Sandy remains a hurricane, slowly leaving the Bahamas

By: Angela Fritz , 9:28 PM GMT on October 26, 2012

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Reuters reports that the death toll from Sandy in the Caribbean is now up to 41 people as Hurricane Sandy continues its track toward the U.S. East Coast this afternoon, slowly leaving the Bahamas. States of Emergency have been declared in North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and New York. The hurricane is just barely still a Category 1 with surface winds of 75 mph and a minimum central pressure of 971 mb. Ocean buoys off the coasts of Florida and the Carolinas are recording sustained winds of around 45 mph this afternoon, with gusts steadily increasing and now up to 60 mph. Sandy's rainfall, which is limited to the north and northeast parts of the storm, is reaching eastern Florida, though most of it is staying offshore.

Satellite loops show an asymmetric Sandy, with almost all of the thunderstorm activity on its north side. The hurricane still has a very clear center of surface circulation which you can see on visible and infrared loops. Though the hurricane is leaving the influence of an upper level low pressure area over western Cuba, water vapor imagery shows a large area of dry air being pulled into the storm from the south, which is leading to the lack of thunderstorm activity and contributing to the weakening that Sandy is experiencing right now. The hurricane's tropical storm-force winds now extend 240 miles from the center, and could grow to 400 miles from the center by the time it reaches the East Coast.


Figure 1. Visible/infrared satellite image of Sandy as it leaves the Bahamas this afternoon. The mid-latitude trough, which Sandy will interact with over the next few days, is seen approaching from the northwest. The cold front associated with this trough is draped from upstate New York south to Louisiana, and appears as a line of clouds draped across the Midwest and South in this image.

Forecast For Hurricane Sandy

As a tropical cyclone approaches land, the worst storm surge is almost always where the winds are blowing from ocean to shore, where the wind pushes the water toward and onto the shore. In the case of Sandy's potential track, this region is on the north side of the center. In this morning's GFS scenario, Sandy's center passes over eastern Long Island, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. This would result in the highest surge north of New York City: Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and possibly Maine. The ECMWF forecast from this morning is a bit further to the south. It's suggesting Sandy's center will meet land in New Jersey. This scenario opens up New York City, Long Island, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and southern coastal Mass. to the largest surge. In general, the places that will avoid the largest storm surge are those that are south of where the center of the storm makes landfall. The National Hurricane Center's forecast is similar to the ECMWF, but most importantly, its forecast is also to not focus on the exact point of landfall because of the size of the storm, and that widespread impact is expected.

The Mid-Atlantic and Northeast coasts should be prepared for a storm surge no matter their exact location. A large portion of the coast will feel the impact of up to 60 mph winds and heavy rain. According to the most recent H*Wind analysis from the Hurricane Research Division is that storm surge has a destructive potential of 4.8 out of 6.0, which is a slight increase from previous analyses. Wind damage potential is holding steady around 2.3 out of 6.0. NOAA's HPC is forecasting rainfall totals of 5 to 10 inches in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast, and possibly more in coastal locations close to the core of the storm. Widespread power outages from Maine south to Virginia are likely, due to the combination of long-lived gale-force winds, leaves on trees, and rain that will moisten the soil and possibly increase the chances of falling trees. Snow in the Appalachians is also possible as the intense moisture meets the cold air being pulled south by the mid-latitude trough.


Figure 2. Departure of sea surface temperature from average for the Atlantic shows a large area of unusually warm waters up to 9°F above average off the U.S. mid-Atlantic coast.

Sandy to feed off near-record warm waters off the mid-Atlantic coast
During September 2012, ocean temperatures off the mid-Atlantic coast in the 5x10° latitude-longitude box between 35 - 40°N, 65 - 75° W were 2.3°F (1.3°C) above average, according to the UK Met Office. This is the 2nd greatest departure from average for ocean temperatures in this region since reliable ocean temperature measurements began over a century ago (all-time record: 2.0°C above average in September 1947.) These unusually warm waters have persisted into October, and will enable Sandy to pull more energy from the ocean than a typical October hurricane. The warm waters will also help increase Sandy's rains, since more water vapor will evaporate into the air from a warm ocean. I expect Sandy will dump the heaviest October rains on record over a large swath of the mid-Atlantic and New England.

