Damaging rains bust the drought in portions of Florida Panhandle

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:43 PM GMT on June 11, 2012

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Flood waters are receding in the rain-drenched Florida Panhandle and coastal Alabama today, where prodigious rains from a moist, tropical airmass interacting with a stalled front brought flooding that caused at least $20 million in damage to the Pensacola, Florida area. The most remarkable rains fell in West Pensacola, where 21.70" was recorded over the weekend. Pensacola airport received 13.13 inches of rain on Saturday, the city's second-highest 1-day rainfall total in recorded history. The only greater 1-day rainfall occurred on October 5, 1934, when Tropical Storm Nine brought 15.29" of rain to the city. Satellite loops of atmospheric precipitable water show that this weekend's heavy rains were caused by a flow of very moist tropical air that originated over the warm waters of the tropical Eastern Pacific and flowed northwards across Mexico and Central America to the Panhandle of Florida. This moist airmass has been replaced by relatively dry air over the Gulf, which should limit rainfall amounts today to the 1 - 2 inch range. A cold front expected to arrive on Tuesday will serve as the focus to bring additional rains of 1 - 2 inches per day to portions of the region Tuesday and Wednesday. Before this weekend's mighty rainstorm, the Florida Panhandle was experiencing severe to extreme drought, with 12 - 15 inches of rain needed to pull the region out of drought. This weekend's rains have busted the drought the extreme western Panhandle, but surrounding regions of Alabama, Georgia, and Florida still need 10+ inches of rain.


Figure 1. Radar-estimated rainfall for the Florida Panhandle from this weekend's rain storm.


Figure 2. Amount of precipitation needed to bust drought conditions over the U.S., as of June 2, 2012. A Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDI) of -0.5 is considered the boundary of where a drought exists. The 12 - 15 inches of rain that fell across the extreme western Florida Panhandle and coastal Alabama over the weekend were enough to bust the drought in those regions. Image credit: NOAA Climate Prediction Center.

Some rainfall amounts from the storm, from 7 pm CDT Thu June 7, through 3 am CDT Sunday June 10, from the latest NOAA Storm Summary:

...ALABAMA...
TILLMANS CORNER 4.3 WNW 10.77"
GRAND BAY 0.6 NW 10.03"
MOBILE DOWNTOWN ARPT 8.97"

...FLORIDA...
WEST PENSACOLA 10.9 SW 21.70"
PENSACOLA RGNL ARPT 15.08"
MILTON 10.9 SSW 14.42"
PENSACOLA 3.8 N 13.88"
JACKSONVILLE 11.6 ENE 4.31"

...GEORGIA...
AUGUSTA/DANIEL FIELD 4.08"
WARNER ROBINS AFB 1.95"
VALDOSTA RGNL ARPT 1.50"

...LOUISIANA...
PONCHATOULA 11.8 E 5.64"
SLIDELL 4.29"
LACOMBE 1.4 N 3.73"
BATON ROUGE 2.5 E 2.26"
NEW ORLEANS/LAKEFRONT 2.13"

...MISSISSIPPI...
PASCAGOULA 7.50"
GULFPORT-BILOXI 6.52"
PASS CHRISTIAN 3.5 NE 4.69"

The Atlantic is quiet
There are no threat areas to discuss in the Atlantic today. The NOGAPS model is predicting formation of a strong tropical disturbance capable of becoming a tropical depression in the Western Caribbean by Sunday, but none of the other models is going along with this idea. We could get something developing in the waters offshore of North Carolina late this week, along the edge of a cold front expected to move of the U.S. East Coast on Tuesday - Wednesday. The GFS model has suggested something could develop in this region in several of its recent runs.

Jeff Masters

flood (megulfbreeze)
Out the front window as our house flooded
flood
Flash (mobal)
I decided to turn around
Flash

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Quoting MTWX:


No problem bud! Been following Oz for the last couple of years... good stuff!


He is drunk lol! What is Don doing?
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I miss these WU graphics. I think it helps when you have the history and the forecast on the same map.

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649. wxmod
New age storm, or tryin to be one anyway! MODIS satellite view of Pacific near dry and thirsty California.

