Tropical Storm Debby has formed in the Gulf of Mexico

By: angelafritz , 9:18 PM GMT on June 23, 2012

Share this Blog
36
+

Tropical Storm Debby has been named by the National Hurricane Center this afternoon after hurricane hunters investigated Invest 96L and found a solid closed circulation, with maximum winds of 50mph and gusts up to 65mph. All interests along the Gulf of Mexico coast should pay attention to the progress of Debby. Debby is drifting north at 5mph. The storm has brought heavy rains to Western Cuba, South Florida, and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula over the past two days, but the disturbance's heaviest rains are located well offshore over the Eastern Gulf of Mexico, where heavy thunderstorms are generating winds near tropical storm-force. A buoy 243 miles west of Naples, FL measured sustained winds of 31 mph, gusting to 38 mph, with 10-foot waves, at 8 am EDT Saturday morning. Our Wundermap for the surrounding ocean areas shows a large region of the northern and eastern Gulf of Mexico is experiencing winds of 20 - 30 mph.

Visible satellite loops show an unorganized tropical cyclone with an obvious surface circulation, though the thunderstorm activity is well displaced to the east. The heavy thunderstorm activity is slowly expanding and growing more intense. Upper-level winds out of the west continue to create moderate 10 - 20 knots of wind shear over the region, though that is expected to increase over the next few days. Water vapor satellite loops show a region of dry air over the central Gulf of Mexico, which will continue to interfere with Debby's development and make it hard for the west side of the circulation to maintain heavy thunderstorms. Ocean temperatures are about 28.5°C (83°F) in the Central Gulf of Mexico, which is about 1°F above average.


Figure 1. Saturday afternoon satellite image of Tropical Storm Debby in the Gulf of Mexico.


Figure 2. Saturday afternoon forecast track for Tropical Storm Debby.

Forecast for Debby
The National Hurricane Center is forecasting Debby to remain a tropical cyclone over the next 5 days as it drifts north and then west toward Texas. The Hurricane Center is forecasting a very slow progression of the storm, with a potential landfall not occurring until Friday. However, most of the models that predict the turn to the west suggest landfall will happen before or around Wednesday. The models are still generally split on the forecast for Debby; by Monday, the majority of the reliable models, including the ECMWF, NOGAPS, HWRF, and UKMET, agree that a ridge of high pressure will build in over the Southern U.S., forcing Debby west across the Gulf of Mexico and into South Texas by Wednesday. However, the GFS model, which has been our 2nd most reliable track model over the past two years (behind the ECMWF), has consistently been predicting that a trough of low pressure pushing off of the U.S. East Coast will be capable of grabbing the disturbance and accelerating it to the northeast across Florida north of Tampa Bay on Monday. The GFDL model splits the difference between these extremes and takes Debby north to a landfall near the Alabama/Florida border on Tuesday. The predicted track west to Texas is still the most likely outcome, though it remains a low-confidence forecast. In terms of intensity, none of the models is predicting Debby will become a hurricane, nor is the Hurricane Center. Though sea surface temperature is warm (and around 1°F above average), the actual heat content of the Gulf is relatively low. Wind shear is predicted to remain moderately strong through Sunday, but will increase to 30+ knots by Tuesday.

