97L in Western Caribbean Still a Threat to Develop

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:58 PM GMT on October 02, 2013

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A tropical disturbance (Invest 97L) over the Western Caribbean is moving to the northwest at 10 mph and is generating heavy rains over the Cayman Islands and Western Cuba. Grand Cayman Island had picked up 2.32" (59 mm) of rain as of 9:30 am EDT on Wednesday. Satellite loops show that 97L has a modest area of heavy thunderstorms that have increased substantially in areal coverage and in intensity since Tuesday, but there is little rotation apparent. Cayman Islands radar also does not show any rotation to the echoes, but there are several prominent low-level bands of heavy rain. The storm has low wind shear of 5 - 10 knots to work with, as well as an upper-air anticyclone aloft that is providing good ventilation above it. Dry air is over the Yucatan Peninsula and Gulf of Mexico, as seen on water vapor satellite loops, and this dry air is slowing development. Ocean temperatures are a very warm 29°C (84°F). An Air Force hurricane hunter flight is scheduled for Wednesday afternoon.


Figure 1. Wind forecast for 2 pm EDT Saturday October 5, 2013, from runs of the GFS model done six hours apart. The more recent run, initialized at 06Z (2 am EDT) on Wednesday, October 2 (left panel) predicts that 97L will have top winds below 35 knots (40 mph, light orange colors). This run showed the center of 97L making landfall in the Florida Panhandle about 120 miles east of Alabama late Saturday afternoon.The run initialized six hours earlier, at 00Z (right panel), showed a stronger storm, with top winds of 40 - 45 knots (46 - 52 mph.) This run showed the center of 97L making landfall near the Alabama/Florida border Saturday night. The images were generated using our wundermap with the model layer turned on.

Forecast for 97L: development into at least a tropical depression likely
Wind shear is expected to remain low on Wednesday, then steadily increase to the moderate range on Thursday, then to the high range on Friday, according to the latest SHIPS model forecast. On Wednesday night, 97L will cross the northeastern tip of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, bringing 3 - 6" of rain to the peninsula and to Western Cuba. Passage over the Yucatan will act to disrupt the storm. The atmosphere will grow drier as 97L moves northwards over the Gulf of Mexico on Thursday and Friday, and the drier air combined with increasing wind shear will retard development, making rapid intensification unlikely. A trough of low pressure and an associated cold front will be moving through Louisiana on Saturday, and the associated upper-level westerly winds will be able to turn 97L more to the northeast as it approaches the coast on Friday. The GFS model develops 97L into a tropical storm, and predicts landfall will occur along the Florida Panhandle. The European model, which does not develop 97L into a tropical storm, is farther west, taking the storm over Eastern Louisiana. In their 8 am EDT Wednesday Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave 97L 2-day odds of development of 40%, and 5-day odds of 50%. I give a 30% chance 97L will be Tropical Storm Karen with top winds of 40 - 60 mph at landfall between Louisiana and the Florida Panhandle on Saturday, a 5% chance it will be stronger, and a 65% chance it will be a tropical depression or mere tropical disturbance. Heavy rains of 3 - 6" can be expected falling the coast from Louisiana to the Florida Panhandle on Saturday, even if 97L does not develop into a tropical depression.


Figure 2. MODIS satellite image of 97L, taken at 12:30 pm EDT on October 2, 2013. Image credit: NASA.

Tropical Storm Jerry in the Central Atlantic no threat
Tropical Storm Jerry continues to slowly wander over the Central Atlantic, far from land. Jerry is not a threat to any land areas.

Jeff Masters

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2666. LargoFl
Quoting 2656. EllasD:

stop that! no K storm for Biloxi
time to prepare and be ready just in case..ALL models have a storm hitting the northern gulf coast,exactly where is still a bit uncertain...good luck up there..stay safe.
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39201
Good morning everyone, wonder what the Hurricane Hunters will find. Regardless I think NW Florida is going to see a very wet weekend AGAIN!
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Quoting 2626. SLU:
So I see we still don't have Karen.

