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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Even the IR is starting to look impressive.

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Quoting weathermanwannabe:


I know.....A nightmare right now for folks on I-4 who decided to travel to Orlando with their families today to beat the rush tomorrow.
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Convection increasing on the northwest side of the center, this is organizing well today.

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10-m winds

Close-up

Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
578. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
National Hurricane Center Miami
Tropical Cyclone Advisory #20
SEVERE TROPICAL CYCLONE BUD (EP022012)
2:00 PM PDT May 25 2012
====================================

SUBJECT: "BUD" A CATEGORY ONE HURRICANE HEADING FOR THE WESTERN COAST OF MEXICO

At 18:00 PM UTC, Hurricane Bud (995 hPa) located at 19.2N 105.5W or 70 NM west of Manzanillo, Mexico has sustained winds of 65 knots with gusts of 80 knots. The cyclone is reported as moving north at 6 knots.

Dvorak Intensity: T4.0

Forecast and Intensity
=========================

24 HRS: 20.1N 105.5W - 35 knots (Tropical Cyclone - Inland)
48 HRS: 19.9N 105.9W - 25 knots (Overland Low Pressure Area)

Tropical Cyclone Watches/Warnings
==================================

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for Mexico from Manzanillo northwestward to Cabo Corrientes

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Mexico from Punta San Telmo westward to east of Manzanillo

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for Mexico from Punta San Telmo westward to east of Manzanillo

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for Mexico north of Cabo Corrientes to San Blas
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting HurricaneSwirl:
Are ATCF TCWEB files not reset until the official start of hurricane season? The whole page is just flooded with 2011 files. I can't find files for any of the invests this year so far. Link


Change tpc to nhc.
Member Since: December 21, 2007 Posts: 13 Comments: 3046
Quoting LargoFl:
geez on a holiday friday getaway..and I-4 CLOSED..oh man i can just imagine the traffic backup in BOTH directions..and 95 degree heat


I know.....A nightmare right now for folks on I-4 who decided to travel to Orlando with their families today to beat the rush tomorrow.
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9413
Quoting HurricaneSwirl:
Are ATCF TCWEB files not reset until the official start of hurricane season? The whole page is just flooded with 2011 files. I can't find files for any of the invests this year so far. Link


New sites for 2012

Link
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
574. 7544
looks like its all comin together now we could see tropstrom beryl by 11pm stay tuned
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Quoting HurricaneSwirl:
Are ATCF TCWEB files not reset until the official start of hurricane season? The whole page is just flooded with 2011 files. I can't find files for any of the invests this year so far. Link


Here is the 2012 file.

Link
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..............pic of I-4 closed because of smoke from brush fire
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Are ATCF TCWEB files not reset until the official start of hurricane season? The whole page is just flooded with 2011 files. I can't find files for any of the invests this year so far. Link
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Moist air trying to dip into the west.
Member Since: December 21, 2007 Posts: 13 Comments: 3046
Quoting weathermanwannabe:
560. LargoFl 4:38 PM EDT on May 25, 2012

Bad combination on a Holiday Weekend. Lot's of folks are going to be outside doing their holiday thing and tossin cigarette buts all over the place........
geez on a holiday friday getaway..and I-4 CLOSED..oh man i can just imagine the traffic backup in BOTH directions..and 95 degree heat
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I still can't get over this. Two stories stacked in my local news.

"NHC predicting near normal hurricane season"
"2nd pre-season tropical storm, for first time since 1908, likely by Sunday"

These two headlines do not go together ;)
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Quoting CosmicEvents:
It's official now.
2 for 2 for the season.


What is that supposed to mean?
There is no TD2 or Beryl yet
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9760
Quoting CosmicEvents:
It's official now.
2 for 2 for the season.


Link?
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
Quoting weatherh98:



Wait what


This.
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560. LargoFl 4:38 PM EDT on May 25, 2012

Bad combination on a Holiday Weekend. Lot's of folks are going to be outside doing their holiday thing and tossin cigarette buts all over the place........
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9413
www.nhc.noaa.gov
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Quoting Grothar:


May 15, 1887

May 17, 1887

I never thought I would live long enought to see two seasons like this.








LOL.
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Quoting CosmicEvents:
It's official now.
2 for 2 for the season.



Wait what
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URGENT - FIRE WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TALLAHASSEE FL
411 PM EDT FRI MAY 25 2012

...RED FLAG WARNING IN EFFECT FROM 1 PM EDT /NOON CDT/ TO 8 PM
EDT /7 PM CDT/ SATURDAY FOR INLAND PORTIONS OF THE FLORIDA
PANHANDLE AND BIG BEND...

