Ernesto disorganized; more fires, extreme heat for Oklahoma

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:25 PM GMT on August 05, 2012

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A disorganized Tropical Storm Ernesto continues to speed westward at 23 mph across the Caribbean. Ernesto has brought sporadic heavy rains to Jamaica today, and Kingston has picked up 0.51" of rain as of noon, and recorded top sustained winds of 22 mph. Ernesto looks very unhealthy on visible satellite loops, with its low-level circulation center a naked swirl exposed to view with almost no heavy thunderstorm activity near the center. However, the storm does have some rather far-flung spiral bands, and these bands are bringing occasional heavy downpours to Haiti, western Cuba, Jamaica, and the southwest Dominican Republic. This morning's flight by the Hurricane Hunters found that Ernesto had a very high central pressure of 1006 mb and top winds near 50 mph. The latest wind shear analysis from the SHIPS model shows moderate shear of 10 - 15 knots affecting the storm, but there must be some wind shear the satellites are not able to detect affecting Ernesto, given its disorganized appearance. Water vapor satellite loops show a large area of dry air to the west, and this dry air is also interfering with Ernesto's organization.


Figure 1. Visible satellite image with 375 meter resolution taken of Ernesto by the new Suomi NPP satellite at 1:39 pm EDT August 4, 2012. At the time, Ernesto had a flare-up of intense thunderstorms, and had top winds of 60 mph. Image credit: University of Wisconsin Madison CIMSS.

Forecast for Ernesto
Ernesto's rapid forward speed of 23 mph has been part of the reason for its lack of intensification, but the storm is expected to slow down Monday and Tuesday in response to a trough of low pressure passing to the north. This slowing, in combination with low wind shear, a moister environment, and increasing heat energy in the ocean, may allow Ernesto to strengthen some before making landfall in Belize or Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula on Tuesday night. However, the storm will be passing very close to the north coast of Honduras, putting a portion of its circulation over land and limiting intensification potential. It is unlikely Ernesto will become a hurricane in the Caribbean; NHC is giving just a 19% chance that this will occur. The main threat from Ernesto will be heavy rains over Honduras, Belize, Mexico, and Jamaica. The track forecast for Ernesto has become a bit easier, since the storm's current disorganization and more southerly path make will make it more difficult for the storm to make a northwesterly turn into the Gulf of Mexico like the UKMET and GFDL models are predicting. A stronger Ernesto would have been more likely to turn northwest under the influence of a trough of low pressure passing to the north. If Ernesto survives its crossing of the Yucatan Peninsula, the potential exists for it to re-strengthen over the Bay of Campeche, and make a second landfall on Mexico's coast on Friday, between Tampico and Veracruz. It's pretty unlikely that Ernesto will hit the U.S.-- though Brownsville, Texas could see some rain from Ernesto's outer spiral bands on Friday, if the storm survives that long.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of Ernesto, showing the exposed low-level center--a swirl due south of Jamaica--and only very limited heavy thunderstorm activity surrounding the center.

Tropical Storm Florence
Tropical Storm Florence continues to plow westward at 14 mph over the Eastern Atlantic, and is not a threat to any land areas for next five days. The SHIPS model is predicting a moderate 5 - 15 knots of wind shear for Florence Sunday and Monday, but the shear will increase to the high range as Florence encounters an upper-level trough of low pressure on Tuesday. The latest Saharan Air Layer Analysis shows that a large area of dry air lies to the north and west of Florence, and this dry air will likely cause problems for the storm. Ocean temperature are near 26 - 26.5°C, which is right at the threshold for where a tropical storm can typically exist. It is possible that Florence could pose a threat to Bermuda next weekend, if the storm survives that long. Both the GFS and ECMWF models dissipate Florence before then.

Historic heat wave in Oklahoma
A second day of destructive fires affected Oklahoma on Saturday, thanks to extreme heat and drought, low humidities, and strong winds in advance of an approaching cold front. At 3 pm CDT Saturday, Oklahoma City had a temperature of 107°, a humidity of 19%, and winds of 16 mph gusting to 22 mph. The Oklahoma fires have destroyed at least 125 homes. The high temperature in Oklahoma City on Saturday reached 109°, the 12th warmest temperature recorded in the city since records began in 1891. Friday's high of 113° tied for the warmest temperature in city history.


Figure 3. Highway 48 is covered in smoke as flames continue, Saturday, Aug 4, 2012, east of Drumright, OK. Image credit: Associated Press.