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647. MTWX
Quoting KoritheMan:


Thank you!


No problem bud! Been following Oz for the last couple of years... good stuff!
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Quoting MTWX:


Link


Thank you!
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645. MTWX
Quoting KoritheMan:


Link, please.


Link
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UKMet is perfoming better than the GFS and look at the NOGAPs right there with the GFS..



NCEP/EMC Global Model Performance
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Wow now a severe tstorm watch
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6539
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
15 minute review: Hurricane Hunters is worth watching.


Lol, TWC is back.
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Quoting KennyNebraska:
Cyclone Oz is broadcasting from the severe weather front moving through.


Link, please.
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Cyclone Oz is broadcasting from the severe weather front moving through.
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Quoting weatherh98:


With the update, I'd say GFS but emcwf is still very strong


OK thanks. I keep an eye on GFS mostly. Will check it against emcwf this season. I heard they were updating some of the models but wasn't sure which ones.
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:


that thing got some spin in western virginia?
Member Since: September 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5234
Quoting TomTaylor:
yeah, did you have any comments to add to that?

I'm curious to see other people's takes on the models...their biases, strengths, weaknesses, etc

No, you pretty much got it covered. GFS and ECMWF are good for the tropics and outside of the tropics. I've never used the UKMET for Severe Weather forecasting honestly, never really thought using it. The CMC and NOGAPS do develop way too many storms. I think the NOGAPS tends to blow the systems up more though. In fact, it shows our Caribbean disturbance next week hitting Florida as a hurricane.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32286
Quoting mynameispaul:
Question for experts. Which models do you think will be best performing this hurricane season. I live 60 miles from Gulf Coast and like to keep up with the models although I realize they're not really that accurate more than 5 days out.
Well we can't say for sure at this point. But based on the last several years, one would have to favor the ECMWF. However, the GFS recently got an upgrade, from what I heard it significantly improved the intialization scheme of the model, although I don't think the actual physics of the model changed.
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Quoting weatherh98:


This was the 2011 winter


No it wasn't, lol. We were still an the grips of an El Nino when this happened.
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Quoting TomTaylor:
yeah, did you have any comments to add to that?

I'm curious to see other people's takes on the models...their biases, strengths, weaknesses, etc


I think we went through that earlier and took about two pages..Im spent..Im interested to see however if the Doc mentions the Nogaps tomorrow in the new blog..
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Quoting KoritheMan:


Temperature readings between 18 and 25F seemed rather common during the winter of 2009-2010. I miss those days.


This was the 2011 winter
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6539
Quoting washingtonian115:
Thank you...Now someone knows how I feel.(Ahhh don't throw tomatoes at me!!!!).


This kind of mentality runs off many good people. I'm not going anywhere, but still.
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Quoting washingtonian115:
Thank you...Now someone knows how I feel.(Ahhh don't throw tomatoes at me!!!!).


DUCK!!
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

I'm not an expert, but as I stated earlier on the blog, the ECMWF is good for short-range (before 120 hours out) and the GFS is better for the long-range although it shouldn't be the final say-so for anything.


WHY DO U ALWAYS HAVE TO SAY THE TWO MODELS I MENTIONED LIKE 30 SECONDS BEFORE ME! Wahhhhhh

Okay hahaha back to reality
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6539
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

Thanks for that post.
yeah, did you have any comments to add to that?

I'm curious to see other people's takes on the models...their biases, strengths, weaknesses, etc
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
The Hurricane Hunters are going into the disturbance that formed Hurricane Nate now.


Very interesting show, I never figured that they would have to miss passes or have problems with birds. I also didn't know they can directly measure the windspeed by looking at the wave caps. Hurricane Nate was an interesting storm for sure, they thought it would become a Category 3 but briefly became a Category 1 and the Texas Death ridge prevented any hope for Major.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24195
Quoting KoritheMan:

In my experience it really depends on the year. Some are good some years, while other times they do poorly.


