Flooding swamps the Gulf Coast

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:28 PM GMT on October 17, 2006

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A frontal system accompanied by copious moisture pumped in by tropical disturbance 92L dumped prodigious rains on the Gulf states yesterday. Rainfall totaled 14 inches in some regions of Texas and Louisiana (Figure 1), triggering flooding that killed three people in the Houston area. The victims challenged flood waters in their vehicles, and lost. Parts of Interstates 10 and 45 were shut down around Houston, and the University of Houston and several other schools were closed. The storm system also spawned numerous tornadoes which caused a few injuries and scattered damage. At 3am yesterday, a tornado ripped into a boat yard in Leeville, LA, hurling boats around, flipping two mobile homes, and injuring four people. Tornadoes also hit Lumberton, China, and Magnolia Beach in Texas. The threat of tornadoes continues today across the coastal regions of Alabama and the Florida Panhandle, but should diminish by this afternoon as the atmosphere finally starts to stabilize.


Figure 1. Total estimated rainfall from the Lake Charles radar.

Elsewhere in the tropics
There's nothing going on, anywhere in the world. Later this week, most of the models forecast that a weak tropical storm will form in the central Atlantic northeast of Puerto Rico and move out to sea. Wind shear is expected to be light across the Caribbean and southern Gulf of Mexico most of the week, and the NOGAPS model is forecasting that a tropical storm will form in the southern Caribbean on Friday. The storm is forecast to move northwards, threatening Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, and Cuba early next week. None of the other models are picking up on this, and the NOGAPS has been wrong once before this month on a similar type of forecast. Still, residents of the Caribbean, south Florida, and the Bahamas should keep an eye on possible development later this week.

I'll be back with an update Wednesday morning.

Jeff Masters

Too Close for Comfort (INNOVAGOLF)
This normally is a drastic elevation drop below a spillway from our neighborhood lake, sloping steeply from the road, to the back of the picture. The water at its deepest point is at least 15 feet. With 8-10 inches of rain since midnight, the area below our spillway has swollen. Fortunately, a break from the rain is letting everything catch up.
Too Close for Comfort
Power Pole 2 (texfirebug)
High winds blew trees into the lines shorting the pole.
Power Pole 2

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467. HIEXPRESS
1:27 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Move on - New Blog
Member Since: October 13, 2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 2156
466. Utah2Miami
1:26 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Morning everyone.

RapidIntensify is a bit of a pantywaist isn't he/she?

465. saddlegait
1:10 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Patrap - Alabama is in great shape this morning. Had a really thick, but beautiful, fog that started about 8:00 yesterday evening. It just moved in and hung in the air - I love fog especially when I don't have to drive that far in it. This morning everything was all wet and the horses were all dirty from rolling in the dirt (they do that when it rains). The kitties were not thrilled to have their little toes wet, but NO ONE seemed that upset about it - I think even the buzzards who were starting to line up to fight over the latest armadilly road kill incident were content with the moisture.
464. Gatorx
1:07 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Rand ...I sent you mail
462. MichaelSTL
1:03 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
I was in one on July 19th

Ok, it was just a thunderstorm, but one that lasted for about an hour with very high winds (the warning even used the term "hurricane force winds" and it certainly was right - I have never seen high winds lasting that long before or seen the amount of damage it produced before). It was because it was a derecho, which produces a very wide swath of continuous high winds (instead of brief isolated gusts, as normal thunderstorms produce). Of course, there was no storm surge.
Member Since: February 22, 2006 Posts: 94 Comments: 32744
460. Patrap
1:01 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Gm Alabama Momma!..How goes it?
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
459. Patrap
1:01 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Im so Happy ..Saddllegait is up & atum!...WHinnnnie!
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
458. saddlegait
12:58 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Patrap - I'm reporting you to me for making me laugh.
457. Patrap
12:54 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Micheal has never been in a Cane I presume?...
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
456. Patrap
12:53 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
gee ,Im offended..LMAO!..Gm SWLA...
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
455. Patrap
12:53 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
LOL...Okay rapid..you lil tattle tale you..LOL!
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
454. SWLAStormFanatic
12:50 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Pat...you naughty boy!
453. MichaelSTL
12:49 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
El Nino = less storms in the Atlantic, especially in the latter half of the season.