Hurricane rains and climate change
Hurricanes are expected to dump 20% more rain in their cores by the year 2100, according to modeling studies (Knutson et al., 2010). This occurs since a warmer atmosphere holds more water vapor, which can then condense into heavier rains. Furthermore, the condensation process releases heat energy (latent heat), which invigorates the storm, making its updrafts stronger and creating even more rain. We may already be seeing an increase in rainfall from hurricanes due to a warmer atmosphere. A 2010 study by Kunkel et al. "Recent increases in U.S. heavy precipitation associated with tropical cyclones", found that although there is no evidence for a long-term increase in North American mainland land-falling tropical cyclones (which include both hurricanes and tropical storms), the number of heavy precipitation events, defined as 1-in-5-year events, more than doubled between 1994 - 2008, compared to the long-term average from 1895 - 2008. As I discussed in a 2011 post "Tropical Storm Lee's flood in Binghamton: was global warming the final straw?", an increase in heavy precipitation events in the 21st Century due to climate change is going to be a big problem for a flood control system designed for the 20th Century's climate.


Figure 3. Time series of the 15-yr running average (plotted at the end point of the 15-yr blocks) of the tropical cyclone Heavy Precipitation Index (red) and the associated 15-yr total of U.S. landfalling hurricanes from Atlantic HURDAT hurricane data base, from 1895 - 2008 (blue). Note the steep rise in heavy precipitation events from tropical cyclones over the past 20 years, which has not been accompanied by a corresponding increase in landfalling hurricanes. Image credit: Kunkel et al., 2010, Geophysical Research Letters.

Angela Fritz and Jeff Masters

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Station 41009 (LLNR 840) - CANAVERAL 20 NM East of Cape Canaveral, FL
28.523° N 80.184° W (28°31'22" N 80°11'3" W)



Buoy 41009 was down for quite awhile but looks like they brought her back up just in time.
Member Since: September 16, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3141
Quoting Zappy:
Interesting NYTimes article... So sad with he current state of D.C. and politics

Hopefully Sandy will be a wake-up call for them.


It won't. Don't even think that.
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Anybody have SLOSH models up for the Northeast?
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253. Zappy
Interesting NYTimes article... So sad with he current state of D.C. and politics

Hopefully Sandy will be a wake-up call for them.
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Quoting Chicklit:

She looks dead.


dry air from the southwest and shear to her north



quite a scenario
I'm not quite sure, it seems the only way she loses it really is the loss of the low center circulation, and she still seems to have that the last things I've seen, but I think she's going to be losing that soon with all the shear and dry air. I am not at all an expert, but I really don't see how she can hold that for much longer, maybe 18 hours(?), I don't know how fast she can lose it. This would be a whole lot more fun to track if I wasn't in the cone...
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Quoting stormchaser19:
GFDL Re-intensify Sandy as Cat 2..If maintain tropical characteristics


Oh no, the agony of it! I am on Long island, NY! This is going to be a very long weekend/week!
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Quoting guygee:
I don't think so, she is highly sheared but still warm-core.
I'm thinking Subtropical as most of the convection is sheared away and that is where the highest winds would be, not the center.
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Quoting MAweatherboy1:
If you go strictly by what recon has found than winds are no more than 50mph right now. I have a feeling it's at least a little higher than that but she's not having a fun time out there. Is it possible she's post-tropical?

I don't think so, she is highly sheared but still warm-core.
Member Since: September 16, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3141
Quoting KoritheMan:


You call that tropical? Look at the isobars and wind distribution.

