Texas heat wave smashes more records; 93L more organized

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:26 PM GMT on August 17, 2011

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Texas' Texas-sized drought and heat wave is setting new records, as August temperatures regularly topping 100° continue to impact most of the state. The high temperature hit 102° at the Houston Intercontinental Airport yesterday, a record for the date, and the 16th consecutive day of 100°+ heat. The 16-day streak is a new record. The previous record was 14 straight days, ending on July 19, 1980.

The low temperature yesterday morning at Dallas/Fort Worth International was 86°--the all-time highest minimum temperature recorded there. This is the 4th time this summer Dallas has had an 86° minimum temperature, with the other dates being July 26, August 3, and August 4. Prior to this year, the hottest minimum temperature ever recorded in Dallas was 85° on September 1, 1939 (which they also matched this summer on July 25, August 7, and again this morning.) Thus Dallas has matched or exceeded their all-time hottest minimum temperature from previous years seven times this year. It's extremely rare for a station with a long observation history spanning more than fifty years to break an all-time record seven times in one year; if anyone can find an example of this in the past, I'd love to hear about it. The National Climatic Data Center records page is a good place to look. Dallas has had 40 days with a minimum temperature of 80° or higher this year, breaking the previous record of 39 days, set in 1998. Dallas had a streak of 40 straight days with a maximum temperature above 100° which ended August 10, good for 2nd place all-time, next to a 42-day streak in 1980.


Figure 1. The amount of rain needed to break the Texas drought is in excess of 15 inches (purple colors) over most of the state. This year's drought is officially Texas' worst one-year drought on record. Image credit: NOAA/NWS.

According to the National Climatic Data Center, twelve other major airports set or tied their all-time high minimum temperature two or more times this summer: San Angelo, TX (four times); Lake Charles, LA (three times); Bristol, TN; Indianapolis, IN; Trenton, NJ; Newark, NJ; West Palm Beach, FL; Shreveport, LA; Beckley, WV; Texarkana, AR; Lake Charles, LA; Lubbock, TX; plus, Fort Worth Meacham Field. This year's total of fourteen airports that broke their all-time high minimum temperature multiple times this summer is similar to last year's total of ten sites. Most notable last year was West Palm Beach, Florida, which tied it's all-time high minimum temperature of 83° five times in 2010.

Fifteen major airports have tied or broken their all-time highest temperature multiple times this summer: Tyler, TX (three times); Tallahassee, FL (three times); Fort Smith, AR; Harrison, AR; Tulsa, OK; McAlester, OK; Longview, TX; and Oklahoma City, OK, Ypsilanti, MI; Altoona, PA; Dubois, PA; Salisbury, MD; Raton, NM; Amarillo, TX; and Dalhart, TX. For comparison, only three stations broke their all-time maximum temperature record multiple times in 2010: Wilmington, DE; Norfolk, VA; and Richmond, VA.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of Invest 93L.

Caribbean disturbance 93L
A westward-moving tropical wave in the Central Caribbean a few hundred miles south of Hispaniola, Invest 93L, has increased in organization overnight, building up a modest amount of heavy thunderstorms. Low-level spiral bands have begun to form on all sides of the storm this morning. There are currently no signs of a surface circulation, though there is plenty of large-scale rotation apparent on satellite imagery. Dry air surrounds 93L and has infiltrated the center of the disturbance, giving 93L a doughnut-like appearance. However, the disturbance is steadily moistening its environment and is under low wind shear of 5 - 10 knots, so this dry air should gradually mix out today and allow 93L to continue to organize. There is a hurricane hunter mission scheduled for this afternoon at 2pm EDT to see if a tropical depression is forming.

93L will bring heavy rain showers to southern Haiti this afternoon and to Jamaica tonight. By Thursday, 93L's forward motion will slow to 10 - 15 mph, and the storm will bring heavy rains to Northern Honduras and Northeast Nicaragua. These rains will spread to Belize and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula by Saturday. The latest SHIPS model forecast shows wind shear remaining in the low range and the atmosphere steadily moistening as 93L enters the Western Caribbean on Thursday. All of the models agree that the ridge of high pressure steering 93L to the west will remain strong, forcing the storm into a landfall Friday in Northeast Nicaragua or Northeast Honduras. It is possible that 93L will have time to intensify into a Category 1 hurricane before then, though landfall as a tropical storm would be more likely, given the dry air that 93L needs to overcome. Regardless of development, the storm will bring very heavy rains of 4 - 8 inches or more to Nicaragua and Honduras. These rains are likely to cause dangerous flash flooding and mudslides. NHC gave 93L a 30% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Friday morning in their 8am outlook; I'd put these odds at 50% now, given the continued increase in organization seen on satellite images.


