U.S. heat wave blamed for 22 deaths; Bret and Cindy no threat

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:07 PM GMT on July 21, 2011

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The dangerous U.S. heat wave of July 2011 will continue to bring another day of exceptionally humid heat to over 100 million Americans today, with 33 states plus the District of Columbia currently under heat advisories. The heat index--how hot the air feels when factoring in both the temperature and the humidity--exceeded 100° in twenty states in the Central and Eastern U.S. on Wednesday, peaking at 123° in Council Bluffs, Iowa. At least 22 deaths are being blamed on the heat in the Midwest. The extreme humidity that has accompanied this heat has made it a very dangerous one, since the body is much less able to cool itself when the humidity is high. The high humidities are due, in great part, to the record rains and flooding in the Midwest over the past few months that have saturated soils and left farmlands flooded. Accompanying the heat has been high levels of air pollution, which also contributes to mortality. Air pollution is expected exceed federal standards and reach code orange, "Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups", in at least 22 states today, according to the latest forecasts from EPA.

The extreme heat peaked in Chicago yesterday, where the temperature hit 100° at Midway Airport and the Chicago Lakefront station. Rockford, Illinois hit 100°, the first time in 22 years that city had seen 100° temperatures. Detroit is expected to hit 100° for the first time in sixteen years today, and I think I'm going to skip the Ann Arbor Art Fair! New York City and the mid-Atlantic states are expected to be near 100° on Friday. The forecast high of 103° in Washington D.C. for Friday is just 3° below the hottest temperature ever recorded in the city, 106°. The heat will continue in the mid-Atlantic states through Sunday, then ease on Monday when a cold front is expected to pass through. Wunderground's climate change blogger Dr. Ricky Rood has some good insights on the current heat wave in his latest post. A few notable highlights from this week:

Omaha, Nebraska has been above 80° for a four-day period beginning on July 17. This is the 2nd longest such stretch on record, next to the 8-day period that ended July 25, 1934. Multi-day periods when the low temperatures do not cool off below 75° are associated with high heat wave death rates.

Amarillo, Texas recorded its 26th day of 100° temperatures yesterday, tying the city's record for most 100° days in a year, last set in 1953. Record keeping in the city goes back to 1892.

Minneapolis, Minnesota, recorded its highest dew point ever, 82°, on Tuesday. The heat index hit a remarkable 118° in the city, which tied July 11, 1966 for the highest heat index on record in the city. Minnesota's all-time highest dew point temperature of 86° was tied on Sunday, in Madison. The previous record was in St. James and Pipestone in July of 2005.

The latest National Weather Service storm summary has a list of cities where the heat index exceeded 100° yesterday.


Figure 1. On Wednesday, heat advisories for this dangerous heat wave covered portions of 33 states plus the District of Columbia, an area with 141 million people--about half the population of the U.S.

Tropical Storm Bret no threat
Tropical Storm Bret continues to struggle with high wind shear of 20 - 30 knots, and high shear is expected to affect the storm the remainder of the week. The combination of high wind shear and dry air nearby should act to destroy Bret by Sunday, and the storm is not a threat to any land areas.

Tropical Storm Cindy forms
Tropical Storm Cindy formed yesterday 600 miles to the east of Bermuda. Cindy's formation was 24 days ahead of the usual formation date for the third named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season, which is August 13. This year has the most early season activity since 2008, when Hurricane Dolly got named on July 20. Wind shear is a moderate 10 - 20 knots, and is expected to remain moderate for several days. However, Cindy has moved over cool ocean waters of 25°C this morning, and this temperature is 1.5°C below the threshold of 26.5°C that tropical storms typically need in order to maintain their strength. With Cindy predicted to move over waters of just 21°C by Friday morning, the storm doesn't have long to live. Cindy is not a threat to any land areas.

An African wave worth watching
An African wave near 12N 50W, 700 miles east of the Lesser Antilles Islands, is moving west to west-northwest at about 15 mph, and is generating a limited amount of heavy thunderstorms due to the presence of a large amount of dust and dry air from the Sahara. This wave will spread heavy rain showers and strong gusty winds to the northern Lesser Antilles beginning on Saturday. The wave has a modest degree of spin to it, and is under low wind shear, 5 - 10 knots. Once it finds a moister environment near the Bahama Islands early next week, it could develop. Of the latest 00Z and 06Z runs of the four reliable models for predicting formation of a tropical depression, only the NOGAPS model shows development of the wave. The NOGAPS predicts the wave could attain tropical depression status on Wednesday, just off the coast of South Carolina. The other models generally depict too much wind shear over the Bahamas for the wave to develop. The eventual track of the wave once it reaches the Bahamas early next week is uncertain; there will be a trough of low pressure located off the U.S. East Coast that will be capable of turning the wave to the north, along the East Coast. However, it is also quite possible that the wave would be too weak and to far south to feel the influence of this trough, and instead would enter the Gulf of Mexico.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of Hurricane Dora.

