Hurricane warnings for Mexico; tornadoes and floods for the Midwest U.S.

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:26 PM GMT on June 20, 2011

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The outer spiral bands of intensifying Tropical Storm Beatriz have reached the coast of Mexico between Acapulco and Puerto Vallarta, and a hurricane warning is now in effect for the coast of Mexico from Zihuatanejo northwestward to La Fortuna. Beatriz is headed to the northwest under the influence of the large trough of low pressure over the Midwest U.S. that is causing severe weather and flooding rains there. As Beatriz nears the coast Tuesday morning, the trough may have progressed far enough eastwards so that Beatriz wil miss making a direct hit on the coast, and instead turn west and move out to sea as a ridge of high pressure builds in. Regardless of whether the core of the storm makes landfall or not, the major threat from Beatriz will be heavy rains. Rainfall amounts of 4 - 8 inches will be common along the coast, and up to a foot of rain is likely in some mountainous regions, causing significant flooding and dangerous mudslides. NHC is giving Manzanillo a 5% chance of experiencing hurricane-force winds of 74 mph or greater; these odds drop to just 1% for Puerto Vallarta, and 8% for Barra Navidad. With ocean temperatures between 29 - 30°C and wind shear predicted to drop to 10 knots later today, there is no reason why Beatriz couldn't intensify into a Category 1 hurricane by Tuesday. NHC is giving a 15% chance the Beatriz could intensify into a Category 2 or stronger hurricane. A hurricane hunter aircraft is scheduled to visit Beatriz this afternoon to gauge its strength. Satellite loops reveal that Beatriz has become more organized this morning, and Microwave satellite imagery indicates that Beatriz has built about 50% of an eyewall. Once this process is complete, more rapid strengthening is likely.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Tropical Storm Beatriz taken at 8am EDT June 20, 2011. Image credit: NASA/GSFC.

Significant severe weather outbreak and flooding rains possible today in the Midwest
Severe thunderstorms developed along a warm front stretching from Eastern Colorado through Nebraska and into Iowa and Wisconsin last night. The result was an active evening with numerous severe thunderstorm, tornado, and flash flood warnings. Hail to the size of baseballs and winds to 77 miles per hour were reported at Champion and Imperial, Nebraska. Many other locations reported large hail and winds greater than 60 miles per hour, and NOAA's Storm Prediction Center logged thirteen preliminary tornado reports in Nebraska, Colorado, Iowa, and Wisconsin. The large, slow-moving low pressure system responsible for yesterday's severe weather will touch off a new round of severe weather this afternoon, and the Storm Prediction Center has placed Eastern Nebraska, Western Iowa, and portions of three other states in their "Moderate Risk" area for severe weather. Baseball and softball-sized hail is likely in some of the stronger supercell thunderstorms that form, and there is also the risk of a few strong EF-2 and EF-3 tornadoes.



Figure 2. Today's severe risk outlook from NOAA's Storm Prediction Center.

Also of concern is the large area of 2 - 4 inches of rain this storm is likely to bring to the Missouri River watershed this week. As I discussed in detail in Friday's post, the flood control system on the Missouri River is being strained beyond its designed limits, and this week's rains are likely to worsen existing flooding and potentially cause new levee breaches on the river.


Figure 3. Predicted rainfall for the coming five days (top image) shows that a large region of 2 - 4 inches is expected over the Missouri River watershed (bottom image.) Image credit: NOAA/HPC and Wikipedia.

