Bud the strongest Eastern Pacific hurricane so early in the year; 94L may develop

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:14 PM GMT on May 25, 2012

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Category 2 Hurricane Bud is weakening, but still presents a formidable rainfall threat as it continues north-northeast towards an expected landfall between Manzanillo and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico late Friday night. Thursday night at 11 pm EDT, Bud peaked at Category 3 status, with 115 mph winds, becoming the earliest Category 3 hurricane on record in the Eastern Pacific. Recent Satellite loops show that Bud has weakened, though. The eye has disappeared, and the cloud pattern has shrunk and appears squashed, due to an increase in dry air, wind shear, and cooler sea surface temperatures affecting the storm. These hostile conditions should continue to weaken Bud to a Category 1 hurricane or strong tropical storm by the time of landfall. Bud is projected to cross the coast in a rugged, relatively unpopulated area, so wind and storm surge damage will probably be light to moderate. Heavy rain will cover a much wider area, and will be the main threat from Bud. The coast where Bud is headed towards is very mountainous, and numerous flash floods and dangerous mudslides will affect the region, probably including the cities of Manzanillo and Puerto Vallarta. I don't think Puerto Vallarta will see much in the way of wind or storm surge damage, since it is in a well-protected location and will probably be on the weak (left-front) side of the hurricane. Manzanillo is at higher risk, since it will probably be on the stronger right-front side of the hurricane.


Figure 1. True-color satellite image of Hurricane Bud taken at 12:25 pm EDT May 24, 2012. At the time, Bud was a Category 2 hurricane with 110 mph winds. Image credit: NASA.

A record May for the Eastern Pacific hurricane season
Bud is the strongest Eastern Pacific hurricane on record for so early in the year, and is tied with Hurricane Alma of 2002 (115 mph winds) as the second strongest May hurricane on record in the Eastern Pacific. Only Hurricane Adolph of 2001 (145 mph winds) was stronger. Also, Bud's appearance on May 21 marked the earliest date since record keeping began in 1949 for formation of the season's second named storm. The previous record was set in 1984, when the second named storm formed on May 29. Hurricanes are uncommon in the Eastern Pacific in May; there have been just twelve since record keeping began in 1949--an average of one May hurricane every five years. If Bud ends up making landfall in Mexico as a hurricane, it would be only the second Eastern Pacific May hurricane on record to hit Mexico. The other was Hurricane Agatha of May 24, 1971, which hit the same stretch of coast that Bud is threatening. Agatha made landfall as a Category 2 hurricane about 45 mi (75 km) from Zihuatanejo, Mexico. Ocean temperatures this year in the region where Aletta and Bud formed are only slightly above average, so the large-scale atmospheric patterns are probably more to blame for this year's exceptionally early start to hurricane season in the Eastern Pacific.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of Invest 94L.

Invest 94L off the Georgia coast could develop this weekend
An area of disturbed weather (Invest 94L) a few hundred miles east of the Georgia coast is headed northeast at about 15 mph. The disturbance has not become more organized over the past day, due to very high wind shear of 40 - 55 knots. However, the latest SHIPS model forecast predicts that wind shear will drop to the moderate range, 10 - 20 knots, on Saturday and Sunday. Most of our reliable models predict that 94L could organize into a subtropical or tropical depression or storm on Saturday or Sunday off the coast of Georgia/South Carolina. NHC is giving 94L a 70% chance of developing into a tropical or subtropical depression by Sunday morning. A ridge of high pressure is expected to build in over the weekend off the East Coast, which will force 94L to the west back towards the coast, and heavy rains from 94L are likely to begin affecting coastal South Carolina, Georgia, and Northern Florida on Saturday and Sunday. There is a lot of dry, continental air on the west side of 94L, so the rainfall amounts from the storm will be limited unless until the center makes landfall. If these rains do materialize, they would be welcome, considering the moderate to severe drought conditions in the area.

I'll have an update Saturday.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting Charmeck:


Why renumber?? It should get named!

