Alberto brings beneficial rains, modest damage

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 9:19 PM GMT on June 13, 2006

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Alberto made landfall at 12:45pm Tuesday near Adams Beach, Florida, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) south of Tallahassee. Alberto had maximum sustained winds of 50 mph at landfall, and brought a storm surge of up to 5 feet near Cedar Key. No major flooding damage has been reported, however. Power outages to 21,000 people have occurred, and tree damage appears to be the predominant problem from the storm. No tornadoes have occurred today in Florida, but there have been several tornado reports from Georgia and South Carolina, including a report of a tornado on the ground at Beaufort Marine Base in South Carolina.

Alberto will weaken to a tropical depression as it crosses Georgia tonight. The storm will likely be declared extratropical on Wednesday, when it emerges into the Atlantic Ocean. The remains of Alberto should then reintensify some as a non-tropical low pressure system over the open Atlantic Ocean, where it will only be of concern to shipping.


Figure 1. Total rain from Alberto estimated by Doppler radar.

It appears now that Alberto may save millions of dollars in agricultural losses and firefighting expenses due to the heavy rains it has brought to drought-parched Florida. Several of the over 100 fires burning in Florida have already been extinguished by Alberto's rains.

Tomorrow, I'll analyze Alberto's sudden burst of intensification Monday morning, and report on what the rest of June may hold for us. It could be an exceptionally active June.

Jeff Masters

Alberto Rain (Tobisan)
Bands of rain continue to push through our area raising whitecaps on Lake Minneola.
Alberto Rain
Picnic anyone (TheCrow)
Driving through town i found the gulf a little closer than usual. This is someones front yard.
Picnic anyone

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261. ForecasterColby
5:08 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Worst drought we've ever seen? Uh...no. There was a much worse one only a few years ago.
260. FLTropixWatcher
5:01 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Lest anyone think all of Florida got rain, we are 10 miles from the coast in south/central Florida, east of Lake Okeechobee, and we got about half an inch onto our parched ground. This in two short showers, one Monday and one Tuesday.

This is the worst drought we have ever seen.
258. atmosweather
4:57 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Nothing is worth watching at the moment. We will not see any genesis this week. We can relax for a few days.
Member Since: September 24, 2005 Posts: 33 Comments: 9265
257. atmosweather
4:56 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
The UKMET and NOGAPS predict high shear to return in the area south of Jamaica.
Member Since: September 24, 2005 Posts: 33 Comments: 9265
256. Hellsniper223
4:56 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Please don't say nothing is worth watching. =D Mothernature is likely to prove you otherwise and then you'll be all... "Woops Sorry Guys. Didn't mean to put your guard down!"

Look at that big wave off of panama.
Member Since: March 28, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 16
255. ForecasterColby
4:55 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Just some showers associated with the trough. The TC Genesis Parameters considers it the most threatening thing in the Atlantic, though.
254. ForecasterColby
4:54 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
252. thelmores
4:52 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
whats that group of showers at the tail end of the trough in the gulf, just off brownsville, texas?

Brownsville Visible Satellite Loop
Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3805
251. atmosweather
4:47 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Unfortunately that wave is about to get shredded by another area of high shear. There isn't anything in the tropics that is worth watching right now for significant development. Next week maybe a different story though...
Member Since: September 24, 2005 Posts: 33 Comments: 9265
249. fredwx
4:44 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Regarding the low off of spain:
This is a surface reflection of a good sized upper level cut-off low.

500mb Chart
Member Since: June 8, 2005 Posts: 221 Comments: 261
248. atmosweather
4:42 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
He's probably writing it as we speak.
Member Since: September 24, 2005 Posts: 33 Comments: 9265
246. fredwx
4:36 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
RE Accuweather claim
"Because of this, people may be unaware that portions of the Northeast coast have been severely damaged by major hurricanes in the past, and that there is a dramatically increased likelihood that over the next five years the Northeast could be hit by a major hurricane. This could be the year."

Here are the facts:

According to the HURDAT files there have been only 2 major hurricanes to hit the NE (NY-Maine) since 1851. (Regions 10 and 11)

Regarding risk. According to the United States Landfalling Hurricane Probability Project:

The historical risk for a landfalling major hurricane is less than 0.7 % in any given year for zones 10 and 11.

The risk this year is estimated to be just under 1.8% or about 2.5 times the average and might be considered a "significant increase in risk", however the estimated 2006 total risk of under 1.8% can hardly be labeled "high" or "significant" (IMHA)
Member Since: June 8, 2005 Posts: 221 Comments: 261
245. jeffB
4:35 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Local storm reports from North Carolina:

http://iwin.nws.noaa.gov/iwin/nc/public.html

Lots of streets flooding, some larger roads closed, a bridge abutment giving way, and so on. The "Storm Total" radar report for our area is now showing a wider area with over five inches of rain, and seven inches in some spots.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 42
244. newt3d
4:27 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Any thoughts on that cut-off low by the coast of Spain? It's been hovering there for a while, and looks like it might stay there a few more days. Water temps are a little cold, but it looks like it's trying to turn sub-tropical.
Member Since: October 6, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 90
243. unc70
4:25 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill area was really dry this spring, down 8-10 inches for the year since March. It started raining irregularly 3-4 weeks ago -- three downpours in a row at my office, each missing my house and yard by a block or two. Eventually, most of us got 3-4 inches before Alberto.

The RDU airport was still down over 5 inches from normal before today. So far today, they show 4.98 inches and it is still pouring.

Getting this rain (and some more) is usually a protection from the worst hurricanes. They seem to really like hitting us after a really hot, drought-condition summer with lots of energy to feed on. Soggy, rainy summers don't attract as many storms.

