Western Caribbean disturbance 99L near tropical depression strength

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:33 PM GMT on October 20, 2010

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A tropical disturbance (Invest 99L) near the Cayman Islands is drifting eastwards towards Jamaica, and has changed little in organization this morning, but is very close to tropical depression status. The storm is bringing heavy rain to the Cayman Islands; 3.85" inches has fallen over the past 48 hours at Savannah on Grand Cayman Island. Heavy rains will continue over the Cayman Islands today and spread to western Jamaica this afternoon. Recent satellite imagery shows that 99L has a well-defined surface circulation, but the center is exposed to view and 99L has a relatively meager amount of heavy thunderstorm activity. Wind shear is marginal for development, 15 - 20 knots, due to the clockwise flow of air around an upper-level high pressure system near the coast of Honduras. The high is bringing strong upper-level winds out of the southwest to 99L. Water vapor satellite loops show considerable dry air to the west and north of 99L, and the strong southwesterly winds over the storm are bringing some of this dry into into the core of the storm, keeping all the heavy thunderstorm development confined to the east side of the center. The waters beneath 99L are very warm, 29°C, but 99L will not be able to take advantage of these warm waters until the shear relaxes. The Hurricane Hunters will be in 99L around 11am EDT this morning to see if the storm is indeed a tropical depression.

Forecast for 99L
The latest SHIPS model forecast predicts that wind shear over the Western Caribbean will stay marginal for development, 15 - 25 knots, for the remainder of today, then decline to the moderate range, 10 - 20 knots, on Tuesday, as 99L positions itself more underneath the upper-level high near the coast of Honduras. Any motion by 99L to the southwest will tend to decrease the shear over 99L, and any motion to the north or east will increase the shear, so 99L's current eastwards drift is detrimental for development. Steering currents will be weak Wednesday through Friday in the Western Caribbean, making it difficult to predict where 99L may wander to, and how much shear might affect the storm. By Saturday, a ridge of high pressure is expected to build in to the north of 99L, forcing the storm on a generally westward track. This should allow 99L to find an environment with less shear. The GFDL and HWRF model predicts a more west-northwestward track, with 99L passing through the Yucatan Channel between Cuba and Mexico on Sunday or Monday as a hurricane. The GFS, ECMWF, and NOGAPS models predict a more west-southwesterly path, with 99L making landfall in Belize Sunday or Monday. NHC is giving 99L a 70% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Friday; I'd put these odds at 80%, and expect this will become Tropical Storm Richard by Thursday.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Invest 99L.

Death toll from Super Typhoon Megi in the Philippines remarkably low
The power is still out and communications are down over the majority of the northern portion of the Philippines' Luzon Island blasted by Typhoon Megi yesterday, so the full extent of the destruction wrought by the great storm is still unclear. However, the death toll from the great storm stands at only 19, reflecting the superior effort Philippines officials made to evacuate low-lying areas and get people out of locations prone to flash flooding and mudslides. Previous major typhoons to strike the Philippines have nearly always killed hundreds, and sometime thousands, so the preparation and evacuation efforts for Megi likely saved hundreds of lives. Megi hit Luzon on Monday morning at 3:30 UTC as a Category 5 super typhoon with sustained winds of 165 mph and a central pressure of 914 mb. Severe damage was done to Isabela Province in northern Luzon, and media reports indicate that 200,000 people are homeless.


Figure 2. Visible MODIS satellite image of Megi from NASA's Aqua satellite taken at 1:30am EDT October 20, 2010. At the time, Megi was a Category 4 typhoon with 135 mph winds. Image credit: NASA.

Passage over Luzon Island destroyed Megi's eyewall and inner core region, and the storm compensated by expanding and intensifying the portions of its circulation that were over water. Now that its center is back over water in the South China Sea, Megi has re-developed its inner core and has intensified into a formidable Category 4 typhoon with 135 mph winds. Megi has been able to maintain its larger size, and is now a much larger typhoon than when it hit the Philippines. This is similar to what happened to Hurricane Ike in 2008 when it passed over Cuba, and helped give Ike a very destructive storm surge when it came ashore over Texas. Wind shear is a low 5 - 10 knots over Megi, and the waters of the South China Sea have a very high total heat content to great depth, so Megi should be able to remain a very dangerous major typhoon through Friday. The larger size of Megi means that it will be able to deliver a significant storm surge in excess of ten feet to the coast of China of Friday or Saturday, when the storm is expected to make landfall north of Hong Kong. As the storm approaches the coast on Friday, wind shear is expected to rise to the moderate or high range, and the total heat content of the ocean will drop significantly, so some weakening is to be expected. Still, Megi will probably hit China as a major Category 3 typhoon, bringing a significant storm surge, high winds, and widespread torrential rains that will likely make this a multi-billion dollar disaster for China. The outer rain bands of Megi are already affecting the coast of China north of Hong Kong, as seen on Hong Kong radar and Taiwan radar.


