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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4257. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
Quoting sunlinepr:
Is it still true that El Nino years are conductive to inhibiting development in the Atlantic?

Is this a Nino year?


yeah
but not till after the new moon of sept 16
by then it won't matter
the damage will be done
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Do EYE spy something?
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6697
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
I don't remember what the verification numbers are. The GFDL is up there with the Euro though.


Some would be willing to bet that it is either the number 1 or number 2 most reliable. The NHC has charts on the accuracy if you're really interested. It also shows deviations for all of the models.
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No change from SAB.


04/0545 UTC 13.9N 66.3W T3.0/3.0 ERNESTO
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Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
I don't remember what the verification numbers are. The GFDL is up there with the Euro though.
Oh ok because the reason I asked was I remember last year it had a difficult time tracking Irene and I believe it was the last model to come away from FL. and join the consensus.
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GFDL actually did a decent job with Katrina IIRC.
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Quoting TexasHurricane:


What exactly does that show? Sorry, don't understand all of these maps.


I think just a low pressure into Central America.

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Quoting MississippiWx:


Lol. Headed straight for NOLA/MS/AL...

GFDL seems to be the only reliable model that wants to strengthen Ernesto.


Unfortunately that seems more realistic than what some other models are saying.
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Quoting GTcooliebai:
What's the track record of the GFDL, I recall it used to be a very good model, not sure about it now?
I don't remember what the verification numbers are. The GFDL is up there with the Euro though.
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basically all these models are useless at this point.I would just watch how Ernesto plays out for himself! Hey he's doing something that he really shouldn't be doing...going against the odds.
Member Since: June 4, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 767
Quoting MississippiWx:


Lol. Headed straight for NOLA/MS/AL...

GFDL seems to be the only reliable model that wants to strengthen Ernesto.


Ive been on this track for the third day in a row. It was just yesterday that I was saying that a cat 2/3 would make landfall and it's likely between corpus christie, tx to mobile AL
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Quoting sunlinepr:
Is it still true that El Nino years are conductive to inhibiting development in the Atlantic?

Is this a Nino year?

Yes, but it tends to be more pronounced the later you move in the season and it can be overpowered by other factors as well.
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Quoting GTcooliebai:
What's the track record of the GFDL, I recall it used to be a very good model, not sure about it now?

Wasn't the GFDL the one that predicted Gustav in '08? I could swear it did pretty well that year.
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GFDL 126hrs



HWRF 126hrs



NAM 84hrs

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Quoting AtHomeInTX:


I'm wondering that myself.


There has been some recent reseach that suggest a correlation between el nino years and tropical activity. If i'm correct the shift in SST and wind shift directions doesn't necessarily prevent development, but it keeps most tracks from making landfall. Anything that develops is TYPICALLY driven into open waters in the mid atlantic. I have also heard much suggestion about those years having significantly less than average numbers of named storms and invests.
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Quoting MississippiWx:
00z GFDL.



Ugh.... I can see this happening. Not good... not good. Out of all the models (most that are on drugs) GFDL seems to be performing decently and realistically.
Member Since: September 2, 2006 Posts: 110 Comments: 6878
Quoting MiamiHurricanes09:
Well damn. Finally a model that goes exactly with my thinking. Borderline major down the Yucatan channel and into the Gulf.
What's the track record of the GFDL, I recall it used to be a very good model, not sure about it now?
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Quoting AtHomeInTX:


I'm wondering that myself.


august 4, 2012 - the day I realized that.... and peak season is more than a month away...
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Quoting GTcooliebai:
951 MB = DOOM!!!


Lol. Headed straight for NOLA/MS/AL...

GFDL seems to be the only reliable model that wants to strengthen Ernesto.
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10284
Quoting MississippiWx:
00z GFDL.

Well thats not good
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Quoting MississippiWx:
00z GFDL.



Yikes! I'm really hoping that projection doesn't pan out.
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Quoting MississippiWx:
00z GFDL.

Well damn. Finally a model that goes exactly with my thinking. Borderline major down the Yucatan channel and into the Gulf.
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Quoting MississippiWx:
00z GFDL.

951 MB = DOOM!!!
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00z GFDL.

Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10284
Quoting sunlinepr:
Is it still true that El Nino years are conductive to inhibiting development in the Atlantic?


I'm wondering that myself.
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Quoting GTcooliebai:
What happened to the 2am advisory for Ernesto?


