Winds diminish for Arizona's fire; flooding from 94L kills 23 in Haiti

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:27 PM GMT on June 09, 2011

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The powerful winds that have fanned Arizona's massive Wallow fire into the state's second largest fire on record will diminish today, and the forecast for Eastern Arizona calls for more modest afternoon winds of 15 - 20 mph through Saturday. For the first time this week, NOAA's Storm Prediction Center has not issued red flag warnings for critical fire conditions in Eastern Arizona, and firefighters should be able to make progress battling the Wallow fire, which is 0% contained. Yesterday, Luna, New Mexico, located about 50 miles northeast of the fire, had wind gusts in excess of 30 mph for almost 7 hours, temperatures near 80°F, and humidities as low as 5%. The fire has grown steadily this week--300 square miles on Sunday, 365 square miles on Monday, 484 square miles Tuesday, and 608 square miles on Wednesday. Its current size is about 50% of the size of Rhode Island. The fire is close to beating the 2002 Rodeo-Chediski fire (732 square miles) as Arizona's largest fire in recorded history. Smoke from the Wallow fire has now blown downwind over 2,000 miles over the Atlantic Ocean, as seen using our wundermap for the U.S. with the Fire layer turned on. Smoke caused "Unhealthy" levels of air pollution (code red on the Air Quality Index) over much of new Mexico Wednesday. A separate fire burning in Southeast Arizona, the 167-square-mile Horseshoe Two fire, is the state's 5th largest fire on record, and is 50% contained. According to the Interagency Fire Center, 3.6 million acres have burned in the U.S. so far this year, the most on record for this early in the year--and more than double the 10-year average from 2001 - 2010 of 1.4 million acres. During May, 1.8 million acres burned, the greatest May fire acreage burned in the 12-year record. Extreme to exceptional drought conditions over most of Texas, New Mexico, and Eastern Arizona are largely responsible for the record fire season.


Figure 1. Smoke from Arizona's Wallow fire passed over the Washington DC area at a height of 5 - 9 km during the day on Wednesday, June 8, 2011. NASA Goddard's micropulse lidar in Greenbelt, Maryland took a vertical profile of particles in the atmosphere during the day. A lidar (short for LIght Detection And Ranging) is a laser detection system that bounces light waves off of particles in the atmosphere to determine where clouds and elevated pollution layers exist. During the afternoon hours, the lidar also detected large amounts of air pollution particles near the surface (orange colors) after 18 UTC (2pm EDT.) Air quality in the Washington D.C. area during the day on June 8 for particles was Moderate (84 on the Air Quality Index, code yellow), and was Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups (Air Quality Index of 150) for ozone pollution. The University of Maryland Smog Blog is where I got this image from, and is a good place to get daily discussions of air pollution.


Figure 2. Smoke billows from the rapidly growing Wallow fire in Eastern Arizona in this image taken by NASA's Aqua satellite at 1:25pm MDT June 8, 2011. The actively burning fire front (outlined in red) surrounds a vast area of charred land. High winds propelled the fire, igniting spot fires as much as three miles ahead of the fire front. Image credit: NASA.

Flooding from 94L kills 23 people in Haiti
The large, disorganized tropical disturbance (94L) that brought heavy rains to Jamaica, Cuba, and Haiti early this week is no more, but at least 23 people are dead and six missing in Haiti due to torrential flooding rains from the disturbance. Satellite-estimated rainfall amounts indicate 8 -10 inches of rain fell over Haiti's southwestern peninsula this week. The heaviest rains from the remains of 94L lie just north and west of Haiti, and may be capable of bringing 1 - 3 inches of rain to Haiti, the Bahamas, and eastern Cuba today. The NOGAPS model is suggesting the remains of 94L could reorganize into a strong tropical disturbance this weekend off the coast of South Carolina, but none of the other models are showing this. The NOGAPS model has had a poor track record handling the evolution of the wind shear pattern this week, and I'm not expecting any major regeneration of 94L. Wind shear is very high 30 - 50 knots in the region between Cuba and South Carolina, making development very unlikely. Elsewhere in the Atlantic, none of the reliable computer models is predicting tropical cyclone development over the next seven days.


Figure 3. Morning satellite image of Hurricane Adrian.

First hurricane of the Eastern Pacific hurricane season forms
Hurricane Adrian is putting on an impressive bout of rapid intensification, and has emerged as the season's first hurricane in the Eastern Pacific Ocean. Adrian is in an ideal environment for intensification, with light wind shear and ocean temperatures of 30°C (86°), and will likely become a major hurricane later today. Adrian is expected to remain far enough offshore the coast of Mexico to not pose a threat to that country, at least for the next three days. June hurricanes in the Eastern Pacific are much more common than in the Atlantic.

NOAA's pre-season prediction of the Eastern Pacific hurricane season, issued on May 16, calls for below average activity, with 12 named storms, 6.5 hurricanes, and 2 major hurricanes, with an ACE index 75% of the median. The 1981-2010 averages for the Eastern Pacific hurricane season are 15 - 16 named storms, 8 - 9 hurricanes, and 4 major hurricanes.

Jeff Masters

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Smokey Moon 2 (gilg72)
This was later at 1109PM when there was heavier smoke from the Ariz Fires.
Smokey Moon 2

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Quoting IceCoast:


Ya pretty much now way it will miss me...


