Caribbean disturbance slow to develop; 5 EF-5 tornadoes this year confirmed

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:33 PM GMT on June 03, 2011

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The tropical disturbance (Invest 93L) that crossed over Florida on Wednesday, bringing welcome rains of 1 - 3 inches, is now a naked swirl of low clouds over the central Gulf of Mexico. The disturbance is embedded in a large area of dry air associated with an upper level low pressure system, and this dry air is discouraging development. 93L is also moving into a region of moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots, and NHC is giving 93L a 0% chance of developing into a tropical depression before the storm makes landfall in Mexico south of Brownsville on Saturday. There are a few heavy thunderstorms trying to fire up near the center of 93L's fairly well-formed circulation, but I don't think this storm is going to bring more than 1 - 2 inches of rain to the coast on Saturday.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of the Central Caribbean disturbance.

Central Caribbean disturbance 94L
Disorganized heavy thunderstorm activity continues in the region between Central America and Jamaica. Wind shear has fallen to the moderate range, 10 - 20 knots, and is predicted to continue to fall over the next two days. This should allow the disturbance, dubbed Invest 94L by NHC on Friday afternoon, to increase in organization, though it will take many days for it to approach tropical depression status, since it is so large and poorly organized. The last two runs of the NOGAPS model have developed the disturbance into a tropical depression or storm by early next week, with the system moving northwards into Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, and eastern Cuba. The other major models do not show the disturbance developing during the coming week. NHC is giving the disturbance a 10% of developing into a tropical depression by Sunday. A surge of moisture accompanying a tropical wave may aid development when the wave arrives in the Western Caribbean on Sunday. Water temperatures in the Central Caribbean are about 1°C above average, 29°C, which is plenty warm enough to support development of a tropical storm. Residents of Jamaica, eastern Cuba, the Cayman Islands, Haiti, and the Dominican Republic should anticipate the possibility that heavy rains of 2 - 4 inches may affect them today through Sunday.

Five EF-5 tornadoes confirmed in 2011
The National Weather Service in Oklahoma City announced Wednesday that the violent tornado that hit Binger, El Reno, Peidmont, and Guthrie, Oklahoma on May 24, killing nine people, was an EF-5 with winds greater than 210 mph. The rating was given based on measurements made by a University of Oklahoma portable "Doppler on wheels" radar. The long track, large wedge tornado caused extensive damage, with well built houses cleanly swept from their foundation and trees debarked. This tornado brings the total number of EF-5 tornadoes this year to five, tying 2011 with 1953 for 2nd place for greatest number of these top-end tornadoes in one year. Only 1974 (six) had more. The EF-5 tornadoes of 2011:

1) The April 27, 2011 Neshoba/Kemper/Winston/Noxubee Counties, Mississippi tornado (3 killed, 29 mile path length.)

2) The April 27, 2011 Smithville, Mississippi tornado (22 killed, 15 mile path length.)

3) The April 27, 2011 Hackleburg, Alabama tornado (71 killed, 25 mile path length.)

4) The May 22, 2011 Joplin Missouri tornado (138 killed, 14 mile path length.)

5) The May 24, 2011 Binger-El Reno-Peidmont-Guthrie, Oklahoma tornado. (9 killed, 75 mile path length.)


Figure 2. Aerial view of damage from the May 22, 2011 Joplin, Missouri tornado. Image credit: Wikipedia.

A few other remarkable statistics on the tornado season of 2011, compiled from NOAA's official press release and Wikipedia's excellent tornado pages:

- The April 25 - 28 tornado outbreak, with 330 tornadoes, was the largest tornado outbreak of three days or less duration on record. The previous record was 148 tornadoes, set during the April 3 - 4, 1974 Super Outbreak.

- For April 27, 186 tornadoes have been confirmed. This is the largest 1-day tornado total on record, beating the 148 recorded in 24 hours on April 3 - 4, 1974.

- The April 14 - 16 tornado outbreak, with 162 confirmed tornadoes, ranks as the fourth largest tornado outbreak of three days or less duration on record.

- The May 21 - 26 tornado outbreak, with 158 confirmed tornadoes, ranks as the 5th largest 6-day or shorter tornado outbreak on record. A May 2003 6-day outbreak had 289 tornadoes, and a May 2004 6-day outbreak had 229 tornadoes. The year 2011 now has three of the top five tornado outbreaks on record.

- April confirmed tornado total was 683, making it the busiest tornado month on record. The previous record was 542 tornadoes, set in May 2003. The previous April record was 267 tornadoes, which occurred in April 1974. The 30-year average for April tornadoes is 135.

