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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Quoting aspectre:
HURRICANE Chris (and some stengthening data on previous positions)

AL, 03, 2012062100, , BEST, 0, 386N, 475W, 55, 994, TS, 34, NEQ, 40, 80, 60, 30, 1008, 180, 30, 60, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
AL, 03, 2012062100, , BEST, 0, 386N, 475W, 55, 994, TS, 50, NEQ, 0, 30, 0, 0, 1008, 180, 30, 60, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
AL, 03, 2012062106, , BEST, 0, 394N, 456W, 60, 990, TS, 34, NEQ, 40, 80, 60, 30, 1008, 180, 30, 60, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
AL, 03, 2012062106, , BEST, 0, 394N, 456W, 60, 990, TS, 50, NEQ, 0, 30, 0, 0, 1008, 180, 30, 60, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
AL, 03, 2012062112, , BEST, 0, 405N, 439W, 65, 987, HU, 34, NEQ, 40, 80, 60, 30, 1008, 180, 30, 0, 0,
AL, 03, 2012062112, , BEST, 0, 405N, 439W, 65, 987, HU, 50, NEQ, 0, 30, 0, 0, 1008, 180, 30, 0, 0,

If the NHC doesn't upgrade it at 11:00......
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Did the NHC upgrade Chriss?
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Finally, woooohoo first cane of the year (:
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Quoting Tazmanian:




no it wont


You are correct and wrong at the same time. It will be upgraded to a cane :)
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Quoting STXHurricanes2012:

its barely going to be 4 or 5 am in ak...so hes asleep please wait a few hrs until he does it


Alaska?

Wow, he sure has an intrest in my part of the world for someone in Alaska. They race dogs ove hundreds of miles of very cold snow. Nothing tropical about that.

Alaska? Really? Well that explains that part about Tropical Tidbits from the TUNDRA.
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Gator, it is a similar story for Orlando. While the Orlando Int'l Airport did officially receive sustained hurricane force winds during Charley, the other official airport stations did not. From what I have read this was the highest wind ever recorded at OIA and I bet Orlando does not on average receive sustained hurricane force winds more than twice per century (possibly not including freak thunderstorm winds). Since Gainesville is even more inland and further north, where strong cyclones rarely traverse, I believe your assertion that is has been 100 years + since hurricane winds have struck Gainesville.

Based on this, Category 3 winds (sustained 111mph+) may only affect Orlando or Gainesville a couple times per millennium. For Orlando to truly get Cat. 3 winds, a strong 4 would have to move directly into Melbourne-Cape Canaveral and then the center move right over Orlando. This would be a very rare scenario indeed.
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Quoting StormHype:


Focus on the the vis sat loops today now that the sun is up.


Now that the sun is up, what is the area of circulation south of the tx/la border? Definite spin.
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This pass likely made them upgrade...

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Hurricane Chris.
AL, 03, 2012062112, , BEST, 0, 405N, 439W, 65, 987, HU
Member Since: July 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5725
Forecasts for TX coast is sunny and hot. Experts better be nailing this down pretty quick, because some models... and it hasn't been just this one, showing a full blown hurricane hitting TX in 6 days. Time is ticking and the call better be made quick. Doesn't make sense for a few models to keep bringing a storm into TX.
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First Hurricane of the year!

AL, 03, 2012062112, , BEST, 0, 405N, 439W, 65, 987, HU, 34, NEQ, 60, 90, 70, 50, 1008, 180, 20, 0, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
AL, 03, 2012062112, , BEST, 0, 405N, 439W, 65, 987, HU, 50, NEQ, 40, 40, 40, 30, 1008, 180, 20, 0, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
AL, 03, 2012062112, , BEST, 0, 405N, 439W, 65, 987, HU, 64, NEQ, 20, 20, 0, 0, 1008, 180, 20, 0, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
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I guess i better start building my ark now!!!
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2227. Asrock
I see the weather channel is already to give th GOM storm a name.

weatherchannel

RT @twc_hurricane: Vacation plans in Florida & the northern Gulf Coast? Read the latest on the potential for #Debby: http://wxch.nl/NQ2bBI
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We have Hurricane Chris.
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976mb hurricane on the CMC

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Quoting Autistic2:
Hey Levi

How about a new video? Something kinda sorta brewing for Fl.?

its barely going to be 4 or 5 am in ak...so hes asleep please wait a few hrs until he does it
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HURRICANE Chris (and alterations showing strengthened MaximumSustainedWinds and MinimumPressures due to re-evaluation of data from its previous positions)

AL, 03, 2012062100, , BEST, 0, 386N, 475W, 55, 994, TS, 34, NEQ, 40, 80, 60, 30, 1008, 180, 30, 60, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
AL, 03, 2012062100, , BEST, 0, 386N, 475W, 55, 994, TS, 50, NEQ, 0, 30, 0, 0, 1008, 180, 30, 60, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
AL, 03, 2012062106, , BEST, 0, 394N, 456W, 60, 990, TS, 34, NEQ, 40, 80, 60, 30, 1008, 180, 30, 60, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
AL, 03, 2012062106, , BEST, 0, 394N, 456W, 60, 990, TS, 50, NEQ, 0, 30, 0, 0, 1008, 180, 30, 60, 0, L, 0, , 0, 0, CHRIS, M,
AL, 03, 2012062112, , BEST, 0, 405N, 439W, 65, 987, HU, 34, NEQ, 40, 80, 60, 30, 1008, 180, 30, 0, 0,
AL, 03, 2012062112, , BEST, 0, 405N, 439W, 65, 987, HU, 50, NEQ, 0, 30, 0, 0, 1008, 180, 30, 0, 0,
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Quoting redwagon:

That's what I was thinking. The real stuff is happening W and NW of where everybody's eyes are trained.