These types of systems can be a real headache for meteorologists as they produce damaging tropical storm conditions but they cannot be called tropical storms. When they hit land they can be very damaging and people tend to remain complacent with them.



We didn't get a recon at 11pm, which is why we don't have Karen. That recon is heading in now.
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This is like 2007 all the weak systems after only two strong storms.Maybe this year is like that one.would be terrible though as the last part of the season the storms form closer to land.
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2662. ncstorm
Good Morning..

00z JMA




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Quoting 2654. SLU:
Some impressive stuff for a fluff ball.
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Quoting 2656. EllasD:

stop that! no K storm for Biloxi
For NOLA?
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very strange system,large blob with no real spin to it.
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2658. GatorWX
Morning all,

A lil bit of dry air on nw side it appears, but overall....not bad.

Member Since: January 1, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 3418
2657. LargoFl
UKMET at 72 hours...................
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39201
2656. EllasD
Quoting 2651. LargoFl:
GEM model has it a lil west BUT also at 997MB.........

stop that! no K storm for Biloxi
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Quoting 2648. washingtonian115:
Karen! is that you?!
No,its me
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2654. SLU
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2653. Drakoen
Circulation has become much more defined overnight. Likely a TS now
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Quoting 2620. unknowncomic:
Future Karen has impressively moistened up its environment. Time to go to Home Depot?



No.Ace.
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2651. LargoFl
GEM model has it a lil west BUT also at 997MB.........
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39201
Quoting 2643. SAINTHURRIFAN:
Ike i would say Biloxi ole jim loves the Beau Rivage.Also this system still reminds me of juan without the loops.Posted that several times but I guess we have a lot of younguns on here now except Doug Ike and i lol


And me :)
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2649. IKE

Quoting SAINTHURRIFAN:
Ike i would say Biloxi ole jim loves the Beau Rivage.Also this system still reminds me of juan without the loops.Posted that several times but I guess we have a lot of younguns on here now except Doug Ike and i lol
You could be right. He can walk out into the water and report.
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Quoting 2636. SLU:
Karen! is that you?!
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Quoting 2622. mrmombq:
Vertically stacked! Thats not good.
Quoting 2622. mrmombq:
Vertically stacked! Thats not good.


Are you the one with the data? I wish I had taken a picture. I'll see if it is still there today, but I don't remember how to attach pictures to comments
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Quoting 2636. SLU:


These are a little misleading for now. Aircraft is still descending. Looks like these would reduce to about 35-40kts at the surface. It does appear however that the system is stronger.
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 17 Comments: 10284
SFMR
Peak (10s Avg.) Sfc. Wind

46 knots
(~ 52.9 mph)

WOW 46 knots!

There should be a COC by now.
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2644. Gearsts
Quoting 2610. Torito:
97L survived the night...

It does not look as defined as yesterday, however.

It look better than yesterday.
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Ike i would say Biloxi ole jim loves the Beau Rivage.Also this system still reminds me of juan without the loops.Posted that several times but I guess we have a lot of younguns on here now except Doug Ike and i lol
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This reminds me of a Dolly/Irene situation.Irene wasn't named until it had 50mph winds and Dolly wasn't named until it had 45mph winds.They eventually went on to become hurricanes.
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2641. beell
Quoting 2624. CybrTeddy:
Recon descending into 97L..


Karen awaits!

Ya'll have a good 'un.
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Member Since: June 11, 2013 Posts: 20 Comments: 3212
2639. 1Banana


Turbulence 24 Hour Forecast Map 20000Ft to 450000Ft
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2638. LargoFl
Quoting 2620. unknowncomic:
Future Karen has impressively moistened up its environment. Time to go to Home Depot?



geez i sure hope this doesnt take that right hook..whew.
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39201
2637. IKE
Based on what I see on recon...It's Karen.