Debby's place in history (by Jeff Masters)
Remarkably, Debby's formation on June 23 comes a full two months ahead of the usual formation date of the season's fourth storm in the Atlantic, August 23. Debby's formation beats by twelve days the previous record for formation of the fourth named storm of the year in the Atlantic, set in 2005, when Hurricane Dennis was named on July 5. An early start to the Atlantic hurricane season has been increasingly common in recent years. In 2008, I blogged about the research of Dr. Jim Kossin of the University of Wisconsin, who published a 2008 paper in Geophysical Research Letters, titled "Is the North Atlantic hurricane season getting longer?" He concluded that yes, there is a "apparent tendency toward more common early- and late-season storms that correlates with warming Sea Surface Temperature but the uncertainty in these relationships is high". Three out of four of this year's early quartet of storms--Alberto, Beryl, and Debby--formed in ocean areas that were more than 1°F above average, which is an unusually high amount of warmth. We should expect to see more early-season Atlantic tropical storms as a consequence of global warming, since cool ocean temperatures are a key impediment to formation of such storms. However, this assumes that factors such as wind shear and atmospheric stability won't grow more hostile for tropical cyclone formation during the early part of hurricane season, and this is uncertain. If we do end up seeing a substantial increase in early-season tropical storms as a consequence of global warming, this is not necessarily a bad thing. Early-season tropical storms are often more boon than bane, bringing much-needed drought-busting rains, like Tropical Storm Beryl did for North Florida last month. With drought frequency and intensity predicted to increase for much of the Gulf Coastal states in coming decades, an increase in rainfall from early-season tropical storms may do more good than the damages inflicted by the high winds and flooding these storms may bring. There is typically a lot of wind shear around in May, June, and July, making it difficult for early season storms to reach major hurricane status. According to Wunderground's list of major early-season hurricanes, since record keeping began in 1851, there has been only one major hurricane in May, two in June, and nine in July. Three of these occurred in the past ten years, so there has not as yet been a large increase in early-season major hurricanes due to global warming.

References
Kossin, J., 2008, "Is the North Atlantic hurricane season getting longer?", Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 35, L23705, doi:10.1029/2008GL036012, 2008.

Angela and Jeff

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 1786 - 1736

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56Blog Index

Euro is overall slower and a little farther to the north and east so far when compared to the 12z run.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting KoritheMan:


At this point I don't care where she goes. I just want a consensus.


You're a funny little guy aren't ya? My bet it's still 180, with Euro landing in Louisiana instead of ol'Texas.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1784. Patrap
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127642
Quoting IceCoast:
Haven't checked in on the blog much lately, but Debby has been interesting to track thus far and the spread of the models to date has been crazy. Euro will be interesting to see.

Still on fire here in Colorado with 8 wildfires currently burning in the state, the largest still being the High Park Fire at over 80,000 acres and 191 homes destroyed. A new one burned 20 homes in Estes park in the Woodland Heights fire and the Waldo canyon fire just outside Colorado Springs seems to be causing major problems tonight. Crazy stuff, stay safe along the Gulf coast this week wherever Debby may wander.


Scary stuff! Wish we could send some of Debby's rains your way!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting IceCoast:
Haven't checked in on the blog much lately, but Debby has been interesting to track thus far and the spread of the models to date has been crazy. Euro will be interesting to see.

Still on fire here in Colorado with 8 wildfires currently burning in the state, the largest still being the High Park Fire at over 80,000 acres and 191 homes destroyed. A new one burned 20 homes in Estes park in the Woodland Heights fire and the Waldo canyon fire just outside Colorado Springs seems to be causing major problems tonight. Crazy stuff, stay safe along the Gulf coast this week wherever Debby may wander.


What's the % contained?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1781. GBguy88
I'm surprised that there hasn't been at least a tropical storm watch issued for northern Florida, on the panhandle. Apalachicola is already seeing gusts to 30, and the heaviest thunderstorms are still a couple of hours out. Seems unreasonable, especially given the uncertainty in the track.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting GetReal:


I am with you and Pat that Debbie has stalled in place or drifting slowly the last two or three frames to the west. IMO there has been no eastward motion.


the NHC coordinats show it is further east than it was earlier today
Member Since: March 10, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 7397
the GFDL just went from a Texas landfall to a Florida landfall...WOW
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting KoritheMan:


"Praying for us all"? I know you are being sincere, and I appreciate it, but seriously. It's June. We're not going to have a major hurricane.


No a major hurricane would be horrifying in june. I can't even begin to imagine if that happened. No mainly I was going to pray it be a weak system with no tornadoes and flooding. Yes I'll pray for everyone on that. I know a lot of us could use the rain though.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1777. Walshy
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
48 hours; drifting WNW. 993mb pressure.



I think we both know what it's going to do...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Haven't checked in on the blog much lately, but Debby has been interesting to track thus far and the spread of the models to date has been crazy. Euro will be interesting to see.

