Paula weakens, heads towards Cuba

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:42 PM GMT on October 13, 2010

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Data from an Air Force Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicates that Hurricane Paula has weakened substantially, and may now be a Category 1 hurricane. The aircraft has made three penetrations of the eye as of 3:30pm EDT, and found top surface winds of 80 mph with their SFMR instrument. Top winds seen at flight level of 10,000 feet were 92 mph, which translates to 83 mph surface winds, using the 10% reduction rule of thumb. Based on these data, it is reasonable to assume Paula is now a Category 1 hurricane with 85 - 90 mph winds, since the aircraft may not have sampled where the peak winds were occurring. Paula is in the Yucatan Channel, the narrow gap between Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula and the western tip of Cuba, and has now turned and is headed northeast towards Cuba. A rain band with heavy rains lies over the western tip of Cuba, and Cabo San Antonio on the western tip of Cuba picked up 2.80" of rain so far today from Paula. However, the winds have remained below 15 mph.


Figure 1. Radar image from the Pinar del Rio radar in Cuba at 3:15pm EDT on October 13, 2010, showing the eye of Paula near the western tip of Cuba. A strong spiral band was affecting western Cuba at this time. Image credit: Cuban Institute of Meteorology.

High wind shear due to strong upper-level winds out of the south are starting to tear up the southern portion of Paula, and satellite imagery shows the storm now has a lopsided appearance due to the shear. Low level spiral banding is no longer as impressive, and lines of low-level arc-shaped clouds are racing away from the southern portion of Paula, indicating that the hurricane has ingested dry air that has created strong thunderstorm downdrafts. Ingestion of this dry air is partially responsible for Paula's recent weakening. Water vapor satellite loops confirm the presence of a large amount of dry air on the south, west, and north sides of Paula.

Forecast for Paula
A small storm like Paula may weaken very quickly under the current 30 knots of wind shear and the dry air surrounding it. However, the latest 3pm EDT eye report from the Hurricane Hunters indicated that Paula's eyewall still remained solid, so Paula may be able to hang on for a few more hours before the shear drives dry air into the inner core and destroys the eyewall. Once that occurs, Paula should weaken more rapidly. I'd be surprised if Paula was still a hurricane on Thursday morning, even if it does not hit Cuba. Hurricane force winds extend out just fifteen miles from Paula's center, so only a very small region of coast will receive Paula's strongest winds if landfall occurs. The 11am EDT wind probability product from NHC gives Cabo San Antonio on the western tip of Cuba the highest odds of receiving hurricane force winds of any land area--a 35% chance. Key West is given a 4% chance, and Havana, Cuba, an 8% chance. These probabilities are slightly higher than they were in the 5am advisory, reflecting Paula's ability to hang tough in the face of 30 knots of wind shear. It currently appears that heavy rain will be the major threat from Paula. If Paula stalls over or near western Cuba for several days, the hurricane could easily dump more than ten inches over mountainous regions of the island.

The latest SHIPS model forecast calls for wind shear to rise to a very high 35 - 40 knots on Thursday afternoon, and remain above 25 knots for the rest of the week. This high shear, combined with the expected landfall of the center over mountainous Cuba, should be enough to destroy Paula by Sunday.

The latest set of model runs from 8am EDT (12Z) are very similar to the previous sets of runs. There are two basic solutions. One solution, championed by the GFDL and GFS ensemble mean, takes Paula just south of the Florida Keys on Friday morning, then into the Bahamas Friday afternoon. The other solution, offered by the rest of the models, is for Paula to move very slowly over western Cuba the next few days, then circle southeastwards into the Caribbean, as a strong high pressure system over the Gulf of Mexico intensifies and pushes Paula to the south. This is the more likely scenario, given the current trends in how the models are depicting evolution of the jet stream pattern over the U.S. in the coming days. However, residents of South Florida, the Keys, and the Bahamas should be anticipate the possibility of Paula coming their way as a weak tropical storm on Friday.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The NOGAPS model is predicting the formation of Tropical Storm Richard 5 - 6 days from now, in the southern Caribbean off the coast of Nicaragua, near where Paula formed. The GFS has just a strong tropical disturbance forming there.