Focus on the the vis sat loops today now that the sun is up.
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Quoting johnbluedog69:

Then your's should be Grothar12345678910 sorry had to!lol


Grothar∞
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Quoting weathermanwannabe:
Good Morning. Don't be fooled by the displaced convection to the East over the Yucatan Channel. The consolidating center still appears to be just to the NW of the tip of the Yucatan Peninsula and this going to be a very slow burn over the next 72 hours dependending on when the sheer becomes favorable enough for further development.

It's going to be a long wait going into the end of the weekend for lots of folks along the Gulf Coast.

That's what I was thinking. The real stuff is happening W and NW of where everybody's eyes are trained.
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Hey Levi

How about a new video? Something kinda sorta brewing for Fl.?
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Quoting Neapolitan:
I understand. Many areas across Florida received a lot of rain. My point was that the forecast showed the heaviest rainfall right off my coast, and we were expecting clouds, wind, and half a foot or precipitation. Instead, however, we got nothing--not even a trace--and clear skies. I'm just curious how and why that happened, that's all...
,what the hpc posted was a 120hr accumulated precipitation map,with a bullseye of about 11inches off our coastline and about6-7" along the coast,notice we are only 24-36 hrs into a 120hr map,my point is that widespread 2-4" totals thru monday is not only possible,but likely imo,i bet you get over 2" in the next 48hrs....p.s. im in sarasota and we had abour 3 band features move over us yesterday,about 1/2-3/4 inch,local nws said .10-.25 except in thunderstorms,we had no stors just bands,so we actually got more than predicted in my area!
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Quoting HurrMichaelOrl:


Exactly. It would seem that the historical tracks of storms/canes into the West Coast of Florida would be roughly evenly distributed, but this is not the case. Would anybody like to venture a guess as to why?

As for soon to be 96L, the developing coc looks to be right on the northern coast of the Yucatan.


I think it would be hard to get a front to line up in the odd way required for a storm to hit that piece of coast line perpendicularly. I think usually the most reasonable way to get a storm there would for it to "round" the Bermuda high in the perfect fashion out of the gulf. Which is rare for there to be a storm in the gulf if the weakness is so close to that eastern part of the GOM.
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2216. ncstorm
Quoting gator23:


Why those two?


both are predicting strong storms and one takes it east and one takes it west..
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 16225
2215. gator23
Quoting Hurricanes4life:


Tampa bay area/ that part of the west coast of flordia seem to be a "dead" area historically as far as tropical systems go. I believe if it does hit flordia it will be 100 miles north of Tampa or 100 miles south of Sarasota.


It has been more han 100 years since Gainesville has seen any cat 3 winds. For that matter it has been nealry 40 years since we have see Cat 1 winds
Member Since: August 26, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 2182
Good Morning. Don't be fooled by the displaced convection to the East over the Yucatan Channel. The consolidating center still appears to be just to the NW of the tip of the Yucatan Peninsula and this going to be a very slow burn over the next 72 hours dependending on when the sheer becomes favorable enough for further development.

It's going to be a long wait going into the end of the weekend for lots of folks along the Gulf Coast.
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Looks like no matter where it goes the models agree that someone is likely to get a hurricane.
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Quoting Grothar:


Some people put their age. :)

Then your's should be Grothar12345678910 sorry had to!lol
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Quoting ncstorm:
the CMC aint joking eithier..CMC or the Euro..which model will prevail?


I have to go with the Euro, the GEM (CMC) has been long over due for upgrades according to one MET i know at environment Canada, however I'm not sure if the money isn't there or they are simply happy with what they got for the time being.
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2210. gator23
Quoting ncstorm:
the CMC aint joking eithier..CMC or the Euro..which model will prevail?



Why those two?
Member Since: August 26, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 2182
Quoting Hurricanes4life:


Tampa bay area/ that part of the west coast of flordia seem to be a "dead" area historically as far as tropical systems go. I believe if it does hit flordia it will be 100 miles north of Tampa or 100 miles south of Sarasota.


Exactly. It would seem that the historical tracks of storms/canes into the West Coast of Florida would be roughly evenly distributed, but this is not the case. Would anybody like to venture a guess as to why?

As for soon to be 96L, the developing coc looks to be right on the northern coast of the Yucatan.
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2208. ncstorm
the CMC aint joking eithier..CMC or the Euro..which model will prevail?

Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 16225
2207. Joe21
Quoting StormTracker2K:
Also folks the C Gulf has been untouched since 2008 so we maybe due this year for severeal strikes toward the gulf coast from TX to FL.