Still on fire here in Colorado with 8 wildfires currently burning in the state, the largest still being the High Park Fire at over 80,000 acres and 191 homes destroyed. A new one burned 20 homes in Estes park in the Woodland Heights fire and the Waldo canyon fire just outside Colorado Springs seems to be causing major problems tonight. Crazy stuff, stay safe along the Gulf coast this week wherever Debby may wander.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Would it be important to point out that the Euro did agree with the GFS for several days on a Florida landfall up until about Thursday?
Member Since: March 10, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 7397
1774. 7544
nope
Member Since: May 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6694
1773. emguy
There continues to be an elongated system with gyres, but it is continuing to shrink and become more consolidated as it has done all evening...To answer the WHERE Questions... 27.2N, 86.8W Link
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting RussianWinter:
Euro looks to be still trending west. It aint biting the bullet yet =(.


At this point I don't care where she goes. I just want a consensus.
Member Since: March 7, 2007 Posts: 558 Comments: 20000
1771. GetReal
Quoting MississippiWx:


The only thing that's clear on RAMSDIS products is a stalled system.


I am with you and Pat that Debbie has stalled in place or drifting slowly the last two or three frames to the west. IMO there has been no eastward motion.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Euro looks to be still trending west. It aint biting the bullet yet =(.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1769. Drakoen
Quoting Jedkins01:



I agree, I'm just saying it looks like that might be a recent trend, will it happen? Maybe, maybe not.


Yes to the latter of your statement than the former.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 29928
the NEW GFDL just made a NORTH Florida Landfall....big move EAST

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
48 hours; drifting WNW. 993mb pressure.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Stationary through 24 hours.



Lol...could it be...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Patrap:
Best Track Position and Intensity as of:

Sunday, June 24, 2012 0:00 Z

Location at the time:
301 statue miles (484 km) to the S (183°) from Pensacola, FL, USA.

Wind (1 min. avg.):
45 knots (~52 mph | 23 m/s | 83 km/h)

Gusts:
55 knots (~63 mph | 28 m/s | 102 km/h)

Pressure:
998 mb (29.47 inHg | 998 hPa)

Coordinates:

26.1N 87.5W



SUMMARY OF 100 AM CDT...0600 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...26.8N 87.3W
ABOUT 200 MI...320 KM SSE OF THE MOUTH OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...50 MPH...85 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...N OR 360 DEGREES AT 6 MPH...9 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...998 MB...29.47 INCHES


I don't know I see the center AT 87 not past 87.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1764. skook
Some Heavy rain, here in Brandon east of Tampa, nothing too bad, no lightning so far, just a nice soaking rain.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting STXHurricanes2012:

gfdl lol hwrf didn

Gdlf did shift for what its worth.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Drakoen:
Rainfall shield is expanding poleward. All interests from Florida to Louisiana should be monitoring this system.



Moving much faster and NOT west. Wow! I bet she skirts all along the northern gulf coast. Major changes in NHC track coming!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting wolftribe2009:
oh boy....watch out Texas if that convection trend continues and Debby does head for south texas. We don't need an organized system with plenty of time to spare in the GOM. I am going to be praying for you all.


"Praying for us all"? I know you are being sincere, and I appreciate it, but seriously. It's June. We're not going to have a major hurricane. Comments like that don't do much good except to cause unnecessary panic to those who are unfamiliar with atmospheric dynamics. It makes it sound worse than it actually is.
Member Since: March 7, 2007 Posts: 558 Comments: 20000
Stationary through 24 hours.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1759. gator23
Quoting STXHurricanes2012:

gfdl lol hwrf didn

GFDL has shifted
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1758. Patrap
Best Track Position and Intensity as of:

Sunday, June 24, 2012 0:00 Z

Location at the time:
301 statue miles (484 km) to the S (183°) from Pensacola, FL, USA.