They Renumber the storm from 94L to 02L< Marking that it's upgraded to a Tropical Cyclone.
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Quoting ProgressivePulse:


I would venture a guess that it would be a little more than slightly. 50kt storm would not surprise me at all.

The highest I could find at 10 meters is 40 mph. However, considering the buoy reported 45 mph, we know that is a little off. In addition, GREarth shows winds at the 850 mb level are already at 60 mph, so they could definitely work down farther as the night progresses.



10 meter winds ^
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32858
First Advisory pretty apparant to me.
...Second Named Storm Of season forms off the Carolinas...
Tropical Storm Beryl
45 Mph sustained winds
1001 Millibars
Moving NNW @ 6 mph.
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1079. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 178 Comments: 56141
Besides all the Tropical Weather stuff.... There is a really nasty Tornado Warned cell going towards La Crosse, KS.

Well defined hook echo
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1077. cg2916
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:


Looks closed!
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94L had a T# of 2.5 at around 7:45 EDT

Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
1075. Patrap
Here it comes.

..wait for it.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129902
1074. JLPR2
Quoting Charmeck:


Why renumber?? It should get named!


Renumber = Named

It looses the 94L and would become 02L
Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 7 Comments: 8747
I knew it will develop.
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1072. Patrap
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129902
1071. Levi32
Quoting winter123:
Amazed that NHC is not claiming 94L is frontal, and therefore non-tropical. It will break off the front within 12 hours, though.



WV loop


That's not a front.
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History for me will be made tah-nyhat(tonight).sorry i wasn't around 125 years ago(Maybe Grothar) and wasn't around in 1908 either.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17831
1069. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 178 Comments: 56141
Quoting cg2916:


When should the renumber come? 9:30?


Why renumber?? It should get named!
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

How do you feel about our first two storms forming just a couple hundred miles from the NC coast ;D
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Quoting HurricaneDean07:

There's slightly stronger winds on the eastern-north side.


I would venture a guess that it would be a little more than slightly. 50kt storm would not surprise me at all.
Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 5458
1065. cg2916
Quoting Grothar:
Tight consensus, but they are moving more South on each run.



Best consensus so far.
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Quoting cg2916:


When should the renumber come? 9:30?

The renumber can happen at any time before 11. So, basically We have 02L on our hands....
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Quoting Grothar:
Tight consensus, but they are moving more South on each run.



Levi called it
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6539
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


Rain Contaminated




Scatterometer data is less accurate in rain

Data products include a scatterometer derived rain flag, and colocated radiometer columnar rain rates
space.
Known Problems
Rain Contamination


Rain is a well known problem affecting scatterometers. It tends to result in erroneous cross track vectors and/or unrealistically high speeds.

Here is an example:

Note the rain contaminated data in the image. The scatterometer derived rainflag is used to draw the arrows grey instead of black. Collocated radiometer rain rates are also available in the data files. Scientists should use the rainflag and radiometer rain rates to help remove rain effects from the data files when doing research.
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9760
1061. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
DATE TIME LAT LON CLASSIFICATION ID NAME
20120525 2345 32.1 75.2 ST2.5 94L 94L
20120525 1745 31.0 75.0 ST1.5 94L 94L
20120525 1145 29.4 77.0 ST1.5 94L 94L
20120525 0545 28.4 77.8 ST1.5 94L 94L
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 178 Comments: 56141
1060. Grothar
Tight consensus, but they are moving more South on each run.

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Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32858
1058. Patrap
Quoting cg2916:


When should the renumber come? 9:30?


Read the NHC words on the system

They are the only source for OFFICIAL text.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129902
Sanvu needs love, too :)
This is a nice-looking storm.
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Quoting ProgressivePulse:


45? There is 42mph winds in the bone dry NW quad.

There's slightly stronger winds on the eastern-north side.
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1055. cg2916
Quoting HurricaneDean07:

Transitioning warm-core, so most likely tropical, but with it Transitioning, they may call it a Sub-tropical storm in the first advisory, before making tropical.


Dvorak's still ST2.5.
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I'm really excited....I predicted subtropical cyclone formation by 0000Z May 26 2 AM this very early morning on my blog....and it looks like it has happened basically right on cue....