The only comparable Oklahoma heat wave: August 1936
The only heat wave in Oklahoma history that compares to the August 2012 heat wave occurred during the great Dust Bowl summer of 1936, the hottest summer in U.S. history. Oklahoma City experienced three days at 110° that summer, and a record streak of 22 straight days with a temperature of 100° or hotter. Those numbers are comparable to 2012's: three days at 110° or hotter, and a string of 18 consecutive days (so far) with temperatures of 100° or hotter. The weak cold front that passed though Oklahoma Saturday will bring temperatures about 10° cooler over the next few days, but high temperatures are still expected to approach 100° in Oklahoma City Sunday through Tuesday. It's worth noting that Oklahoma City has experienced only 11 days since 1890 with a high of 110° or greater. Three of those days were in 2011, three in 2012, and three in the great Dust Bowl summer of 1936.

Wunderground's weather historian Christopher C. Burt has a new post on July's heat extremes in the U.S.


Figure 4. Most of Oklahoma has experienced nine consecutive days with highs of 100° or more, and many regions, including Oklahoma City, have had a streak of eighteen such days. Image credit: Oklahoma Mesonet.

Severe thunderstorm complex forces evacuation of Lollapalooza
A organized complex of severe thunderstorms developed over Eastern Iowa and Northern Illinois late Saturday afternoon, forming a dangerous bow echo that swept through Chicago, forcing the evacuation of the Lollapalooza music festival. NOAA's Storm Prediction Center (SPC) logged over 150 reports of wind damage from the storm, with five of the thunderstorms containing winds in excess of hurricane force (74 mph.) And just yesterday, my daughter was bemoaning her misfortune at not being able to get tickets to the show! The thunderstorm complex traveled about 300 miles from Eastern Iowa to Ohio, generating winds gust in excess of 58 mph along most of its path, meeting the definition of a derecho.


Figure 5. Radar image of the severe thunderstorm complex that spawned a dangerous bow echo over Chicago, which forced the evacuation of the Lollapalooza music festival.

Jeff Masters

IN THE EYE OF THE STORM (nanamac)
Storm clouds overwhelming Chicago
IN THE EYE OF THE STORM
IN THE EYE OF THE STORM (nanamac)
Sheets of rain & darkness!
IN THE EYE OF THE STORM
()
Storm damage (Bubbly)
Straight line winds during a severe thunderstorm left crumpled metal and splintered wood behind in Frytown, Iowa
Storm damage

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Quoting tennisgirl08:
POLL TIME....bored while waiting on recon:

What will the HHs find when they reach Ernesto?
A. status quo - no weakening or strengthening; same track and speed
B. 50 mph,WNW - slower
C. 60 mph, W - slower
D. strongest yet - 70 mph or higher

E. none of the above (please be specific)

E. 3 competing cocs. Nobody is going anywhere until one wins out sometime tomorrow afternoon, so rent a few movies :)
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Quoting tennisgirl08:
POLL TIME....bored while waiting on recon:

What will the HHs find when they reach Ernesto?
A. status quo - no weakening or strengthening; same track and speed
B. 50 mph,WNW - slower
C. 60 mph, W - slower
D. strongest yet - 70 mph or higher

E. none of the above (please be specific)


I don't usually participate in polls, but based on what I'm seeing so far I would say 65 mph with W-WNW movement @ 14-15mph.
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rough.flight?...remember.felix
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Quoting Gorty:


Ok.

And do you or anyone else think Ernesto can get its act going or not?



i think Ernesto has a ch but then i dont no any more
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Quoting MississippiWx:
Recon hasn't reported in 25 minutes.


yeah its annoying
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 6585
Quoting Gorty:


Ok.

And do you or anyone else think Ernesto can get its act going or not?


Ask me after we get the data from recon
Member Since: June 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 532
Quoting DubiousCane2012:


Absolutely. Ivan devastated them back in 04, =(.

I hate hurricanes with a passion. Hopefully they'll stay out to sea this year.


Where do you live? Sorry for my harsh scrutiny.
Member Since: June 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 532
1026. Gorty
Quoting Tazmanian:



ok when you do PM me and yet me no


Ok.

And do you or anyone else think Ernesto can get its act going or not?
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1025. etxwx
Quoting bluenosedave:


NASA TV. Link


You can also watch the Mars landing on XBox 360 according to this: How to Watch the Mars Curiosity Rover Landing
and more here: Link

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Recon hasn't reported in 25 minutes.
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10278
Quoting tennisgirl08:
POLL TIME....bored while waiting on recon:

What will the HHs find when they reach Ernesto?
A. status quo - no weakening or strengthening; same track and speed
B. 50 mph,WNW - slower
C. 60 mph, W - slower
D. strongest yet - 70 mph or higher

E. none of the above (please be specific)


C
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Quoting tennisgirl08:
POLL TIME....bored while waiting on recon:

What will the HHs find when they reach Ernesto?
A. status quo - no weakening or strengthening; same track and speed
B. 50 mph,WNW - slower
C. 60 mph, W - slower
D. strongest yet - 70 mph or higher

E. none of the above (please be specific)


A. Status quo ante-HH
Member Since: June 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 532
1021. Hugo5
I think tomorrow we will see a much different ernesto; florrence may be downgraded for now, but will come back when it gets past the wind shear, I believe then we will see flo blow up into a much larger storm. The low coming off of africa looks like it will form pretty similar to flo, however the wind shear will be a little higher, so slower developement. I also expect l91 reminats to come back and flare up in the gom. should be an exciting week ahead.
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Quoting stormpetrol:
Have a feeling this might an exciting and surprising mission.

Time: 23:20:00Z
Coordinates: 16.5N 75.9833W
Acft. Static Air Press: 392.3 mb (~ 11.58 inHg)
Acft. Geopotential Hgt: 7,728 meters (~ 25,354 feet)
Extrap. Sfc. Press: -
D-value: 407 meters (~ 1,335 feet)
Flt. Lvl. Wind (30s): From 150 at 18 knots (From the SSE at ~ 20.7 mph)
Air Temp: -15.2C* (~ 4.6F*)
Dew Pt: -*
Peak (10s) Flt. Lvl. Wind: 20 knots (~ 23.0 mph)
SFMR Peak (10s) Sfc. Wind: 47 knots (~ 54.0 mph)
SFMR Rain Rate: 21 mm/hr (~ 0.83 in/hr)
(*) Denotes suspect data

Look at the rain rate, has to have some affect on the winds. But I know what you mean, he may be stronger.
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7946
Looks like Florence has opened up and should be the last advisory on her. Wow did this storm quickly strengthen then fall apart!
Member Since: June 4, 2012 Posts: 0 Comments: 767
Quoting tennisgirl08:
POLL TIME....bored while waiting on recon:

What will the HHs find when they reach Ernesto?
A. status quo - no weakening or strengthening; same track and speed
B. 50 mph,WNW - slower
C. 60 mph, W - slower
D. strongest yet - 70 mph or higher

E. none of the above (please be specific)


AB more B
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Quoting stormchaser19:


The question is in what phase will be the NAO in the Second half of August and early september? Negative like the trend is right now or positive and the storm trend to recurve

Interesting!
I think that the oscillation will not be a factor as given enough storm/wave entrance events into the Cape Verde area then the disturbances caused by one will leave the East, West track wide open for the next.
That Mid Atlantic high is going to slingshot anything it can straight to the gates of the Caribbean at the very least.
Only an opinion of course. Its not like I'm qualified to make guesses, let alone predictions!
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Quoting Tazmanian:



i wish they fly faster
Top speed is around 325 mph in good weather,probably flying around 180 mph.
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Have a feeling this might an exciting and surprising mission.

Time: 23:20:00Z
Coordinates: 16.5N 75.9833W
Acft. Static Air Press: 392.3 mb (~ 11.58 inHg)
Acft. Geopotential Hgt: 7,728 meters (~ 25,354 feet)
Extrap. Sfc. Press: -
D-value: 407 meters (~ 1,335 feet)
Flt. Lvl. Wind (30s): From 150° at 18 knots (From the SSE at ~ 20.7 mph)
Air Temp: -15.2°C* (~ 4.6°F*)
Dew Pt: -*
Peak (10s) Flt. Lvl. Wind: 20 knots (~ 23.0 mph)
SFMR Peak (10s) Sfc. Wind: 47 knots (~ 54.0 mph)
SFMR Rain Rate: 21 mm/hr (~ 0.83 in/hr)
(*) Denotes suspect data
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Quoting wunderkidcayman:
ok I'm back it was a good swim


So glad you will not get the full brunt of Ernesto. The Caymans have been through a lot in the last few years.
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Good Evening everyone. I see Florence blew apart.
Ernesto looks better than earlier though.
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i.saw.sign.of.a.nw.trend.last.vis...recon.
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POLL TIME....bored while waiting on recon:

What will the HHs find when they reach Ernesto?
A. status quo - no weakening or strengthening; same track and speed
B. 50 mph,WNW - slower
C. 60 mph, W - slower
D. strongest yet - 70 mph or higher

E. none of the above (please be specific)
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Been gone for a while, I see convection is still increasing and recon is going in to Ernesto.
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7946
Quoting washingtonian115:
Wait..Why are we talking about trolls?.


nice pic
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Wait..Why are we talking about trolls?.
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next set of Recon Observations should give us an indication of the winds in Ernesto , they are going over some very strong convection still 100 miles away from center
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Quoting ncstorm:


Sir, you havent even begun to dig in the truth of who is really the main troll around here..

moving on!


moving back

so who is it?
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Quoting galvestonhurricane:


You don't remember him from last year. Probably the worst troll that I have ever seen on this blog.


what'd he do?
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1002. Beremat
Got some near-severe storms coming into NYC right now. Crazy wind outside, trees look like they're barely holding up and it hasn't even started pouring yet.
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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


what?