Figure 3. Morning satellite image of the tropical wave 500 miles west-southwest of the Cape Verde Islands.

Elsewhere in the tropics
A tropical wave near 14°N 34°W, about 500 miles west-southwest of the Cape Verde Islands off the coast of Africa, is moving westward near 15 - 20 mph. This wave has little heavy thunderstorm activity associated with it due to dry air, but an impressive amount of large-scale spin is obvious in visible satellite loops. This wave is expected to arrive in the Lesser Antilles Islands by Saturday. Three of our four reliable models for predicting tropical storm genesis predict that this wave could develop into a tropical depression sometime Friday through Sunday. A west-northwest track through the Northeast Caribbean bringing the storm near Puerto Rico by Sunday or Monday is favored by most of the models.

Jeff Masters

Tanker Drop (anm8ed)
This fire destroyed 15 homes and burned about 30 acres. Was nothuge, but was in a populated area.
Tanker Drop
Jet Ski dock (BEENE)
Business is slow here this summer.
Jet Ski dock
The Marina (BEENE)
Lake Houston is dangerously low as well. They will be draining 12inches of water to ease the water shortage in Houston
The Marina

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Quoting Tazmanian:



the next will be 97L



Your right TAZ, thanks for the correction.
Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 5043
Quoting Grothar:



Then here try this one. Anything else you want, GT??
I have a list of all the pharaohs from the early 1st dynasty. I suppose you want that, too. :)

Link


Grothar-I think your link might be messed up and as I was in charge of the human sacrifices during that ancient time, I am attaching the list of Pharoahs during that pesky 1st Dynasty as best I can remember! Link
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957. DDR
Good evening all
Some very heavy rains today in Trinidad thanks to the itcz and daytime heating.
2.8 inches between 1pm to 3pm,nothing out of the ordinary.
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Quoting twincomanche:
Is most of your electricity generated by oil driven generators on the islands?
Here in The Bahamas they are; dunno about Caymans, but likely the same.
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 21485
Quoting fishcop:


No cooling breezes. When I open the front door in the morning it is quite like walking into an oven. I'm born and raised here in Cayman and this is one of the hottest on record. We set a record for hottest summer in our history in 2009. Every year it feels hotter and hotter - or maybe I'm just getting older and older.


I know exactly what you mean. We call it 'walking into a wall of heat' here.
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Quoting twincomanche:
Is most of your electricity generated by oil driven generators on the islands?

Grand Cayman powers with diesel. Caribbean Utilities Company.
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wouldnt this be nice? i remember it brought all of the areas east of it including dfw a good soaker we has massive rains and no wind damage to south Texas it was the perfect storm
Member Since: July 31, 2011 Posts: 5 Comments: 812
950. MTWX
Quoting weatherjr:
For several consecutive days several bloggers said somewhat like this: "I would not be surprised if we have a depression by morning and TS Harvey by tomorrow at this time" (this last phrase is from MrNatural).
IMO invest 93 is a dead body that looks as it is alive

ZOMBIE STORM!! LOL!!
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Quoting atmoaggie:
Better? Than what; the current chance of a TS developing over Snook, Texas?

Otherwise, nearly a rain-free tropical wave, at this point.



Loop: http://rammb.cira.colostate.edu/ramsdis/online/lo op_timestamp_640.asp?data_folder=rmtc/rmtcsasec4ir 404


Texas has some funny town and city names, then again most states do as well, except Alaska, if you have to ask why, then you'll never know.
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Quoting ProgressivePulse:
Evening All.

Looks like we'll have 94L soon. What a monster of a circulation. Looks to be consolidating around 13.5-14N 34W






the next will be 97L
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Quoting TexasHurricane:


wow, sorry to hear about that. We got lucky and had minimal damage with Rita, but a block from our house they had a tornado from the storm that destroyed their home. Wild.....