Quoting KoritheMan:


You call that tropical? Look at the isobars and wind distribution.


I don't know....... DR.Masters says the sst....... supports sandy to maintain as tropical........But the time will tell
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Quoting stormchaser19:
GFDL Re-intensify Sandy as Cat 2..If maintain tropical characteristics
Subtropical Cyclone Sandy-Athena, especially if snowfall occurs.
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Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:
217. pottery 7:53 PM EDT on October 26, 2012 +0
Quoting presslord:
startin' to rock aboard Lady Bug...

You having a party ?
There's a storm coming, man !
.........


If the boats rockin...
Don't bother knockin...
Quoting presslord:


Headed up to the marina bar right now...will save a seat for you...


LOL, LOL.

Keep safe there Press.
And trust in your instruments.....
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Quoting KoritheMan:
"I can track storms blindfolded.", I said.

"So I know Sandy's going out to sea without even looking.", I said.

Oh boy.

I remember you saying those things, you aren't perfect.
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7928
The wind in Orlando picked up big time around 9:00 - 10:00 this morning and was really gusty all day (20-30 gusts 35-40mph) but has died down to just a light breeze after sunset. Interesting how this happens, even when in fairly close proximity to a storm.

Are the models still predicting a really deep system (930-950mb) for the mid Atlantic and NE?
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Quoting LargoFl:
ere are some basic items you'll need to stock your hurricane kit.
>


My God, man, you forgot beer! (joke :P) Good list, can't see where you missed anything. One more important one for the big storms: a run, run, run away! plan. You need to be very aware of whats coming your way and to not wait till the last moment to leave. You need to have a good idea of the best direction to go (hint, don't go in the direction of the damn thing, or take refuge inland in low ground) and you better have a good atlas that shows the back roads. Running from a hurricane in Florida purely sucks. The state is long and skinny and theres all sorts of obstacles with no roads at all.

Like you said, you need to plan, you need to execute your plan, and if you can't stay, then GO.
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Quoting stormchaser19:
GFDL Re-intensify Sandy as Cat 2..If maintain tropical characteristics


You call that tropical? Look at the isobars and wind distribution.
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PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MOUNT HOLLY NJ
631 PM EDT FRI OCT 26 2012

...POTENTIAL HISTORIC STORM FOR THE AREA...

TROPICAL CYCLONE SANDY IS EXPECTED TO MOVE NORTHWARD AND THEN TAKE A
TURN BACK TO THE NORTHWEST, MAKING LANDFALL ALONG THE MID ATLANTIC
COAST. IT APPEARS THIS OCCURS SOMEWHERE BETWEEN THE DELMARVA
PENINSULA AND WESTERN LONG ISLAND.

SANDY IS EXPECTED TO INTENSIFY AS IT INTERACTS WITH AN UPPER LEVEL
SYSTEM MOVING OUT OF THE GREAT LAKES, AND INDICATIONS ARE THAT OUR
REGION MAY EXPERIENCE A WIDESPREAD DAMAGING STORM, POSSIBLY OF
HISTORIC PROPORTIONS.

WIDESPREAD DAMAGING WINDS ARE POSSIBLE. THE EXACT STORM TRACK IS
STILL UNCERTAIN AND THIS WILL DETERMINE THE ACTUAL IMPACTS. HOWEVER,
THE STORM IS FORECAST TO BE A LARGE STORM THEREFORE DO NOT FOCUS ON
THE EXACT CENTER OF THE STORM. IT APPEARS THAT THE STRONGEST WINDS
WILL OCCUR MONDAY AND TUESDAY.