Or my sibs in W. MA. Stay safe!
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Pottery dont you just love summertime between the trolls and the heat I don't know which is worse.
I just report them every time I dont like there comment..I gat a WU ban for saying the proper name for womans undergarments last year, no I won say P-----S again
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system near the bahamas is rather large and is coming together this morning there was a little bit here and alittle bit there. by tomorrow we might have a blooming semi tropical system
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Quoting DontAnnoyMe:




Ya pretty much no way it will miss me...Should be fun.
Member Since: October 17, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1267
Quoting twhcracker:
Since Japan, I have been checking the earthquakes on the interactive map a lot. there was like 7 or 8 quakes today in baja. and there is an earthquake almost every single day in arkansas?? in the same spot?? that cant be right. whats up with that. is that an underground nuclear testing site or something?


The baja quakes are on an active fault. The Arkansas ones are at a natural gas fracking site. There have been some fairly recent clusters at an enhanced geothermal fracking site in southern Nevada, too
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Cat 4 maybe...?
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Quoting hurricanehunter27:

What? We are not in an El nino, there is a possibility of that but currently we a neutral. And a drought in Texas is completely unrelated. If you have found a way that they are related plz explain.

And to further your thought, the Northeast experienced a Heat Wave like this in '05 because I was in New York at the time & it was more humid & hot there than it was in Florida, so I see some similarities & no way we see conditions like in '09 or '06 on top of that the SAL isn't kicking up a lot of dust.
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Quoting IceCoast:
This severe line of storms dropping ESE through southern NH is heading directly towards me in Methuen, MA. If it holds together like it looks it will, it should be pretty severe.

Link


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Quoting TxHurricanedude11:
well, I just put you on ignore because you keep quoting someone I have on ignore....
Keep it up.
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This severe line of storms dropping ESE through southern NH is heading directly towards me in Methuen, MA. If it holds together like it looks it will, it should be pretty severe.

Link
Member Since: October 17, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1267
I don't know how anyone could have looked at this earlier today and not see the intensification process. I believe it may even get a bit stronger before heading into cooler water.


Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 69 Comments: 25410
Wow, Adrian looking surprisingly good.

You guys are doing a good job on the trolls... Sometimes I have to click 'Show' before I get the chance to '-' and '!', but usually, I don't even see the posts.

Those models 6 days out that show something off the east coast, is it forming north of the high shear region?
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Quoting toddluck:
put a stock in it?.....

lol yeah they misspelled sock
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339. IKE
"""i was right about 2006 I was called a troll"""

With 29 posts...total, since June 7th, 2011.

wth?
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Hurricane year forecasts for the last several years have been bust. Why is this year any different? I don't appreciate all the hype that follows. Because of all the disasters everybody is in a "sensational" mood and their vocabulary proves it. It is still a "wait and see game". I have no confidence in "hurricane season predictions".
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Tropics: Does June Matter?
by Jonathan Erdman, Sr. Meteorologist

Baseball has spring training. Players work on fundamentals, roster spots are firmed up. The games "don't count". Does the same apply to the Atlantic hurricane season?Similar to the baseball season, the hurricane season "heats up" to its peak in the months of August, September and October. June, of course, sits a couple months prior to the peak.

Doesn't it take time for the atmosphere and ocean to optimize for tropical cyclone formation? Doesn't it take a while for the shearing winds aloft that rip apart fledgling tropical cyclone "wanna-be's" to relax? Isn't the "Cape Verde season", during which tropical waves regularly march off the west African coast, in August and beyond?

Consider the following June Atlantic Basin factoids since 1965:

June "swoon"?
•Only 22 of last 46 Junes since 1965 have had at least 1 named storm
•No June named storms in 2009, 2008, 2004, 2002, 2000
•Only 8 June hurricanes since 1965
•Only 2 major hurricanes (Category 3 or stronger) since 1950



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Quoting sylver27:
if this season is anything like 2005 I will be eating crow

but i know I won't


LOL, no I doubt that will happen, just brought it up because the same names are being used this yr.
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Link

notice SAL is looking very nice
Member Since: June 8, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 27
334. IKE

Quoting toddluck:
put a stock in it?.....

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Use your ignore or you will be ignored!
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Quoting toddluck:
put a stock in it?.....


What is my portfolio
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Mostly I lurk around to learn what I can from all of the very informative posts here. I am fascinated by weather, and the fact that so many of you are educating me about weather verbiage, reading maps, etc. is a definite plus. I appreciate your time and willingness to share your knowledge and wisdom.
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put a stock in it?.....
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Quoting sylver27:
this season will be a bust because texas had a drought (like they did in 2006 and 2009)Every time texas has a drought hurricane season is bust. plus, we are in a el nino year. the winds are also too strong, there is too much dry air and dust from the droughts for there to be anything. this is why the hurricane season is a bust. Now i study hours deciding this.

What? We are not in an El nino, there is a possibility of that but currently we a neutral. And a drought in Texas is completely unrelated. If you have found a way that they are related plz explain.
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Quoting twincomanche:
I just don't understand why you folks keep quoting the trolls and other ding dong people instead of just ignoring people and hitting the report button. Why are you 'compellesed' to quote Barney to acknowledge their presence?

I agree.
It's ridiculous to quote those comments,
I wish that you people that do that, would stop!
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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.