Irene's eyewall collapses; further intensification unlikely

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:14 PM GMT on August 26, 2011

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Satellite data and measurements from the Hurricane Hunters show that Irene is weakening. A 9:21 am EDT center fix by an Air Force Reserve aircraft found that Irene's eyewall had collapsed, and the central pressure had risen to 946 mb from a low of 942 mb this morning. The highest winds measured at their flight level of 10,000 feet were 125 mph, which would normally support classifying Irene as a Category 3 hurricane with 115 mph winds. However, these winds were not mixing down to the surface in the way we typically see with hurricanes, and the strongest surface winds seen by the aircraft with their SFMR instrument were just 90 mph in the storm's northeast eyewall. Assuming the aircraft missed sampling the strongest winds of the hurricane, it's a good guess that Irene is a mid-strength Category 2 hurricane with 100 mph winds. Satellite imagery shows a distinctly lopsided appearance to Irene's cloud pattern, with not much heavy thunderstorm activity on the southwest side. This is due to moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots due to upper-level winds out of the southwest. This shear is disrupting Irene's circulation and has cut off upper-level outflow along the south side of the hurricane. No eye is visible in satellite loops, but the storm's size is certainly impressive. Long range radar out of Wlimington, North Carolina, shows that the outermost spiral bands from Irene are now beginning to come ashore along the South Carolina/North Carolina border. Winds at buoy 41004 100 miles offshore from Charleston, SC increased to 36 mph as of 10 am, with significant wave heights of 18 feet.


Figure 1. Distribution of Irene's wind field at 9:30 am EDT Friday August 26, 2011, as observed by the Hurricane Hunters and buoys. The right front quadrant of the hurricane had about 90% of the storm's hurricane-force winds (yellow and warmer colors, bounded by the heavy black line between the "50" and "60" knot thin black lines.) Tropical storm-force winds (heavy black like bounding the light blue area) extended out 290 miles from the center of Irene. Image credit: NOAA/AOML/HRD.

Forecast and storm surge potential for Irene
With its eyewall collapsed and just 24 more hours over water before landfall, it is unlikely Irene will have time to build a new eyewall and intensify. The storm is too large to weaken quickly, and the best forecast is that Irene will be a Category 2 hurricane at landfall in North Carolina on Saturday, and a rapidly weakening Category 1 hurricane at its second landfall in New England on Sunday. However, since Irene is such a huge storm--tropical storm force winds extend out up to 290 miles from the center--it has set a massive amount of the ocean's surface in motion, which will cause a much larger storm surge than the winds would suggest. At 9:30am EDT this morning, a wind analysis from NOAA/HRD (Figure 1) indicated that the potential storm surge damage from Irene rated a 5.1 on a scale of 0 to 6. This is equivalent to the storm surge a typical Category 4 hurricane would have. While this damage potential should gradually decline as Irene moves northwards and weakens, we can still expect a storm surge one full Saffir-Simpson Category higher than Irene's winds. Since tides are at their highest levels of the month this weekend due to the new moon, storm surge flooding will be at a maximum during the high tidal cycles that will occur at 8 pm Saturday night and 8 am Sunday morning. Wherever Irene happens to be at those times the storm surge damage potential will be maximized. A surge rivaling that experienced during Hurricane Isabel in 2003 is likely in northern NC, southern Maryland, and up Chesapeake Bay on Saturday night. Coastal New England from New York City to Massachusetts may also see storm surges characteristic of a Category 1 hurricane during Sunday morning's high tide, even if Irene has weakened to a tropical storm. I continue to give a 20% chance that a storm surge high enough to over-top the Manhattan flood walls and swamp the New York City subway system will occur on Sunday.