There are no watches or warnings posted, so they are only doing advisories at 5 and 11, both morning and afternoon/evening. They do intermediate advisories when watches and warnings are posted, and the advisories are posted even more frequently if landfall is imminent.
Member Since: September 2, 2006 Posts: 110 Comments: 6878
What else could you want, NHC? C'mon.


CI# /Pressure/ Vmax
3.5 / 995.3mb/ 55.0kt
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Quoting STXHurricanes2012:
Lol the HWRF finally ran and it thinks ernesto opens up into a wave over the most favorable conditions! Trash it!!


This is bizzare...all the models are freaking out...
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Is it still true that El Nino years are conductive to inhibiting development in the Atlantic?

Is this a Nino year?
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Quoting AtHomeInTX:


Yep. UKMET



What exactly does that show? Sorry, don't understand all of these maps.
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Quoting JLPR2:


Maybe it means...


DOOOOOM! xD

A storm forming over Africa, now that is strange, though it happened once.

True story.

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Quoting TexasHurricane:


Could do that too...amazing how they from one end to the other.


Yep. UKMET

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Lol the HWRF finally ran and it thinks ernesto opens up into a wave over the most favorable conditions! Trash it!!
Member Since: June 4, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 767
Quoting 1900hurricane:
While Ernesto's center of circulation may indeed be biased towards the western half of the CDO, I think this may be overdoing it a bit:



Looking at the shortwave loop, I see no evidence that would lead me to believe that the COC has made it that far west. Since Ernesto obviously isn't that far west, it must mean that he has slowed down more than expected, since that point comes from forecast interpolation.

well where I think it really is at is on that white spot is just E of where that has it I have it at 14.0N 66.0W
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Quoting MississippiWx:


Lol. That wave over Africa could eat Ernesto and TD6 for lunch.
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Wait till I post the GFDL.
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Quoting AtHomeInTX:


Yep saw that earlier. Best I can tell this run CMC and UKMET seem to bury it in MX. Might be wrong just took a quick look.


Could do that too...amazing how they from one end to the other.
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Quoting AussieStorm:

Um.... and who are you????





Lol. That wave over Africa could eat Ernesto and TD6 for lunch.
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10284
Quoting TexasHurricane:


ok, did you see post 4127? Intersting...
way to early to tell though.


Yep saw that earlier. Best I can tell this run CMC and UKMET seem to bury it in MX. Might be wrong just took a quick look.
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Quoting MississippiWx:


Just out of spite, I'm staying!


Fine with me.
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While Ernesto's center of circulation may indeed be biased towards the western half of the CDO, I think this may be overdoing it a bit:



Looking at the shortwave loop, I see no evidence that would lead me to believe that the COC has made it that far west. Since Ernesto obviously isn't that far west, it must mean that he has slowed down more than expected, since that point comes from forecast interpolation.
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Quoting GHOSTY1:

Haha alright, no watches or warnings...my bad. darn, now theyre making me wait even longer. Alright im going to sleep now since i just wasted my time waiting for the advisory that was never gonna come haha :D


The cone of uncertainty also isn't updated on intermediate (3 hour) advisories. This is a pretty common misconception.
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Quoting 1900hurricane:
Never fear everyone, I have returned to the blog! :P

Um.... and who are you????



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Carefull; Visual Stereo effect can be harmfull for your eyes....

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Quoting MississippiWx:


Just out of spite, I'm staying!


YESSSSSSS!!!!!
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Quoting AllStar17:


Ok, I fixed it....now you must! Lol


Just out of spite, I'm staying!
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10284
Quoting JLPR2:


Maybe it means...


DOOOOOM! xD

A storm forming over Africa, now that is strange, though it happened once.

Quick, someone get Toto to bless the rains down in Africa!
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Quoting JLPR2:


Maybe it means...


DOOOOOM! xD

A storm forming over Africa, now that is strange, though it happened once.




Here after emerging into Atl
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Quoting AtHomeInTX:


Yeah. Catching up on my daughter's day when she's not ignoring me and texting. lol so will be in and out. :)


ok, did you see post 4127? Intersting...
way to early to tell though.
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Quoting TomTaylor:
Thanks :)

It's fun doing them and its also a learning process, afterall the only way to get better is to practice and put your forecasts out there for others to comment on. Next time I'll pay more attention to the upper level environment and avoid model guidance which has been performing poorly with an existing storm.


did you consider the CMC...it seems to have been performing at least moderately well this go about??
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Quoting MississippiWx:
Let's clear things up for real...

Next recon leaves out at 1030UTC.
Which is 6:30 AM EDT. If I'm not mistaken.
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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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