Caribbean disturbance 93L to drench Honduras; 97L disturbance worth watching

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:04 PM GMT on August 18, 2011

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A westward-moving tropical wave in the Central Caribbean a few hundred miles south-southwest of Jamaica, Invest 93L, has continued to increase in organization, and is close to tropical depression status. 93L is a small system, but has built up a respectable area of heavy thunderstorms around its center. A few low-level spiral bands are apparent on satellite imagery, but there is almost no upper-level outflow apparent, and a surface circulation is not obvious. 93L has moistened its environment somewhat over the past day, but dry air is still in evidence around the storm, particularly to the southeast, as seen on water vapor satellite images. Wind shear continues to be low, 5 - 10 knots. There is a hurricane hunter mission scheduled for this afternoon at 2pm EDT to see if a tropical depression is forming.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of 93L.

Heavy rains from 93L will begin spreading over Northern Honduras and Northeast Nicaragua tonight. The forward motion of 93L will slow to 5 - 10 mph by Friday, so the storm could be a major rain event for Northern Honduras, with rain amounts of 4 - 8 inches likely by the time the storm reaches Belize on Saturday. Heavy rains will spread to Belize and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula by Friday night or Saturday morning. The latest SHIPS model forecast shows wind shear remaining in the low range and the atmosphere steadily moistening over the next two days, which should allow 93L to reach tropical storm strength. 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 Honduras, or Saturday near the Belize/Mexico border. 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, and the possibility that the storm will pass too close to the northern coast of Honduras. Regardless, heavy rain will be a major threat from 93L. NHC gave 93L an 80% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Saturday morning in their 8am outlook. If 93L does cross the Yucatan Peninsula and enters the Gulf of Mexico, a strong ridge of high pressure should keep the storm moving due west to make a second landfall along the Mexican coast, well south of Texas.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of the tropical wave 97L midway between the Lesser Antilles and the coast of Africa.

Invest 97L midway between the Lesser Antilles and the coast of Africa
A tropical wave near 14°N 40°W, midway between the Lesser Antilles Islands and the coast of Africa, is moving westward near 15 - 20 mph. This wave, designated 97L by NHC this morning, 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. 97L is expected to arrive in the Lesser Antilles Islands by Saturday. Over the past day, all four of our reliable models for predicting tropical storm genesis have predicted that this wave could develop into a tropical depression sometime Saturday through Monday, so 97L needs to be watched carefully. NHC gave 97L a 10% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Saturday morning in their 8am outlook, and it is unlikely that this storm will pose much of a threat to the Lesser Antilles. It will take several days for the storm to overcome the large amount of dry air surrounding it, even though wind shear is a low 5 - 10 knots. By Saturday, the wave will find a moister atmosphere and warmer sea surface temperatures near the northern Lesser Antilles, and more rapid development may occur. However, there is expected to be high wind shear associated with an upper level low pressure system to the north of Puerto Rico at that time, and this wind shear may interfere with development. 97L is expected to take a west-northwest track through the Northeast Caribbean bringing the storm near Puerto Rico by Sunday or Monday. Long-range model runs, which are highly unreliable, foresee that 97L could be a threat to Hispaniola, Eastern Cuba, the Bahamas, and Florida by the middle to end of next week.

Jeff Masters

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@216HR Tampa landfall:



For 3 runs it has been depicting the Tampa shield being broken.
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Quoting rushisaband:
tampa spin....just joined a couple days ago .. p'cola here ... yes next week should be interesting .. some of these bloggers are freaking hilarious


Welcome in.......you have not seen anything yet.....the funny stuff will really just be starting.......WATCH...and have the popcorn ready!
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 177 Comments: 20430
As was mentioned earlier. The GFS run still seems to be discounting the land interaction and deepening it too much. Also I've looked at many layers of the GFS so far it doesn't show this stupid ridge over us moving at all. I guess I could be looking at it wrong. Sigh
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Long Range Forcast Models are very unreliable. A track in the caribbean, does not necessarily point to a gulf or florida storm.

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Quoting HuracanKY:


Again, I'm not a huge fan of model reliance to the point where I'd omit watching a paricular wave just because it's not forecast by them to developed. Systems have spun up with little to no model support before and will continue to do so.


Or as an impressive system shows some signs of organization, then the models sometimes pick them up.
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Quoting AussieStorm:

Beta

Gamma
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Quoting extreme236:
If 97L crosses over all of that land I can't see it being as strong as depicted on the GFS.


That's definitely true. Seems like the "vortex degradation" ins't all that accurate or realistic this run.
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Quoting WxLogic:
Now starting to move NW to NNW... looks like Tampa area could be again the spot:




STOP IT.........LOL
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 177 Comments: 20430
Quoting angiest:


GFS, for one, is not indicating development of many more waves in the next couple of weeks. There is one a few days behind 97L that it wants to develop, but usually drops in the Central Atlantic.


