a storm tomorrow evening, we shall see. Looks like a lot of rain, and not a big wind event..
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Quoting kmanislander:
I find it somewhat amusing that the surface pressure at Grand Cayman is lower than the pressure where the center of TD16 is. Doesn't make a lot of sense to me.


We don't know that, kman. The lowest reading was an hour and a half ago.

You were about the same pressure, iirc.

Let's see where it is when they get back in that area.
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Recon found winds of 51mph
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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.