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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616. FOREX
Quoting 612. BrandiQ:
Is this really a panhandle storm or should anyone on the gulf be watching... this I believe is where Wilma formed and about this time in 05


It's up in the air right now.
Member Since: August 17, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 1337
615. beell
Quoting 602. daddyjames:


Really beell? I don't think that convection is directly attributed to the surface front, low. My opinion. Why are you thinking it should be called?


It was a very, very, snide comment dj. Run back through it.

;-)
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If it wasn't for the trough/front coming down the plains, this thing would of barreled right towards TX.

Next! see ya in 2014.
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613. FOREX
Quoting 604. opal92nwf:

For 2013 lol.

But seriously, that sure is making me more wary of this potential storm here in the FL Panhandle. Maybe a little more than a rain even this will be...


Wasn't a panhandle landfall dependent on that front? The front is too slow right now.
Member Since: August 17, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 1337
Is this really a panhandle storm or should anyone on the gulf be watching... this I believe is where Wilma formed and about this time in 05
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Quoting 586. MississippiWx:


Lol. The word vomit continues...


Yes, it does...please, if everyone could check their egos and quit acting like a bunch of school yard bullies it might stop.
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Quoting 601. ChillinInTheKeys:


Fortunately, everything to date has busted and I hope this will too. Crow taste much better than disaster, and can be much more filling.

Although one thing we're pretty certain about is:

97L ain't gonna be no 95L! lol
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Quoting 600. Drakoen:
System is still in the process of organizing as the RECON makes their observations. Overall the system has improved over the past 24 hours as of the latest RECON observations.


some just get a little ahead of themselves not that there is anything wrong with that

but at the moment it has potential to become a cyclone but its not there yet but its coming along
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Getting better organized i must say on this one

but if u look at it here i dont think so organized
It looks disorganized
Member Since: July 25, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 2510
Quoting 582. ChillinInTheKeys:
In defense of Scott, I can see why he might get excited. The storm suddenly looks great on satellite with good outflow and banding for not even being a depression...

Time will tell...

I often tell people that say a storm won't be bad based on how it looks at the time that a system's current appearance has nothing to do with how it will eventually turn out. The opposite applies now. It has a decent structure but that doesn't mean it's destined to be a monster, especially since wind shear and dry air will be a problem in the Gulf.
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TOLD YOU GUYS

not going to be a TS today
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Quoting 597. LargoFl:
Pressure at a low 990 MB at landfall..thats Strong...

For 2013 lol.

But seriously, that sure is making me more wary of this potential storm here in the FL Panhandle. Maybe a little more than a rain even this will be...
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Quoting 591. MississippiWx:
MAN. What a HUGE eye. They finally got to the southern end of the eye.



LMAO lol
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Quoting 594. beell:
I had started to post a response to this earlier this morning. Decided it would not help anything. But...in a fit of weakness, I'm piling on.



No truer statement was ever made.


Really beell? I don't think that convection is directly attributed to the surface front, low. My opinion. Why are you thinking it should be called?
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Quoting 590. StormTrackerScott:


One can tell this has that look as if 97L wants to hit the gas whether people on here agree or not.


Fortunately, everything to date has busted and I hope this will too. Crow tastes much better than disaster, and can be much more filling.
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System is still in the process of organizing as the RECON makes their observations. Overall the system has improved over the past 24 hours as of the latest RECON observations.
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Quoting 595. daddyjames:


Eye? That i sore like a huge gaping mouth. ;)


Just jabbing at a particular poster who said an eye-like feature was developing.
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97L could be another strong MLC just like DORIAN when it was just north of me... lol some wishcasters were so excited at that moment because they thought DORIAN would finally become a significant storm while heading for the biggest wishcaster land XD
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Pressure at a low 990 MB at landfall..thats Strong...
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36665
Quoting 545. StormTrackerScott:


This thing is going to be a hurricane soon and maybe a very intense one at that. People better be prepared as this heads north.

Looking like and eye feature developing as thunderstorms wrap around the center. This leads me to believe we already have Karen and she is intensifying right now.



you are joking, right?
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Quoting 591. MississippiWx:
MAN. What a HUGE eye. They finally got to the southern end of the eye.