Again, I'm not a huge fan of model reliance to the point where I'd omit watching a paricular wave just because it's not forecast by them to developed. Systems have spun up with little to no model support before and will continue to do so.
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Quoting WxLogic:
Now starting to move NW to NNW... looks like Tampa area could be again the spot:



GFS has been replaying variations of Donna a lot this season. I think it even wanted to have what eventually became Emily to do the same at one point.
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tampa spin....just joined a couple days ago .. p'cola here ... yes next week should be interesting .. some of these bloggers are freaking hilarious
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Quoting belizeit:
Alpha

Beta
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Quoting wpb:
post the 12zun when ur able thanks


Only runs 6z and 18z.
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if the models have already shifted a little westward from the east coast, who is to say that the models won't take this to the central gulf coast?
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If 97L crosses over all of that land I can't see it being as strong as depicted on the GFS.
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281. wpb
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
6z DGEX (Extrapolated NAM)



post the 12zun when ur able thanks
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Quoting CaneHunter031472:


I love your example. It perfectly ilustrates how inacurate long range models are without making them less important. Very true what you stated, and I believe that a large are of the US need to be keeping an eye on this system because you don't want to get caught in the middle of the are which finally gets the higher number in the scale unprepared.


Maybe someday I'll get bored enough ... er ... have enough free time to rework the Torino scale.
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What is concerning to me however is not whether 97L will become a major hurricane but the last two consecutive tracks (from 93L and 97L if this system does get into the Northern Antilles). Not too sure at this point that we will see a season of fishes as some have postulated.......These two consecutive trajectories (with the peak to follow over the next 6 weeks) does not bode well for the Caribbean and parts beyond but one storm and large scale weather pattern for each one at a time.
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Quoting HuracanKY:
The wave exiting appears to have strong cyclonic turning in the mid levels and plenty of convection - so far. We’ll have to wait for another 48 hours or so for it to clear the coast and see how it holds up. No doubt we are certainly approaching the peak and the Cape Verde storms will start to roll out in full force, assuming atmospheric conditions remain favourable. Dry air/ SAL seems to be one of the main inhibiting factors this season. It's been so hot in Cayman recently, and usually dry....can't help but to wonder what is in store for the remainder of the season.


High SAL can prove to be troublesome for the US coast, due to the fact that by inhibiting the formation of strong tropical systems far east in the Atlantic close to the Cape Verde islands due to the dry air associated with SAL, the greater the chances of the waves to move on a more westward trajectory toward the Caribbean and then exploding into mayor hurricanes once there. Mayor hurricanes mean higher tops which can be influenced by the upper level steering patterns taking the system in a more northward trajectory placing the US including the Gulf Coast at risk for landfall.
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Now starting to move NW to NNW... looks like Tampa area could be again the spot:

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180Hr starting to tugged on.
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Lifting north after traversing 75% of Cuba. Looks like a Florida/EGOM strike.
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274. DFWjc
Quoting tropicfreak:


Carolina Beach waterspout/tornado.


That's a bit close for a picture, doncha think?
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Quoting JLPR2:


Actually the track is almost identical to hurricane Georges(98).



Wow, do i remember that one......i was on the roof taking my satelitte dish off ........and a poof of wind hit me on the roof.....knocking me down.....rolling off the roof i grabed the gutters and tore one side completely to the ground with me........LOL........UNREAL...the dang storm didn't even come my direction as the models thought and that was 6 hours out.......LOL
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 177 Comments: 20430
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Quoting CaneHunter031472:


This pattern was predicted from the beginning of the season, yet people kept insisting this was a repeat of 2010. I completely disagree with that. This is a very dangerous pattern for the US Especially Florida and the central Gulf Coast. I think the Fish storm parade is about over.


I think you are right about the pattern. It is dangerous, however, it is also rather common. This is what is meant by being careful and aware of a potential hurricanes or a major storm in the last week of August thru mid September. I simply dont look at it like, OMG look at this. Florida went decades without a major hurricane, but plenty of those years featured such a pattern which would have permitted such a storm at some point during the season. The biggest problem with the developing pattern is that it decreases the likely hood of recurvature. Obviously that means if a storm develops, the likelyhood that somebody is going to get hit increases. Alot of things still have to go right for a storm to be a major storm at landfall and some of those things are impossible to forecast so far out.
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Quoting quakeman55:

Z
Alpha
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@168HR Traveling close to the S Cuba Coast:



00Z CMC had a similar track:

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6z DGEX (Extrapolated NAM)



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there is a Floater up on 97L.........Question for you all! I don't like putting more than 5 live floaters running on the site.......how many on 93L and how many on 97L do you all like.
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 177 Comments: 20430
Quoting AussieStorm:

Y

Z
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264. JLPR2
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
GFS wants to take it over most of Cuba as well. Could slip south of Cuba and into the Gulf at some point.

Very odd track. This is what I was "concerned" about over the past few days.