Critical fire conditions to give Arizona a break this week
Powerful southwest winds gusting to 50 mph affected much of Arizona yesterday, producing some of the worst fire conditions the parched state has seen all year. Sierra Vista in Southeast Arizona experienced sustained winds of 31 mph, gusting to 50 mph yesterday, causing a major spread of the dangerous Monument Fire. With air temperatures of 94° and a humidity of just 13%, it was a tough day for firefighting. The 33-square mile fire jumped fire control lines and surged into the town, forcing the evacuation of thousands of people. However, after a difficult 4-day stretch of critical fire conditions, the winds will give Arizona a break today. Winds under 10 mph are expected in Sierra Vista, and strong winds and critical fire conditions are not expected in the state until at least Friday, according to NOAA's Storm Prediction Center. This respite should give firefighters a chance to gain the upper hand on the three significant fires burning in the eastern part of the state. Arizona's largest fire on record, the massive 800-square mile Wallow Fire, should be mostly contained by the end of the week if this forecast holds up. According to our weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, the Wallow Fire is a long way from being the largest fire in U.S. history. That distinction belongs to the great Peshtigo Fire of 1871, which burned 5,938 square miles of Wisconsin and Michigan.

The Atlantic is quiet
The Atlantic is quiet, with no tropical cyclones predicted over the next seven days by the reliable computer models.

Jeff Masters

Questionable Building Site! (Nikongranny)
From the first time I saw this house starting to go up I questioned whether this was a safe place. Turns out "not this year."
Questionable Building Site!
Monument Fire, Tuesday (paperbag)
The Monument Fire near Sierra Vista looked like this from Bisbee 20 miles away at sunset Tuesday June 14.
Monument Fire, Tuesday
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An 87-year old record was broken today here in Southeastern North Carolina, in Wilmington North Carolina, where the temperature hit 101 °F.

It hit 105 °F here today...Heat that is usually unheard of here.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
There have been eight reported tornadoes today, seven in Kansas, one in North Dakota.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
Severe Thunderstorm Watch #522 is no longer in effect, although an isolated hail/damaging wind threat may persist into the afternoon hours.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
Message: NOAA-NWS-ALERTS-ND20110620194600TornadoWarning2011 0620201500ND.BISTORBIS.45b240e773e43e2433a7cff5fb1 b5e33 from w-nws.webmaster@noaa.gov
Sent: 14:58 CDT on 06-20-2011
Effective: 14:46 CDT on 06-20-2011
Expires: 15:15 CDT on 06-20-2011
Event: Tornado Warning
Alert: THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN BISMARCK HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
CENTRAL MORTON COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL NORTH DAKOTA...

* UNTIL 315 PM CDT

* AT 242 PM CDT...THE PUBLIC REPORTED A TORNADO NORTHEAST OF
ALMONT...OR 31 MILES WEST OF BISMARCK. DOPPLER RADAR SHOWED THIS
TORNADO MOVING WEST AT 5 MPH.

* THE TORNADO WILL BE NEAR...

ALMONT AROUND 315 PM CDT.
Instructions: TO REPEAT...A TORNADO IS ON THE GROUND. TAKE COVER NOW. MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A STURDY BUILDING. AVOID WINDOWS. IF IN A MOBILE HOME...A VEHICLE OR OUTDOORS...MOVE TO THE CLOSEST SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER AND PROTECT YOURSELF FROM FLYING DEBRIS.
Target Area: Morton


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Quoting hurricanehunter27:
Wow did not even know that debris balls could even get that big. Must be picking up a ton of something.


What are you looking at? How can you tell that a tornado is picking up debris?
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Quoting Grothar:


Told ya so, told ya so!!! How you doing, Keep?
iam good just taking a break before i finish todays shift
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 174 Comments: 54639
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the storms so far today have been in the Slight risk area. Conditions are a lot more favorable for the development of tornadoes in the Moderate risk area. Indications are that storms should begin to fire in the MDT risk area within the next 1-3 hours, just in time for peak daytime heating.



Low pressure system supporting these thunderstorms is abnormally strong for this time of the year...992 mb.


:(

That's a sobering thought.