Hurricane Dora in the Eastern Pacific close to Category 5
Hurricane Dora in the Eastern Pacific put on an impressive burst of intensification over the past 24 hours, and is now a very impressive Category 4 storm with 155 mph winds, just 1 mph short of Category 5 status. Dora is expected to move parallel to the coast of Mexico, and should not cause any major trouble in that country. Dora is the second major hurricane in the East Pacific this year; Hurricane Adrian topped out as a Category 4 storm with 140 mph winds in early June.

Think cold. Way cold!
Those of us sweltering in today's heat would do well to consider that on this date in 1983, Vostok, Antarctica shivered at -128°F--the coldest temperature ever measured on Earth. The low tonight in Vostok is expected to be a relatively balmy -80°F.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting doabarrelroll:


3rd world countries bite the US? odd and off topic but hey good trolling
how's that trolling?
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 19 Comments: 4358
800 PM PDT THU JUL 21 2011



A FEW HOURS AGO...THE EYE OF DORA ABRUPTLY DISAPPEARED ON

GEOSTATIONARY SATELLITE IMAGES AND DEEP CONVECTION BECAME MUCH LESS

SYMMETRIC ABOUT THE CENTER. THIS INDICATES A SIGNIFICANT WEAKENING

OF THE HURRICANE. DVORAK T-NUMBERS AND CURRENT INTENSITY NUMBERS

ARE 5.5 AND 6.5 RESPECTIVELY FROM BOTH TAFB AND SAB. USING A BLEND

OF THESE NUMBERS GIVES A RATHER UNCERTAIN WIND SPEED ESTIMATE OF

110 KT. THE HURRICANE IS BEGINNING TO CROSS THE SST GRADIENT AND

IS HEADING FOR COOLER WATERS...ALTHOUGH IT IS CURRENTLY OVER WATERS

OF ABOUT 28 DEGREES CELSIUS. SOME OF THE WEAKENING IS LIKELY DUE

TO STRONG NORTHERLY SHEAR OVER THE CYCLONE. AN EVEN MORE RAPID

WEAKENING IS LIKELY TO COMMENCE AS SOON AS DORA TRAVERSES MUCH

COOLER WATERS. THE OFFICIAL INTENSITY FORECAST IS FAIRLY CLOSE TO

THE LATEST STATISTICAL-DYNAMICAL...LGEM...GUIDANCE.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


But often, at least one model develops the storm in advance. Chantal and Cristobal for example where both shown in advance by the GFS (basing this off my limited memory from 3-4 seasons ago) this time - absolutely none of the models indicated even a closed low and the time of both of the cyclones births. Henceforth, the NHC was caught by surprise with Cindy and especially Bret which is why the other day, the NHC dropped the ball so to speak.
All models saw Bret at some point in advance. Granite, they didn't show Bret up to its classification as a TD. But still, before Bret was classified, nearly all models had a solution at some point indicating the possibility of Bret.

Cindy was a bit more sneaky, but I think a few runs may have developed something as well.

I realize that the models weren't calling out these systems up until they develop like we normally see. However, I'd have to disagree with those who say none of the models saw this coming, there was plenty of indication from the models that we would have to watch the area, especially since this was a trough split, which are harder to see coming.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 19 Comments: 4358
Quoting CosmicEvents:
I've never ever brought up the JFV situation on the blog. Maybe because it doesn't bother me.
.
.
I'd recommend what I've been doing for years. Just ignore any post from anyone that bothers you....ignore it. Move on. Real life is too short. To talk about trolls only breaths life into the issue.
exactly. Its easier said than done, especially when you are being targeted, but as IceCoast said,

Quoting IceCoast:


One can only talk to themselves for so long.


Unfortunately he also said, "that will never happen."
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 19 Comments: 4358
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
dying dora



Wow... dora hit a wall in that loop :/
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Q: When will Tropical Depression #4 develop?

A. Next week
B. First week of August
C. Second week of August
D. Later

C.
Member Since: July 9, 2005 Posts: 2 Comments: 1164
Latest NHC advisories:

Dora: 125 MPH

Bret: 35 MPH

Cindy: 50 MPH
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


Not updated on the NHC page yet.



has you where saying?


AL, 02, 2011072200, , BEST, 0, 351N, 689W, 30, 1008, TD,


in fac they may even kill it
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Quoting watchingnva:


heres an idea...make the featured blogs for the site a paid feature...or, since some on here would whine about that...make it that only paid members can post...everyone else can read, learn and watch...sounds fair to me...