Actually the track is almost identical to hurricane Georges(98).
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Quoting HuracanKY:
The wave exiting appears to have strong cyclonic turning in the mid levels and plenty of convection - so far. We’ll have to wait for another 48 hours or so for it to clear the coast and see how it holds up. No doubt we are certainly approaching the peak and the Cape Verde storms will start to roll out in full force, assuming atmospheric conditions remain favourable. Dry air/ SAL seems to be one of the main inhibiting factors this season. It's been so hot in Cayman recently, and usually dry....can't help but to wonder what is in store for the remainder of the season.


GFS, for one, is not indicating development of many more waves in the next couple of weeks. There is one a few days behind 97L that it wants to develop, but usually drops in the Central Atlantic.
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Quoting extreme236:
93L looks to be developing some outflow now as well.


Seems like it. Had some nice low-level bands on IR last night.

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Good Afternoon wunderbloggers. I see 97L beginning to try to form it's llc around 14 and 40.Now 3 days for puerto rican to get prepared. One more day of consistence of models. Looks like it's not if, it's when. Still has to fight dry air, but as soon as it get to 50w then the party may begin.
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GFS WARFIGHTER MODEL 144 HRS OUT

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Ah... rain is down.... wind is blowing... great stuff. If I disappear, u know what happened....

lol
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
X

Y
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Still over land by 168. Very prolonged period of land interaction on this run.
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Quoting angiest:
An experimental long range TC impact would, IMO, resemble something like the Torino Impact Hazard Scale used for asteroid impacts. That is, you could say that a given storm gives no higher risk of impact to an area of coast than the background risk, or higher risk, or very high risk. So, for instance, based on 97L's model runs to date, a large swath of the US coast would possibly warrant a 4 or 5. Most of that area would eventually be changed to a 0, with other areas heading up the scale.


I love your example. It perfectly ilustrates how inacurate long range models are without making them less important. Very true what you stated, and I believe that a large are of the US need to be keeping an eye on this system because you don't want to get caught in the middle of the are which finally gets the higher number in the scale unprepared.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
The wave exiting appears to have strong cyclonic turning in the mid levels and plenty of convection - so far. We’ll have to wait for another 48 hours or so for it to clear the coast and see how it holds up. No doubt we are certainly approaching the peak and the Cape Verde storms will start to roll out in full force, assuming atmospheric conditions remain favourable. Dry air/ SAL seems to be one of the main inhibiting factors this season. It's been so hot in Cayman recently, and usually dry....can't help but to wonder what is in store for the remainder of the season.
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93L looks to be developing some outflow now as well.
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GFS wants to take it over most of Cuba as well. Could slip south of Cuba and into the Gulf at some point.

Very odd track. This is what I was "concerned" about over the past few days.
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X
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Interacts with Cuba on this run
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Quoting overwash12:
It could get even uglier than your avatar! LOL


Lol bad hair day :)
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Quoting AussieStorm:

Time: 15:59:00Z
Coordinates: 15.05N 74.05W
Acft. Static Air Press: 392.6 mb (~ 11.59 inHg)
Acft. Geopotential Hgt: 7,730 meters (~ 25,361 feet)
Extrap. Sfc. Press: -
D-value: 418 meters (~ 1,371 feet)
Flt. Lvl. Wind (30s): From 71° at 12 knots (From the ENE at ~ 13.8 mph)
Air Temp: -17.0°C (~ 1.4°F)
Dew Pt: -28.0°C (~ -18.4°F)
Peak (10s) Flt. Lvl. Wind: 12 knots (~ 13.8 mph)
SFMR Peak (10s) Sfc. Wind: -
SFMR Rain Rate: -

Time: 16:19:00Z
Coordinates: 15.0N 76.0W
Acft. Static Air Press: 392.6 mb (~ 11.59 inHg)
Acft. Geopotential Hgt: 7,739 meters (~ 25,390 feet)
Extrap. Sfc. Press: -
D-value: 414 meters (~ 1,358 feet)
Flt. Lvl. Wind (30s): From 81° at 14 knots (From the E at ~ 16.1 mph)
Air Temp: -16.5°C (~ 2.3°F)
Dew Pt: -30.0°C (~ -22.0°F)
Peak (10s) Flt. Lvl. Wind: 15 knots (~ 17.2 mph)
SFMR Peak (10s) Sfc. Wind: -
SFMR Rain Rate: -
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248. fuzed
So no one talks about the Fernanda storm from what I see. Models seem to take it right near HI, where I am going this weekend. Is it something to worry about or no?

Lately some models depicted on this site's page for it seem to have some longitudinal errors. I don't think its going to follow the longitudinal line North to CA.
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Quoting JLPR2:
So now, instead of starting to worry at 90hrs, I'm supposed to get worried at 78hrs.


faster track..thats not good..so when is the HH flying out to Invest 97L..
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 13421
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


On the 850 vort maps, the main "max" travels over the whole island and weakens a pretty good deal.

Im out to 138 hours.


I see what you mean there now.
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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.