Tropical Storm Bret forms near the northern Bahamas

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:57 PM GMT on July 18, 2011

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Tropical Storm Bret formed last night over the Northwestern Bahama Islands, and is expected to bring heavy rains of 2 - 4 inches to the northernmost Bahama Islands today and Tuesday, as the storm drifts slowly to the north-northeast. Bret's formation date of July 17 is two weeks ahead of the usual formation date for the Atlantic's second storm of the season, which is August 1. The latest data from the Hurricane Hunters, taken between 4 - 5am EDT, showed a 100-mile wide area of tropical storm-force winds in excess of 39 mph affecting only the northernmost Bahama Islands--the Abacos. A personal weather station on Great Abaco Island recorded a wind gust of 48 mph at 12:23 am today. Satellite imagery shows that Bret has not improved in organization this morning, thanks to dry air to the northwest that has been blown into the storm's core by upper-level northwesterly winds. long-range radar out of Melbourne, Florida shows that Bret is currently dumping very little rain over the Bahamas, and one thin rain band from the storm is affecting the Florida East Coast with rainfall amounts less than a quarter inch. Wind shear is a moderate 10 - 15 knots, and sea surface temperatures are 28 - 29°C, which is 2°C above the 26.5°C threshold needed to support a tropical storm.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Tropical Storm Bret.

Forecast for Bret
None of the models develop Bret into a hurricane. though the GFDL model has it coming close. Given the current ragged appearance of the storm, plus the forecast by the SHIPS model that wind shear will rise to the high range, 20 - 25 knots, by Tuesday morning, it is unlikely Bret will become a hurricane. NHC is giving Bret a 22% chance of developing into a hurricane by Tuesday.

Steering currents are weak off the coast of Florida, and Bret can be expected to move slowly near 5 mph through Tuesday, before the storm gets caught in a trough of low pressure and lifted northeastwards out to sea. It currently appears that the only land areas that will be affected by Bret will be the northernmost Bahama Islands, today and Tuesday.

None of the reliable models predict tropical cyclone development over the remainder of the Atlantic through July 25.


Figure 2. Visible satellite image of Typhoon Ma-on from NASA's Aqua satellite taken July 18, 2011. Image credit: NASA.

Weakened Typhoon Ma-on headed towards Japan
Typhoon Ma-on has weakened to a large Category 1 storm as it heads towards Japan, and is expected to brush the east coast of the main island of Honshu on Tuesday. The typhoon weakened over the past day, thanks to an eyewall replacement cycle where the inner eyewall collapsed, and a new, larger eyewall formed from an outer spiral band. Ma-on was expected to intensify once this process completed, but the eyewall replacement process significantly disrupted the storm, and it is unlikely Ma-on will be able to recover. This is good news for Japan, since Ma-on is a huge storm with tropical-storm force winds that extend 225 miles north of the center.

Jeff Masters

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a friend from Puerto Rico had a very close encounter with a lightning bolt. It's a miracle he's alive.


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Product: Air Force Vortex Message (URNT12 KNHC)
Transmitted: 18th day of the month at 20:41Z
Aircraft: Air Force Aircraft (Last 3 digits of the tail number are 307)
Storm Number & Year: 02L in 2011
Storm Name: Bret (flight in the North Atlantic basin)
Mission Number: 3
Observation Number: 04
A. Time of Center Fix: 18th day of the month at 19:29:50Z
B. Center Fix Coordinates: 28°09'N 77°04'W (28.15N 77.0667W)
B. Center Fix Location: 209 miles (337 km) to the ENE (62°) from West Palm Beach, FL, USA.
C. Minimum Height at Standard Level: 1,406m (4,613ft) at 850mb
D. Estimated (by SFMR or visually) Maximum Surface Wind: 60kts (~ 69.0mph)
E. Location of the Estimated Maximum Surface Wind: 11 nautical miles (13 statute miles) to the W (271°) of center fix
F. Maximum Flight Level Wind Inbound: From 5° at 53kts (From the N at ~ 61.0mph)
G. Location of Maximum Flight Level Wind Inbound: 10 nautical miles (12 statute miles) to the W (269°) of center fix
H. Minimum Sea Level Pressure: 997mb (29.44 inHg)
I. Maximum Flight Level Temp & Pressure Altitude Outside Eye: 16°C (61°F) at a pressure alt. of 1,530m (5,020ft)
J. Maximum Flight Level Temp & Pressure Altitude Inside Eye: 21°C (70°F) at a pressure alt. of 1,522m (4,993ft)
K. Dewpoint Temp (collected at same location as temp inside eye): 15°C (59°F)
K. Sea Surface Temp (collected at same location as temp inside eye): Not Available
L. Eye Character: Open from the north to the east, S
M. Eye Shape & Diameter: Circular with a diameter of 18 nautical miles (21 statute miles)