You don't remember him from last year? Probably the worst troll that I have ever seen on this blog.
Member Since: June 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 532
1000. ncstorm
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


no no its true....i think bantech and co are all jasons so there really are 2..


Sir, you havent even begun to dig in the truth of who is really the main troll around here..

moving on!
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 15632
Quoting Seflhurricane:
by the way great job helping to clear out these pesky trolls



thanks
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I just hope nothing else effects the CONUS this season. Not to wish death and destruction on anyone else.
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Quoting Tazmanian:



will have too see but but 1st they need too find a fully close low
by the way great job helping to clear out these pesky trolls
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remember.donald.sutherland...negative.waves....goin g.up.now
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Quoting ncstorm:


um humm! one day the blog will wake up..


no no its true....i think Bantech & Co. are all jasons so there really are 2..
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Quoting Seflhurricane:
Have a feeling Recon will find 60 Mph Winds again



will have too see but but 1st they need too find a fully close low
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Quoting galvestonhurricane:


What about the fake Keeper of the Gate? "We cross?"


what?
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Have a feeling Recon will find 60 Mph Winds again
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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


i dont bother to ignore anyone...
There are really only 2 trolls and one is quite tame on the blog


What about the fake Keeper of the Gate? "We cross?"
Member Since: June 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 532
Quoting floridaT:
wonder why they havnt started there decent?



there still 200miles a way
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Quoting stormpetrol:
I think Ernesto has slowed significantly , its in the area where storms slow or stall!
for some strange reason, i theory for the past years has been what has occured with ernesto the prime spots are near Cabo gracias a dios Honduras and the NW carribean, the Eastern carribean always gives problems to any system that passes through
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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


i dont bother to ignore anyone...
There are really only 2 trolls and one is quite tame on the blog


um humm! one day the blog will wake up..
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 15632
Warnings like this are in all the east coast states dealing with this cold front moving towards the atlantic..all up and down the east coast...stay safe out there..............................BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE NEW YORK NY
732 PM EDT SUN AUG 5 2012

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN UPTON NY HAS ISSUED A

* SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR...
QUEENS COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST NEW YORK...
EASTERN UNION COUNTY IN NORTHEAST NEW JERSEY...
NEW YORK (MANHATTAN) COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST NEW YORK...
BRONX COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST NEW YORK...
SOUTHEASTERN BERGEN COUNTY IN NORTHEAST NEW JERSEY...
EASTERN ESSEX COUNTY IN NORTHEAST NEW JERSEY...
RICHMOND (STATEN ISLAND) COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST NEW YORK...
HUDSON COUNTY IN NORTHEAST NEW JERSEY...
KINGS (BROOKLYN) COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST NEW YORK...

* UNTIL 815 PM EDT...

* AT 727 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
LINE OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING DAMAGING WINDS IN
EXCESS OF 60 MPH. THESE STORMS WERE LOCATED ALONG A LINE EXTENDING
FROM BLOOMFIELD TO 6 MILES SOUTHEAST OF TOTTENVILLE...OR ALONG A
LINE EXTENDING FROM CALDWELL TO 7 MILES SOUTH OF HUGUENOT...AND
MOVING EAST AT 30 MPH.

LAT...LON 4050 7424 4059 7421 4060 7424 4088 7426
4082 7413 4090 7413 4094 7392 4092 7392
4088 7377 4084 7376 4083 7381 4076 7372
4065 7373 4062 7377 4059 7374 4054 7394
4057 7394 4056 7401 4061 7405 4052 7413
TIME...MOT...LOC 2332Z 270DEG 25KT 4085 7418 4044 7414



LN
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Quoting GeorgiaStormz:


i know i know dont quuote him but lol



hi . GeorgiaStormz
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I think Ernie is finally tapping into his true potential. As noted before, the cyclone has a great circulation and a great moisture field, all he needed to do was slow down enough to take advantage of his environment and throw those things together. Granted, he still has work to do, but he's looking much healthier than yesterday and even a few hours ago.
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wonder why they havnt started there decent?
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Quoting Gorty:


Unlike other people, I will make my own judgement as to whether he is jfv or not and right now, I do not know.



ok when you do PM me and yet me no
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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.