Eye? That is more like a huge gaping mouth. ;)
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594. beell
I had started to post a response to this earlier this morning. Decided it would not help anything. But...in a fit of weakness, I'm piling on.

Quoting 1270. StormTrackerScott:


Yeah I am seeing lots of 35 to 40 mph winds across the Cayman's this morning and why 97L isn't called is beyond me.


No truer statement was ever made.
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This doesn't even fit the bill of a tropical depression yet. Way too broad.
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Quoting 581. MississippiWx:


They are and have been going through the "center". Nothing but a whole page of 1008mb pressures. This is very broad.


On that I agree with Scott - llc is further south around 18.5. Agree with you, coc is broad.
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MAN. What a HUGE eye. They finally got to the southern end of the eye.

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Quoting 582. ChillinInTheKeys:
In defense of Scott, I can see why he might get excited. The storm suddenly looks great on satellite with good outflow and banding for not even being a depression.


One can tell this has that look as if 97L wants to hit the gas whether people on here agree or not.
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Quoting 564. sunlinepr:


Something like an Isaac clone...


Or Iwa!


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pressure keeps dropping nearing the coast..991 mb now..
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36665
Quoting 567. StormTrackerScott:


It's a tight wind core. Just be patient and wait for the recon to get closer to the coc.
its just getting its self together its gonna take some time for winds to catch up its gonna stay in check with conditions waiting for it to the nw
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Quoting 577. cat6band:


Oh my.....I'm just amazed at times...


Lol. The word vomit continues...
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Quoting 547. SuperStorm093:
stop scaring people damn dude, it will be a TS at best. my old prediction of TD at best might be wrong. but this wont be a powerful cane man


I second that. Let's try not to get too dramatic. There are a lot of long memories on this blog of Andrew, Katrina, Rita, etc. Way out forecasting does little to help. Once these things start getting investigated by the hurricane hunters, the info is pretty reliable. Let them do their jobs.
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It's at least <1009, according to that buoy.
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In defense of Scott, I can see why he might get excited. The storm suddenly looks great on satellite with good outflow and banding for not even being a depression...

Time will tell...
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Quoting 573. StormTrackerScott:


LOL Not even close to the coc yet.


They are and have been going through the "center". Nothing but a whole page of 1008mb pressures. This is very broad.
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993 mb..thats a strong storm.................
Member Since: August 6, 2011 Posts: 4 Comments: 36665
thankfully.recon...97.turning.now
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It looks like a 35-40mph TS or at least.a tropical depression.
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Quoting 545. StormTrackerScott:


This thing is going to be a hurricane soon and maybe a very intense one at that. People better be prepared as this heads north.

Looking like and eye feature developing as thunderstorms wrap around the center. This leads me to believe we already have Karen and she is intensifying right now.



Oh my.....I'm just amazed at times...
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Quoting 572. Tribucanes:
StormTrackerScott you think this is already close to a high end 60-70 mph TS? It's got the look of a TD or low end 40-45mph TS and I agree with you in the sense this could become a 60-80mph storm. But you think it could be stronger than that even?


I think winds are 45mph. However tonight winds should increase to 60mph.
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i think its gonna 35-40mph storm its getting close u can see it wrapping around the coc and the outflow is enormous.
Member Since: July 25, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 2510
classic example of how looks can be deceiving lol
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Quoting 552. MississippiWx:
Very weak winds on the north side of the system.



LOL Not even close to the coc yet.
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StormTrackerScott you think this is already close to a high end 60-70 mph TS? It's got the look of a TD or low end 40-45mph TS and I agree with you in the sense this could become a 60-80mph storm. But you think it could be stronger than that even?
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Quoting 546. Torito:
No winds.




Lol B-U-S-T
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Quoting 559. MississippiWx:


Lol. You're steadily losing credibility with this system with each key stroke. It only has 10-20kt winds at flight level on the northern part of the system.



It's a tight wind core. Just be patient and wait for the recon to get closer to the coc.
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Quoting 558. LargoFl:
potential hurricane if the gfs proves true...
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!
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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.

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