Wind damage
I don't think Irene is going to do a lot of wind damage to the mid-Atlantic states, since the eye of the storm will be just offshore, and the I-95 corridor from Virginia to New Jersey will be on the weak (left) side of the hurricane. The current wind distribution of Irene (Figure 1) shows almost all of the hurricane's winds are on the right side of the storm, and by the time the storm reaches Virginia, there will be likely be no hurricane-force winds on the left side of Irene. Sustained winds should stay below 74 mph (hurricane force), and wind damage will be similar to that wrought be some of the strongest Nor'easters of the past 20 years, from Virginia northwards to New York City. Since Irene will be steadily weakening as it approaches its second landfall on Long Island, I give a 50% chance that no mainland U.S. surface station in New England will record sustained hurricane-force winds. I do think it likely that one or more of the offshore islands--Block Island, Nantucket, and Marthas Vinyard--will get Category 1 hurricane winds. Though the wind damage to buildings will be similar to what the Northeast has seen during some of the more severe nor'easters of the past 20 years, tree damage will be much worse. The trees are in full leaf during hurricane season, and catch the wind much more readily than during the winter. Tree damage will very heavy, and we can expect trees in regions with saturated soils will fall over in high winds onto power lines. Irene is likely to cause one of the top-five most widespread power outages in American history from a storm. The record power outage from a Northeast storm was probably the ten million people that lost power during the great Blizzard of 1993. I don't think Irene's power outages will be quite that extensive, but several million people will likely lose power.

Irene likely to bring destructive fresh water flooding
In addition to storm surge, flash flooding and river flooding from Irene's torrential rains are the main threats. The hurricane is expected to bring rains in excess of 8" to a 100-mile-wide swath from Eastern North Carolina northwards along the coast, through New York City. The danger of fresh water flooding is greatest in northern New Jersey, Southeast Pennsylvania, and Southeast New York, where the soils are saturated from heavy August rains that were among the heaviest on record. New Jersey has had its 6th wettest August on record, with most of that rain falling in the past two weeks. Expect major river flooding throughout New Jersey the Delmarva Peninsula, and regions near New York City, as Irene's rains run off the saturated soils directly into the rivers. In general, the heaviest rains will fall along the west side of the hurricane's track, and the greatest wind damage will occur on the east side. I don't think flooding from heavy rains will be a huge concern in North Carolina, which is under moderate to severe drought. Irene's rains are likely to do some good in Southeast Virginia, where a fire triggered by lightning from a thunderstorm on August 4 sparked a fire in the Dismal Swamp that is burning out of control. Right now, it does not appear that tornadoes will be a major concern, but there will probably be a few weak tornadoes. Hurricane Bob of 1991, the last hurricane to affect New England, spawned six tornadoes, most of them weak F-0 and F-1 twisters.


Figure 2. Predicted rainfall for the 5-day period ending at 8 am EDT Wednesday August 31, as issued by NOAA/HPC.

Links
For those of you wanting to know your odds of receiving hurricane force or tropical storm force winds, I recommend the NHC wind probability product.

Wunderground has detailed storm surge maps for the U.S. coast.

The National Hurricane Center's Interactive Storm Surge RIsk Map, which allows one to pick a particular Category hurricane and zoom in, is a good source of storm surge risk information.

Wunderblogger Mike Theiss is in Nassau, documenting the storm's impact on the Bahamas.

Internet radio show on Irene at 4:30pm EDT
Wunderground meteorologists will be discussing Hurricane Irene on a special edition of our Internet radio show, the Daily Downpour, today (Friday) at 4:30pm EDT. Shaun Tanner , Tim Roche, Angela Fritz, and Rob Carver will there, and I will be available if my schedule permits. Listeners can email in or call in questions. The email address to ask questions is broadcast@wunderground.com.

Portlight mobilizes for Irene
The Bahamas have been hit hard by Irene, and unfortunately, it appears that the Northeast U.S. may have its share of hurricane victims before Irene finally dissipates. My favorite disaster relief charity, Portlight.org, is mobilizing to help, and has sent out their relief trailer and crew to North Carolina. Check out this blog to see what they're up to; donations are always needed.

