Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.
By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:36 PM GMT on July 03, 2011
Heavy rains from Tropical Storm Arlene created flash floods and mudslides that killed eleven people in Mexico over the past three days, according to media reports. Rainfall amounts as high as ten inches were estimated by satellite over the mountainous regions of Mexico where most of the fatalities occurred. The soil in the region was prone to more dangerous flash floods than usual, due to extreme drought conditions that killed much of the soil-stabilizing vegetation.
Figure 1. Satellite-based rainfall estimates from NASA's TRMM satellite for June 24 - July 1, 2011. The solid black line shows the path of Arlene with storms symbols marking the 00 and 12Z positions and intensity. Most of the heaviest rain occurs offshore and along the coast. Over land, rainfall totals exceeded 100 to 150 mm of rain (~4 to 6 inches, shown in green) over most of the central east coast of Mexico. In the vicinity of where Arlene made landfall, there are higher amounts in excess of 250 mm (~10 inches, shown in orange). In addition to the rain from Arlene, a passing tropical wave contributed to the rainfall totals over the Yucatan prior to Arlene's formation. Image credit: NASA.
The heat is on
Sizzling summer temperatures set new daily maximum temperature records over many states in the Southwest and Midwest U.S. yesterday. Most notably, Phoenix Arizona hit 118°F, their hottest day since it was 118 on 21 July 2006. If the long-range GFS model is correct, the Midwest could be in for one of its hottest heat waves in recent years next weekend, when a strong ridge of high pressure is expected to move in.
The Atlantic is quiet
The Atlantic is quiet, and none of the computer models is predicting tropical cyclone formation through July 10.
Enjoy your holiday weekend, everyone, and I'll be back with a new post on Tuesday at the latest.
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