I still can't help thinking about the April 27 Dekalb F5 that wiped away a 2 story brick home, ripped the door off a 800lb safe bolted to the foundations, threw the safe 250 ft, then proceeded to try and dig up the tornado bunker the homeowners were hiding in.
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Message: NOAA-NWS-ALERTS-NE20110620195000TornadoWarning2011 0620200000NE.GIDSVSGID.4b37929acf6380647695dd98318 e35b6 from w-nws.webmaster@noaa.gov
Sent: 14:55 CDT on 06-20-2011
Effective: 14:50 CDT on 06-20-2011
Expires: 15:00 CDT on 06-20-2011
Event: Tornado Warning
Alert: ...A TORNADO WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR SOUTHWESTERN HARLAN...
SOUTHEASTERN FURNAS AND NORTHWESTERN PHILLIPS COUNTIES UNTIL 300 PM
CDT...

AT 248 PM CDT...TRAINED WEATHER SPOTTERS REPORTED A TORNADO. THIS
TORNADO WAS LOCATED NEAR ALMENA...OR 14 MILES EAST OF NORTON...MOVING
NORTH AT 35 MPH.
LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE...
LONG ISLAND...WOODRUFF...STAMFORD...ALMA AND BEAVER CITY.

.75IN
Instructions: TO REPEAT...A TORNADO IS ON THE GROUND. TAKE COVER NOW. MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A STURDY BUILDING. AVOID WINDOWS. IF IN A MOBILE HOME...A VEHICLE OR OUTDOORS...MOVE TO THE CLOSEST SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER AND PROTECT YOURSELF FROM FLYING DEBRIS.
Target Area: Furnas
Harlan


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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
be nice to rufus the dufus he just wants some massive storm tearing up the atlantic don't worry rufus it will not be boring much longer its only day 20 we got lots of days left yet


Yeah, we still have 163 days left of Hurricane Season 2011.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the storms so far today have been in the Slight risk area. Conditions are a lot more favorable for the development of tornadoes in the Moderate risk area. Indications are that storms should begin to fire in the MDT risk area within the next 1-3 hours, just in time for peak daytime heating.



Low pressure system supporting these thunderstorms is abnormally strong for this time of the year...992 mb.


Message: NOAA-NWS-ALERTS-NE20110620194300TornadoWarning2011 0620200000NE.GIDSVSGID.ba80929beedd94261fc58fa3849 c9ef0 from w-nws.webmaster@noaa.gov
Sent: 19:52 GMT on 06-20-2011
Effective: on --
Expires: on --
Event:
Alert:
This alert has expired

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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
T.C.F.W.
02E/H/B/C1
MARK
16.37N/102.53W


Told ya so, told ya so!!! How you doing, Keep?
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Quoting Waltanater:
Lame too!
be nice to rufus the dufus he just wants some massive storm tearing up the atlantic don't worry rufus it will not be boring much longer its only day 20 we got lots of days left yet
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 174 Comments: 54639
img src="
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I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the storms so far today have been in the Slight risk area. Conditions are a lot more favorable for the development of tornadoes in the Moderate risk area. Indications are that storms should begin to fire in the MDT risk area within the next 1-3 hours, just in time for peak daytime heating.



Low pressure system supporting these thunderstorms is abnormally strong for this time of the year...992 mb.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
T.C.F.W.
02E/H/B/C1
MARK
16.37N/102.53W
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 174 Comments: 54639
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Quoting CybrTeddy:
EP, 02, 2011062018, , BEST, 0, 166N, 1029W, 60, 989, TS


Conservative approach for this advisory???
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


Just ignore and move on.


oh. Ok yeah, sorry, I got carried away.
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Judging by what recon found, I think the National Hurricane Center will put Beatriz at 80 mph/991 mb.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
Recon supports Beatriz being upgraded to Hurricane status next update.
Edit: ^ Wow surprising, looks like they might keep it a high end TS.
Member Since: October 17, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1267
EP, 02, 2011062018, , BEST, 0, 166N, 1029W, 60, 989, TS
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


I use Google Earth. If you want that, then refer to post #158.



Post #158.

cool
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Quoting aquak9:

YOU'RE BORING!!!