Jeff Masters

Hurricane Irene's Wrath ! (MikeTheiss)
A shot of the Palm Trees at Nassau, Bahamas being thrashed by high winds during Irene's closest approach !
Hurricane Irene's Wrath !
Aftremath of Hurricane Irene in Nassau, Bahamas (ktbahamas)
Utility pole with street light snapped in half by Irene's winds on a busy street in New Providence.
Aftremath of Hurricane Irene in Nassau, Bahamas
Irene Response (presslord)
Portlight deploying to North Carolina
Irene Response

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Quoting fragileuk:


Lurked for years, This one has amazed me more than any others regards to the comments on here. RI fish FL NYC etc. So far this will remain the most accurate answer to date regardless of what she does.
Thank you!
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Quoting drg0dOwnCountry:
Irene eyes heavily populated -- and least prepared -- urban centers



lol...watchin cnn myself...they just said rural areas are more prepared than city large city dwellers... isn't that ironic with some of the posts popping up?
Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3650
For those of you thinking that Irene weakening make it less dangerous remember what happened during Katrina. Katrina hit as a cat 4 or borderline 3 what it hit mississippi. The surge it brought wit hit was a cat 5 surge that has accumulated earlier in the GOMEX. A factor to consider is the size of the system which in this case is huge. Bigger systems mean more water rising and being dumped on the coast. If you do not want a nasty surprise, listen to your local emergency management and do as they advise. But even better use your common sense because once you are in the middle of that mess there is no way back.
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Wind and rain picking up in Wilmington NC
Here at the house have 29+37 kts. with rain.
Pres 29.75 and falling
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Gotta see if IRENE can fire more convection - that one red spot won't cut it but like I said, I think she will at some point.

If you look at Water Vapor, you see two things:

1) She is very clearly removing dry air from her core - you can see the arc clouds moving away from the center.

2) The shear has lessened up considerable and the southern outflow is becoming better, making the system look better. This could lead to some strengthening later IF it is able to filter the dry air out of the core completely.
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Quoting hurricanejunky:
49mph sustained winds reported in Edisto,SC about 170 miles from the center...


where did you find that? I can't find sustained winds that strong anywhere close to Edisto.
Member Since: August 29, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5236
Irene eyes heavily populated -- and least prepared -- urban centers

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Quoting FLdewey:


Too many false alarms, no matter what you call them, can impact the public's response to a disaster.


well, judging by the music and the tv shows that the majority of the public listens to and watch... they shouldn't consider themselves smart enough to risk going against what meteorologists predict. If a Cat 5 is moving up the coast in 3 weeks and makes landfall, and less people listen because of what happens in this event... that's not the meteorologists' fault, not even 1%. That's all on the public right there.

This storm has be forecast to the very best of today's meteorological ability... and it's certainly not going to be anywhere near a "minor" event, even in New York City. I've seen people claim this will be like a bad Nor'Easter... but in my life time there has yet to be one Nor'Easter with 12 hours of sustained tropical storm force winds with hurricane gusts, and that is likely what NYC will see... with worse effects in southern New England. Sure, in our strongest Nor'Easters we'll see TS force winds for a few hours on the immediate SE coast of New England, but further west and inland... it is normally limited to 25MPH sustained winds (tops) and gusts to 40 or 50. So, as the forecast stands now.... this will still be one of the worst weather events the elderly people have seen, and the worst weather event the younger and middle aged people have seen. Of course, things could change for better or worse.

Also, up here.... as recently as June there was over 100,000 people without power in Connecticut alone, just from a line of thunderstorms with gusts to 60MPH.... which only lasted about 30 minutes. So what's 8 to 12 hours of TS force winds and Hurricane Gusts going to do?
Member Since: November 17, 2010 Posts: 11 Comments: 527
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


TWC watcher!!