Rita was no fun. You can always tell who has not had to deal with the damage and hardships of being hit with a hurricane when they post how they want one. Glad you guys wdid okay with Rita.
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The fact that models have been pretty accurate in tbe mid / short term about 93L is making me a bit, um, concerned, now about the likelihood of a system late next week. Don't like the persistence of the trend...
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 21485
Quoting aislinnpaps:


Ouch, fishcop! Are you at least getting the cooling breezes to help a little?


No cooling breezes. When I open the front door in the morning it is quite like walking into an oven. I'm born and raised here in Cayman and this is one of the hottest on record. We set a record for hottest summer in our history in 2009. Every year it feels hotter and hotter - or maybe I'm just getting older and older.
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Evening All.

Looks like we'll have 97L soon. What a monster of a circulation. Looks to be consolidating around 13.5-14N 34W



Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 5043
Quoting GTcooliebai:
Good point! especially the part about the snow in Buffalo...I will even venture as far as to say Blizzard!
I sounded angry didn't I?.Lol.But it's true.And the name proves it as well "Hurricane season".Not tropical storm season.
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What am I seeing here?

The Dvorak shows a clear circulation. Is this at the Mid and Upper levels and just not reaching the surface?

Link
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still no sign of a surface low at this nearby buoy.

Member Since: August 29, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5236
Quoting aislinnpaps:


Oh, I agree! I lost the trees near the house in Rita, one of which thought it should be part of the house. Then the house burned down last November and I put a doublewide on my property. With hurricanes in mind, I placed it far enough so if a cane comes through and a tree comes down it won't hit house. (I hope) But that means I'm still out in the field in full sun. My electric bills are rediculous.


wow, sorry to hear about that. We got lucky and had minimal damage with Rita, but a block from our house they had a tornado from the storm that destroyed their home. Wild.....
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Quoting fishcop:


Our electric bills in Grand Cayman are criminal. My fairly large one bedroom apartment cost me $500US for one months bill in June. The heat here has been unrelenting for the last 3 months.


Ouch, fishcop! Are you at least getting the cooling breezes to help a little?
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Quoting MrNatural:
93l is trying real hard to get its' act together. The satellite presentation is looking better. While there is no surface low, the satellite imagery is showing a tightening of the the upper level circulations. Surface buoys are also showing lower pressures. I would not be surprised if we have a depression by morning and TS Harvey by tomorrow at this time.
Better? Than what; the current chance of a TS developing over Snook, Texas?

Otherwise, nearly a rain-free tropical wave, at this point.



Loop: http://rammb.cira.colostate.edu/ramsdis/online/lo op_timestamp_640.asp?data_folder=rmtc/rmtcsasec4ir 404
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Don't know how much rain Jamaica needed, relatively speaking, but nice to see that the strong band of t-storms headed towards the Island a few hours ago has dissipated........It would make the difference between a steady tropical rain for a few hours versus flash flooding as Kman pointed out earlier.
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Quoting fishcop:


Our electric bills in Grand Cayman are criminal. My fairly large one bedroom apartment cost me $500US for one months bill in June. The heat here has been unrelenting for the last 3 months.
Sounds familiar.....
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 21485
Quoting 69Viking:


Texas ate the last TS (I think it was Don) that tried to give it some rain! I think you'll need something stronger than a TS to hold together and produce rain onces it hits that hot dry air mass that has Texas in a strangle hold this year. Good luck!


Oh, I know, but I don't want the damaging winds, no electricity, etc.. But I feel if I am going to dream, I'm going to dream big. *G*
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Quoting washingtonian115:
WHY WE'LL HAVE HURRICANES THIS YEAR.

I wish people would stop saying we won't see a freaking hurricane this year.Ummmm hello?.With those high sst and more favorable conditions setting up we'll probally see multiple hurricanes at a time.Stop the dumb questions of "we'll we see a hurricane this year?"."I don't think it's possible we'll see one".People it's only mid august.We still got septemnber to go through.October and November can even produce hurricanes.Saying we won't have a hurricane is like saying their won't be any snow in Buffalo NY or Syracuase NY this year.Get a grip.I'm afraid that when a hurricane finally forms people won't be to happy.Enjoy this little break if you will becuase it won't last all season long.
Good point! especially the part about the snow in Buffalo...I will even venture as far as to say Blizzard!
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.
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Quoting dfwstormwatch:
the 18z gfs is starting to come in...
It's been pretty consistent, in regards to FL, with a little shift to the east, then back to the west, and so on. I wonder if it will shift back more to the west again. Every run has it affecting Hispaniola, and Islands SE of there.
Member Since: August 26, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 1547
Quoting aislinnpaps:


Oh, I agree! I lost the trees near the house in Rita, one of which thought it should be part of the house. Then the house burned down last November and I put a doublewide on my property. With hurricanes in mind, I placed it far enough so if a cane comes through and a tree comes down it won't hit house. (I hope) But that means I'm still out in the field in full sun. My electric bills are rediculous.


