Typhoon Utor Pounds Phiippines, Heads for China

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:51 PM GMT on August 12, 2013

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Typhoon Utor powered ashore on the northern Philippine Island of Luzon on Monday near 3 am local time (3 pm EDT Sunday) as a Category 4 storm with 140 mph winds. Damage was heavy in Casiguran (population 24,000) near where the typhoon made landfall, with 80% of the infrastructure of the town reportedly destroyed, and all roads into the city blocked. Utor is being blamed for two deaths so far, and 44 fishermen are reported as missing.


Figure 1. MODIS satellite image of Typhoon Utor taken at approximately 02:30 UTC on Monday, August 12. At the time, Utor was a Category 2 storm with 100 mph winds. Image credit: NASA.

Passage over Luzon disrupted the inner core of Utor, reducing the storm to Category 2 strength with winds of 100 mph. Satellite imagery shows that the typhoon is re-organizing, and a new eyewall is forming. Ocean temperatures are very warm, about 30°C (86°F), which is approximately 0.5 - 1.0°C above average. These warm waters extend to tremendous depth, giving Utor a huge source of energy to tap into. Wind shear is low, 5 - 10 knots. These favorable conditions for intensification will last until the typhoon gets midway between the Philippines and China, where wind shear will rise to the moderate range and ocean waters will cool to 29°C with a much lower heat content. I expect Utor will intensify into a Category 3 storm today, and make landfall in China as a Category 2 or 3 storm about 200 hundred miles southwest of Hong Kong about 06 UTC on Wednesday. Utor is a very wet storm, and will likely bring a large swath of 8+ inches of rain across Southeast China on Wednesday. These rains will cause dangerous flash flooding and mudslides.

Utor is a Marshallese word for squall line, and has been used for three tropical cyclones in the Western Pacific--in 2001, 2006, and 2013. Utor reached super typhoon status with 150 mph winds on Sunday, making it the strongest tropical cyclone globally so far in 2013. Earth's previous most powerful tropical cyclone of 2013 was Typhoon Soulik, which reached Category 4 strength with 145 mph winds on July 10. Soulik weakened to a Category 2 storm before hitting Taiwan on July 12.


Video 1. News video of the damage from Typhoon Utor in Casiguran in the Philippines. Utor is being called Typhoon Labuyo locally in the Philippines. Thanks to wunderground member AussieStorm for posting this in my blog comments.

The Philippines no stranger to powerful typhoons
The Philippines lie in the most tropical cyclone-prone waters on Earth, and rarely escape a year without experiencing a devastating typhoon. Usually, these storms impact the northern Philippine island of Luzon, but last year, Earth's deadliest weather disaster of 2012 occurred on the southern Philippine island of Mindanao, where Super Typhoon Bopha struck as a Category 5 super typhoon with winds of 160 mph (260 km/h), on December 3. Bopha made two additional landfalls in the Philippines, on central Visayas and on Palawan, on December 4. The typhoon left 1901 people dead, mostly on the island of Mindanao, making Bopha the 2nd deadliest typhoon in Philippine history. Bopha affected over 5.4 million people and left over 700,000 people homeless. With damages estimated at $1.7 billion, Bopha was the costliest natural disaster in Philippines history.


Figure 2. December 7, 2012: rescuers and residents look for missing victims amongst toppled tree trunks and coconut shells after flash floods caused by Super Typhoon Bopha hit Compostela Valley on Mindanao Island in the Philippines on December 3 - 4, 2012. (AP Photo/Jay Morales, Malacanang Photo Bureau, HO)

Activity possible late this week in the Gulf of Mexico
A tropical wave in the Central to Eastern Caribbean is kicking up disorganized heavy thunderstorms as it heads westwards. Wind shear is a very high 40 knots over the region, and the wave is not a threat to develop for the next two days. However, once the wave reaches the Gulf of Mexico on Saturday, some of the models are suggesting that the wave will find a region with lower wind shear, and a strong tropical disturbance capable of becoming a tropical storm could form near Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula or farther north in the Gulf of Mexico. If it penetrates far enough into the northern Gulf of Mexico, the tropical wave could interact with a stalled cold front expected to push off the Southeast U.S. coast late this week. This interaction could produce a hybrid low pressure system that might be partially tropical, and capable of bringing heavy rains to the Southeast U.S. on Saturday and Sunday. In their 8 am EDT Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave the system a 20% of developing by Saturday, and a 0% chance of developing by Wednesday.