Figure 3. Still frame of damage to NE Luzon Island from a video posted to YouTube by storm chaser James Reynolds of typhoonfury.com.

Next update
I'll have an update later today, with the timing depending upon what the Hurricane Hunters find.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Amazing how the GFDL turns the pathetic congregation of clouds that is 99L's circulation into a monster.



With the TCHP levels in that area, I wouldn't doubt it.
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hilarious.
Quoting NOSinger:



I'm fascinated to know your better strategy on betting on roulette....cause I'm pretty sure all the bets on roulette are random....LOL!!


yep, lol....i think you understand my sense of humor. lol

it's always good to get a breather and some jokes when tempers start flaring. it allows everyone to step back and laugh which eases the tension. lol
Member Since: September 20, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 365
Quoting SweetHomeBamaGOM:


ty for the update levi.
Quoting sunlinepr:


As always, excellent, specially your 99L, Paula comparison; Thanks
Quoting FLWaterFront:


Excellent analysis, Levi, as usual! You have a "feel" for meteorology that is rare even for veteran mets.

I agree also with your assessment. Indeed this system will eventually get pulled north into the GOM, roughly about 7-9 days out. But as you said, it will not be nearly as strong by that time as it could become while still in the Caribbean.

Good work and thank you for posting this update today!


It's my pleasure =)
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26548
Quoting aprinz1979:


Levi said that wasn't going to happen.


I find it unlikely, but his statement:

"Vigilence is a good idea... Talking about potential bad things is a good idea too... I'd rather hear the worse case scenario\potential than plan for a weaker\non system and be blind-sided by a major."

is right on. This is why covering the potential worst-case impacts and all possible solutions is essential to any forecast regarding tropical cyclones.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26548
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
12z intensity

Quite a spread.



It is either going to not do anything or become a monster ... nothing in between
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12z GFS 48 hours

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Quoting FSUCOOPman:


I get what you're saying, but it's not like people are pulling the major hurricane idea out of their hineys... 3 models predicted a major in the GOM, of course people are going to respond to that data.

Climatology takes a system forming in this location north and then NNE to ENE across FL at some point.

The upper level stearing looks like it will be conducive to pulling whatever is left out in a manner similar to typical climatology.

Vigilence is a good idea... Talking about potential bad things is a good idea too... I'd rather hear the worse case scenario\potential than plan for a weaker\non system and be blind-sided by a major.


Levi said that wasn't going to happen.
Member Since: October 5, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 269
Quoting Levi32:
Good morning all.

Tropical Tidbit for Wednesday, October 20th, with Video


Excellent analysis, Levi, as usual! You have a "feel" for meteorology that is rare even for veteran mets.

I agree also with your assessment. Indeed this system will eventually get pulled north into the GOM, roughly about 7-9 days out. But as you said, it will not be nearly as strong by that time as it could become while still in the Caribbean.

Good work and thank you for posting this update today!
Member Since: October 15, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 715
12z intensity

Quite a spread.

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Quoting Levi32:
Good morning all.

Tropical Tidbit for Wednesday, October 20th, with Video


As always, excellent, specially your 99L, Paula comparison; Thanks
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Quoting oleClegs:
This talk of a “major” is ridiculous without being named, Come on, MAN. I agree 99l is much better organized this morning. I also agree the exposed LLC is only temporary and the current convection burst will continue throughout the day as he moves to protect itself from the dry air he’s boxed into. But the models are struggling with this storm in its current state and we won’t see a better solution until tomorrow or later. Yes, he may continue to build despite the hostile environment and become named, then maybe, as shear decreases to its north, it could latch onto a steering ridge which may allow it to move to the north and then east as is traditional and as some models might suggest. However troublesome, given the current long term setup, the scenario of a major event being “somewhat likely” is long shot at this point and track and intensity is anyone’s guess. But really, ..really!, ..no really!! a major hitting the US. COME ON, Mann, get a grip. Interest in FL and the Caribbean should remain vigilant and keep abreast with the NHC, (not a bunch of amateur quacks!) for any potential developments.


I get what you're saying, but it's not like people are pulling the major hurricane idea out of their hineys... 3 models predicted a major in the GOM, of course people are going to respond to that data.