Also, I would like to do as Cody did, and proudly admit that I'm not an expert.
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Quoting KoritheMan:

I don't mind disagreements. Disagreements are fine. But it seems like anything Levi says is automatically construed as truth, which is fallacious. I think that's called "appeal to authority" in informal logic.
Thank you...Now someone knows how I feel.(Ahhh don't throw tomatoes at me!!!!).
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17095
Quoting weatherh98:
Eh Ive had 17 before


Temperature readings between 18 and 25F seemed rather common during the winter of 2009-2010. I miss those days.
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Quoting mynameispaul:
Question for experts. Which models do you think will be best performing this hurricane season. I live 60 miles from Gulf Coast and like to keep up with the models although I realize they're not really that accurate more than 5 days out.


With the update, I'd say GFS but emcwf is still very strong
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6539
Quoting mynameispaul:
Question for experts. Which models do you think will be best performing this hurricane season. I live 60 miles from Gulf Coast and like to keep up with the models although I realize they're not really that accurate more than 5 days out.

I'm not an expert, but as I stated earlier on the blog, the ECMWF is good for short-range (before 120 hours out) and the GFS is better for the long-range although it shouldn't be the final say-so for anything.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32286
Link


8 Inches of snow in Gillam Manitoba yesterday! Average is 2 inches for the whole month of June!
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Ends up with that S shape....

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Quoting mynameispaul:
Question for experts. Which models do you think will be best performing this hurricane season. I live 60 miles from Gulf Coast and like to keep up with the models although I realize they're not really that accurate more than 5 days out.
In my experience it really depends on the year. Some are good some years, while other times they do poorly.
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Quoting ncstorm:


So we were supposed to take your comment as fact because wouldnt that be informal logic?
Did I say that?
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Question for experts. Which models do you think will be best performing this hurricane season. I live 60 miles from Gulf Coast and like to keep up with the models although I realize they're not really that accurate more than 5 days out.
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Quoting KoritheMan:


Well first it would have to actually get to 25F, which it never does here. :P
Eh Ive had 17 before
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Quoting KoritheMan:

I don't mind disagreements. Disagreements are fine. But it seems like anything Levi says is automatically construed as truth, which is fallacious. I think that's called "appeal to authority" in informal logic.


So we were supposed to take your comment as fact because wouldnt that be informal logic?..Sorry, I dont consider it "appeal to authority"..I call it "respect for one's talent"..the guy does an excellent job here...He's good! I was only pointing out that Weather could be possibly right. Its fine to disagree just as you stated
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Quoting weatherh98:


At least you get away from it it can be 25 f and the dewpoint will be like 69


Well first it would have to actually get to 25F, which it never does here. :P
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Quoting nigel20:

It will be interesting to see what pans out over the next week or so...

Good afternoon!
kinda like this huh?
Member Since: September 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5234
Quoting HurricaneHunterJoe:
Yup humidity sucks IMHO


At least you get away from it it can be 25 f and the dewpoint will be like 69
Member Since: June 17, 2011 Posts: 11 Comments: 6539
The Hurricane Hunters are going into the disturbance that formed Hurricane Nate now.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32286
609. beell
Everybody's got their own take on Beryl's origins.

Weather Outlook - May 20

GFS spits out another piece of energy that will move towards the SE coast on Wednesday from the lower MS Valley around the base of a saggy, baggy trough in a scenario similar to synoptics that gave rise to Alberto. This piece of mid-level energy is, like Albert's mid-level vort, forecast to become cut-off from the westerlies and meander around a bit S of Bermuda as a relatively strong ridge of high pressure builds over the TN Valley and the southeast. Which would represent a bit of a short-term pattern change with the trough setting up over the western US, Look for some heat indicies to approach the 100°F mark towards the end of the week.

At the surface, an elongated area of low pressure (a surface trough) should still be in place. Extending from the Caribbean, across Cuba and at times, into the western Atlantic. In conjuction with the cut-off mid-level system and a decent fetch of moisture along the surface trough extending out of the Caribbean, we may see a blob or two worth watching. This would be in addition to the continuing signs from the models to lift a purely tropical system out of the Carbbean.