In the Western Pacific, Tropical Storm Megi has formed, and is predicted to be a major typhoon that will threaten the northern Philippine Island of Luzon early next week.

Next update
I'll have an update Thursday morning.

Jeff Masters

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608. 7544
paula idk the eye is still intact 80mph can might try to pull a surpise at dmax even with the shear so no rip yet here next
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607. IKE
Dedicated to Paula....Link

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Quoting Grothar:


Haven't had angst since I left Germany.
Is that in Canada?
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Quoting atmoaggie:
None.
Inept Explorer the cause of your angst.


Haven't had angst since I left Germany.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Quoting atmoaggie:
I truly think that LSU fears that we'll somehow compete for the same funding dollars and they'll somehow lose out. When, in actuality, there is no reason that the corridor of LSU to Stennis couldn't be to surge modeling and data, with copious amount of collaboration, what Boulder is to atmospheric science.


The NSF has poured a lot of money to them over the years. You need a good "Liu" on your side. He can be very convincing.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Quoting sunlinepr:
Classic...


A great classic. I turned it back on cause you mentioned it. I haven't listened to the song in a while even though I have it on my iPod.
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Sorry it's so behind, but I'd like to tell Lightning Charmer that choosing "Go to the regular site" on the iphone app will get you the blog comments. (I rejoice, b/c last year this crashed my phone.)
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Sheesh, you people have been wavin' bye-bye to Paula since before she was named. Guess what? TropicalCyclones dissipate...eventually.
And ya don't get no brownie points for being the first to say that one is gonna RIP.

HurricanePaula's heading has been (5.7degrees north of) EastNorthEast
H.Paula's average speed moving between its last 2 reported positions has been ~5mph(~8km/h)

Category2
13Oct 03amGMT - - 19.9n86.0w - - 100mph(~160.9km/h) - - 981mb -- #7
13Oct 06amGMT - - 20.4n86.0w - - 100mph(~160.9km/h) - - 981mb -- NHC.Adv.#7A
13Oct 09amGMT - - 20.7n86.0w - - 100mph(~160.9km/h) - - 984mb -- NHC.Adv.#8
13Oct 12pmGMT - - 21.3n85.9w - - 100mph(~160.9km/h) - - 984mb -- NHC.Adv.#8A
13Oct 03pmGMT - - 21.3n85.8w - - 100mph(~160.9km/h) - - 984mb -- NHC.Adv.#9
13Oct 06pmGMT - - 21.5n85.7w - - 100mph(~160.9km/h) - - 989mb -- NHC.Adv.#9A
Category1
13Oct 09pmGMT - - 21.7n85.6w - - - 85mph(~136.8km/h) - - 992mb -- NHC.Adv.#10
14Oct 12amGMT - - 21.8n85.6w - - - 85mph(~136.8km/h) - - 992mb -- NHC.Adv.#10A
14Oct 03amGMT - - 21.9n85.4w - - - 80mph(~128.7km/h) - - 993mb -- NHC.Adv.#11

Copy &paste 19.9n86.0w, 20.4n86.0w, 20.7n86.0w, 21.3n85.9w, 21.3n85.8w-21.5n85.7w, 21.5n85.7w-21.7n85.6w, 21.7n85.6w-21.8n85.6w, 21.8n85.6w-21.9n85.4w, cun, hav, nbw, 21.9n85.4w-22.45n84.29w into the GreatCircleMapper for a look at the last 12^hours.

