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 Drakoen:


Does he have papers that cite the physics behind dry air induced convection? I would like to know.


Alright, Drak. What's it going to do? You nailed Debby, so now you know you have to give an opinion. :-)
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10156
Quoting HurricaneHunterJoe:
This can't get to Florida, right?


I think it's too soon to say no, but it's looking like Florida may be able to relax a little bit. At least for the meantime, all the while keeping an eye on things until Monday. I think by Monday we'll have a great idea of what's going on.
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The big difference tomorow at Domes Rincon, will be the surfing crowd and some 5' waves....



Saturday 8/4 Morning

Windy conditions with choppy seas. Small craft advisory. Small short period wind waves.
Winds: E 19 to 26 knots
Seas: ENE 5 feet at 6 sec.

Afternoon

Breezy whitecapping conditions with moderate choppy seas. Small short period wind waves.
Winds: ESE 15 to 20 knots
Seas: ENE 6 feet at 7 sec.
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Quoting ABH4Life:
Good evening all, I stuck my head in here a few weeks ago. Lurking since, Considering how "slow" the Atlantic has been over the past few weeks this is surely a change of pace.


Welcome....things are def on the uptick
Member Since: September 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 4570
Quoting Drakoen:


Does he have papers that cite the physics behind dry air induced convection? I would like to know.
Guess it depends on what he means by, " ...dry entrainment bursting..."
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Quoting HurricaneHunterJoe:
This can't get to Florida, right?
Very unlikely it goes to florida but i would watch it just in case
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l8r, all. bed is calling...
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:
Might as well go to bed as well. Ernesto better be at 60mph when I wake up tomorrow.
Night all.
or more than 60mph I say 70mph when I wake up.
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This can't get to Florida, right?
Member Since: September 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 4570
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Tropical Storm Ernesto:

Well one thing is for sure it looks a whole lot better than last night.
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3847. Grothar
Quoting CosmicEvents:
I don't expect Jamaica to move so from here on in it's up to Ernesto.


Careful, Cosmic. You're getting like me.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 63 Comments: 23710
Quoting bohonkweatherman:
High is pretty darn strong with temps 110 to 115 in North Texas and Oklahoma and hotter, It may move some but the High will be close enough to Texas to effect anything tropical. I would guess Mexico. I have Lakes 30 miles from me that are 50 feet low this area could use tropical rains big time.


I still disagree. I live in the coastal portion of Texas and we have most definitely not been rain free. With the exception of the last few days, we have seen outflow from disturbances light up some convection. Likewise, models already indicating an increased POPs as well as a decrease in temps for the HGX area...

NOT to mention, the CPC has placed coastal TX in the area for heavy rain in their 8-14 day forecast. I think they're also onto something. I don't think this high will retrograde back to the 4 corners as progged...but I would expect it to back off enough and have enough weakness to help guide something tropical in. Also, if an elongated trough were to develop it would also have an impact on the steering.
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:
Might as well go to bed as well. Ernesto better be at 60mph when I wake up tomorrow.
Night all.
91L doesn`t look bad either.
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Quoting TomTaylor:
I don't really like doing these kind of things, but to get a better idea of my thoughts on Ernesto's future intensity (and for fun) figured I'd make my own unofficial intensity forecast


Tom's Unofficial Intensity Forecast For Fun (TUIFFF)

0-12H Slight Strengthening to a Strong TS (60-65) by 12H
12-24H Intensity Levels Off
24-48H Slight Weakening to a Moderate TS (50-60MPH) by 48hrs
48-60H Intensity Levels Off, Possible Slight Weakening, Moderate TS (45-50)
Beyond 72H Gradual Intensification Resumes

Why do you forecast it to weaken? There's nothing to assume it will since the system has showed that trade winds are a non-issue.
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I'm back... sorry, y'all! How Ernesto and TD6 doing?
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Tropical Storm Ernesto:

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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
T.C.F.W
05L/TS/E/CX
R.I.FLAG OFF
MARK
13.81N/65.03W



RI flag off? They just turned it ON two hours ago!
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3840. viman
I'm facing the south side up about 1500ft, so I'm getting blown pretty good right now... Starting to ease off a little as I type......nope....... here it comes again....
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Quoting Thrawst:


Wise words from a fellow Bahamian :')
How are you Baha?
hey... thought u were gone... good comments on the wx here yesterday... I got in very late fr. FLL because of it. Amazing 2 see lightning fr. the air...
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The main ball of convection collapsed, but it looks to be coming back already. New thunderstorms are going up everywhere.

Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10156
Might as well go to bed as well. Ernesto better be at 60mph when I wake up tomorrow.
Night all.
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3836. pcola57
Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
T.C.F.A.
06L/TD/XX/CX
MARK
OUT OPF RANGE


Getting closer..
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Just interesting to note...about a week ago, local NWS office was speaking highly about the ridge retrograding enough to allow a trough to pass around the ridge and impact the SE texas area...maybe that invest is something to watch out for. SST anamolies are most at +1 to +3 for the coastal areas, and some of the SST's at the coast line are approaching 90degrees. This could most definitely be something to watch if it does decide to ride around the ridge and stay over water.
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Quoting wxchaser97:
Need the sleep to get from the pain of my braces so see ya all around 7am EDT. Wunder what Ernesto will bring when I wake up?


Night. Sleep well wx. :)
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I don't really like doing these kind of things, but to get a better idea of my thoughts on Ernesto's future intensity (and for fun) figured I'd make my own unofficial intensity forecast


Tom's Unofficial Intensity Forecast For Fun (TUIFFF)

0-12H Slight Strengthening to a Strong TS (60-65) by 12H
12-24H Intensity Levels Off
24-48H Slight Weakening to a Moderate TS (50-60MPH) by 48hrs
48-60H Intensity Levels Off, Possible Slight Weakening, Moderate TS (45-50)
Beyond 72H Gradual Intensification Resumes
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
It makes sense to see Ernesto's cloud tops warming just a bit this evening. It is diurnal minimum after all. Just as long as they don't dissipate much, the storm will be fine.



The storm has a much better structure, so I wouldn't be surprised to see the storm quickly rebuild that convection.
Member Since: June 29, 2009 Posts: 13 Comments: 5238
3831. Drakoen
Quoting Twinkster:
Joe Bastardi just said this on twitter: "Convective blow up over Ernesto may be dry entrainment bursting, we will know tomorrow I have seen this many times, may not be what u think"


what does everyone think of this possibility. My take on Ernesto is track will be further north than NHC currently has it, short term it will I don't see Ernesto getting stronger than a strong TS with the dry air to its west. I actually like the NHC intensity forecast


Does he have papers that cite the physics behind dry air induced convection? I would like to know.
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Need the sleep to get from the pain of my braces so see ya all around 7am EDT. Wunder what Ernesto will bring when I wake up?
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Quoting huntsvle:


I disagree. The ridge has been progged to retrograde for some time. Some of the models are even starting to pick up on that weakness in the ridge. Likewise, the coastal part of texas has seen significant weaknesses several times. I don't think the Tx Coast is out of the woods at all. It's still too early to put a lot of weight in extended model runs, but I don't think TX is in any way safe.
High is pretty darn strong with temps 110 to 115 in North Texas and Oklahoma and hotter, It may move some but the High will be close enough to Texas to effect anything tropical. I would guess Mexico. I have Lakes 30 miles from me that are 50 feet low this area could use tropical rains big time.
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Quoting KoritheMan:
I'm a bit tired. I really need a breather, so I think I'm gonna bail out for a bit. I should be back in about an hour.




you feeling ok?
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5089 Comments: 114051
3827. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
T.C.F.A.
06L/TD/XX/CX
MARK
OUT OPF RANGE
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I'm a bit tired. I really need a breather, so I think I'm gonna bail out for a bit. I should be back in about an hour.
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Quoting bohonkweatherman:
Texas is pretty much protected, strong High pressure dominating this state, over 100 here every day and I have seen a cloud in almost 3 weeks. I would say Ernesto will go to Mexico or East of Texas but I know little except that high pressure is kicking most of this state's butt again.

The high pressure dome is supposed to move NNE and get off us in time to have 30% pops Monday. This heat with no clouds whatsoever has things in my truck cab melting.
The earth itself is hotter than it was a month ago when we were doing 112o for days on end.

91L may cloud things up a bit for us soon, too.
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3823. JLPR2
Quoting viman:

You guys are about to get the leading edge of this one rolling thru now... No lightening/thunder but boy heavy winds and heavy gusts... Pouring right now... I see the leading edge approaching Vieques, you guys next...


Looks rather decent, lets see how well it holds up until it gets to me.