Climatology takes a system forming in this location north and then NNE to ENE across FL at some point.

The upper level stearing looks like it will be conducive to pulling whatever is left out in a manner similar to typical climatology.

Vigilence is a good idea... Talking about potential bad things is a good idea too... I'd rather hear the worse case scenario\potential than plan for a weaker\non system and be blind-sided by a major.
Member Since: August 29, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 371
Post 169.
From that loop, the storm looks to be imminently Doom!
The dry air is performing the Dreaded Pincer Movement....
Member Since: October 24, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 24031
Amazing how the GFDL turns the pathetic congregation of clouds that is 99L's circulation into a monster.

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Again, conditions expected to become favorable tomorrow as high builds over the storm and ventilates 99L. I can see this becoming a big storm if conditions become favorable as forecast.
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Quoting Hurricanes101:


It is pretty clear by the loops that the circulation and convection are getting further away from each other.

This is not and may never be a TD or TS


I agree and until that huge layer of dry air moving in from the west dissapates or lessens then it could be lights out.
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Quoting Hurricanes101:


kind of made him look dumb there didn't ya? lol


lol

Well that wasn't my intention.

Apologize if I did. Reading through the posts here while getting some work done. Not really paying attention all that much.
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Quoting Levi32:
Good morning all.

Tropical Tidbit for Wednesday, October 20th, with Video


ty for the update levi.
Member Since: September 20, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 365
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


Actually more than half of the flights this year have been into invests.

Standard procedure.


kind of made him look dumb there didn't ya? lol
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Quoting stormpetrol:
I think COC and convection are slowly but surely coming together. Funny how we all see things differently, thats just how it is supposed to be!


It is pretty clear by the loops that the circulation and convection are getting further away from each other.

This is not and may never be a TD or TS
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:


Actually more than half of the flights this year have been into invests.

Standard procedure.


yeah i was just kinda having fun :) no harm intended...it was meant as a joke kind of but at the same time having some relevance to what is going on. it's going to be interesting to see what happens in the next 24 hours to say the least :)
Member Since: September 20, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 365
Quoting SweetHomeBamaGOM:



all i can say about this (***glances at naysayers***) is well,...hmm....

wonder why they are flying into it before it's even announced as a t.d....hey dont they usually start flying into systems later on in the development stages...maybe, just maybe, nhc know something the naysayers dont? hmmm...maybe....


lol


Actually more than half of the flights this year have been into invests.

Standard procedure.
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GFDL


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Good morning all.

Tropical Tidbit for Wednesday, October 20th, with Video
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26548
Quoting BLee2333:


They haven't been over near the heavy convection yet. The TS readings they got were near the COC.




The high readings I saw were all near 18 N and 80.5 West which is just West of Jamaica and to the SE of Grand Cayman.
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 15725
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Bastardi-AccuPro

"
WEDNESDAY 10 A.M.

RICHARD TO BE... WHY THIS SHOULD DEVELOP AND COULD BE A MAJOR HURRICANE.

The reason is should develop is because in spite of the shear and dry air, pressures are lowering, indicating that once these inhibiting factors come off, convection will either develop over the center or the center will get pulled into the convection.

Why could it be a major hurricane? Its banding features are already circular, indicating that once this starts to go, a classic case of rapid development feedback could ensue. That is why you see the hurricane models going bonkers... while the global models, not sure of how to organize a center, remain less than impressed. It's as if it gets to step one, it's almost a shoe-in to get to step two.

Given the nature of the season, look out. It's a season that. though still short on U.S. impact, has found a way to put the big numbers up. Both the GFDL and now the HWRF are saying some of that impact deficit could yet be cut into, and this is no Nicole in the overall setup... bigger development potential, then a bigger trough in a week to come and get it.

At the very least, only the most cynical out there cannot see what the method behind my hurricane madness was and is this year.

Ciao for now."


Gotta love the hype, but in one case he is absolutely right. If conditions become more favorable, which is expected to tomorrow, this could really ramp up in a hurry.
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Bastardi-AccuPro

"
WEDNESDAY 10 A.M.

RICHARD TO BE... WHY THIS SHOULD DEVELOP AND COULD BE A MAJOR HURRICANE.

The reason is should develop is because in spite of the shear and dry air, pressures are lowering, indicating that once these inhibiting factors come off, convection will either develop over the center or the center will get pulled into the convection.

Why could it be a major hurricane? Its banding features are already circular, indicating that once this starts to go, a classic case of rapid development feedback could ensue. That is why you see the hurricane models going bonkers... while the global models, not sure of how to organize a center, remain less than impressed. It's as if it gets to step one, it's almost a shoe-in to get to step two.