Member Since: June 13, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 16
242. Wombats
4:25 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
I doubt we will reach 4 but you never know.
241. guygee
4:14 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Stellar - Dr. Masters answered that question in a previous blog: Link.

Three named storms in June would tie the record set in 1936 and 1968.

Member Since: September 16, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3167
240. dnalia
4:14 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Would 3 storms be a record for June?


I think 4 would be a new record
239. yorkcova
4:14 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
hello - long time lurker, 1st time poster
hooked - i was on the road in richmond during gaston, didnt think id make it home.
im now in se va and im waiting for that big rain shield to roll in anytime now. we have about .6 inches so far today.
Member Since: September 14, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 30
238. StellarCyclone
3:54 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Would 3 storms be a record for June?
237. hookedontropics
3:48 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
I said it this morning, I am here in Richmond and when Gaston decided to change directions on us, we had 11 inches of rain in 4 hours. While your rain in Raleigh may not be as intense you have been in it for a longer period of time.. Gaston was not a strong cyclone, nor very large, yet we still had some extreme flooding.
Member Since: August 25, 2005 Posts: 3 Comments: 127
236. guygee
3:46 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Wombats - Looks like a good part of the energy in that Carribean wave got sheared off far to the northeast, but enough of the energy has escaped and is under a ridge entering an area of low shear, so I think it still merits watching over the next few days.
Member Since: September 16, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3167
235. WSI
3:45 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
"I wonder what Dr. Masters is suggesting by this statement, especially the last part.

Exceptionally active = record breaking activity?"

I would think he means above average, but that is just my take on it.


weathercore.com
232. ForecasterColby
3:25 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
BTW, all you folks who have just returned, check out my blog. It's not weather-related, but a great link nonetheless.
231. ForecasterColby
3:23 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Heh. Raleigh isn't in drought, we (FL) are.
230. jeffB
3:07 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
We're ready for the "beneficial rains" to stop:

Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 42
229. Wombats
2:54 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Anyone think the wave in the carribian will develop? Looks like it lost a little luster.
227. ProgressivePulse
2:18 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
GFS seems to have lost sight of wave one off Africa but, it and the NOGAPS are recognizing a new low @ approx 120hrs.
Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 5405
226. ProgressivePulse
2:05 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Combining the shear and fast movement of the wave in the Carribian I think this will be a EPAC issue.
Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 5405
225. PBG00
1:46 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
That Bermuda high is what kept throwin storms at s fla in 2004
Member Since: October 20, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 6650
224. Skyepony (Mod)
1:43 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Yeah, I think Alberto just left FL craving for more. Cuba & Cayman took more than their share of rain from him... I got a total of less than 2"

The Caribbean wave is having a much tougher time of it this morning, by the last few frames it looks like that 50kts of shear that was trailing it to the NE yesterday is really catching up to it now.
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 163 Comments: 37847
223. ProgressivePulse
1:41 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
NHC has the high @ 1031MB, that is pretty darn high.
Member Since: August 19, 2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 5405
222. pilotguy71
1:41 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
We picked up 4.14 inches of rain here in Bluffton, SC in a 24 hour period from Alberto. Time to dry out! :)

Member Since: December 14, 2005 Posts: 17 Comments: 1
220. sandtrapdt
1:32 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
We here in Navarre, FL (panhandle region) were hoping for a little more rain out of Alberto. All I got was a trace which was not enough to make a puddle. I am glad for central and southern FL as they needed the rain as well. We have been without rain for over a month and have only had 9" since the beginning of the year. Normal amount should be 25-30" by now.

I hate to say this, but we sure could use a low intensity tropical system to come this way so we could get some relief.
219. HopquickSteve
1:30 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Look at the Hawaiian high Michael...

Both of the Highs seem massive in the GFS. I would want to see how fast they are spinning anti-cyclonically, but it would be hard for anything cyclonic to go near anything that deep. Makes me wonder about the Alberto forecast. I don't know if he can go back over water...

Back to the satellites.
Member Since: May 17, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 635
218. HopquickSteve
1:26 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
I read the much maligned accuweather article:

Said AccuWeather.com Hurricane Center Meteorologist Bernie Rayno, "With the exception of the southern tip of the Florida peninsula, almost all the damage wrought by last year's storms in the U.S. occurred along the Gulf Coast. In recent history, it is the Gulf coast and the East Coast from the Carolinas southward that have borne the brunt of U.S. hurricane strikes. Because of this, people may be unaware that portions of the Northeast coast have been severely damaged by major hurricanes in the past, and that there is a dramatically increased likelihood that over the next five years the Northeast could be hit by a major hurricane. This could be the year."

I think the point of the graphics and the prediction of "low chance" for impact in the big bend, is them anticipating the bermuda high flinging storms up towards the NE.

It's trying to hype up the NE so that they pay attention. Everyone in the gulf is already watching. But even a Cat-2 Alberto (if he miraculously strengthened) turning in and hitting a Bos-Wash metropolis would be bad.
Member Since: May 17, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 635
216. HopquickSteve
1:18 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
I am hoping for a year of 25-28 named storms, all of them fishspinners except for one little tropical storm, Alberto! (Oh well)
Member Since: May 17, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 635
215. HopquickSteve
1:15 PM GMT on June 14, 2006
Well...about 2006 being worse then 2005...

I think it is very possible that 2006 could be worse in number of storms, number of hurricanes, number of major hurricanes.

That being said...I am not sure that there will be as many landfalls. ^_^

I thought I heard someone say that this was going to be more of a verde year than a gulf year.

Gulf = 99% landfall chance (once you are in the gulf, there is no way out). Cape Verde = ? % landfall chance. (It mostly has to do with how the bermuda high is feeling, and the trough of the moment)
Member Since: May 17, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 635

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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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