...FIRE WEATHER WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT SATURDAY AFTERNOON FOR
SOUTHEAST ALABAMA...

.TOMORROW WE ARE EXPECTING ANOTHER HOT DAY. HIGH TEMPERATURES
WILL ALSO BE ACCOMPANIED WITH LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITIES CAUSING
DRIER CONDITIONS. THE COMBINATION OF THESE FACTORS AND UNSTABLE
LOWER ATMOSPHERE WILL LEAD TO RED FLAG CONDITIONS IN INLAND
PORTIONS OF THE FLORIDA PANHANDLE AND BIG BEND. RED FLAG CONDTIONS
MAY ALSO DEVELOP OVER SOUTHEAST ALABAMA.


ALZ065>069-261100-
/O.CON.KTAE.FW.A.0029.120526T1800Z-120526T2200Z/
COFFEE-DALE-HENRY-GENEVA-HOUSTON-
311 PM CDT FRI MAY 25 2012

...FIRE WEATHER WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT SATURDAY AFTERNOON...

* WIND...NORTHEAST AROUND 10 MPH.

* HUMIDITY...28 TO 30 PERCENT.

* KBDI...GREATER THAN 500

* IMPACTS...ANY FIRES THAT DEVELOP WILL LIKELY SPREAD RAPIDLY.
OUTDOOR BURNING IS NOT RECOMMENDED.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A FIRE WEATHER WATCH MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS
ARE POSSIBLE. LISTEN FOR LATER FORECASTS AND POSSIBLE RED FLAG
WARNINGS.

&&

$$

08/LV
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Quoting Grothar:


I believe there was only 1 storm in May.


The two before June 1rst.
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SPC WRF

Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
Quoting LargoFl:
Florida is burning up..we need that rain............SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT...UPDATED
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MELBOURNE FL
411 PM EDT FRI MAY 25 2012

FLZ045-053-252100-
ORANGE-OSCEOLA-
411 PM EDT FRI MAY 25 2012

...INTERSTATE 4 CLOSED IN BOTH DIRECTIONS NEAR INTERNATIONAL DRIVE
DUE TO BRUSH FIRE BURNING CLOSE TO THE HIGHWAY...

THE FLORIDA HIGHWAY PATROL IS REPORTING THAT INTERSTATE 4 HAS BEEN
CLOSED TO TRAFFIC IN BOTH DIRECTIONS NEAR THE ORANGE-OSCEOLA
COUNTY LINE DUE TO A BRUSH FIRE BURNING CLOSE TO THE INTERSTATE.
NORTHEAST WINDS OF 15 TO 20 MPH WITH HIGHER GUSTS COUPLED WITH
RELATIVE HUMIDITY VALUES NEAR 40 PERCENT ARE HELPING TO FUEL THE
FIRE. EASTBOUND MOTORISTS ARE BEING REROUTED TO STATE ROAD 417...
THE FLORIDA GREENE WAY...WHILE WESTBOUND MOTORISTS ARE BEING
REROUTED TO STATE ROAD 528...THE BEACH LINE.

$$

CRISTALDI
hey stormtracker..this anywhere near you?
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Quoting Tropicsweatherpr:


Also 1908.

Link


I believe there was only 1 storm in May.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27211
Florida is burning up..we need that rain............SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT...UPDATED
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MELBOURNE FL
411 PM EDT FRI MAY 25 2012

FLZ045-053-252100-
ORANGE-OSCEOLA-
411 PM EDT FRI MAY 25 2012

...INTERSTATE 4 CLOSED IN BOTH DIRECTIONS NEAR INTERNATIONAL DRIVE
DUE TO BRUSH FIRE BURNING CLOSE TO THE HIGHWAY...

THE FLORIDA HIGHWAY PATROL IS REPORTING THAT INTERSTATE 4 HAS BEEN
CLOSED TO TRAFFIC IN BOTH DIRECTIONS NEAR THE ORANGE-OSCEOLA
COUNTY LINE DUE TO A BRUSH FIRE BURNING CLOSE TO THE INTERSTATE.
NORTHEAST WINDS OF 15 TO 20 MPH WITH HIGHER GUSTS COUPLED WITH
RELATIVE HUMIDITY VALUES NEAR 40 PERCENT ARE HELPING TO FUEL THE
FIRE. EASTBOUND MOTORISTS ARE BEING REROUTED TO STATE ROAD 417...
THE FLORIDA GREENE WAY...WHILE WESTBOUND MOTORISTS ARE BEING
REROUTED TO STATE ROAD 528...THE BEACH LINE.

$$

CRISTALDI
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It's official now.
2 for 2 for the season.
Member Since: August 3, 2005 Posts: 10 Comments: 5689
Quoting StormTracker2K:


This could even by a tropical storm by you as well. By you I mean NE Gulf.