- If the three deaths in Massachusetts from Wednesday's tornadoes are confirmed, this year's tornado death toll will be 522, beating 1953 as the deadliest tornado year since modern tornado records began. That year, 519 people died, and three heavily populated cities received direct hits by violent tornadoes. Waco, Texas (114 killed), Flint, Michigan (115 killed), and Worcester, Massachusetts (90 killed) all were hit by violent F-4 or F-5 tornadoes. A similar bad tornado year occurred in 1936, when violent tornadoes hit Tupelo Mississippi (216 killed), and Gainesville, Georgia (203 killed.) During that time period, the tornado death rate per million people was 60 - 70 times as great as in the year 2000 (Figure 4), implying that this year's tornadoes would have killed many thousands of people had we not had our modern tornado modern warning system.

- The May 22, 2011 Joplin, Missouri tornado killed 138 people and injured 1150, making it the deadliest U.S. tornado since 1947, and 8th deadliest in history. The $1 - $3 billion estimate of insured damage makes it the most expensive tornado in history.

- Damage from the April 25 - 28 super tornado outbreak was estimated at $3.5 - $6 billion, making it the most expensive tornado outbreak of all-time.

- The tornado that hit Springfield, Massachusetts on June 1 was at least an EF-3 with 136 - 165 mph winds. It was only the 9th EF-3 or stronger tornado to hit Massachusetts since 1950, and the third deadliest, with three deaths.

- The year 2011 now ranks in 3rd place behind 1974 and 1965 for highest number of strong to violent EF-3, EF-4, and EF-5 tornadoes (Figure 3.)


Figure 3. Number of strong to violent EF-3, EF-4 and EF-5 tornadoes from 1950 to 2011. The year 2011 now ranks in 3rd place behind 1974 and 1965. There is not a decades-long increasing trend in the numbers of these most dangerous of tornadoes. Image credit: NOAA/National Climatic Data Center (updated using stats for 2008 - 2011 from Wikipedia.)


Figure 4. Death rate per million people per year in U.S., 1875-2000. Thin line with dots is raw rate, curved thick line is death rate, filtered by 3-point median and 5-point running mean filter, and straight solid lines are least squares fit to filtered death rate for 1875-1925 and 1925-2000. Dashed lines are estimates of 10th and 90th percentile death rates from 1925-2000. The death rate fell from 8 per million to .12 per million between 1940 and 2000. Image credit: A Brief History of Deaths from Tornadoes in the United States, Harold Brooks and Charles Doswell III.

Joplin tornado the 7th U.S. billion-dollar weather disaster of 2011
The Joplin tornado is the 7th U.S. weather disaster of 2011 costing more than a billion dollars. With a major flooding disaster coming on the Missouri River, and hurricane season still to come, 2011 has an excellent chance of beating 2008's record of nine billion-dollar weather disasters. The billion dollar weather disasters of 2011 so far:

1) 2011 Groundhog Day's blizzard ($1- $4 billion)
2) April 3 -5 Southeast U.S. severe weather outbreak ($2 billion)
3) April 8 - 11 severe weather outbreak ($2.25 billion)
4) April 25 - 28 super tornado outbreak ($3.5 - $6 billion)
5) Mississippi River flood of 2011 ($9 billion)
6) Texas drought ($1.2 billion)
7) Joplin tornado ($1 - $3 billion)


Figure 5. River flood outlook for the U.S. Image credit: NOAA.

The next U.S. billion-dollar weather disaster: a Missouri River flood?
A great 100-year flood has arrived along the Missouri River and its tributaries from Montana to Nebraska. Record spring rains, combined with snow melt from record or near-record winter and spring snows, brought the Missouri River at Williston, North Dakota to 27.9' yesterday, just an inch short of the highest crest on record (28.0' on 4/01/1912.) Tributaries to the Missouri, such as the Souris River in North Dakota and the North Platte River in Nebraska, are already flooding at all-time record heights. With warm summer temperatures and additional rainfall expected over much of the area during the coming week, snow melt and rain runoff will swell area rivers even further, creating a damaging 100-year flood. Wunderground weather historian Christopher C. Burt has the details in his latest post, and I will be writing more on this latest epic flood next week.

I'll have a new post on Monday, or earlier if the Caribbean disturbance shows significant development.

Jeff Masters

Joplin Tornado Damage (thebige)
Joplin Tornado Damage
And Bigger.... (weatherfanatic2010)
Here it is turning into a monster.
And Bigger....

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3624. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting stormwatcherCI:
ok so now its back up on the graphic somebody make up there mind will they
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3623. Grothar
I still think there will be a considerable burst of convection to the immediate SE of Jamaica. The high cirrus clouds at the periphery of the system is showing good outflow. Should be an interesting watch the next few hours. I got to go, but let me know what happens.

Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27208
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3621. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting BahaHurican:
Good morning all. Did anybody check to see if RandyB is flying today?
missions for today cancelled
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
nothing in atlantic now thats been removed but poss TCFA has been issued for epac basin




maybe thats why information is getting cross
http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/tafb_latest/danger_atl_la testBW.gif


That one was old. Here is the latest one.
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3619. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
xx/INV/94L
MARK
16.79N/77.23W
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Good morning all. Did anybody check to see if RandyB is flying today?
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91E has been dealing with some dry air, and also has about 10 to 15 knots of shear on it's east side, although it does look pretty decent, and might have a chance.
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its orange again bit of an upgrade
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
nothing in atlantic now thats been removed but poss TCFA has been issued for epac basin




maybe thats why information is getting cross


the information has been screwy with 94L for days

gets better organized, models drop it

looks dead and the models pick it up, goes up to the 30% and they show that graphic

now its back looking better and they drop that?


I am not trusting anything at this point
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3613. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting Grothar:


So what you are saying is, we have a pre-poss TCFA.
nothing in atlantic now thats been removed but poss TCFA has been issued for epac basin




maybe thats why information is getting cross
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AIRPORTS
RAINFALL : DEPARTURE : RAINFALL: DEPARTURE
OCT1-JUN2 OCT1-JUN2 JAN1-JUN2 JAN1-JUN2

PALM BEACH INTERNATIONAL : 10.45 : -23.11 : 5.63 : -13.78
NAPLES MUNICIPAL AIRPORT : 6.70 : -13.33 : 4.59 : -8.32
FORT LAUDERDALE INTERNATIONAL : 9.27 : -23.68 : 4.08 : -15.21
MIAMI INTERNATIONAL : 16.56 : -11.16 : 11.42 : -4.50


8 month rainfall totals, first number, are sickening. No rain in June would mean the -23.11 would go up to -31.31". That's a big deficit.
Member Since: January 30, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 3259
Thanks Keeps.
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3608. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting aquak9:
ahh well. I was looking forward to all the maps of the hunters. All recon cancelled for today? Too bad...it woulda been a good run for all of us to follow the data.
no recoons today maybe tommorow
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3607. scott39
94L has two things going for it, that it didnt have yesterday. The mid-level southwesterly shear is relaxing and the mid-levels are moistening up. I thought 94L was toast 24 hours ago! Looks like I was wrong. Its in better shape than 24 hours ago, but its still going to take at least until mid week to reach TD status. IMO
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3606. Grothar
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
its only a POSS TCFA

if there is a TCFA it will show here right now nothing

Fleet Weather Center Norfolk Tropical Feed
No Active Tropical Warnings in the Atlantic, Caribbean, or Gulf of Mexico
By Maritime.CDO@navy.mil (FWC-N CDO) from Fleet Weather Center Norfolk Virginia. Published on .

As of Sun 05 Jun 2011 14:45:01Z


So what you are saying is, we have a pre-poss TCFA.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27208
3605. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
It appears a TCFA has been issued for 94L.

Link
its only a POSS TCFA

if there is a TCFA it will show here right now nothing

Fleet Weather Center Norfolk Tropical Feed
No Active Tropical Warnings in the Atlantic, Caribbean, or Gulf of Mexico
By Maritime.CDO@navy.mil (FWC-N CDO) from Fleet Weather Center Norfolk Virginia. Published on Sun, Jun 05, 2011.

As of Sun, 05 Jun 2011 15:00:01 GMT
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another thing on the 12Z surface map the Tropical Wave
in the caribbean is gone and go/getting absorbed into 94L
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 12716
Quoting kimoskee:
I'm back. French open delay because of rain.

I wonder if it's the rain from Jamaica? (I'm not being serious!)



its an amazing match
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3602. aquak9
ahh well. I was looking forward to all the maps of the hunters. All recon cancelled for today? Too bad...it woulda been a good run for all of us to follow the data.
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:


True, but there was pretty much nothing left to it.

Point is, this doesn't have the type of organization that you'd use a flight on.

I gotta disagree... while 94L is locked in place and the models don't do much with it the rate it stacking, the amount of energy it is all set to draw on from the Ocean and SA monsoon, the favorable upper level conditions and that fact recon flight are also research flights makes it worthwhile.
Also the pressure is dropping...
I'm not saying it will, but there is potential for 94L to blow up and take over. Maybe a 2% chance.
At this point good pressure data is KEY! and you can't get that without a flight.

Regardless
At a minimum it is going to bring TS conditions to the West/Central Caribe even if it never officially forms into a TS and 5 days is a long time to be dumped on for Jamaica and the Caymans.
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I'm back. French open delay because of rain.