N. Fix Determined By: Penetration, Radar, Wind, Pressure and Temperature
N. Fix Level: 850mb
O. Navigation Fix Accuracy: 0.02 nautical miles
O. Meteorological Accuracy: 3 nautical miles
Remarks Section:
Maximum Flight Level Wind: 53kts (~ 61.0mph) in the west quadrant at 19:26:30Z
Maximum Flight Level Wind Outbound: 62kts (~ 71.3mph) in the southeast quadrant at 19:39:10Z
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what going on is everyone hitting the f-5 button
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VDM had the eye...

L. Eye Character: Open from the north to the east, S
M. Eye Shape & Diameter: Circular with a diameter of 18 nautical miles (21 statute miles)
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NHC is slow putting out the 5pm Advisory package
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Quoting MississippiWx:


Yep, should be another active and possibly hyper-active year. However, if we have steering currents that resemble last year, we will turn out just fine. Indications are that our luck is running short, though.
I want our luck to continue.The U.S could do without a hurricane for a few more years.(Especially with the finacial situation).
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 15706
Dora in the E Pac.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 414 Comments: 125503
Recon's approaching the circulation once more...going to penetrate through the northeastern semicircle this time around.

204230 2830N 07644W 8406 01559 //// 146 //// 140056 060 043 007 05
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Quoting washingtonian115:
Bonnie looked like a super cell.A matter of fact.....it she looks like a lady with hair flowing back!.I see her presence now! Quite nasty.We all know that if upper level conditions previel it will get ugly...


Yep, should be another active and possibly hyper-active year. However, if we have steering currents that resemble last year, we will turn out just fine. Indications are that our luck is running short, though.
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Quoting RitaEvac:


They even try to get in my weepholes of near the foundation, last year they did that and were inside the walls

Last week we were doing alot of projects outside and the ANTS are horrible. My son and his wife had ants in their car(and NOT due to food...they are neat freaks). It is like SUDDENLY the ants are everywhere and building up mounds. I have noticed this in the last week and I am a very outside person and am out every day>
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Quoting WeatherfanPR:


thanks for helping
Sry, just my honest opinion...
Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 12461
is there any chance of the low over La turning tropical ,then continuing west and maybe bringing some moisture to tx,because its grown in coverage since this mourning
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Look at dem feeder bands!!! LOL.
Bonnie looked like a super cell.A matter of fact.....it she looks like a lady with hair flowing back!.I see her presence now!
Quoting MississippiWx:






Today's version was never updated for some reason.
Quite nasty.We all know that if upper level conditions previel it will get ugly...
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 15706
Thanks again Patrap


a href="" target="_blank">Link
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Quoting MississippiWx:
Bonnie at her finest:


Cute.
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:

You did not just say that! LOL!


Lol...I'm afraid that I did. :-/
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Quoting MississippiWx:
Bonnie at her finest:

Look at dem feeder bands!!! LOL.
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Bonnie at her finest:

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BE sure to preview it first,,

Yer welcome,,anytime.

Sharing here is what we do best.
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Quoting MrstormX:
Bonnie was barely a borderline TS, Bret is not.

I wasn't talking about strength, I was talking more about size or time or area of origin.
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Quoting Patrap:


Its really ez,,

First pull up the EMBED code below the video,,you have to use the "Old" embed code as wu dosent accept the I-frame ones.

Copy to clipboard,paste DIRECTLY in the comments box below here, bypassing the image button,,preview,,and Post



thanks Patrap, I will try it to see what happens.
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Time of Latest Image: 201107182002
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Quoting MississippiWx:


You know, the explorer...

You did not just say that! LOL!
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Quoting atmoaggie:
Step 1: In this blog, in season, just link 'em.


thanks for helping
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Quoting washingtonian115:
Could anybody post the TCHP map and the sst map(not from wunderground.)






Today's version was never updated for some reason.
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Bonnie and Bert don't have much in common though, apart from both being compact

Restrain thyself,..Patrick

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 414 Comments: 125503
Quoting MississippiWx:


Ah...Bonnie. The thunderstorm that had swirling winds.
I'm currently under stronger winds and rain than when Bonnie came through, LOL.

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Could anybody post the TCHP map and the sst map(not from wunderground.)
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 15706
Quoting atmoaggie:
Step 1: In this blog, in season, just link 'em.


That's not necessary as a Embed dosent drag the flow here @ all.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 414 Comments: 125503
Bonnie was barely a borderline TS, Bret is not.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


Oh, lol
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:

Who's Dora?


