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 , 2:30 PM GMT on August 15, 2011
Tropical Storm Gert, the 7th named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season, is here. Gert's formation on August 14 marks the 4th earliest date for the season's 7th storm. Only 2005, 1995, and 1936 have had an earlier formation of the season's 7th storm. Gert will pass very close to Bermuda today, but thus far the island has had no wind or rain from Gert, with top winds at the Bermuda Airport of just 9 mph as of 10 am EDT. Radar out of Bermuda shows the rains from Gert are staying just offshore, moving northward, parallel to the island. An Air Force hurricane hunter aircraft is in the storm, and has found that Gert has not changed much in intensity since last night. Top surface winds seen by their SFMR instrument this morning as of 10am EDT were 48 mph, though higher winds of 58 mph that may be erroneous due to rain interference were measured. It currently appears that Gert's northerly motion will keep virtually all of the storm's rains just offshore from from Bermuda. Gert should not trouble any land areas after moving past Bermuda.
Figure 1. Morning radar image of Gert from the Bermuda radar .
Elsewhere in the tropics
The disturbance we've been tracking over the past few days in the open Atlantic between Africa and the Lesser Antilles, Invest 93L, has regenerated a modest amount of heavy thunderstorms and will bring heavy rain showers and gusty winds to the Lesser Antilles today and Tuesday as it moves westwards through the islands at 15 - 20 mph. Dry air surrounds 93L, and is interfering with development. However, the disturbance is steadily moistening its environment and is under low wind shear of 5 - 10 knots, so could begin to organize over the next few days as it tracks across the Caribbean. The latest 06Z run of the NOGAPS model is showing weak development of 93L once it reaches the western Caribbean, with a track over Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula and into the Gulf of Mexico by this weekend. Stay tuned.
Figure 2. Radar-estimated rainfall for the past 2 days from the Long Island, NY radar.
New York City sets an all-time 1-day rainfall record
A long series of "training" thunderstorms that each moved along the same path deluged the New York City and Newark areas yesterday, smashing an all-time 1-day rainfall record at New York City's JFK Airport, which recorded 7.80 inches of rain. It was the most rain at JFK since record keeping began in 1948. The previous record was a 6.3" deluge on June 30, 1984. New York City's official measuring site, Central Park, got 5.81" yesterday, the fifth wettest day on record there. The 6.40" that fell on Newark, NJ yesterday was that city's 2nd heaviest 1-day rainfall in history, next to the 6.73" that fell on November 3, 1977.
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