LOL.


my local stations saying the same thing...waiting for it to hit a few more miles north of edisto in charleston...getting a break right now
Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3650
Quoting tiggeriffic:
ok...back on after a decent squall hit the Charleston area...last i heard Presslord was still without power, several thousand in other parts of Chas without power...my oldest son was headed toward Daniel Island to meet my hub to do some electrical and dad called son to say turn around NOW...squall hit the work van and he almost lost control...he got home and was white as a ghost...said it was the wind and fact he was surrounded by tractor trailers... since then they have shut down all contractors on Daniel Island...they have been kicked off, only residents allowed now...waiting on the next squall


Thanks for that update. Hope Press get power back soon. Stay safe
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Good Morning...

Quite glad Irene still having problems and thankfully her time is running out. Dry air is doing a good job keeping her in check.

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Quoting BaltimoreBrian:There will be a few billion dollars in damage, and maybe a dozen killed. Half of the dead will probably be doing stupid things that put them in harm's way.

And on Monday people will be talking about how overhyped this all was.

Huh????? Sounds like an oxymoron to me. Few Billion in damage and people killed but NOT to be construed as overhyped? What you want....a few trillion in damage and hundreds killed in order to say its' overhyped coverage valid? Stupidity and callousness in people never cease to amaze me. Saving just one person's life would be payment enough for the overhyping we have to endure....at least in my mind.

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Quoting hurricanejunky:
49mph sustained winds reported in Edisto,SC about 170 miles from the center...


That's crazy. This is going to cause a lot wide spread of damage far from the coast
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Quoting Gorty:


In western Mass I am in, I am under a TS watch and I could get both damaging wind and flooding rains. Not good.


Hello Groty, you and I are both aware that wind is stilla threat in W Ma!

Here is my W. Ma Sunday forecast from Wunderground:
Tropical storm conditions possible. Showers. Locally heavy rainfall possible. Humid. Near steady temperature in the upper 60s. East winds 40 to 50 mph with gusts up to 60 mph... becoming northeast and...increasing to 50 to 70 mph with gusts up to 85 mph in the afternoon. Chance of rain near 100 percent.

70 mph winds with 85 mph gusts will be damaging in a region dominated by many aging trees.

Anybody downplaying wind damage potential for W. Ma is unaware of the forests conditions in the region. We are in an area with lot's of aging barns and old houses. While I do not expect roofs to get ripped from houses, I do expect to see a lot of downed trees and large limbs. I expect widespread power outages and many damaged structures from tree damage.

Add to that the many communities built next to creeks that will flood and we have a recipe for some real pain in our area.

My house is less than 100 feet from a stream that rose over it's banks and onto my yard the last time we had a three day 8 inch rain event. I expect more than that in a 24 hour period this weekend. I am currently filling sand bags to protect the vulnerable places around my foundation (basement windows, a place were they only built the foundation to 3 feet instead of 8 feet, in front of the garage door, etc.)
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Quoting BaltimoreBrian:
I think Irene is being overhyped. Let's compare it to Gloria. Back in 1985 Gloria moved over Cape Hatteras with a 942 mb pressure and Suffolk County on Long Island with a 961 mb pressure. Gloria was a damaging hurricane, but hardly the apocalypse.

Irene will be weaker than Gloria was in the OBX, and is likely to be weaker than Gloria was in Long Island/New England.

Irene will probably be far enough east to keep a northerly wind flow over the Chesapeake, limiting storm surge.

There will be a few billion dollars in damage, and maybe a dozen killed. Half of the dead will probably be doing stupid things that put them in harm's way.

And on Monday people will be talking about how overhyped this all was.

What's sad is that it was the Weather Channel and other media who overhyped this storm, not the NHC although you can bet people will be blaming the NHC for overhyping.


It ain't the size of the winds in the storm, son, it's the size of the storm with the winds.

Gloria was never this big. Irene has a ridiculously large TS strength wind field. The danger she poses is surge, not wind. Comparing central pressures, in that context, is effectively useless.
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The news whores in NYC are finally getting wind that there's a hurricane coming and now that's all you hear.