I wonder if it's the rain from Jamaica? (I'm not being serious!)

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Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
It appears a TCFA has been issued for 94L.

Link
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


There's no actual message. Just the ATCF guidance.
Quoting NICycloneChaser:


That page just lists invests, and there's a link to the TCFA if there is one. That's why when you click 'TCFA message' it just reloads the page.


#1 wrong
#2 correct
#3 wrong
#4 (myself) that that is the forecast models
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 12716
well ill be back to give my opinion on monday evening..i dont things will change to much by then though..i know one thing for certain jamaica is in for lots of heavy rainfall...
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Don't forget about the tropical waves that could help this system.
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Always disappointing to see a cancelled recon but its their call. Anyways, 94L still holding strong with convection on its Eastern front but is slacking on the western side of the circulation which is still broad and does not appear to be down to the surface. Though, development is looking more likely today than yesterday.
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Quoting NICycloneChaser:


That page just lists invests, and there's a link to the TCFA if there is one. That's why when you click 'TCFA message' it just reloads the page.


Gotcha. Thanks Chaser(s).
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3594. pottery
Quoting NICycloneChaser:


The convection ball has waned quite a bit. Seems to be flattening out a bit like it was yesterday.

DMax had a good effect on it. DMin is coming and zapping it now.
It will probably flare again tonight, but not by so much.

See you all Later....
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3593. emcf30


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Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
It appears a TCFA has been issued for 94L.

Link


That page just lists invests, and there's a link to the TCFA if there is one. That's why when you click 'TCFA message' it just reloads the page.
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Maybe they are waiting for persistence before sending recon. out.
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3590. pottery
Quoting Hurricanes101:
waiting for the season is a bust idiots to start comment now


It's OK, I made that pre-emptive post at post 3465

EDITED post #
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Quoting Hurricanes101:


Doesnt look all that much different to me



The convection ball has waned quite a bit. Seems to be flattening out a bit like it was yesterday.
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Quoting AussieStorm:

Date:Jun. 5, 2011 12:00 Z (Sunday)
Coordinates:16.2N 79.3W
Pressure (MSLP):1007 mb (29.74 inHg | 1007 hPa)
Wind speed (1 min. avg.):25 knots (29 mph | 13 m/s | 46 km/h)
Location:207 statue miles (333 km) to the SW (233°) from Kingston, Jamaica.
Isobar details: The last closed isobar has a pressure of 1010 mb. (29.83 inHg | 1010 hPa) The radius of the last closed isobar is 250 nautical miles (288 miles | 463 kilometers).
Radius of Max Winds:175 nautical miles (201 miles | 324 kilometers)
System Depth:Medium

Nope that westerly coordinate is wrong..it's 78.5 I tell you!!!! Actually looking at the G in the RGB now that the lights better.......
i'm going with 16.7234N and 78.63921W
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Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
It appears a TCFA has been issued for 94L.

Link


There's no actual message. Just the ATCF guidance.
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:


True, but there was pretty much nothing left to it.

Point is, this doesn't have the type of organization that you'd use a flight on.


I agree with that
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Quoting Hurricanes101:


it looks way better than it did last night


True, but there was pretty much nothing left to it.

Point is, this doesn't have the type of organization that you'd use a flight on.
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3. REMARK: LOW-LEVEL INVEST MISSION FOR 05/1800Z AND FIX
MISSION FOR 06/0600Z CANCELED BY NHC AT 05/1100Z.
CANCELED BY NHC...
CANCELED BY NHC....
CANCELED BY NHC.....
(continues repeating for 10 minutes)
*drools*
Man, we should get more data, if it wasn't for the cancellation.
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Quoting NICycloneChaser:


Right now it looks way worse than it did a few hours ago.


Doesnt look all that much different to me

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94L will not start getting its act together until late wednesday or thursday...then they will be cause for concern...
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It appears a TCFA has been issued for 94L.

Link
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Quoting stormwatcherCI:


Low is back.


yes buy I think they put it too far to the West
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 12716
Quoting Hurricanes101:


it looks way better than it did last night


Right now it looks way worse than it did a few hours ago.
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Quoting Hurricanes101:
waiting for the season is a bust idiots to start comment now



well we are on pace for 0 storms...
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Quoting pottery:
Cancelled.
Well, why not?
Looking at the thing, there is no apparent advantage to flying into it.
Jamaica must be producing some good surface obs, and aircraft in and out of Kingston too.


Jamaica is too far away from the centre to produce many useful surface observations. But I agree that there's no point flying into it. It's improved, but it's still a long way from being a cyclone.
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Scrubbed. Oh well.

Nothing too impressive anyway.




it looks way better than it did last night
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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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