Wind (1 min. avg.):
45 knots (~52 mph | 23 m/s | 83 km/h)

Gusts:
55 knots (~63 mph | 28 m/s | 102 km/h)

Pressure:
998 mb (29.47 inHg | 998 hPa)

Coordinates:

26.1N 87.5W



SUMMARY OF 100 AM CDT...0600 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...26.8N 87.3W
ABOUT 200 MI...320 KM SSE OF THE MOUTH OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...50 MPH...85 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...N OR 360 DEGREES AT 6 MPH...9 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...998 MB...29.47 INCHES
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127642
When a storm don't have a defined coc, this thinks happens,until the storm don't established will be a uncertainty in the models.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MississippiWx:


The only thing that's clear on RAMSDIS products is a stalled system.


Stationary, if you will.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TampaSpin:


NOT any more...LOL

gfdl lol hwrf didn
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Drakoen:


Yes. She still has two to three more days over water before making landfall regardless of what path she chooses.



I agree, I'm just saying it looks like that might be a recent trend, will it happen? Maybe, maybe not.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Hurricanes101:
the 990mb-999mb steering layer shows a much larger weakness to the north and east


Wow maybe the GFS predicted the weakness correctly.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1752. emguy
Quoting Hurricanes101:
the 990mb-999mb steering layer shows a much larger weakness to the north and east

That's a raparound blocking High over Texas if that continues and does NOT flatten out.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
oh boy....watch out Texas if that convection trend continues and Debby does head for south texas. We don't need an organized system with plenty of time to spare in the GOM. I am going to be praying for you all.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting emguy:


It's pretty clear on the Satellite products (Shortwave and RAMSDIS products)


The only thing that's clear on RAMSDIS products is a stalled system.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Hurricanes101:


AND, the ridge at that level is eroding westward
Thanks for posting that I posted the wrong layer as this storm has deepened to the next layer which is the 500-850 mb. layer.
Member Since: August 31, 2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
Quoting tennisgirl08:


Interesting. This would be very much unexpected. Tropical Storm watches/warnings would need to go up along the northern gulf coast ASAP.


They will at 5AM..... If not sooner :o)

Taco :o)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1747. Drakoen
Rainfall shield is expanding poleward. All interests from Florida to Louisiana should be monitoring this system.

Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 29928
Quoting TampaSpin:


NOT any more...LOL
Not anymore?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1745. Patrap
Quoting emguy:


It's pretty clear on the Satellite products (Shortwave and RAMSDIS products)


Where?

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127642
1744. emguy
Quoting Patrap:


There is no NE component.

Where do you see that in the Obs or Lat/Lon?

The CoC is here,seen easily

Zoom if needed


RAMSDIS Night IR Floater



It's pretty clear on the Satellite products (Shortwave and RAMSDIS products)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Hwrf didnt go to the fl pandhandle still tx lol
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Hurricanes101:
the 990mb-999mb steering layer shows a much larger weakness to the north and east



AND, the ridge at that level is eroding westward
Member Since: March 10, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 7397
Quoting Bretts9112:

thats old


Nah, it's brand new.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1740. Patrap
Where is the Ne component in the Convective radar Return as well?

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127642
the 990mb-999mb steering layer shows a much larger weakness to the north and east

Member Since: March 10, 2010 Posts: 1 Comments: 7397
Quoting Bretts9112:

thats old
00z HWRF? Yeah, ancient.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
1737. Drakoen
Quoting Jedkins01:
Based on my analysis of satellite and radar trends, the eastern panhandle through the nature coast seems like the most likely track. After the earlier fade in convection with Debby, she is beginning to fire new development and this could mean crazy rainfall here on the west coast of Florida tomorrow


Yes. She still has two to three more days over water before making landfall regardless of what path she chooses.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 29928
1736. Patrap
Quoting emguy:
This system just continues to go with the thinking...a NE Gulf Storm. We will probably see this nudge even farther NE tonight. It clearly has gained lattitude with the NE compnent this evening.


There is no NE component.

Where do you see that in the Obs or Lat/Lon?

The CoC is here,seen easily

Zoom if needed


RAMSDIS Night IR Floater

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127642

Viewing: 1786 - 1736

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32 | 33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 37 | 38 | 39 | 40 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 | 50 | 51 | 52 | 53 | 54 | 55 | 56Blog Index

Top of Page

About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

Local Weather

Mostly Cloudy
69 °F
Mostly Cloudy