IN ADDITION, WIDESPREAD HEAVY RAIN /POSSIBLY AS MUCH AS 6 TO 10
INCHES/ WOULD CAUSE SIGNIFICANT FLOODING ON RIVERS AND STREAMS
ACROSS THE REGION. THIS COULD BE MAJOR TO EVEN RECORD FLOODING.
RAIN CAN BE EXPECTED TO BEGIN DURING THE DAY SUNDAY OR SUNDAY
EVENING AND THEN CONTINUE MONDAY WHEN IT WILL BECOME HEAVY AT
TIMES. AS WATER IS PUSHED TOWARD THE COAST, COASTAL FLOODING WILL
INCREASE AND THIS COULD BE TO MAJOR TO PERHAPS EVEN RECORD LEVELS
ALONG THE COASTS OF NEW JERSEY AND DELAWARE. THE EXTENT OF THE
COASTAL FLOODING WILL BE DEPENDENT ON THE TRACK OF THE STORM.

THIS HAS THE POTENTIAL TO BE A LARGE AND RECORD SETTING STORM, WITH
WIDESPREAD WIND DAMAGE, INLAND AND COASTAL FLOODING, AND BEACH
EROSION. THE COMBINATION OF THE HEAVY RAIN AND WIND WILL CREATE THE
POTENTIAL FOR WIDESPREAD POWER OUTAGES AND SIGNIFICANT FLOODING. AT
THIS TIME, THE MOST LIKELY TIME FRAME FOR THE WORST OF THE RAIN AND
WIND LOOKS TO BE MONDAY AND TUESDAY. THIS MEANS THERE IS STILL TIME
TO PREPARE.

SOME SUGGESTED PRE-STORM ACTIONS ARE:

1. FUEL UP YOUR VEHICLES.

2. IF YOU HAVE A GENERATOR, BE SURE YOU HAVE ADEQUATE FUEL ON HAND.

3. TO PREPARE FOR THE POSSIBILITY OF PROLONGED POWER OUTAGES, MAKE
SURE YOU HAVE A SUPPLY OF FRESH BATTERIES AND A SUPPLY OF CANDLES OR
FLASHLIGHTS ON HAND.

4. BE SURE TO HAVE SEVERAL DAYS OF FRESH WATER ON HAND FOR DRINKING
AND COOKING.

5. IF YOU STILL HAVE LAWN FURNITURE OUTSIDE, SECURE OR STORE IT
INDOORS. SECURE ANY OUTSIDE ITEMS THAT COULD BECOME AIRBORNE IN
STRONG WINDS, INCLUDING HALLOWEEN DECORATIONS.

6. CLEAN OUT ANY STORM DRAINS OR GUTTERS THAT MAY BE CLOGGED BY
LEAVES.

7. IF YOU LIVE IN A FLOOD PRONE AREA AND IF POSSIBLE, CONSIDER
MOVING ITEMS THAT MAY BECOME DAMAGED TO HIGHER GROUND.

8. IF YOU HAVE LIMITED MOBILITY OR KNOW OF SOMEONE WHO MAY BE
DISABLED, CONSIDER ARRANGING FOR TEMPORARY SHELTER IF THEY LIVE IN
AN AREA THAT MAY FLOOD OR COULD LOSE POWER.

9. IF YOU NEED TO EVACUATE, BE SURE TO CARE FOR YOUR PETS.

$$

NWS MOUNT HOLLY, NJ
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31519
GFDL Re-intensify Sandy as Cat 2..If maintain tropical characteristics
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Any reason why mission 13 into Sandy turned around over Miami? Mechanical failure? Instrument failure? Electronic failure?
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7928
Quoting pottery:

You having a party ?
There's a storm coming, man !


Headed up to the marina bar right now...will save a seat for you...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Hurricane SANDY
...SANDY MOVING SLOWLY NORTHWARD AWAY FROM GREAT ABACO...
8:00 PM EDT Fri Oct 26
Location: 27.5°N 77.2°W
Moving: N at 7 mph
Min pressure: 970 mb
Max sustained: 75 mph
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Winds are coming down, but the pressure is too. It's easy to see how this will go sub 950mb even with very unimpressive winds.