Jeff Masters

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1139. gator23
Quoting 1125. Patrap:
And my Fav from a talented child.

A very good one I might add.





How long did it take u to draw that? ;)
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CPC preliminary, East Atlantic week 2


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Quoting 1125. Patrap:
And my Fav from a talented child.

A very good one I might add.





Don't tell me. That's Gro's drawing. He's very talented!
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1135. hydrus
Quoting 1061. kmanislander:


Quite likely the current Caribbean system will traverse the high TCHP in the NW Caribbean but the real question is whether it does so as a cyclone or as an open wave. Big difference as to how it reacts to the heat potential.
Yep. A large storm or hurricane can transfer enormous amounts of heat energy from the sea or ocean to the atmosphere. 5.2 x 1019 Joules/day or
6.0 x 1014 Watts. 200 times the world-wide electrical generating capacity.
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Quoting 1130. seminolesfan:


Stop it, you're gonna make me blush.


(I just try to go with one part 'weather-weenie' jargon, one part 'idea for the newbies', throw in a dash of science and/or graphics; And a good dose of my FL-charm.)


You got it working, whatever it is. If folks were paying attention, they'd learn something.
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1133. Patrap
Quoting 1126. marcuskyle:
hey patrap... every heard of an crystal magna booster tower? with weslar range?


No, I not that into the Ham jargon myself, I was a USMC Air Winger though.

I used to Bumm around in NATO with Grothar,esp in the Arctic, Tromso Norway.

Decades ago now.



Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128632
1132. FOREX
Quoting 1124. kmanislander:
1009 mbs at the buoy located at 15 N and 75 W



Interesting.
Member Since: August 17, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2335
1131. icmoore
Quoting 1101. LargoFl:
oh yes I was outside when those showers came ..wonderful relief from this heat..well for a few minutes anyway.

It lasted a lot longer here in Madeira Beach and although I love hot sunny blue sky days the most it felt so good getting slightly misted by the rain under the umbrella, great happy hour in the tropics :)
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Quoting 1108. moonlightcowboy:



I simply just continue to enjoy your common sense, very logical, straight-forward and highly informative posts! Thank you! Blow, blow, Seminole Wind! ;)


Stop it, you're gonna make me blush.


(I just try to go with one part 'weather-weenie' jargon, one part 'idea for the newbies', throw in a dash of science and/or graphics; And a good dose of my FL-charm.)
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Quoting 1120. MiamiHurricanes09:
High TCHP values and warm SSTs are virtually irrelevant if mid to upper-level dynamics are not conducive for development.
Not much in the way of Upper Level wind shear. Someone told me earlier lack of convergence could hold the system back?

Member Since: June 30, 2013 Posts: 12 Comments: 8419
Quoting 1121. FOREX:


We like it. Have been here for 6 years now. Moved here from the desert near Vegas. Quite a difference.lol.


Moved here 6 years ago from Ohio......... ain't never going back
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1127. LargoFl
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1125. Patrap
And my Fav from a talented child.

A very good one I might add.



Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128632
1009 mbs at the buoy located at 15 N and 75 W

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1123. Patrap
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128632
1122. Patrap
Never see enough Cane Cross sections, so I'm tossing in a few for the disco here.

