Ernesto hit the Windward Islands; 128.5°F in Kuwait

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:49 PM GMT on August 03, 2012

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Tropical Storm Ernesto lashed the Windward Islands with strong winds and heavy rain early this morning, as it passed over St. Lucia near 7 am AST. Ernesto brought sustained winds of 43 mph to Barbados at 7 am AST, and sustained winds of 41 mph, gusting to 63 mph to St. Lucia at 6:15 am AST. Ernesto looks moderately well-organized on Martinique radar, with spiral bands to the north and south feeding into an echo-free center. Ernesto is beginning to show more organization on visible satellite loops, with the very limited heavy thunderstorm activity near its center now expanding, spiral banding increasing, and an upper-level outflow channel developing to the north. Ernesto is fighting moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots, and water vapor satellite loops show a large area of dry air to the west. Strong upper level winds from the west are driving this dry air into the core of the storm, disrupting it. It appears, though, that Ernesto has fended off the most serious challenges to its survival, as the pressure has fallen to 1002 mb, and the storm's appearance on radar and satellite is gradually improving. The latest 7:30 am center report from the Hurricane Hunters also indicated that Ernesto was beginning to build an eyewall.


Figure 1. Radar image of Ernesto at 9:15 am EDT August 3, 2012. Image credit: Meteo France.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of Ernesto.

Forecast for Ernesto
Ernesto's survival into today means that the storm now potentially poses a formidable threat to the Western Caribbean. Wind shear is expected to drop to the low range, 5 - 10 knots, later today, and remain low for the next five days, according to the 8 am EDT run of the SHIPS model. With the storm entering a moister environment with increasing heat energy in the ocean, the official NHC forecast of Ernesto reaching hurricane strength by early Monday morning near Jamaica is a reasonable one. The reliable computer models predict a west to west-northwest motion through the Caribbean, with the storm's heavy rains staying south of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. The more southerly path predicted by the usually reliable ECMWF model, which brings Ernesto to a landfall in Belize on Wednesday, is being weighted less heavily by NHC, since they are assuming Ernesto will stay stronger than the ECMWF model is forecasting. Once Ernesto enters the Central Caribbean on Sunday, the storm's outer spiral bands will likely cause flooding problems in Southwest Haiti, Jamaica, and the Cayman Islands. Of the major dynamical models NHC uses operationally--the ECMWF, GFS, NOGAPS, UKMET, GFDL, and HWRF--none clearly show Ernesto reaching hurricane strength in the Caribbean. However, some of the best statistical models, such as the LGEM and SHIPS, do show Ernesto becoming a hurricane in the Caribbean. By Monday, a trough of low pressure passing to the storm's north may be capable of turning Ernesto more to the northwest, resulting in the storm entering the Gulf of Mexico by the middle of next week.

New African tropical disturbance 90L
A strong tropical wave is located just off the coast of Africa, about 175 miles south of the Cape Verde Islands. This disturbance, designated Invest 90L by NHC Friday morning, is headed west-northwest at 10 - 15 mph. Wind shear is a high 20 - 30 knots over 90L, but is expected to drop, and water temperatures are warm enough to support development. NHC gave 90L a 30% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Sunday morning in their 8 am Friday Tropical Weather Outlook.

Kuwait hits 53.6°C (128.5°F): 2nd hottest temperature in Asian history
An extraordinary high temperature of 53.6°C (128.5°F) was recorded in Sulaibya, Kuwait on July 31, the hottest temperature in Kuwait's history, and the 2nd hottest temperature ever measured in Asia. According to weather records researcher Maximiliano Herrera, Sulaibya is in a location well-suited for recording extreme high temperatures, since high sand dunes surround the site, keeping the wind low and hampering sea breezes from cooling the city. Most record books list the 54°C (129.2°F) recorded on 21 June 1942 in Tirat Zvi Israel as the site of Asia's all-time maximum temperature, but this record is disputed. The previous second warmest temperature in Asian history was set 53.5°C (128.3°F) at MohenjuDaro, Pakistan on May 26, 2010.