965.9 mb
(~ 28.52 inHg)
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Quoting MAweatherboy1:
If you go strictly by what recon has found than winds are no more than 50mph right now. I have a feeling it's at least a little higher than that but she's not having a fun time out there. Is it possible she's post-tropical?


Nope, she still fits the requirements for a fully tropical cyclone. She probably will be a TS at 11pm. I think she may be able to make it back to a hurricane or strong TS over the gulf stream.
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7928
Quoting MAweatherboy1:
If you go strictly by what recon has found than winds are no more than 50mph right now. I have a feeling it's at least a little higher than that but she's not having a fun time out there. Is it possible she's post-tropical?



she's post mortem
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217. pottery 7:53 PM EDT on October 26, 2012 +0
Quoting presslord:
startin' to rock aboard Lady Bug...

You having a party ?
There's a storm coming, man !
.........


If the boats rockin...
Don't bother knockin...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Recon finding nothing impressive right now. If current trends continue, Sandy should weaken to a 60 or 65 mph tropical storm at 11.
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Quoting MAweatherboy1:
If you go strictly by what recon has found than winds are no more than 50mph right now. I have a feeling it's at least a little higher than that but she's not having a fun time out there. Is it possible she's post-tropical?



That quickly? No.
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Quoting MAweatherboy1:
If you go strictly by what recon has found than winds are no more than 50mph right now. I have a feeling it's at least a little higher than that but she's not having a fun time out there. Is it possible she's post-tropical?


No...her core is fully warm-core. Well, mostly warm-core. But definitely not subtropical or post-tropical.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31519
Quoting KoritheMan:


Oftentimes people (myself included, admittedly) overestimate the negative environment that generally persists in that portion of the Atlantic. With the exception of Lee, when is the last time you saw a Gulf storm look this pathetic? The two environments are simply not comparable. That being said, the western Atlantic, unlike the Gulf, has a lot more baroclinicity, so I think she will restrengthen, albeit not through tropical processes.


so...she becomes the undead through no means of her own.
wow. I could not have made this up.
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Quoting wxchaser97:

On whether Sandy would go out to sea or if she would hit the East Coast. Sandy will hit the East Coast so I won, something I usually don't do in bets.

Kori's giving up too easily. Didn't he hear the LBAR received a massive upgrade and is now a nearly perfect forecasting model?

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Sandy remains at 75mph but the pressure dropped 1mb to 970mb.

Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7928
"I can track storms blindfolded.", I said.

"So I know Sandy's going out to sea without even looking.", I said.

Oh boy.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
If you go strictly by what recon has found than winds are no more than 50mph right now. I have a feeling it's at least a little higher than that but she's not having a fun time out there. Is it possible she's post-tropical?

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
BULLETIN
HURRICANE SANDY INTERMEDIATE ADVISORY NUMBER 18A
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL182012
800 PM EDT FRI OCT 26 2012

...SANDY MOVING SLOWLY NORTHWARD AWAY FROM GREAT ABACO...


SUMMARY OF 800 PM EDT...0000 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...27.5N 77.2W
ABOUT 75 MI...120 KM N OF GREAT ABACO ISLAND
ABOUT 400 MI...645 KM SSE OF CHARLESTON SOUTH CAROLINA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...75 MPH...120 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...N OR 360 DEGREES AT 7 MPH...11 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...970 MB...28.64 INCHES
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31519
Quoting aussiecold:
,,,lets see if this time the president "sign" the bill for FEMA assistence, a little bit earlier

Hey are you from OZ
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Quoting NEwatcher:

The stores are crazy. Seekonk home Depot has more generators coming in tomorrow AM. My sister got the last one at her local Job Lot. I guess Irene is fresh enough in peoples minds that they know to be ready.
Now I have to convince Mom not to tape the window!



I work at an HD store in Virginia, our generators were mostly gone by 9AM. Last one went out at 1130 AM. No word on when more coming in!
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What a great opportunity to incite the global warming debate when talking about the storm of the century!