So to them: thanks for the pre-landfall coverage of Ike, Katrina, Allison, Andrew and any of the other GOM and Florida storms.
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Quoting hurricanejunky:
49mph sustained winds reported in Edisto,SC about 170 miles from the center...


TWC watcher!!

LOL.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 112 Comments: 31339
Quoting quakeman55:

Ike was about the strength Irene is now, and Irene is even larger than Ike was. But I hardly think Ike was overhyped after what happened...

Just a little food for thought.


They waited too long for Ike. Media should have been on it sooner.
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My personal theory as to the collapse of Irene? A warm mid-level atmosphere to the north and east of the storm due to the strength of the Azores-Bermuda High. Clearly the ocean heat content is high enough to create very low pressures, but the storms which are popping off in the feeder bands don't have the strength needed to last all the way in to the eyewall due to the higher temps in the mid-level air. There's just not enough CAPE to really allow the hot towers to fire up well.

We have seen this all season, and have attributed it to dry air or the SAL, but it could just be an issue with CAPE; i.e. not enough temp difference between the lower levels and the mid-levels. With the extensive cloud cover Irene has generated, I don't think the sunlight can drive the lower levels the way it needs to during the daytime to sustain this storm as she heads further north.

In other words, she's creating her own sunshade as she goes and fighting overly-warm mid-level air at the same time. It's just a theory... but I hope its right and she continues to weaken in spite of the low central pressure. My parents live in Harrisburg, PA and the last thing they need is a large hurricane slamming inland there.
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49mph sustained winds reported in Edisto,SC about 170 miles from the center...
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Looks exactly like Alex...



Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 112 Comments: 31339
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


but that makes no sense..






Perhaps the storm is stabilizing itself. It seems to have reached its max in terms of spreading out the windfield. She might try to focus on her center now and she is still quite symmetrical and seems to be a fight to say the least.
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Based on water vapor imagery, rapid deterioration continues with numerous dry slots developing within the band structure. Irene has vacuumed in an enormous amount of dry air from the West at the same time ventilation over-the-top has suffered.
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If it keeps wobbeling to the west I think Topsail Beach Landfall IMO
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Quoting BaltimoreBrian:
I think Irene is being overhyped. Let's compare it to Gloria. Back in 1985 Gloria moved over Cape Hatteras with a 942 mb pressure and Suffolk County on Long Island with a 961 mb pressure. Gloria was a damaging hurricane, but hardly the apocalypse.

Irene will be weaker than Gloria was in the OBX, and is likely to be weaker than Gloria was in Long Island/New England.

Irene will probably be far enough east to keep a northerly wind flow over the Chesapeake, limiting storm surge.

There will be a few billion dollars in damage, and maybe a dozen killed. Half of the dead will probably be doing stupid things that put them in harm's way.

And on Monday people will be talking about how overhyped this all was.

What's sad is that it was the Weather Channel and other media who overhyped this storm, not the NHC although you can bet people will be blaming the NHC for overhyping.


read this:

410. tiggeriffic 5:25 PM GMT on August 26, 2011 +1
something else to take into consideration on Irene... yes, the intensity has gone down, but ONLY wind wise... local met explained it like this:

those are just the winds she has coming at you...she already absorbed all the moisture, the power, etc of being much stronger...she still has all that in her and is waiting to release it...the surge will still be higher than the cat she is now...

Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3650
Quoting DallasGumby:
No.


Lurked for years, This one has amazed me more than any others regards to the comments on here. RI fish FL NYC etc. So far this will remain the most accurate answer to date regardless of what she does.
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Quoting CosmicEvents:
These folks don't know basic storm prep as those of us in the south do.


Let's see, got my truck on blocks out front, food and water for my 3-legged dog, boarded up the double-wide and stocked up on Natty Light...what did I miss oh wise southern soul??