You know, the explorer...
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


2nd year in a row that the first storm of the season forms in the last week of June from a monsoonal system and hits the Gulf coast of Mexico, and the 2nd storm develops near Florida in the Bahamas, is small and compact, and develops in the 3rd week of July. Interesting..

Interesting indeed.

Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Both developed in the same general location too. Bonnie and Bert don't have much in common though, apart from both being compact.

It's BRET, not Bert.
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Both developed in the same general location too. Bonnie and Bert don't have much in common though, apart from both being compact.


Ah...Bonnie. The thunderstorm that had swirling winds.
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Quoting WeatherfanPR:
can someone tell me how to post Youtube videos here on the blog ?


Its really ez,,

First pull up the EMBED code below the video,,you have to use the "Old" embed code as wu dosent accept the I-frame ones.

Copy to clipboard,paste DIRECTLY in the comments box below here, bypassing the image button,,preview,,and Post
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 414 Comments: 125503
Quoting uptxcoast:


I know I am a litttle late now but I have seen 2 fire ant colonies on the move in my yard in the past few weeks. Yesterday I did not notice until I was bitten. Those suckers get REALLY mean when they are on the move. (Meaner than usual...) But the ants around here are busier than usual and as I watch my yard for insects very closely (Ants, Fleas, Termites etc...)I have never seen this much activity. I am going to have to spray again. They are really aggressive right now.


They even try to get in my weepholes of near the foundation, last year they did that and were inside the walls
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9625
Quoting WeatherfanPR:
can someone tell me how to post Youtube videos here on the blog ?
Step 1: In this blog, in season, just link 'em.
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:

Who's Dora?

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No go for a hurricane yet, storm petrol
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With the NNe Drift we're losing the CoC 's Radar View over the Hill,,

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Quoting AllStar17:
Dora is organizing quickly.

Who's Dora?
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can someone tell me how to post Youtube videos here on the blog ?
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:
Wow, has anyone else noticed something? This is the second year in a row where the first storm of the season is a large monsoonal-type cyclone, while the second is small and compact.
Both developed in the same general location too. Bonnie and Bret don't have much in common though, apart from both being compact.
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Public Information Statement

Heavy rainfall developed during the early morning hours across
portions of coastal Mississippi and Metro New Orleans. The heavy
rainfall began around 5 am and persisted through around 8 am.
These heavy rains resulted in widespread street flooding across
the westbank of Metro New Orleans and in the Pass Christian and
Long Beach areas of the Mississippi coast. Rainfall totals ranged
from 6 to 8 to inches in most areas...but some official and
unofficial observations reported rainfall totals of 11 to 13 inches (!)
along the Mississippi coast near Pass Christian.

atmo: Now, everyone start fanning it to the west...
Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 12461
Quoting WeatherNerdPR:
Wow, has anyone else noticed something? This is the second year in a row where the first storm of the season is a large monsoonal-type cyclone, while the second is small and compact.


2nd year in a row that the first storm of the season forms in the last week of June from a monsoonal system and hits the Gulf coast of Mexico, and the 2nd storm develops near Florida in the Bahamas, is small and compact, and develops in the 3rd week of July. Interesting..
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Quoting presslord:


interesting....we've seen that here, too


I know I am a litttle late now but I have seen 2 fire ant colonies on the move in my yard in the past few weeks. Yesterday I did not notice until I was bitten. Those suckers get REALLY mean when they are on the move. (Meaner than usual...) But the ants around here are busier than usual and as I watch my yard for insects very closely (Ants, Fleas, Termites etc...)I have never seen this much activity. I am going to have to spray again. They are really aggressive right now.
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Recon Positioning to make another pass through the center
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That Northern Storm Track is a fast un..
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 414 Comments: 125503
I think Bret is very close to hurricane status, I would expect a 70mph TS at the next advisory at 5pm , if not a minimal hurricane at 75mph.
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Quoting atmoaggie:
I don't *think* it is....


Like I said, only a part of it. The frontal zone was squeezed to begin with, with subsidence pushing in from either side. Bret is still strongly feeling the effects of dry air from this. The result was that the frontal boundary could only be so wide, supporting only a thin zone of rising air. As Ritavac said, the vorticity spin-off from the front started the system off small, but the squeezed frontal zone was the main reason for that to begin with.

It sure is an interesting feature. The dynamics change a lot with abnormal sizes.

Gotta get back to work. Back later.
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It's spun up quickly and has the right environment, therefore it can spin down rapidly and dissipate at any time once the environment deterioates. If conditions aren't good down the road this thing COULD dissapear before Bermuda
Member Since: July 14, 2008 Posts: 1 Comments: 9625

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About JeffMasters

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.