Seems to me, with a storm with the potential for loss of life and property destruction, we could at least deep6 the Global Warming debate for a week! Or is it climate change?

Hopefully we can just stick to the storm, and leave the the debate for another day!
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Quoting wxchaser97:

I was waiting for you to show up. I have been ready since day one for my money.


Message me (either on Facebook or here) your address and stuff. I'll get to sending it.
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Quoting MAweatherboy1:

What was the bet?

On whether Sandy would go out to sea or if she would hit the East Coast. Sandy will hit the East Coast so I won, something I usually don't do in bets.
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7928
Quoting KoritheMan:


Is that what we thought was going to become Rosa?

No. That disturbance is long gone. Doesn't look like we're going to get a Rosa.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 31519
Quoting presslord:
startin' to rock aboard Lady Bug...

You having a party ?
There's a storm coming, man !
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Chicklit:

She looks dead.



Oftentimes people (myself included, admittedly) overestimate the negative environment that generally persists in that portion of the Atlantic. With the exception of Lee, when is the last time you saw a Gulf storm look this pathetic? The two environments are simply not comparable. That being said, the western Atlantic, unlike the Gulf, has a lot more baroclinicity, so I think she will restrengthen, albeit not through tropical processes.
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Quoting Chicklit:

She looks dead.



This is a classic hybrid look, as expected.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 23606
Quoting wxchaser97:

I was waiting for you to show up. I have been ready since day one for my money.

What was the bet?
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Quoting KoritheMan:
Here here, Isaac. You ready for your $20? I lose.

I was waiting for you to show up. I have been ready since day one for my money.
Member Since: March 16, 2012 Posts: 127 Comments: 7928
Quoting KoritheMan:


My guess is three to four days, although it could occur closer to the lower end of that spectrum.

She looks dead.


dry air from the southwest and shear to her north



quite a scenario
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long johns,

When I went back to the cold I was glad to have them
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Area of interest in the East Pacific.

A WEAK AREA OF LOW PRESSURE LOCATED ABOUT 625 MILES SOUTH-SOUTHWEST
OF MANZANILLO MEXICO IS PRODUCING DISORGANIZED SHOWERS AND
THUNDERSTORMS. DEVELOPMENT...IF ANY...OF THIS LOW IS EXPECTED TO
BE SLOW TO OCCUR AS IT MOVES TO THE WEST-NORTHWEST AT ABOUT 10 TO
15 MPH. THIS SYSTEM HAS A LOW CHANCE...10 PERCENT...OF BECOMING A
TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.

Unless the East Pac goes on a big run in the last month of the season we're gonna beat them for named storms this year. I bet nobody predicted that as El Nino was supposed to hurt our season and enhance the East Pac.
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Quoting aussiecold:
,,,lets see if this time the president "sign" the bill for FEMA assistence, a little bit earlier


I know of people on standy already..
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Quoting Chicklit:
So...does anybody know exactly when Sandy loses her tropical identity, merges with the baroclinic force that makes her a monster and becomes Bride of Frankenstorm?


My guess is three to four days, although it could occur closer to the lower end of that spectrum.
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So...does anybody know exactly when Sandy loses her tropical identity, merges with the baroclinic force that makes her a monster and becomes Bride of Frankenstorm?
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:
Area of interest in the East Pacific.

A WEAK AREA OF LOW PRESSURE LOCATED ABOUT 625 MILES SOUTH-SOUTHWEST
OF MANZANILLO MEXICO IS PRODUCING DISORGANIZED SHOWERS AND
THUNDERSTORMS. DEVELOPMENT...IF ANY...OF THIS LOW IS EXPECTED TO
BE SLOW TO OCCUR AS IT MOVES TO THE WEST-NORTHWEST AT ABOUT 10 TO
15 MPH. THIS SYSTEM HAS A LOW CHANCE...10 PERCENT...OF BECOMING A
TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.


Is that what we thought was going to become Rosa?
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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.