But I don't think I did so good on the track forecast...I am updating it right now....
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Quoting weatherh98:
I betcha they are trying to figure out wether it should be subtropical or tropical

Transitioning warm-core, so most likely tropical, but with it Transitioning, they may call it a Sub-tropical storm in the first advisory, before making tropical.
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1052. cg2916
Quoting Patrap:
Beryl has NOT be Named yet,but hang tight.

11 pm isnt far off, save for da West Coast


When should the renumber come? 9:30?
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Quoting wunderkidcayman:
so hello TS Beryl 45MPH


45? There is 42mph winds in the bone dry NW quad.
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1050. Patrap
Beryl has NOT been Named yet,but hang tight.

11 pm isnt far off, save for da West Coast
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 428 Comments: 129902
TLX radar is seeing the circulation up at 25,000 feet.

Looks pretty decent.
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
Bud brings new meaning to the saying "POOF!" I predict final advisory at the next advisory.
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1047. Patrap
www.nhc.noaa.gov
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1046. yqt1001
Quoting cg2916:


What was that?


Tropical Depression 8 in the EPac.
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1045. Grothar
If this becomes Beryl tonight, could we keep the NHC posts to under 1000 tonight???



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1044. Drem
With this system now off the eastern seaboard. Is anyone else having problems when clicking on the Hurricane option on the Wundermap page? When I select Hurricane I get nothing showing up on the map or under Hurricane Data.

Thanks,
Ralph
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so hello TS Beryl 45MPH
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1042. cg2916
Quoting yqt1001:


Well deserved crow. I wasn't even close to sold on Beryl development at 80%. :P Although I've never seen a 100% fail to develop.

Last year an 80% almost failed to develop and started dropping in percentages...but then it developed at 20%.


What was that?
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890 MiamiHurricanes09: Back then in the 1000s BC in tribal Africa, when someone contracted the influenza they thought that it was a curse from the gods for not giving a sufficient amount of sacrifices. But now the term influenza is substituted with "common cold" and could be contracted for simply walking in the rain without an umbrella. What a disgusting excuse for a disease though.

1) Nobody had a clue as to the cause of colds and influenzas -- or other contagious diseases -- until after Pasteur pushed the GermTheory, ie after ~1860AD.
2) The discovery of the virus was made in 1892AD. Colds and influenzas are viral diseases.
3) Colds and influenzas have quite different symptoms.
4) It has been proven over and over and over again in studies on human volunteers that damp and/or chill do not increase the likelyhood of catching either a cold or a flu.
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Quoting cg2916:


What is the record on here for the most comments?
I have no idea.Some one said 10,000.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17831
Amazed that NHC is not claiming 94L is frontal, and therefore non-tropical. It will break off the front within 12 hours, though.



WV loop
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Quoting GTcooliebai:
Get ready for one wide cone of uncertainty.


Models such as CMC,Nogaps,Euro,Ecwmf are all showing a landfall around Jacksonville,Fl / Georgia/Florida border.
Member Since: March 22, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 723
Quoting LargoFl:
ok where is the crow? lol

Dag nabbit...the NHC beat me to it...I am putting a blog post together that was also saying 100%.

I am very sure that we will have Subtropical Storm Beryl at 11 PM EDT. Unbelievable folks....unbelievable....

Look for my blog post around 9:45 PM tonight or so. I am betting we'll have an Invest renumber by that time....

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Quoting cg2916:


What is the record on here for the most comments?

9000.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32858
1034. yqt1001
Quoting Patrap:
Three Crow Recipes



AL942012 - INVEST



Well deserved crow. I wasn't even close to sold on Beryl development at 80%. :P Although I've never seen a 100% fail to develop.

Last year an 80% almost failed to develop and started dropping in percentages...but then it developed at 20%.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

What's RC?


Rain Contaminated
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
1032. cg2916
Quoting GTcooliebai:
Get ready for one wide cone of uncertainty.


Can't be worse than Bud's.
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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.

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