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1121. FOREX
Quoting 1116. PanhandleChuck:


Nice area


We like it. Have been here for 6 years now. Moved here from the desert near Vegas. Quite a difference.lol.
Member Since: August 17, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2335
High TCHP values and warm SSTs are virtually irrelevant if mid to upper-level dynamics are not conducive for development.
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1118. Kyon5
Quoting 1088. wunderweatherman123:
think so? im not too sure. i want to see actual systems developing, not sporadic areas of low pressure
Don't trust the GFS long range, because it will ALWAYS change. Remember, the GFS showed Dorian 300 hours out, and then dropped it. A few days later, the wave that became Dorian came out and the GFS started showing development again. That's why models are not good when the storm has not formed yet.
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30%.long.rg
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Quoting 1098. FOREX:


PC Beach by the Waterpark.


Nice area
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WEATHER RECONNAISSANCE FLIGHTS
CARCAH, NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER, MIAMI, FL.
1015 AM EDT MON 12 AUGUST 2013
SUBJECT: TROPICAL CYCLONE PLAN OF THE DAY (TCPOD)
VALID 13/1100Z TO 14/1100Z AUGUST 2013
TCPOD NUMBER.....13-073

I. ATLANTIC REQUIREMENTS
1. SUSPECT AREA -- WESTERN CARIBBEAN
FLIGHT ONE -- TEAL 70
A. 13/2100Z
B. AFXXX 01BBA INVEST
C. 13/1645Z
D. 12.0N 82.5W
E. 13/2030Z TO 13/2300Z
F. SFC TO 10,000 FT
2. OUTLOOK FOR SUCCEEDING DAY.....NEGATIVE.
Member Since: September 10, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 11258
1114. Patrap
Indeed kman, the folks n the Business of Shipping and all others Marine interest here have to have a good 48 to get the Lower Parishes mobilized and evacuated

We let everyone below NOLA out first to expedite that process.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128632
Quoting 1086. Patrap:
Utor taking a deep breath after Wearing and Tearing across Luzon.



Just went through DMAX at that longitude, I believe...
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According to KFDM 6 this will NOT be a TX storm. So...looks like el droughto continues :/ Dead gum high pressure GET OUT OF THE WAY WE NEED RAIN!
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Quoting 1063. Patrap:


Hiya kman, I think your spot on, and the separation is going to set the ball a rolling.

Always neat to see how 2 Basins get a split energy genesis though.





Looks to be slowly pulling in moisture from the SW Caribbean and it has decent convergence. Once that some of that vort crosses over CA tonight then a low can form. Also firing moderate but disorganized convection through DMIN. Could organize some tonight as DMAX comes around and get a low to form.
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Quoting 1097. Patrap:


Yeah itsa that time to get er revving up in the Atlantic, the GOM is untapped ..and being on the Northern edge of Guidance...I'm watching it closely too.

There is already some Marine Band chatter and early Emg Mgr calls scheduled for Weds here.


No surprise about the chatter. You have to believe that the odds are rising for conditions to swing the other way real soon and perhaps relatively quickly.
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Quoting 1074. seminolesfan:


You make some good points here. Especially in regards to the strange nature in which weather can conspire, I mean transpire, in the tropical latitudes. :)

I know that the ocean temps and THCP and upwelling and all the other ocean-air boundary ideas are frequently talked about; But I don't think that they are understood in a fuel-goes-into-the-engine fashion that would help in understanding the thermodynamics of TCs 'feeding' off the heat.

It takes a discrete atmospheric 'engine' of pressures and related factors to use the 'fuel' of warm ocean waters. Pour all the gasoline you want into a car motor with a broken timing chain, she won't be turning over.

It is the functioning of this complex atmospheric 'engine' that makes these tropical seasons so entertaining! Even the pros have trouble making heads or tails of some of the REAL tricky setups...



I simply just continue to enjoy your common sense, very logical, straight-forward and highly informative posts! Thank you! Blow, blow, Seminole Wind! ;)
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Utor is trying to uncover his eye again.