43.1 knots (~ 49.6 mph)
Tropical Storm

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2636. SLU
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2635. LargoFl
Quoting 2625. KORBIN:
What I think people don't realize is the center is already east of where every model said yesterday. I think this storm will have more interaction and end up a bit east and a bit stronger. I think we should see a pretty big watch put in place these October storms can be tricky to forecast especially with an approaching front.
yes everyone needs to stay alert this weekend.
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39201
2634. VR46L
Quoting 2617. LargoFl:
yes but folks should be preparing for a hurricane now..at least they wouldnt get caught off guard and Not prepared...how many times in florida we prepared and either the storm went somewhere else or weakened..we at least were prepared, had supplies etc...


Very True Largo Prep is the name of the game for you guys !
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Member Since: June 11, 2013 Posts: 20 Comments: 3212
2632. WxLogic
Quoting 2627. PanhandleChuck:
The question of the day. .... Where will Jim Cantore be reporting from tonite or tomorrow?


I would dare to say Pensacola... lol
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2631. VR46L
Quoting 2615. PensacolaDoug:

GOM ver of Sandy?


I doubt it would be that bad ... but I guess ya never know

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11:12:00Z 23.617N 86.483W 571.3 mb
(~ 16.87 inHg) 4,801 meters
(~ 15,751 feet) 1009.5 mb
(~ 29.81 inHg) - From 84° at 22 knots
(From the E at ~ 25.3 mph) -1.2°C*
(~ 29.8°F*) -1.4°C*
(~ 29.5°F*) 22 knots
(~ 25.3 mph) 35 knots*
(~ 40.2 mph*) 3 mm/hr*
(~ 0.12 in/hr*) 35.0 knots* (~ 40.2 mph*)
Tropical Storm* 159.1%*
Member Since: June 11, 2013 Posts: 20 Comments: 3212
2629. IKE

Quoting PanhandleChuck:
The question of the day. .... Where will Jim Cantore be reporting from tonite or tomorrow?
Mobile?
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2628. IKE

Quoting Torito:


I think there is one this time, see post 2616.
I would be shocked if they don't find a definitive one. This blog would be off the charts if that happened.
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The question of the day. .... Where will Jim Cantore be reporting from tonite or tomorrow?
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2626. SLU
So I see we still don't have Karen.

These types of systems can be a real headache for meteorologists as they produce damaging tropical storm conditions but they cannot be called tropical storms. When they hit land they can be very damaging and people tend to remain complacent with them.

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2625. KORBIN
What I think people don't realize is the center is already east of where every model said yesterday. I think this storm will have more interaction and end up a bit east and a bit stronger. I think we should see a pretty big watch put in place these October storms can be tricky to forecast especially with an approaching front.
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Recon descending into 97L..
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2623. LargoFl
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39201
2622. mrmombq
Quoting 2605. PanhandleChuck:
Just gonna throw a piece of data out there for the guy who correlates ant activity with tropical systems. In my fiancee's front yard yesterday, approximately 5 miles North of Pensacola Beach . We saw what was the largest ant hill that I have seen this year and instead of being a rounded mound, some how the sides were almost straight up. Just found it interesting.
Vertically stacked! Thats not good.
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2621. Torito
Quoting 2619. IKE:
Recon going in...lowering to find COC.


I think there is one this time, see post 2616.
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Future Karen has impressively moistened up its environment. Time to go to Home Depot?



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2619. IKE
Recon going in...lowering to find COC.
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2618. WxLogic
I would venture out to say that HH might find a 40kts to 45kts storm at most.

On another note... and based on CIMSS VORT maps; it appears 97 is tilted from SW(850MB) to NE(500MB).
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2617. LargoFl
Quoting 2611. VR46L:


Unless it has transitioned .....
yes but folks should be preparing for a hurricane now..at least they wouldnt get caught off guard and Not prepared...how many times in florida we prepared and either the storm went somewhere else or weakened..we at least were prepared, had supplies etc...
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 39201
2616. Torito
White= less than 30mph winds
Green=TD force winds (30-39mph)
Yellow=TS force winds (40-74mph)
Red/orange=Hurricane force winds (74 mph)


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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.