Well, sort of like cosmic said it doesn't really bother me. I like how everyone can post on this blog and give there input. I don't think i've ever got annoyed by a troll on here. Some people take it way to serious on here.
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Quoting Tazmanian:
Bret now a TD lol


Not updated on the NHC page yet.
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Quoting hunkerdown:
aye, a round of mub pie for everyone :)



lol
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Bret now a TD lol
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Latest NHC advisories:

Dora: 125 MPH

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next one creepin into view

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909. ackee
Quoting JrWeathermanFL:


A
A
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Click for larger image.
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Quoting Tazmanian:



mub pie with pig flys on top
aye, a round of mub pie for everyone :)
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


I don't know...I guess whatever kind of pie you want, Taz.

lol.


mub pie with pig flys on top
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Q: When will Tropical Depression #4 develop?

A. Next week
B. First week of August
C. Second week of August
D. Later


A
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dying dora

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Q: When will Tropical Depression #4 develop?

A. Next week
B. First week of August
C. Second week of August
D. Later
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting tkeith:
New Orleans, Louisiana (Airport)
Updated: 39 min 23 sec ago
92 °F Scattered Clouds
Humidity: 52%
Dew Point: 72 °F
Wind: 4 mph from the North

well at least New Orleans aint hotter than Hell...


Yet in Earth, TX, it only go to 90...
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Quoting jasonweatherman2011:
Bret will be down to 35 mph at 11pm


I hope so! Its about time.
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Quoting CosmicEvents:
I've never ever brought up the JFV situation on the blog. Maybe because it doesn't bother me.
.
.
I'd recommend what I've been doing for years. Just ignore any post from anyone that bothers you....ignore it. Move on. Real life is too short. To talk about trolls only breaths life into the issue.


true enough
thats why i know someone
and they have a hammer
and well
it will be done
soon enough
its never nice
but some men you just can't reach
and well they get there just reward
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Quoting txjac:


Key lime sounds good about right now ...
not to this South Floridian...how 'bout a coconut custard pie, could even go for a shoo fly pie (I used to live an hour or so from Amish Country.
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Yesterday:Bret, Cindy, Tropical Wave all looking fine.

Today:2007
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Quoting ackee:
I think this wave will have a much better chance to devlop condtion should be even more favorable


This one???
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Quoting ackee:
I think this wave will have a much better chance to devlop condtion should be even more favorable


Yeah, once the one nearing the Caribbean clears everything out, the "fiesta" will start.
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Link

I found this very interesting, received it in an e-mail and could hardly believe what I was reading...
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892. ackee
Quoting JLPR2:


That one is quietly moving into the CATL; hadn't noticed it.
I think this wave will have a much better chance to devlop condtion should be even more favorable
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891. red0
Quoting doabarrelroll:


3rd world countries bite the US? odd and off topic but hey good trolling


The term 3rd world country is a cold war era term referring to non-aligned countries, not a synonym for a developing nation (or failed nation in Somalia's case).

I apologize for contributing to the further off-topicness of the blog, but clearing up common misconceptions on the internet is a noble cause :)
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Quoting AussieStorm:

Sorry but you are wring, Balsero2011 is not JFV. just someone impersonating him. You can take my word for it.


I have also been talking to JFV, Balsero is defiantly not him.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24485
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
JFV=Balsero

Das POOF!

Sorry but you are wring, Balsero2011 is not JFV. just someone impersonating him. You can take my word for it.
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Quoting IceCoast:


Exactly, always going to be fighting an uphill battle. If everyone really did ignore him he'd go away. One can only talk to themselves for so long. Unfortunately that will never happen.


heres an idea...make the featured blogs for the site a paid feature...or, since some on here would whine about that...make it that only paid members can post...everyone else can read, learn and watch...sounds fair to me...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Thanks Catfish.
They are also a well known al Qaeda sponsor state. The militants currently deny the developing famine, even as today a live CNN hookup from one of the starved villages was transmitted. Its not off topic. We held similar conversations on this blog about the weather caused tragedy in Haiti
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
I really hope the NHC pulls the plug on Bret...the system is pathetic.



Cindy will be gone sometime tomorrow as well...Not looking too healthy right now.



And thus, we will be without a named storm in the Atlantic for a while.


Shouldn't be too long. I think this season will be like 2008 where after this point it can't really go much more than a week without activity. Or like 2007 where the Atlantic will spit out numerous storms and do away with them the next day.
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884. 7544
hi everyone is good old bret trying to go south or loop de loop lol looks like it
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883. Relix
Wave is looking pathetic. Damn
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I really hope the NHC pulls the plug on Bret...the system is pathetic.



Cindy will be gone sometime tomorrow as well...Not looking too healthy right now.



And thus, we will be without a named storm in the Atlantic for a while.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:
We'll see what happens!


wait watch see

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We'll see what happens!
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24485
879. txjac
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


I don't know...I guess whatever kind of pie you want, Taz.

lol.


Key lime sounds good about right now ...
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Quoting Tazmanian:

'


what kind of pie?


I don't know...I guess whatever kind of pie you want, Taz.

lol.
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Quoting wxgeek723:


Hey man, didn't you tell me once that 7/22 is your birthday?


Yup, tomorrow is my birthday. :)
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XX/AOI/XL
MARK
13.13N/53.43W
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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.