Extreme heat in Oklahoma
The most intense and widespread heat wave in Oklahoma since August, 1936 brought more than half of the state temperatures of 110° or higher for the second consecutive day on Thursday. The temperature at the Oklahoma City airport hit 112°, for the 2nd day in a row. These are the city's 2nd highest temperatures since record keeping began in 1890. The only hotter day was August 11, 1936, when the temperature hit 113°. Thursday's temperatures in Oklahoma were generally a degree or two cooler than Wednesday's, with the hottest temperature reported a 116° reading from a location just south of Tulsa International Airport. The highest reading Thursday at any major airport was a 114° temperature at Tulsa Jones Airport. Oklahoma's all-time state record is 120°, set in Tipton on June 27, 1994, and at three locations in 1936. Freedom, in the northwest part of the state, hit 121° on Wednesday, but this reading will need to be reviewed to see if the sensor was properly sited.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting Levi32:


They messed up the penetration pretty badly so they had to loop around to get the true center.


Time: 15:53:30Z
Coordinates: 14.4833N 68.7333W
Acft. Static Air Press: 843.5 mb (~ 24.91 inHg)
Acft. Geopotential Hgt: 1,529 meters (~ 5,016 feet)
Extrap. Sfc. Press: 1004.4 mb (~ 29.66 inHg)
D-value: -
Flt. Lvl. Wind (30s): From 62° at 10 knots (From the ENE at ~ 11.5 mph)
Air Temp: 19.3°C (~ 66.7°F)
Dew Pt: 9.1°C (~ 48.4°F)
Peak (10s) Flt. Lvl. Wind: 16 knots (~ 18.4 mph)
SFMR Peak (10s) Sfc. Wind: 30 knots* (~ 34.5 mph*)
SFMR Rain Rate: 6 mm/hr* (~ 0.24 in/hr*)
Member Since: September 30, 2007 Posts: 9 Comments: 15935
Quoting sunlinepr:


Shows Ernesto in the BoC in 7 days, a new system south of the CV islands, but no sign of Florence. Odd.
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Quoting Drakoen:
Looking pretty good:
drak are you buying the models and the forecast track
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5504. Levi32
Quoting AussieStorm:
Hmmmmm....they just did a loop. I wonder why???


They messed up the penetration pretty badly so they had to loop around to get the true center.
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WOW a very active tropical atlantic. there are now three systems to track. by the look of things there will soon be another with this big and robust wave about to come off the african coast ,at a lower latitude, this could be a long track cv disturbance.
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Hmmmmm....they just did a loop. I wonder why???
Member Since: September 30, 2007 Posts: 9 Comments: 15935
pressure dropped to 1005.6mb ernesto
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 11975
Quoting stormpetrol:
I think what happened to Ernesto, he is has grown significantly in size, this reorganization probably caused a temporary weakening , look for a steady increase in strength down the road.




Agree. Should be a hurricane in 36-48 hrs.. As it apprach the Yucatan peninsula.
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Quoting Levi32:


I recall many saying the same thing yesterday about not showing Ernesto strengthening in the central Caribbean. Well...
I would say it is just now entering the Central Caribbean. Many thought it would die in the Eastern Caribbean and that was not the case. Recon found that the pressure is starting to fall again. Satellite presentation looks quite impressive with nice outflow expanding. Conditions may be there now for a strengthening phase. As you like to say "we shall see what happens."
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Quoting Levi32:
Ernesto's center jumped northwest as well compared to the last recon fix.
thats not good.. Will you have a tidbit today and is the shear over ernesto right now weak? I know dry air from the trade winds has been choking him this morning
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5496. Patrap
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 424 Comments: 128259
Noticeable wind-shift once they went through the CoC as well.
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Center moved at 307 degrees between the two passes, that can't last long.
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Time: 15:55:00Z
Coordinates: 14.4333N 68.7167W
Acft. Static Air Press: 843.5 mb (~ 24.91 inHg)
Acft. Geopotential Hgt: 1,525 meters (~ 5,003 feet)
Extrap. Sfc. Press: 1006.5 mb (~ 29.72 inHg)
D-value: -
Flt. Lvl. Wind (30s): From 238° at 27 knots (From the WSW at ~ 31.0 mph)
Air Temp: 15.2°C (~ 59.4°F)
Dew Pt: 9.0°C (~ 48.2°F)
Peak (10s) Flt. Lvl. Wind: 33 knots (~ 37.9 mph)
SFMR Peak (10s) Sfc. Wind: 61 knots (~ 70.1 mph)
SFMR Rain Rate: 40 mm/hr (~ 1.57 in/hr)
(*) Denotes suspect data
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5492. Drakoen
Looking pretty good:
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He looks so much better than just a few hours ago
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5488. Patrap
the pressure falls now from earlier,and Improved appearance overall has shown in the Obs.


Tenacious "E"


RainBowTop

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 424 Comments: 128259
5487. ncstorm
Quoting Levi32:


I recall many saying the same thing yesterday about not showing Ernesto strengthening in the central Caribbean. Well...


um humm...LOL
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 15285
Got ourselves a star burst feature dead over the center

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5485. Levi32
Ernesto's center jumped northwest as well compared to the last recon fix.
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5484. GetReal


It appears, IMO, that Ernesto is becoming a compact system once again, and developing a new CDO and solid core. A indication of a strengthening system.
Member Since: July 4, 2005 Posts: 204 Comments: 8871
Quoting Levi32:


Unknown. Usually turns like that are because the model consensus shows such a turn. It's fairly subtle though.


Thanks for the response. I Agree it is a very subtle turn and thus the reason no one seems to be talking about it. But in the big picture, at his current speed, WNW as opposed to W could make quite a big difference in the eventual landfall location... either on the Yucatan or in the Gulf, or both. I am interested to see if it wobbles back westward like the models and NHC forecast show... if it does not, it seems they would need to shift the cone (especially later in the forecast) to the north
Member Since: August 4, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 631
Time: 15:50:30Z
Coordinates: 14.4333N 68.75W
Acft. Static Air Press: 842.6 mb (~ 24.88 inHg)
Acft. Geopotential Hgt: 1,540 meters (~ 5,052 feet)
Extrap. Sfc. Press: 1005.4 mb (~ 29.69 inHg)
D-value: -
Flt. Lvl. Wind (30s): From 340° at 12 knots (From the NNW at ~ 13.8 mph)
Air Temp: 18.0°C (~ 64.4°F)
Dew Pt: 10.0°C (~ 50.0°F)
Peak (10s) Flt. Lvl. Wind: 13 knots (~ 14.9 mph)
SFMR Peak (10s) Sfc. Wind: 43 knots (~ 49.4 mph)
SFMR Rain Rate: 10 mm/hr (~ 0.39 in/hr)
(*) Denotes suspect data

Getting interesting, look on google earth at the loop Recon did!
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This all about dry air being pulled in to Ernesto right now folks. Wind shear is not a factor and so it is definitely looking more impressive on satellite due to its outward expansion. It cannot be stated enough that a new circulation center could form further north and thus have a major impact on the track down the road. Once the storm gets too about 80w, it should be in a more favorable environment for intensification.

As far as a reliable forecast track, you can forget about it today. It's all speculation at this point. I think tomorrow evening into Monday we will have a much better picture of what Ernesto intends to do based on its latitude and presence of a weakness in the ridge. Obviously the further north in latitude, the better chance it has getting caught up in that weakness. Still a lot to watch for sure, but I would lean if anything to a northern Mexico or south Texas landfall and that is strictly based on climatology more than anything
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5479. Patrap
Ernesto Long Floater - Water Vapor Imagery Loop

click image for Loop


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5478. Gorty
Dang that core! And remember, his south side doesnt have bands because he's so close to to South America. Similar to Felix in 2007.
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5469. There we go, intensification.