Just have to wait and see; however, I just reloaded my fishing plans in the Big Bend Gulf for next weekend just in case........:)
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9413
barometer is not calibrated but it pretty low e cent. fl.
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Quoting Gearsts:
Is this the only year were we have 2 named system on may? And what does it say about the rest of the season than hasn't even started yet?


May 15, 1887

May 17, 1887

I never thought I would live long enought to see two seasons like this.






Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27211
According to this, the last time we had two tropical storms in May was May of 1887 (no, it's not a typo), but we had two tropical depressions in May of 1969.

Yes it's Wikipedia, but meh...

Link
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:


1887 I believe.


1908 2 storms in May one on March 6th and the other on May 24th.
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Quoting Stormchaser2007:


1887 I believe.


Also 1908.

Link
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Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
Quoting Bluestorm5:
Speaking of rare May storms, I'm looking for when the last time two tropical storms formed in one May... brb with results.



1887
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Quoting Patrap:
Rivets and Bad wings come to mind.


LOL!! Good afternoon Pat!
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Quoting Bluestorm5:
Speaking of rare May storms, I'm looking for when the last time two tropical storms formed in one May... brb with results.


1887 I believe.
Member Since: June 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15950
Quoting weathermanwannabe:
Going to be interesting, intensity wise, to see how much it has developed before the center of circulation cross the Gulf Stream on the way in. Water temps around it appear to be in the upper 70's (as opposed to 80's around South Florida) but the stream is usually closer to 80 along the coast of Florida. If sheer relaxes sufficiently, a few degrees in water temp could potentially make the difference (assuming a fully tropical system) between a tropical storm vs. a low category Cat 1 at landfall.

Will also be interesting, historically, in terms of a potential landfall near Jacksonville if it did attain minimal hurricane status..........I don't know the stats (someone on here will pull that up I am sure) but that has not happened in a long time; (sorry Fay) which flooded Jax out a few years ago only reached TS status.


This could even by a tropical storm by you as well. By you I mean NE Gulf.
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Quoting Patrap:
Rivets and Bad wings come to mind.


lol.
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9413
Rivets and Bad wings come to mind.

..meh LoL
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Quoting Levi32:


You must also realize that the southern center was racing like a gazelle northward between 12z and 18z...so a shift south by 0.2 degrees during that time means they definitely switched centers, and they were a lot farther apart at 12z.


Yes, I still don't see what their reasoning was. I wouldn't be surprised if these tracks move further South. Some models have the high a little stronger and further to the west,than earlier runs.

Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27211
Quoting CybrTeddy:
Impressive for May.

Even more impressive considering this will probably be our 2nd named storm of the season and it's only May 25th.


we are on the cusp of a 45mph Beryl right now.
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Quoting Tropicsweatherpr:
Levi, if 94L gets more stronger more than anticipated, will the track be like the consensus of the models, or being more strong it goes more north at landfall?


The strength of the cyclone should have little influence on its track in this situation, because the steering will be deep-layered uniform near the SE U.S. when the blocking ridge takes over. For example, see the GFS 48-hour forecast for shallow- and medium-level steering. They are basically the same.

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Quoting carolinabelle:
Anyone know where to get a link to a good storm-centered satellite image for 94L? Lost all my bookmarks from last year in a computer crash :(


Maybe try the wundergrounds Tropical/Hurricane Page

I get 90% of my Seasonal Info from there.



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Is this the only year were we have 2 named system on may? And what does it say about the rest of the season than hasn't even started yet?
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Speaking of rare May storms, I'm looking for when the last time two tropical storms formed in one May... brb with results.
Member Since: August 1, 2011 Posts: 28 Comments: 8075
And also.. thank you to Levi, StormJunkie & Zappy for the links ;)
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Quoting carolinabelle:
Anyone know where to get a link to a good storm-centered satellite image for 94L? Lost all my bookmarks from last year in a computer crash :(


Good links for most anything you need here. Imagery, models, buoys, etc.
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 16874

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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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