Using straightline projection upon the speed&heading averaged
over the 3hours spanning the last two reported positions:
~16hours from now to Dimas,Cuba

^ The northernmost line-segment is the straightline projection.
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600. IKE
No problems.
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Quoting Grothar:
Anyone else having trouble with the blog?
None.
Inept Explorer the cause of your angst.
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Quoting Grothar:


Don't let Don hear you say that. He is awfully proud of his accomplishments there.
I truly think that LSU fears that we'll somehow compete for the same funding dollars and they'll somehow lose out. When, in actuality, there is no reason that the corridor of LSU to Stennis couldn't be to surge modeling and data, with copious amount of collaboration, what Boulder is to atmospheric science.
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Anyone else having trouble with the blog?
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Classic...
Quoting caneswatch:


"This is The End, beautiful friend......." Funny how I was just listening to the song.
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Quoting atmoaggie:
Hah! He doesn't seem to appreciate all that we do and could do in the commercial side of things...not very frequent that we get any work at all from those guys.

But you know what? The machines I am building this week and next can run surge modeling faster than LONI...


Don't let Don hear you say that. He is awfully proud of his accomplishments there.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Well, maybe as many people do, you can be using Internet Explorer 8.0 - But there are other FREE browsers available, Like:
* Firefox 3.6.10
* Google Chrome 8.0.552.0 Beta
* Safari 5.0.2
Avant Browser, Flock, K-Meleon, Maxton, Opera (Very good), Sea Monkey
You can download and try any of them as Freeware here

Link
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Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
There she goes:


Looks like a Comet, in colour...
Blowing in the wind, toward Flori... never mind that.
Member Since: October 24, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 24023
Quoting Grothar:


You must make Bob Twilley proud. LOL
Hah! He doesn't seem to appreciate all that we do and could do in the commercial side of things...not very frequent that we get any work at all from those guys.

But you know what? The machines I am building this week and next can run surge modeling faster than LONI...
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Not a Hurricane now.
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10972
OK, who stretched the blog????????????
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
Classic!!
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Quoting caneswatch:


But, I never get tired of it lol


And you are who, again?
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Quoting sunlinepr:
Soon Paula will reach The Doors to The End
9,171,225 Views
img src="">



"This is The End, beautiful friend......." Funny how I was just listening to the song.
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Quoting reedzone:
Evening everyone. Look at that, Paula still a Hurricane at 80 mph. Very interesting storm.


Aren't all 80 mph storms hurricanes?
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Quoting LightningCharmer:


Aggie Responsible for Drilling Chile Rescue Shaft

Denver Driller Becomes Chile Mine Rescue Hero

Two Good Stories about those that went to help.
Awesome! Its really good to see people that are selfliss and make an outcome so amazing.
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There she goes:

Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10972
Quoting atmoaggie:
lol.
I only build super computers to run weather and surge models...but, hey, that's all Linux, so maybe I don't know.
;-)
(Yes, gotme.)


You must make Bob Twilley proud. LOL
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Quoting atmoaggie:
Even when it's in writing, the Grothar must be told everything all over again within a week...


But, I never get tired of it lol
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Quoting atmoaggie:
Even when it's in writing, the Grothar must be told everything all over again within a week...

Re ported
De ported
Trans ported
Lovely one...
Member Since: October 24, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 24023
Quoting LightningCharmer:


Aggie Responsible for Drilling Chile Rescue Shaft
...of course!
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Quoting scott39:
Those 6 rescuers have got real guts. Real Heros!


Aggie Responsible for Drilling Chile Rescue Shaft

Denver Driller Becomes Chile Mine Rescue Hero

Two Good Stories about those that went to help.
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576. IKE
Happy belated 70th birthday John Lennon....Link

Wow~

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Quoting caneswatch:


I told you months ago I was going into college! lol They know, and they're all good people too.
Even when it's in writing, the Grothar must be told everything all over again within a week...
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Quoting Grothar:


It's the only thing I use. Maybe you don't know enough about computers to use it properly. (Gotcha!)
lol.
I only build super computers to run weather and surge models...but, hey, that's all Linux, so maybe I don't know.
;-)
(Yes, gotme.)
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Quoting LightningCharmer:
Let's see:

Hurricane Paranoia
Hurricane Psychosis
Cyclone Identity Syndrome
Invest Awareness Denial
Post Traumatic Blog Posting Disorder
Hurricane Season Finality Anxiety
.
.
.