SFMR picked up a 70mph SFMR sustained, but that was in the heaviest rainrates.
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5476. Levi32
Quoting reedzone:
GFS = LOL.... Opens Ernesto into a wave around 50-60 hours, before landfall... Sorry, all the global models are garbage for right now until we get G-4 data in them.


I recall many saying the same thing yesterday about not showing Ernesto strengthening in the central Caribbean. Well...
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wait isnt recon normally lower than 5,000ft?
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9727
That's a 4mb drop, winds might start responding now
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Pressure down to 1004.4mb...
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Quoting VAbeachhurricanes:
Time: 15:53:30Z
Coordinates: 14.4833N 68.7333W
Acft. Static Air Press: 843.5 mb (~ 24.91 inHg)
Acft. Geopotential Hgt: 1,529 meters (~ 5,016 feet)
Extrap. Sfc. Press: 1004.4 mb (~ 29.66 inHg)
D-value: -
Flt. Lvl. Wind (30s): From 62° at 10 knots (From the ENE at ~ 11.5 mph)
Air Temp: 19.3°C (~ 66.7°F)
Dew Pt: 9.1°C (~ 48.4°F)
Peak (10s) Flt. Lvl. Wind: 16 knots (~ 18.4 mph)
SFMR Peak (10s) Sfc. Wind: 30 knots* (~ 34.5 mph*)
SFMR Rain Rate: 6 mm/hr* (~ 0.24 in/hr*)


recon did a loop-de-loop...wonder if they found the center or what they found
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9727
5471. Patrap
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 424 Comments: 128259
5470. Levi32
Quoting CarolinaHurricanes87:
LEVI (or anyone else who can think of a good reason for this):

Any idea why the NHC forecast track shows WNW for the next 12 hours or so then flattens back to a westward motion for a bit?


Unknown. Usually turns like that are because the model consensus shows such a turn. It's fairly subtle though.
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Time: 15:53:30Z
Coordinates: 14.4833N 68.7333W
Acft. Static Air Press: 843.5 mb (~ 24.91 inHg)
Acft. Geopotential Hgt: 1,529 meters (~ 5,016 feet)
Extrap. Sfc. Press: 1004.4 mb (~ 29.66 inHg)
D-value: -
Flt. Lvl. Wind (30s): From 62° at 10 knots (From the ENE at ~ 11.5 mph)
Air Temp: 19.3°C (~ 66.7°F)
Dew Pt: 9.1°C (~ 48.4°F)
Peak (10s) Flt. Lvl. Wind: 16 knots (~ 18.4 mph)
SFMR Peak (10s) Sfc. Wind: 30 knots* (~ 34.5 mph*)
SFMR Rain Rate: 6 mm/hr* (~ 0.24 in/hr*)
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5468. Patrap


Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 424 Comments: 128259
Quoting SELAliveforthetropic:

When will that happen?


I think Sunday or Monday..
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Quoting 1900hurricane:

More than just visible it appears. Looks like everything got stopped at 7:45Z (which was coincidentally teh last frame I saw before I went to sleep last night).



That's a bummer. Luckily it seems that the RAP site is still updating. Fairly good zoomed in view of x 91 if anyone is interested. RAP site under Imagery section here.
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Nestito....

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I looked at almost all the buoy reading in the Atlantic, Caribbean and GOM and the only BP dropping was on the coast of Texas. Big high pressure pushing west from the central Atlantic.
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Quoting reedzone:
GFS = LOL.... Opens Ernesto into a wave around 50-60 hours, before landfall... Sorry, all the global models are garbage for right now until we get G-4 data in them.

When will that happen?
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Quoting Tazmanian:



nop


not even back in prior seasons?
During the seasons height?
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9727
Recon going back towards the center area, not finding much winds yet...30mph
Member Since: February 11, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 9727
Florence

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Daily Atlantic Tropical Analysis
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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.