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Quoting 1073. wunderweatherman123:
i want to see storms not areas or low pressure big difference. i hope the 0z realizes this



"No, no difference! Only in your mind"

Anything beyond 240 hours is total rubbish, the GFS loses resolution and anything beyond that is usually a ghost storm. You're chasing ghosts. However, it has a better idea on what kind of pressure, or MSLP, we will be seeing in the Atlantic. Below normal MSLP = increased likelihood of a storm, or at least more favorable conditions. I counted at least four waves that the GFS is showing with the potential to develop. This means there's one heck of a wave train being set up on the GFS. When we get closer to August 20th, you'll probably see more storms.You can chase ghost storms all you want, but if you're only focusing on what track/intensity the GFS is spitting out beyond 240 hours, you're always going to be wrong.

There's a reason we call it "fantasy land."
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Up to 30% in Five days.

TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
800 PM EDT MON AUG 12 2013

FOR THE NORTH ATLANTIC...CARIBBEAN SEA AND THE GULF OF MEXICO...

CLOUDINESS AND SHOWERS EXTENDING FROM THE SOUTHWESTERN CARIBBEAN
SEA NORTHEASTWARD ACROSS MOST OF THE CENTRAL CARIBBEAN TO NEAR
HISPANIOLA ARE ASSOCIATED WITH A TROPICAL WAVE AND A BROAD AREA OF
LOW PRESSURE INTERACTING WITH AN UPPER-LEVEL TROUGH. ENVIRONMENTAL
CONDITIONS ARE FORECAST TO GRADUALLY BECOME MORE CONDUCIVE FOR
DEVELOPMENT OVER THE NEXT SEVERAL DAYS AS THE LARGE DISTURBANCE
MOVES TOWARD THE YUCATAN PENINSULA AND THE SOUTHERN GULF OF MEXICO.
THIS SYSTEM HAS A LOW CHANCE...NEAR 10 PERCENT...OF BECOMING A
TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS...AND A MEDIUM CHANCE...
30 PERCENT...OF BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 5 DAYS.

&&

FIVE-DAY FORMATION PROBABILITIES ARE EXPERIMENTAL IN 2013. COMMENTS
ON THE EXPERIMENTAL FORECASTS CAN BE PROVIDED AT...

WWW.NWS.NOAA.GOV/SURVEY/NWS-SURVEY.PHP?CODE=ETWO

$$
FORECASTER STEWART

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Quoting 1082. TheDawnAwakening:


If it goes untapped once again, I wonder how high the available potential energy can get, or how strong a storm it will be able to create sayin October, another Sandy, or Wilma like situation. I know once Sandy emerged from the southern Caribbean Sea on her way to eastern Cuba she tapped into some of that potential energy and exploded right upon landfall in eastern Cuba. I think we can potentially see another Wilma if e Cape Verde season runs above the Caribbean Sea like the great 2010 season, until at least early October when the cv season dies down and homegrown activity begins to take hold, but this season isn't another 2005, simply not as favorable.

Given that SSTs rarely get above 86F at their warmest 30-32C, I wonder how much more available energy would be present for latent release if the temps just warmed to 90F?
It sure will be interesting to see how much energy this water can produce for a storm.Imagine if Earl had touched those waters in 2010 (gulp).Unfortunately it appears that the highest heat potential is always in the caribbean which is surrounded by land.I would love to see TCHP like this way out to sea to know how a storm can use this to it's advantage say like Kirk from 2012.
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1101. LargoFl
Quoting 1066. icmoore:


I just came in from sitting outside under an umbrella out back with the clouds and showers going over, no thunder or lightening, but some wonderful sun showers mixed in with the smell of the salt air. Feeling blessed and refreshed right now.
oh yes I was outside when those showers came in by my house. ..wonderful relief from this heat..well for a few minutes anyway.
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Quoting 1071. CybrTeddy:


How it preforms over that high TCHP will be detrimental to this system's future. It it can even close off a low over the Caribbean we may be facing a stronger cyclone in the Gulf. If not, we'll be lucky to get a 50mph cyclone off it.