Member Since: August 27, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 27
449. Vero1
Quoting FLdewey:
BREAKING: NYC Subway System to shut down Noon on Saturday
Hope they don't use it as a shelter.
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Quoting tiggeriffic:


Nash...he said he was more scared with that one gust of wind than when people were bumping him going over the George Washington bridge in NY area when he was headed to Providence RI going to college...and at that time he had only been driving about a year... Folly power out...lines down at crosby's...i was outside West AShley when that squall came thru...i looked toward DT of cours as that is where it would come from and saw the black flying at me...thats when my phone went nuts with son, hubby, etc calling me bout the band coming in


Yikes!!! I'll be getting out of here at 3pm. Wanna get home before things get hairy.

Looks like the bands are moving further inland than they were earlier this morning. Not done yet by a longshot.
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Quoting BaltimoreBrian:
Storm surge is extremely dangerous, MahFL, and I do not recommend being on the beach!

Irene is not the hurricane of the century.

The 1938 New England hurricane had the same pressure on Long Island that Irene does now. What must it's pressure have been when it was east of Georgia? Way below 946 mb I am sure.

It's too bad that our media outlets can't simply say that we will have a Cat 1/2 hurricane moving up the northeast coast, and that it should be taken seriously, and people should take precautions.

But no, it's "worst hurricane for northeast ever" "first hurricane to hit NYC since 1893" and all that.

Irene won't be the worst hurricane to hit the northeast. It will still be dangerous, but not the worst. A hurricane doesn't have to be the worst to be dangerous.


Not way below, down below Irene's by a whole 8 millibars. And they are right - this will be one of the worst hurricanes the Northeast has ever experienced...At least in the past several decades.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 112 Comments: 31339
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


but that makes no sense..





And this, too:
000
URNT12 KNHC 261724
VORTEX DATA MESSAGE AL092011
A. 26/17:06:00Z
B. 31 deg 02 min N
077 deg 29 min W
C. 700 mb 2660 m
D. 68 kt
E. 049 deg 43 nm
F. 137 deg 92 kt
G. 050 deg 84 nm
H. 951 mb
I. 14 C / 3046 m
J. 18 C / 3055 m
K. 8 C / NA
L. NA
M. NA
N. 12345 / 7
O. 0.02 / 3 nm
P. AF306 2709A IRENE OB 22
MAX FL WIND 105 KT SE QUAD 13:36:40Z
MAX FL TEMP 20 C 251 / 11 NM FROM FL CNTR
;
Member Since: June 29, 2009 Posts: 13 Comments: 5300
I am kinda glad Irene is going to NC first.

Any one that lives on the Atlantic or GOM or Caribbean may get a hurricane. However if you live in the islands, the Yucatan Peninsula, or the outer banks of NC you ARE going to be hit by Hurricanes. It is only a question of when and it won’t be long (in terms of years) before it happens.

With this said I would think that people that live in those places are better prepared to deal with this than those in New England.

My friend in NY city just asked me what I am worried about? After all it’s just a big puff of wind! I doubt you would hear anyone in the outer banks refer to a storm that way,
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


but that makes no sense..



I took it straight from Google Earth.
Member Since: June 29, 2009 Posts: 13 Comments: 5300
Quoting nash28:


WOW!!! Over here in N. Chas there hasn't been much. Daniel Island is just a quick jaunt down 526. Hmmm. Guess we might be in for worse conditions later then.


Nash...he said he was more scared with that one gust of wind than when people were bumping him going over the George Washington bridge in NY area when he was headed to Providence RI going to college...and at that time he had only been driving about a year... Folly power out...lines down at crosby's...i was outside West AShley when that squall came thru...i looked toward DT of cours as that is where it would come from and saw the black flying at me...thats when my phone went nuts with son, hubby, etc calling me bout the band coming in
Member Since: September 16, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 3650
the term "Crying Wolf" refers to an outright lie. Nobody was telling lies in the forecasting of this system.
Member Since: November 17, 2010 Posts: 11 Comments: 527
More and more evacuation orders -- just listed to TWC broadcast from Philadelphia, and tons of evacuations ordered by Gov. of VA.

