Tropical Storm Chris forms; little change to Cuba disturbance; Duluth floods

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:33 PM GMT on June 20, 2012

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Tropical Storm Chris formed Tuesday evening from a extratropical storm that spent enough time over waters of 24 - 26°C to acquire tropical characteristics. Chris is headed eastwards, out to sea, and will not trouble any land areas. Only twice before, in 1887 and 1959, has the third storm of the season formed earlier than this date. Formation of three tropical storms so early in the year is not necessarily a harbinger of an active season; 1959 was close to average, with 12 named storms, 7 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricanes (average is 11 named storms, 6 hurricanes, and 2 intense hurricanes.) Unusual levels of early season activity in the Caribbean and between Africa and the Lesser Antilles usually portends a very active hurricane season, but this year's storms have not formed in this region. Alberto, Beryl, and Chris all formed off the U.S. East Coast.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of Chris.

Disturbance near Cuba will bring heavy rains to Florida
An area of low pressure and heavy thunderstorms centered just south of Cuba has changed little since Tuesday, and is bringing sporadic heavy rains to Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, South Florida, the Southern Bahamas, and Cuba. This disturbance will need to be watched for development as it drifts slowly northwest at about 5 mph and enters the Gulf of Mexico late this week. The disturbance is poorly organized, and has only a modest area of heavy thunderstorms. Wind shear is a moderate to high 15 - 25 knots over the region, and the shear is predicted to remain in the moderate to high range for the next three days along the disturbance's path. Water vapor satellite loops show a region of dry air over the Southern Gulf of Mexico; strong upper-level winds out of the northwest are bringing some of this dry air into the vicinity of the disturbance, which is interfering with development. NHC is giving the disturbance a 20% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Friday morning. As the disturbance reaches the waters off the southwest coast of Florida this weekend, a strong trough of low pressure pushing off of the U.S. East Coast will be capable of grabbing the storm and accelerating it to the northeast. This is the solution of the GFS model, which takes the storm across Florida on Sunday, and into the waters off the coast of South Carolina by Monday, with the disturbance developing into a tropical or subtropical storm off the coast of South Carolina. None of the other reliable computer models is showing development of the disturbance into a tropical depression. I think it is unlikely that heavy rains from this disturbance will affect Louisiana and Texas, but it will bring heavy rains to Southwest Florida and Cuba over the next five days.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of the tropical disturbance near Cuba.


Figure 3. Rainfall for the 5-day period ending at 8am EDT Monday as predicted by NOAA's Hydrometeorological Prediction Center. Amounts in excess of five inches (orange colors) are predicted for Southwest Florida, with an area of ten inches (yellow colors) just off the coast.

Major flooding in Duluth, Minnesota
A serious flood emergency is occurring in Duluth, Minnesota. A series of "training" thunderstorms that all passed over the same region have dumped 4 - 5 inches of rain over a wide swath of Northern Minnesota overnight and early this morning. Nearly 8 inches of rain fell in the Denfeld area of western Duluth. This is more rain than fell in the city's previous worst flood on record, which occurred August 20, 1972. Major flooding is occurring, and only emergency travel is recommended in the city due to flooded roads. A flash flood warning from the Duluth National Weather Service issued at 7am CDT said this:

We cannot stress what a major threat this is for the city of Duluth
and along the North Shore. Aging infrastructure will also play a
part in the flood threat... especially on the hillside. Highway 61
remains closed in spots with washouts... overflowing streams and
rivers...washed out culverts and washed out roads. Just because you
might be able to travel to a destination now... does not mean you
will make it in one to two hours. This is how fast this situation
may deteriorate as more rainfall moves in from the west. There is
the potential for several more inches of rain today and the utility
system and the saturated ground cannot take much more rain.


According to wunderground's weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, the all-time 24 hour precipitation record for Duluth is 5.79" on 8/22 - 8/23 1978; 4.14" was recorded on Tuesday at the airport.


Figure 4. Radar-estimated rainfall from the Duluth, Minnesota radar.

Jeff Masters

storm damage June 19 (CythiaSue)
there is another car buried on the other side of the road. This is just some of the storm damage from a 4 am rain and thunderstorm
storm damage June 19

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Here is your low pressure center, obvious:



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Scottsvb thank you very much for that answer, I found it to be very helpful.
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
I don't understand what is wrong with people these days...(sorry for straying off-topic, I just can't believe this)

Link


That story and video made me so mad - middle school students have always been exactly like this, just now the bus driver can't stop the bus and throw them out on the spot..
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23565
1936. Walshy
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
All I can say is oh my god.