Given the nature of the season, look out. It's a season that. though still short on U.S. impact, has found a way to put the big numbers up. Both the GFDL and now the HWRF are saying some of that impact deficit could yet be cut into, and this is no Nicole in the overall setup... bigger development potential, then a bigger trough in a week to come and get it.

At the very least, only the most cynical out there cannot see what the method behind my hurricane madness was and is this year.

Ciao for now."



all i can say about this (***glances at naysayers***) is well,...hmm....

wonder why they are flying into it before it's even announced as a t.d....hey dont they usually start flying into systems later on in the development stages...maybe, just maybe, nhc know something the naysayers dont? hmmm...maybe....


lol


as a sidenote, this is developing from a broad low pressure area. it had to organize.....it had a lot of disorganized low pressure, and the bigger the low pressure area, the longer it can take to develop a bigger storm. but anyhow lol
Member Since: September 20, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 365
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Quoting kmanislander:
The high winds being seen are all located in the deep convection just to the West of Jamaica and well removed from the center of 99L. The readings are almost certainly gusts.

Compare the coordinates with the satellite imagery using the lat/lon feature

There will be no TD classification based upon this data.


They haven't been over near the heavy convection yet. The TS readings they got were near the COC.


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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Circulation seems to be unwrapping.

I doubt this gets classified today.



I'm looking more at tomorrow when the conditions become less hostile. Got fooled last night when it looked like the center was tucked a bit under the convection, but I was really tired last night as well. Once the visible came up, it made sense that this was gonna stay Invest 99L for at least another 24 hours.
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Quoting FLWaterFront:


It would need to have the shear to stop nipping away at it.

This system is struggling and its fate right now is unclear. It seems likely that those models (such as the GFDL) which have been aggressively developing this system have not been able to get a handle on the upper air environment as of yet.


the moderate small pocket of shear has moved to the north. the next few hours should be interesting. dry air and shear in the southwest quad is usually poison to development, but it looks like that is ending.

Link

Member Since: September 20, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 365
Man... flying less than 1000 feet off the deck in the middle of a thunderstorm... must know there is no microburst risk
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I think COC and convection are slowly but surely coming together. Funny how we all see things differently, thats just how it is supposed to be!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Bastardi-AccuPro

"
WEDNESDAY 10 A.M.

RICHARD TO BE... WHY THIS SHOULD DEVELOP AND COULD BE A MAJOR HURRICANE.

The reason is should develop is because in spite of the shear and dry air, pressures are lowering, indicating that once these inhibiting factors come off, convection will either develop over the center or the center will get pulled into the convection.

Why could it be a major hurricane? Its banding features are already circular, indicating that once this starts to go, a classic case of rapid development feedback could ensue. That is why you see the hurricane models going bonkers... while the global models, not sure of how to organize a center, remain less than impressed. It's as if it gets to step one, it's almost a shoe-in to get to step two.

Given the nature of the season, look out. It's a season that. though still short on U.S. impact, has found a way to put the big numbers up. Both the GFDL and now the HWRF are saying some of that impact deficit could yet be cut into, and this is no Nicole in the overall setup... bigger development potential, then a bigger trough in a week to come and get it.

At the very least, only the most cynical out there cannot see what the method behind my hurricane madness was and is this year.

Ciao for now."
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ok guys, guess we will see by this time tomorrow eh? it will be fun to watch one way or the other.
Member Since: September 20, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 365
I've seen many classified TS/Tds look worse than this, I think they'll call it, JMO.
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Quoting SweetHomeBamaGOM:
what is generally going to be required for this invest to start throwing up convection around the closed circulation?


It would need to have the shear to stop nipping away at it.

This system is struggling and its fate right now is unclear. It seems likely that those models (such as the GFDL) which have been aggressively developing this system have not been able to get a handle on the upper air environment as of yet.
Member Since: October 15, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 715
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Circulation seems to be unwrapping.

I highly doubt this gets classified today.




really? lol, to me it looks doing exactly the opposite. it's nude, but vertically aligning.

lol
Member Since: September 20, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 365
Circulation seems to be unwrapping.

I doubt this gets classified today.