If it transits as a cyclone then all bets are of on intensity. The NW Caribbean has caught the NHC on the low side of the intensity forecasts time and time again.
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1099. Patrap
Quoting 1096. marcuskyle:
yeah my neighbor is on ham. and i can remember many times it was the only thing we had to communicate with the real world


Thankfully with the Power situ the Large Towers have even better lasting Battery Backup for Texting as Isaac and Sandy showed.

But HAM is a failsafe and we should consider organizing here on wunderground.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128632
1098. FOREX
Quoting 1093. PanhandleChuck:


Where you at forex....... Milton here


PC Beach by the Waterpark.
Member Since: August 17, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 2335
1097. Patrap
Quoting 1087. kmanislander:


I've been watching that surface low to the West and hopefully the Ascat pass this evening will show us if it is on the way across into the Epac.

Shear continues to fall slowly over the West / Central Caribbean and if the TUTT lifts out while the tail end of it retrogrades West of the Yucatan we could see something spin up near 75 / 78 W in about 24 to 36 hours IMO. Looks like a slow process right now.


Yeah itsa that time to get er revving up in the Atlantic, the GOM is untapped ..and being on the Northern edge of Guidance...I'm watching it closely too.

There is already some Marine Band chatter and early Emg Mgr calls scheduled for Weds here.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128632
Quoting 1088. wunderweatherman123:
think so? im not too sure. i want to see actual systems developing, not sporadic areas of low pressure
Don't worry man, the season is not going to end with 4 storms I can assure you that. The Cape-Verde season will pick up when it wants to pick up regardless of what the models show. We also have to remember today is August 12th not September 12th. :)
Member Since: June 30, 2013 Posts: 12 Comments: 8419
Quoting 1077. washingtonian115:
Agreed.We learned with Dorian that even when the remnants moved over much warmer waters and higher TCHP it couldn't do much because it didn't have a real established center to work with.


Exactly. You need that convergent flow sucking up all the heat content to really get the engine cranking.
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Quoting 1055. FOREX:


Right where I live.


Where you at forex....... Milton here
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This image was taken several hours ago, but it shows pretty much all of Luzon has no power after Utor. The only populated area with power is Manila, the capital.
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1091. Patrap
Quoting 1085. marcuskyle:
i asked this earlier but there now seems to be more people on the blog.... is there any HAM rado operators with frequencies on here? could be the only way to get communication if its a bad storm


We have a few Hammies around, not currently though.

Maybe you can start a blog and we could get a network going here on wunderground.

We always open to new ideas.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128632
1090. LargoFl
Quoting 1055. FOREX:


Right where I live.
YES Im afraid this is going to be a big rain event..on top of what rains you folks get from the cold front..hopefully it does not become a big wind event...in july when we here in central florida were getting OUR big rains we got in my area 9-10 inches of rain in one day..local sewers etc handled it pretty weel..yes there was localized flooding and some lakes went over but all in all we faired pretty good...rained at my house a solid 30 days..did not see the sun for whole month..well anyway..be prepared and stay safe up there....one good thing,it mostly comes in on a weekend when most people are home and can handle emergencies huh..take care and stay alert..things can change in the days to come.
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TAFB now showing a sfc low in the extreme northwest Caribbean in 72 hours. My guess here is that proximity to land and shearing keeps it in check. It's going to depend on how quickly any shear dissipates, whether it has an anticyclone overhead, as to what it'll do. Notice too that, as I mentioned earlier as well, that it would move northwest firstly. Loops and surface maps, observations and discernment. I sure wish there was not quite so many leaning on every twist of a model, especially on a system that hasn't even initialized yet (because, well, it just ain't there yet!). ;(

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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.