Just ignore and move on.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
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Recon indicates Beatriz is a 80 mph Hurricane with a pressure of 991 mb.
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Wow quite the active afternoon, a good size tornado hope those folks are able to take cover, probably alot of hail with cell to hmm.Beatriz i think is gainning some convection in those last few frames of the loop, so there sending a hurricane hunter aircraft up there now i would,t be surprised if it gets updated to the cat 1 storm now.
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000
URPN12 KNHC 201826
VORTEX DATA MESSAGE EP022011
A. 20/18:07:20Z
B. 16 deg 37 min N
102 deg 53 min W
C. 850 mb 1342 m
D. 70 kt
E. 144 deg 14 nm
F. 245 deg 74 kt
G. 143 deg 13 nm
H. 991 mb
I. 17 C / 1518 m
J. 22 C / 1520 m
K. 11 C / NA
L. NA
M. NA
N. 12345 / 8
O. 0.02 / 2.5 nm
P. AF302 0102E BEATRIZ OB 09
MAX FL WIND 74 KT SE QUAD 18:03:20Z
CURVED BAND S THRU NW
Member Since: October 17, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 1267
Quoting HurricaneHunterJoe:
anyone have a link for real time pacific recon?


I use Google Earth. If you want that, then refer to post #158.

Quoting caribbeantracker01:
could someone post the link for the hurricane hunters in Google earth?


Post #158.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
could someone post the link for the hurricane hunters in Google earth?
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Man the Atlantic is boring
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anyone have a link for real time pacific recon?
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Going to keep this post updated...

Current Severe Weather Watches:




* 522
* PDS 523

Current Mesoscale Discussions:




* 1320

* 1322

Reports:



Tornado: 6
Wind: 15/0
Hail: 29/6
Total: 50/3


Risks:

Current day 1 risk: MODERATE
Current day 2 risk: SLIGHT
Current day 3 risk: SLIGHT
Current day 4 risk: PREDICT. TOO LOW
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
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* at 221 PM CDT... storm spotters and National Weather Service Doppler radar were tracking a large and extremely dangerous tornado near Densmore. Doppler radar showed this tornado moving northeast at 40 mph.


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Tornado Watch likely to be put in effect soon. It could be a PDS, but the conditions are against it.

Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32355
KITTEH!!!
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These storms and intensify rapidly, even for short periods of time, even sometimes when they are near the coast.


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Beatriz acting up.


Link
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Quoting jasonweatherman2010:

are you saying we are going to have some hurricane hit the usa this year.


Nope, not saying that at all. Just that conditions continue to improve for development. It's natural for conditions to improve as we head into the heart of hurricane season, but anomalies don't always strengthen. The Atlantic continues to warm above average, while the rest of the world stays right around average. Kind of like last year when we referred to the bundling of heat in the Atlantic. The heat has to go somewhere and it goes with the development of tropical cyclones.
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It might also be worth noting that the system ripping across Kansas right now brought snow to Colorado at elevations as low as about 9,500' last night... higher elevations got several inches at least.

This is the lowest snowline I've seen for at least a month. Snow at 9,500' is not unprecedented for Colorado in June, but it's a testament to the strength of this system and also significant on this, the day before summer officially starts.
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Here is a good example of what an anomalously cool Gulf of Guinea does to the monsoon trof over Africa:



Notice how far north the trof is currently? If this persists into peak hurricane season, it might not bode well for us if steering currents are favorable for landfalls.

Here is the updated anomalies. The Atlantic continues to warm above average, thanks in part to a strongly negative NAO. Also notice, the Atlantic is warmer than any other tropical basin when it comes to anomalies:

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Beatriz is a lot closer to land than Adrian was; high elevation land, too.

Which suggests that Beatriz will snag its northeastern skirt on the mountainous terrain, ripping the smooth(er) windflow needed to strengthen its core, hindering development.
Given its predicted track, nothing stronger than a lowCat.2 would be my guess.
A Cat.1 max is more likely.
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this could get upgraded to a tornado emergency pretty soon
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:




This morning's EURO showed a tropical system in about the same location as the 12z GFS during the same time frame. Will be interesting to see this afternoon's EURO.
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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.