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162. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
Japan Meteorological Agency
Tropical Cyclone Advisory #3
TROPICAL DEPRESSION 18
21:00 PM JST October 20 2010
=================================

SUBJECT: Tropical Depression Near The Marianas

At 12:00 PM UTC, Tropical Depression (1004 hPa) located at 16.0N 145.8E has 10 minute sustained winds of 30 knots with gusts of 45 knots. The depression is reported as moving west at 9 knots

Dvorak Intensity: T1.5

Forecast and Intensity
=======================
24 HRS: 16.0N 140.7E - 35 knots (CAT 1/Tropical Storm)
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161. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
India Meteorological Department
Tropical Cyclone Bulletin #1
DEPRESSION BOB04-2010
17:30 PM IST October 20 2010
================================

At 12:00 PM UTC, Latest satellite imagery and surface observations indicate that a depression has formed over east central Bay of Bengal. Depression BOB04-2010 lays centered near 17.5N 91.5E, or about 250 kms southwest of Sittwe, Myanmar, 350 kms south southeast of Cox Bazar, Bangladesh, and 550 kms southwest of Digha, West Bengal.

The current environmental conditions and numerical weather prediction models suggest that the system would intensify into a deep depression. It would move initially northward then north northeastward towards north Myanmar and south Bangladesh coast during next 48 hours.

3 minute sustained winds near the center is 25 knots with a central pressure of 1002 hPa. The state of the sea is rough to very rough around the system's center.

Satellite imagery indicates shear pattern. The Dvorak intensity is T1.5. Associated broken intense to very intense convection is seen over east central Bay of Bengal between 14.0N 19.5N and 87.5E to 92.5E. The lowest cloud top temperature due to convection is around -70C.

Vertical wind shear of horizontal wind over the region is low to moderate. 24 hour tendency of vertical wind shear shows no significant changes. Sea surface temperature is 28-32C, and the ocean heat content over central Bay of Bengal is favorable for intensification. However, ocean heat content is less than 100 kj/cm2. The relative vorticity at 850 HPA level and upper level divergence around the system's center is also favorable for intensification. The system lies to the south of tropospheric ridge, which roughly runs along 19.0N at 200 HPA level. There is an anticyclonic circulation over central India to the northwest of the system at mid-tropospheric level and is expected to influence the movement of the system towards the north northeast direction.
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160. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
Japan Meteorological Agency
Tropical Cyclone Advisory #60
TYPHOON MEGI (T1013)
0:00 AM JST October 21 2010
=================================

SUBJECT: Category Four Typhoon In South China Sea

At 15:00 PM UTC, Typhoon Megi (945 hPa) located at 18.4N 117.1E has 10 minute sustained winds of 90 knots with gusts of 130 knots. The cyclone is reported as moving north northwest slowly

Dvorak Intensity:

Storm Force Winds
=================
120 NM from the center

Gale Force Winds
=================
300 NM from the center in northern quadrant
240 NM from the center in southern quadrant

Forecast and Intensity
=======================
24 HRS: 20.4N 117.6E - 95 knots (CAT 4/Strong Typhoon)
45 HRS: 21.6N 117.5E - 90 knots (CAT 4/Strong Typhoon)
69 HRS: 23.2N 117.2E - 85 knots (CAT 4/Strong Typhoon)
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159. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
Philippines Atmospheric Geophysical Astronomical Service and Administration
Tropical Cyclone Bulletin #19
TYPHOON JUAN (MEGI)
5:00 AM PhST October 20 2010
=======================================

Typhoon "JUAN" continues to move north northeastward slowly.

At 10:00 PM PhST, Typhoon Juan (Megi) located at 18.5°N 117.1°E or 350 km west of Laoag City has 10 minute sustained winds of 95 knots with gustiness up to 110 knots. The cyclone is reported as moving north northeast slowly

Signal Warnings
==============

Signal Warning #1 (30-60 km/h winds)

Luzon Region
----------
1.Ilocos Norte
2.Ilocos Sur
3.La Union
4.Benguet
5.Pangasinan
6.Zambales

Additional Information
========================
Residents living in low lying and mountainous areas under Public Storm Warning Signal are alerted against possible flash floods and landslides.

Residents along the coastal areas of Western Luzon are alerted of possible storm surges.

The public and the disaster coordinating councils concerned are advised to take appropriate actions, monitor the hourly updates and watch for the next bulletin to be issued at 5 a.m. tomorrow.
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Latest hurricane to strike the U. S.: late on November 30, 1925 near Tampa, Florida.
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Quoting BLee2333:


Flight level was < 900ft. Doesn't make sense IMO either...



maybe they extrapolated based on other variables?


i for one wouldnt want to fly 700 ft off of the water at that speed....lol...i probably wouldn't wanna do it in a helicopter either, but thats another story...lol
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Banding on the north of the system is now pulling energy from the area of convection.

Possible convective burst at COC soon.
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I wouldn't be surprised to see a decouple this afternoon and a regen down by the center.
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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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