Delaware coast residents ordered to evacuate and the roads are already jammed (see delawareonline.com if you wish). Some of these highways aren't, really; two lanes in a lot of areas.

I've never seen or heard anything like this, and I'm even older than the Flood. :)

It's killing me to be on the edge of 1 to 3, vs. 3 to 6 inches of rain(very roughtly, the area around BWI to Dulles airports). That could be a huge difference. And would be very weird to be eligible to be a "local hire" or disaster applicant for FEMA ... something I suppose residents of FL and TX are sort of used to.

This thing is really playing with my head.

Well, time to go fill water containers. I filled the dishwasher with them first. It's been awhile.
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Storm surge is extremely dangerous, MahFL, and I do not recommend being on the beach!

Irene is not the hurricane of the century.

The 1938 New England hurricane had the same pressure on Long Island that Irene does now. What must it's pressure have been when it was east of Georgia? Way below 946 mb I am sure.

It's too bad that our media outlets can't simply say that we will have a Cat 1/2 hurricane moving up the northeast coast, and that it should be taken seriously, and people should take precautions.

But no, it's "worst hurricane for northeast ever" "first hurricane to hit NYC since 1893" and all that.

Irene won't be the worst hurricane to hit the northeast. It will still be dangerous, but not the worst. A hurricane doesn't have to be the worst to be dangerous.
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Quoting AllStar17:
New vortex at 951 mb and this:

L. Eye Character: Not Available
M. Eye Shape: Not Available


but that makes no sense..



Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 112 Comments: 31339
Quoting BaltimoreBrian:
Media need to attract viewers and outfits like TWC, CNN (which has been REALLY bad this time) Fox, etc have been describing what is now a large Cat 2 hurricane in apocalyptic terms.

On Monday when it is over, in addition to the damage Irene caused, the credibility of meteorologists and the NHC will be damaged. Crying wolf about the 'Big One'. Again.


The news is what you make of it. You can choose what to watch and what to take to heart. What you regard as "apocalyptic terms" could in fact be useful, potentially life-saving information to somebody else.
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433. HCW
Level 3 radar is on reload for updates


Member Since: August 10, 2002 Posts: 0 Comments: 1406
Quoting BaltimoreBrian:
Media need to attract viewers and outfits like TWC, CNN (which has been REALLY bad this time) Fox, etc have been describing what is now a large Cat 2 hurricane in apocalyptic terms.

On Monday when it is over, in addition to the damage Irene caused, the credibility of meteorologists and the NHC will be damaged. Crying wolf about the 'Big One'. Again.


But... umm.. It IS a huge Hurricane in apocalyptic terms..

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430. Skyepony (Mod)
NANMADOL is about to nail the northern Philippines.



Got close to the top of the chart.
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Quoting BaltimoreBrian:
I think Irene is being overhyped. Let's compare it to Gloria. Back in 1985 Gloria moved over Cape Hatteras with a 942 mb pressure and Suffolk County on Long Island with a 961 mb pressure. Gloria was a damaging hurricane, but hardly the apocalypse.

Irene will be weaker than Gloria was in the OBX, and is likely to be weaker than Gloria was in Long Island/New England.

Irene will probably be far enough east to keep a northerly wind flow over the Chesapeake, limiting storm surge.

There will be a few billion dollars in damage, and maybe a dozen killed. Half of the dead will probably be doing stupid things that put them in harm's way.

And on Monday people will be talking about how overhyped this all was.

What's sad is that it was the Weather Channel and other media who overhyped this storm, not the NHC although you can bet people will be blaming the NHC for overhyping.

Ike was about the strength Irene is now, and Irene is even larger than Ike was. But I hardly think Ike was overhyped after what happened...

Just a little food for thought.
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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.