Texaa has there share of hurricane hits lol
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Quoting Hurricanes4life:

Fair enough, I wasn't necessarily referring to you, more of a general statement. Back on topic now, It seems kind of weird to have the orange crayon out but no invest! I think yesterday recon was talking about possibly checking out a "low level" invest today.
Their were so many lows in the gulf yesterday.The NHC were probably going dizzy.Their is no real low level center yet.
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Quoting washingtonian115:
No.I chose these numbers.I like the number five.Actually when signing up my original number was suppose to be 105.

Fair enough, I wasn't necessarily referring to you, more of a general statement. Back on topic now, It seems kind of weird to have the orange crayon out but no invest! I think yesterday recon was talking about possibly checking out a "low level" invest today.
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Good morning,

TS Chris does look nice. Florida is still targeted as that Yucatan disturbance might turn out to be a system in the GOM.

Have a good day everyone.
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2203. yqt1001
Hopefully I can finish this post before I have to go to school...

Comparing Chris to other similar hurricanes/tropical storms.

Sean 55kts:


Vince 65kts:


Epsilon 70kts:


Chris 50kts:


CHRIS 2012 unjustifiably a tropical storm.
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2140 TemplesOfSyrinxC4: ...all of these trillions of crickets, The Great Texas cricket plague of 2012 that I can report has now spread to North TX with a vengeance. I am not exaggerating either- it is of biblical proportions with every square inch of pavement near the entrances to some big box stores filled with gigantic piles of dead decomposing crickets everywhere you look...
...remember there is a silver lining to almost everything...

Consider yourselves lucky. Otherwise Texas'd be all

Fortunately, crickets are carnivorous and zombies are slow...
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Quoting ilovehurricanes12:
Tropical Storm Chris will have winds up to 70 mph at 11am


There is no reason for the NHC to change their current logic now, unless there was some hard core buoy or shipping data that said otherwise.
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Quoting redwagon:

I dunno, that mass of clouds looks rounder and spinnier the more I look at it. Think that's how Allison 2001 was born.


Wasn't laughing at you. Just at the bully ridge. You may be right about Allison's beginnings. Not sure off hand. But I don't think that will become anything tropical. The area to watch seems to be taking shape on/near the Yucatan.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 254
Quoting Hurricanes4life:


I've always thought that 3 numbers after a user name usually refers to an area code?
No.I chose these numbers.I like the number five.Actually when signing up my original number was suppose to be 105.
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Quoting ilovehurricanes12:
Tropical Storm Chris will have winds up to 70 mph at 11am




no it wont
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2196. WxLogic
Hopefully the image posts this time.

Below I've circled the former SFC Low in "Red" which it has now become an open TROF and should become stationary for a while.

The "Yellow" circle depicts a mid level circulation over northern Yucatan moving N.



Now, the open TROF still has a decent amount of vorticity associated with it at 850/700MBs. If the Yucatan mid level circulation is able to couple with the remains of the former low then it will be able to quickly extend to the SFC and spin up rather quickly.
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Does anyone know if Chris is close or on any major north Atlantic shipping lanes?
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2194. yqt1001
NHC must hate these storms...



Only explanation as to why they keep it at 50kts.
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Very impressive.
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Quoting AtHomeInTX:


Lol.

I dunno, that mass of clouds looks rounder and spinnier the more I look at it. Think that's how Allison 2001 was born.
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:
Good Morning.

"60mph tropical storm"
Yeah right.


Looks like a pretty storm, id say best of the year so far (:
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Quoting canehater1:
...DISCUSSION...

GULF OF MEXICO...
AN UPPER RIDGE EXTENDS FROM AN UPPER HIGH OVER THE YUCATAN
CHANNEL NW TO THE LOUISIANA/TEXAS COAST COVERING ALL BUT THE FAR
NE GULF. DIFFLUENCE ALOFT TO THE W OF THE UPPER RIDGE IS
GENERATING SCATTERED SHOWERS/ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS W OF 92W TO
INLAND OVER MEXICO AND TEXAS. AN UPPER LOW IS INLAND OVER S
ALABAMA EXTENDING AN UPPER TROUGH TO OVER THE FAR NE GULF. THE
ACTIVITY OVER THE E GULF IS DESCRIBED IN THE SPECIAL FEATURES
SECTION ABOVE. THE SURFACE TROUGH WILL MOVE INTO THE CENTRAL
GULF AS A NEW LOW PRESSURE IS EXPECTED TO FORM OVER YUCATAN
TODAY AND MOVE INTO THE S CENTRAL GULF THROUGH SAT POSSIBLY AS A
TROPICAL CYCLONE
. THE LOW IS THEN EXPECTED TO TRACK NE TO THE E
GULF SUN AND MON.

Still another solution?


Wow the shear around the Yucatan is starting to decrease now its about 10-20 knots where the suspected
LLC is developing shear should continue to decrease in the gulf as the upper ridge starts to really establish itself. A possible invest by 2pm.
Member Since: May 25, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 2043
Good Morning.

"60mph tropical storm"
Yeah right.
Member Since: July 7, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5725

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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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