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BTW Hope all are doing ok tonight!
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607. skook
Extreme amounts of lightning to our east tonight, in Brandon Fl, will try to post a video later on.
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Quoting bohonkweatherman:
Last year we had no humidity and temps 100 or greater every day this year it is almost 100 every day with dew points in 70s and heat indexes around 110, I think I like the dryer air better. :) I could not live closer to the Coast cause I hate humidity.
Yup humidity sucks IMHO
Member Since: September 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5234
Quoting TomTaylor:
I agree with the list, and especially with the bold part. ECMWF is usually rather reluctant to sniff out a storm beyond a week out, meanwhile the GFS is more aggressive and will often be the first to sniff out a storm, although it's aggressiveness can result in it forming too many storms. I also find the ECMWF to be more reliable with track than the GFS. Meanwhile, looking at the other models, the UKMET has a pretty poor resolution so it isn't too good at finding potential areas of development, however, it is one of the best at track and that poor resolution keeps it from being overly aggressive. Finally, the CMC and NOGAPS are both too aggressive and develop too many storms. However, one difference between development on the two models is the CMC seems to not only develop too many but it over-intensifies them, whereas the NOGAPS's develops even more systems, but its poor resolution means it keeps storms fairly weak most of the time. As far as track, the CMC and NOGAPS are both pretty unreliable, but I'd have to say the CMC is better, except when it bombs out a storm when it shouldn't (because then the steering layer is dramatically altered).


Outside of the Tropics

1. ECMWF
2. GFS
3. UKMET
4. CMC
5. NOGAPS

Outside of the tropics, the ECMWF is definitely the best as well. Between the GFS and UKMET it is rather close, however. Model verification actually reveals that the UKMET is better at predicting 500mb heights, however, with the finer resolution, longer range, and more model runs per day, I find the GFS to be a more useful model. Then comes the CMC which isn't far behind for fourth place, and finally the NOGAPS which is pretty far behind the other four global models.


Thanks for that post.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32286

Quoting ncstorm:


I dont considered it gospel and I have seen him wrong but rarely have I seen that..you right there's room for disagreement but he did state it was from a trough..I only agreed with Weather as he mentioned he thought it was from that feature as you just disagree with weather about it not being a trough..
I don't mind disagreements. Disagreements are fine. But it seems like anything Levi says is automatically construed as truth, which is fallacious. I think that's called "appeal to authority" in informal logic.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
In terms of nailing short-term development, ECMWF wins. In terms of nailing long-term development, GFS wins. In terms of not performing well in anything a great majority of the time, the NOGAPS wins.

Personally...

1.) ECMWF
2.) GFS
3.) UKMET
4.) CMC
5.) NOGAPS
I agree with the list, and especially with the bold part. ECMWF is usually rather reluctant to sniff out a storm beyond a week out, meanwhile the GFS is more aggressive and will often be the first to sniff out a storm, although it's aggressiveness can result in it forming too many storms. I also find the ECMWF to be more reliable with track than the GFS. Meanwhile, looking at the other models, the UKMET has a pretty poor resolution so it isn't too good at finding potential areas of development, however, it is one of the best at track and that poor resolution keeps it from being overly aggressive. Finally, the CMC and NOGAPS are both too aggressive and develop too many storms. However, one difference between development on the two models is the CMC seems to not only develop too many but it over-intensifies them, whereas the NOGAPS's develops even more systems, but its poor resolution means it keeps storms fairly weak most of the time. As far as track, the CMC and NOGAPS are both pretty unreliable, but I'd have to say the CMC is better, except when it bombs out a storm when it shouldn't (because then the steering layer is dramatically altered).


Outside of the Tropics

1. ECMWF
2. GFS
3. UKMET
4. CMC
5. NOGAPS

Outside of the tropics, the ECMWF is definitely the best as well. Between the GFS and UKMET it is rather close, however. Model verification actually reveals that the UKMET is better at predicting 500mb heights, however, with the finer resolution, longer range, and more model runs per day, I find the GFS to be a more useful model. Then comes the CMC which isn't far behind for fourth place, and finally the NOGAPS which is pretty far behind the other four global models.

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Quoting KoritheMan:


What's it about? I don't have a TV in this room.

Hurricane Hunters...flying into hurricanes.

It shows what they do up there and stuff.

They're flying through Irene right now. Hurricane-force winds extended out 100 miles from the center.
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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.