Our electric bills in Grand Cayman are criminal. My fairly large one bedroom apartment cost me $500US for one months bill in June. The heat here has been unrelenting for the last 3 months.
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Hey, been on for a few years.I like to read everyones post.Up here in Myrtle Beach SC. so let me know whats heading my way. Thanks
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sounds like u guys need parasols 4 houses.....
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 21485
Quoting washingtonian115:
WHY WE'LL HAVE HURRICANES THIS YEAR.

I wish people would stop saying we won't see a freaking hurricane this year.Ummmm hello?.With those high sst and more favorable conditions setting up we'll probally see multiple hurricanes at a time.Stop the dumb questions of "we'll we see a hurricane this year?"."I don't think it's possible we'll see one".People it's only mid august.We still got septemnber to go through.October and November can even produce hurricanes.Saying we won't have a hurricane is like saying their won't be any snow in Buffalo NY or Syracuase NY this year.Get a grip.I'm afraid that when a hurricane finally forms people won't be to happy.Enjoy this little break if you will becuase it won't last all season long.
And before someone hides or minuses this comment I would like to that saying thse kind of statements are false and childish.
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Quoting aislinnpaps:
Evening everyone. It's 104 degrees, and more with the heat index. We're needing over fifteen inches of rain to help break the drought and the ridge still protects and hinders us from getting rain. While I do NOT want a hurricane, a stalled TS over us and TX is in my dreams.


Texas ate the last TS (I think it was Don) that tried to give it some rain! I think you'll need something stronger than a TS to hold together and produce rain onces it hits that hot dry air mass that has Texas in a strangle hold this year. Good luck!
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Quoting TexasHurricane:


I know what you mean...our AC is set on 74. It is 80 in our house. Can we at least have some cloud coverage??

and yes, we could use the rain...


Oh, I agree! I lost the trees near the house in Rita, one of which thought it should be part of the house. Then the house burned down last November and I put a doublewide on my property. With hurricanes in mind, I placed it far enough so if a cane comes through and a tree comes down it won't hit house. (I hope) But that means I'm still out in the field in full sun. My electric bills are rediculous.
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Evening all! Another hot, sticky mess in Grand Cayman today. Heavy rains last night in West Bay and I'd welcome more tonight. Maybe 93L will make a little wobble north?
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Quoting oceanblues32:
Anyone if you would like to enlighten me on what I see on the gfs for next friday slamming in to south east florida heading to louisiana..!!
A tropical system.

GFS has consistently developed a wave, now in the Atlantic, and brought to us, over the last ~16 runs. (Has it really been doing this the last 4 days?)

While the track and intensity mean nothing this far out, the consistency in developing it and the evolution of the synoptic features (read: steering) makes one want to keep one eye stapled open.
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WHY WE'LL HAVE HURRICANES THIS YEAR.

I wish people would stop saying we won't see a freaking hurricane this year.Ummmm hello?.With those high sst and more favorable conditions setting up we'll probally see multiple hurricanes at a time.Stop the dumb questions of "we'll we see a hurricane this year?"."I don't think it's possible we'll see one".People it's only mid august.We still got septemnber to go through.October and November can even produce hurricanes.Saying we won't have a hurricane is like saying their won't be any snow in Buffalo NY or Syracuase NY this year.Get a grip.I'm afraid that when a hurricane finally forms people won't be to happy.Enjoy this little break if you will becuase it won't last all season long.
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Quoting BahaHurican:
Hmmm.... Looks like S FL and NW Bahamas will get some rain this p.m. ......






We need it!!!
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93l is trying real hard to get its' act together. The satellite presentation is looking better. While there is no surface low, the satellite imagery is showing a tightening of the the upper level circulations. Surface buoys are also showing lower pressures. I would not be surprised if we have a depression by morning and TS Harvey by tomorrow at this time.
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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.