Link


I would beat the **** out of those immature ****.
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We don't know yet what till come out of this. We wont know till probably Saturday.. we have 48hrs of a broad low and models to look at. By Saturday we will see if a LLC will form and what the conditions are like. If there is dry air coming in off the continental U.S. to keep this weak and moisture mostly off to the east or if there is shear that will hamper development or if the system generates enough energy to neglect 1 or 2 of them. If it does both then there is no reason this wont become a strong TS or a hurricane even.. if 1 of them (shear or dry air) affect this.. then it may not get above a 50mph TS.. and if both occur Sunday-Monday then it will just be a disturbance or small TS with most of the precip east of the LLC as it cross FL.
So right now, we won't know about strength till Saturday along with the movement.. but still looks like this will be more of a NE GOM event Monday.
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**11:00 PM ADVISORY**
(click to enlarge)
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Quoting hurricane23:


Still thinking this will not become a significant problem for anyone. More rainfall for florida for sure.


Good evening to you Adrain.

With the models still flopping around like a wahoo on deck you would think so. Really tough to imagine anything looking at satellite. I am really not a big model junkie however, most are showing something. ECMWF this afternoon with a strong TS makes you wonder. But, I also wonder if it's just a bunch of dogs having trouble with the scope and just chasing their tails. Good thing is that it "Shouldn't" be too strong if something were to form. Still an awful lot of ?????
Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 5039
It's just been a unique couple of days in the Caribbean, I would expect nothing less than a few more surprises out of this trough of low pressure with it's embedded 1009mb Low. So that's it for now, but by Friday when we'll likely be looking at a red circle and the days after was what my question pertained to. It's a prognosticating question but also very likely to come to fruition question. Hope that clears it up for you ProgressivePulse.
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Quoting congaline:
Trouble is sure brewing! LOL! I think this will escalate quickly. Will be a tropical storm before it has time to be an invest. Things are going to fire up in the hot am. Just sayin' Guess we're gonna cancel the astronomy skywatch we have scheduled for Sat nite...it's definitely gonna rain here in SW Fl.!
Hope so... Naples virtually dry today!
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1930. nigel20
It's good to see a lot of the old timers...hopefully y'all will be on more often....
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I don't understand what is wrong with people these days...(sorry for straying off-topic, I just can't believe this)

Link
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31444
Trouble is sure brewing! LOL! I think this will escalate quickly. Will be a tropical storm before it has time to be an invest. Things are going to fire up in the hot am. Just sayin' Guess we're gonna cancel the astronomy skywatch we have scheduled for Sat nite...it's definitely gonna rain here in SW Fl.!
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The GFS unrealistically (?) splits the storm in two.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31444
Quoting hurricane23:


Still thinking this will not become a significant problem for anyone. More rainfall for florida for sure.




downcaster
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Quoting ProgressivePulse:


All that is true at the moment is that a broad, inverted trough of low pressure is moving NW into the Gulf Of Mexico with an embedded 1009mb Low analyzed at 25N 85W. That's it.


Still thinking this will not become a significant problem for anyone. More rainfall for florida for sure.
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Quoting Tribucanes:
No low to tag yet, wow this blob remains in flux. So no fixed low yet, but we do know it's destination is the central GOM. Wonder what's in store tomorrow? What's going to stop this from becoming at least a strong TS if it does head to the central GOM and sheer, as forecast, drops?


All that is true at the moment is that a broad, inverted trough of low pressure is moving NW into the Gulf Of Mexico with an embedded 1009mb Low analyzed at 25N 85W. That's it.
Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 5039
1923. 7544
new gfs run back to the east over fl a bit more south again

Link
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Quoting zillaTX:


This depresses me, the high that is suppose to build over Texas will keep all of this goodness away they say..


Your high comes on day five. Link
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1921. scott39
I havent been following the tropics very closely this season, But when I heard about a possible storm in the GOM...it got my attention. Looks like the NHC is being proactive and we are going to see some kind of devlopement soon. Modules are good for "entertainment" right now.
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00z GFS continues to be overly aggressive though not as aggressive with the trough as the 18z.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23565
1918. zillaTX
Quoting Patrap:








This depresses me, the high that is suppose to build over Texas will keep all of this goodness away they say..
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No low to tag yet, wow this blob remains in flux. So no fixed low yet, but we do know it's destination is the central GOM. Wonder what's in store tomorrow? What's going to stop this from becoming at least a strong TS if it does head to the central GOM and sheer, as forecast, drops?
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If Chris can make it another 2 hours until the ATCF update...
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31444
1914. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting scott39:
Hello everyone, I have never seen the NHC at 30% with an AOI, and it not be tagged an Invest.....interesting

its been a tough day but in 5 mins that day is done and a new day will have begun

maybe invest within the next 6 hrs or so
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
NEXSAT WV
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1912. Patrap


Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127543
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1910. Patrap






Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127543
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31444
1908. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
Quoting scott39:
Hello everyone, I have never seen the NHC at 30% with an AOI, and it not be tagged an Invest.....interesting


This is going to be a tough one, up and out by Sunday according to the models however, there is no definitive low to tag yet, no center fix. Now they added a low this evening "BUT", persistence is the key. Nothing has persisted "Yet".
Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 5039
1906. Patrap
12Z Nam
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127543
I'm normally a lurker as well, but I like to watch storms that persevere under unique circumstances and such, Chris is definitely one of the best ones I've seen given his latitude and the time of year. And to say "Even if Chris is a little stronger" is like the NHC doesn't care about that.

All of the storms this year have impressed me thus far, though.
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1904. nigel20
Good evening everyone!
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1903. scott39
Hello everyone, I have never seen the NHC at 30% with an AOI, and it not be tagged an Invest.....interesting
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1902. Patrap
Link

West Pacific
94W.INVEST
93W.INVEST
06W.TALIM
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127543
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31444
1900. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
WTPN21 PHNC 202300
MSGID/GENADMIN/JOINT TYPHOON WRNCEN PEARL HARBOR HI//
SUBJ/TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION ALERT//
REF/A/JOINT TYPHOON WRNCEN PEARL HARBOR HI/192300Z JUN 12//
AMPN/REF IS TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION ALERT (WTPN21 PGTW 192300)//
RMKS/
1. REMARKS: THIS CANCELS REF A (WTPN21 PGTW 192300). THE AREA OF
CONVECTION PREVIOUSLY LOCATED NEAR 17.6N 107.4W, IS NOW LOCATED NEAR
18.1N 108.2W, APPROXIMATELY 220 NM WEST-SOUTHWEST OF MANZANILLO,
MEXICO. RECENT ANIMATED MULTISPECTRAL SATELLITE IMAGERY SHOWS
MINIMAL DEEP CONVECTION ASSOCIATED WITH THE LOW LEVEL CIRCULATION
CENTER. UPPER LEVEL ANALYSIS INDICATES THE SYSTEM IS IN AN AREA OF
MODERATE VERTICAL WIND SHEAR AND SUBSIDENCE ALOFT. DUE TO THE
UNFAVORABLE UPPER LEVEL CONDITIONS AND LACK OF DEEP CONVECTION OVER
THE LLCC, THE SYSTEM IS NO LONGER EXPECTED TO DEVELOP INTO A
SIGNIFICANT TROPICAL CYCLONE WITHIN THE NEXT 24 HOURS.//
NNNN

Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
39 hrs.

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1898. Patrap
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 420 Comments: 127543
1897. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
INV/AOI/XXL
MARK
23.33N/84.11W
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 169 Comments: 53296
I was like, man, I've been lurking all day soaking it up; and now I make what I hope will be an amusing post, and wham I get slammed! But I get ya now, it reminds me of what a good friend once told me, "When talking to someone, if you will put the best spin possible on what they are saying to you then you will benefit yourself and them greatly." Sorry again.
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GFS 00z 12hrs.

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That upper level high over the tip of the Yacatan has been steadily moving north towards the central gulf.
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Link

This is the ECMWF model, at 144 hour , i think this is why the NHC is taking his time with this system,when the system enter in the gulf, will stay there many days because the strong anticyclone in the atlantic,the people from tampa and the west side of florida need to pay attention, i think this system will could be a strong tropical storm or cat1 hurricane.
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No problem, I wondered at the wording. Sorry I didn't ask you before I posted that.
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I still think the low that is just now ejecting off of the Yucatan will end up being the dominant low and will end up eating that other one.
Link

There is already pretty good cyclonic flow showing.
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Quoting Tribucanes:
Well LostTomorrows if smug is how you roll then that's not cool.


Whoa, whoa, I didn't mean that in the least, I'm just glad there are people agreeing with me, and was citing that line "Even if Chris is a little stronger" as the reasoning behind it. To me that just seems a tad unprofessional from Berg.

Sorry if I'd offended you. I really didn't mean to.
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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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