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Really Kori your an all-star here. You know I very much respect you and your opinions. Going to read your blog now, thanks again.
Member Since: April 18, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 2437
Quoting bohonkweatherman:
Texas is pretty much protected, strong High pressure dominating this state, over 100 here every day and I have seen a cloud in almost 3 weeks. I would say Ernesto will go to Mexico or East of Texas but I know little except that high pressure is kicking most of this state's butt again.


Hi Dennis. I won't mention our high today or rain chances. lol :)
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Quoting JLPR2:


You're writing about Ernesto, I was writing about TD 6.


My bad :-D carry on then.
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Quoting JLPR2:


San Juan, PR got a 35mph gust.


Another band is comming to Eastern PR.
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3817. viman
Quoting JLPR2:


San Juan, PR got a 35mph gust.

You guys are about to get the leading edge of this one rolling thru now... No lightening/thunder but boy heavy winds and heavy gusts... Pouring right now... I see the leading edge approaching Vieques, you guys next...
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3816. JLPR2
Quoting huntsvle:


if Ernesto managed to survice his own shear issues while moving at 24mph, I don't think he'll have a problem managing some 15-20kt winds down the road. And if the storm itself is farther north than what they've placed it (which I think it probably is) it's likely that dry air is not going to be AS significant of a problem.


You're writing about Ernesto, I was writing about TD 6.
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Quoting bohonkweatherman:
Texas is pretty much protected, strong High pressure dominating this state, over 100 here every day and I have seen a cloud in almost 3 weeks. I would say Ernesto will go to Mexico or East of Texas but I know little except that high pressure is kicking most of this state's butt again.


I disagree. The ridge has been progged to retrograde for some time. Some of the models are even starting to pick up on that weakness in the ridge. Likewise, the coastal part of texas has seen significant weaknesses several times. I don't think the Tx Coast is out of the woods at all. It's still too early to put a lot of weight in extended model runs, but I don't think TX is in any way safe.
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Three hours Kori? Thanks so much. Hope it's at least relatively accurate. :)
Member Since: April 18, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 2437
3812. JLPR2
At 60hrs it closes off Td 6 again and Ernesto is hanging out in the Western Caribbean.

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3811. pcola57
Quoting fsumet:


The NOGAPS is no longer considered reliable, it was removed in 2011. The CMC was also never considered a reliable model.

"NOGAPS: The U.S. Navy's Navy Operational Global Prediction Center System. Graphics are available at the Navy web site. This model has been performing poorly in recent years compared to the other global models, so it has been removed from the consensus models that the National hurricane Center uses as of 2011."


The NHC doesn't use NOGAPS anymore...the Navy's OP.Site use's ALL resources in their determinations/predictions and defensive posturing to protect the US and our interests from man made/weather/enviromental catastrophies..No other country in the world has NASA,NHC,and all of our Satellites with top notch tech.
I don't think you were knocking the US Navy..But
That's their mission...Best in the world.. :)
(PS..Ernesto has that"Mad Max" look to it right now..

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I dozed off earlier and just read the 11:00 "Official" source NHC advisory for Ernesto.

I sure the media will be on it but if you have friends or family who live on the Gulf Coast from Mexico to Florida (or yourselves for our Gulf bloggers), call them, given them a heads up, and tell them they will have a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico by the end of the week. Please tell them, if they have not done so already, to go ahead and make their plans and get their yearly cane "supplies" just in case in a timely manner this weekend if they can. This is not a drill as NHC has clearly indicated a storm entering the Gulf and, the possibility of a major one at that.

We understand the gravity of this situation given the current plot, the apparent size of this storm, and the banding features that are starting to appear on the most recent loops. Please tell your friends and family to take this potential threat very seriously.
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 8278
Quoting JLPR2:


Dry air and shear, at least that's the NHC's thinking.

I wouldn't be that surprised if it managed to fight off the dry air, but the shear ahead isn't friendly.


if Ernesto managed to survice his own shear issues while moving at 24mph, I don't think he'll have a problem managing some 15-20kt winds down the road. And if the storm itself is farther north than what they've placed it (which I think it probably is) it's likely that dry air is not going to be AS significant of a problem.
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3808. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
T.C.F.W
05L/TS/E/CX
R.I.FLAG OFF
MARK
13.81N/65.03W


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3807. JLPR2
Quoting viman:
Antigua - wind gusts to 45
St. Thomas - 43
St. Croix - 36
St. Maarten - 36
Not bad considering how far away Ernesto is...
Currently gustin pretty good right in a band of showers that's rolling thru... Must be about 35-40mph....


San Juan, PR got a 35mph gust.
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About JeffMasters

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