Can we add:
Blog obsessive-compulsive disorder?
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Quoting IKE:
The King will always live.
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Quoting Grothar:


Don't know you well, but you are always polite and have a good sense of humor. Didn't know you were a college kid. I hope the others know that we were all just teasing with each other. Sometimes they think that all the insults we and others throw are all serious. LOL


I told you months ago I was going into college! lol They know, and they're all good people too.
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Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:

soon comes the time to raise your cup
and say a "thank you".....



2356: One man left. "Will it be his job to turn the lights off?" wonders the BBC's Tim Willcox.

2355: Fifth rescuer lifts off from the bottom of the mine shaft - leaving just one more man at the bottom.
Those 6 rescuers have got real guts. Real Heros!
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Quoting atmoaggie:
also known as Inept Explorer...


It's the only thing I use. Maybe you don't know enough about computers to use it properly. (Gotcha!)
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Quoting caneswatch:


HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA, that was a good one Grothar. Actually, it's because many people told me I would make a great psychologist, including my aunt, who told me "I bet you will switch your major soon."


Don't know you well, but you are always polite and have a good sense of humor. Didn't know you were a college kid. I hope the others know that we were all just teasing with each other. Sometimes they think that all the insults we and others throw are all serious. LOL
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Quoting sunlinepr:
The most attacked Browser on earth is MS Explorer.... Count the number of patches MS had and still, every month has to send down in "updates"....
also known as Inept Explorer...
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soon comes the time to raise your cup
and say a "thank you".....



2356: One man left. "Will it be his job to turn the lights off?" wonders the BBC's Tim Willcox.

2355: Fifth rescuer lifts off from the bottom of the mine shaft - leaving just one more man at the bottom.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting LightningCharmer:
I was thinking the same thing...LOL
Let's see:

Hurricane Paranoia
Hurricane Psychosis
Cyclone Identity Syndrome
Invest Awareness Denial
Post Traumatic Blog Posting Disorder
Hurricane Season Finality Anxiety
.
.
.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
The most attacked and hacked Browser on earth is MS Explorer.... Count the number of patches MS had and still, every month has to send down in "updates"....
Quoting Grothar:


I have tried Firefox twice and crashed my PC twice. Never again.
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Quoting pottery:
Who???
heheheh
Better than The Mighty Sparrow, doing Jingle Bells.


You know he will pull up a "Chipmunks" Christmas song.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Quoting IKE:


Ike, you shouldn't have done it. I cry easily (as tough as I am). And now GeoffWPB is going to go into his archives. You really did it now. Nice song by the way.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25345
Evening everyone. Look at that, Paula still a Hurricane at 80 mph. Very interesting storm.
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Post 503 with a photo from Mars Rovers Exp. Mission will not stretch your screens... I Use Mozilla Firefox 3.6.10; No problems at all...

Quoting LightningCharmer:
It depends on the how your browser handles CSS (Cascading Style Sheets). Internet Explorer 6, Netscape, some versions of Opera, and some versions of Chrome do not work well on this blog. I've found Firefox works best but it crashes sometimes on Linux most likely because of all the Flash ads on Wunderground.

PDA browsers, phone browsers, and portable device browsers are hit and miss with this blog. Unfortunately, the lite version, iPhone version, and mobile version of Wunderground do not show blog comments.

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Quoting Grothar:


That is good, Canes. Did your decision to go into psychology have anything to do by being on this blog so long? You could have some good case studies here. LOL


HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA, that was a good one Grothar. Actually, it's because many people told me I would make a great psychologist, including my aunt, who told me "I bet you will switch your major soon."
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Lol...That's why Ike is so cool!
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 10972

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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.