End of past El Nino seasons (last storm dissipated):

2002: October 4th (there was a depression from October 14-16)
1997: October 16th
1993: September 21st
1992: October 27th

Note: 1994 began with an El Nino but ended with a La Nina, so it does not count. Note... only one year went later than this year.

Oh, Wilma does not count... La Nina was developing at that time (likely why October was so active, not to mention all the late season storms).
Member Since: February 22, 2006 Posts: 94 Comments: 32744
452. rapidintensify
12:46 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Patrap, I am reporting you to Dr. Masters, your posts are totally ridiculous. When using Dr. Masters' blog, please refrain from posting material not relevant to the discussion of tropical weather, or the topic of the blog entry itself.
450. Patrap
12:44 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Another recent October Hurricane..We regress so fast..LOLLink
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
449. Patrap
12:41 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
MArs weather & Obs,,...with pics!..Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
448. Patrap
12:39 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
The lack of Experience ..is grippingly evident,,LOL
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
447. Patrap
12:38 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Hurricane Juan...Oct 26-Nov 1, 1985Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
446. MichaelSTL
12:38 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Posted By: amd at 12:35 PM GMT on October 18, 2006.

this hurricane season is over.


Exactly! Let's watch the Southern Hemisphere now:



They have their first TCFA...
Member Since: February 22, 2006 Posts: 94 Comments: 32744
445. Patrap
12:36 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Try contacting them direct by e-mail or phone for assistance..
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
444. Patrap
12:37 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
One will learn to refrain from that statement..In October..in time..LOL..Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
443. amd
12:35 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
this hurricane season is over.

Member Since: August 29, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 1024
442. C2News
12:16 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
hamweather.......
Member Since: July 17, 2006 Posts: 73 Comments: 622
441. C2News
12:15 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
i am so confused with the software
Member Since: July 17, 2006 Posts: 73 Comments: 622
440. Patrap
12:09 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Another try..Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
439. Patrap
12:08 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Fog..PensacolaLink..now..
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
438. Patrap
12:05 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Vis down in Fla panhandele...Foggy for sure.Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
437. Patrap
12:04 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
the GFSx 10 day..Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
436. PensacolaDoug
12:03 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Foggy here in P'cola this morn.
Member Since: July 25, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 591
435. Patrap
12:01 PM GMT on October 18, 2006
Heres my Morning traffic cam..Interstate -10 and the Heavy traffic heading in to New Orleans from the westLink
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
434. Patrap
11:59 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
Not much out there to banter around this AM.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
433. C2News
11:56 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
wow.....it is slow today
Member Since: July 17, 2006 Posts: 73 Comments: 622
432. leftovers
11:12 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
23 You said twenty times last week the season was over. Changed your tune? Everyone have a nice day.
431. mrpuertorico
10:58 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
buenos dias looks like 90l still won't die off 1000 mb on my weather station
Member Since: July 10, 2006 Posts: 1 Comments: 833
430. Gatorx
10:41 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
Good morning all.
429. IKE
10:36 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
**yawn**
Member Since: June 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
428. hurricane23
5:04 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
MichaelSTL i know there isn't great model support on this yet but have you seen the 12z Nogaps?
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13839
427. hurricane23
4:56 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
MichaelSTL to say nothing will form i think is a little premature as there is a good 2 1/2 weeks were we can get something going down there.The 18z GFS is still showing pretty favorable conditions shear wise across the caribbean threw 144hrs.If were going to get anymore development this season the western caribbean will be an area to moniter in my opinion. Adrian
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13839
426. aquak9
4:55 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
well yeah, StL...that's what I said. Fronts oughtta move east insteada northeast. BUT...what it oughtta do, and what it DOES do, are different colored ponies.
Member Since: August 13, 2005 Posts: 171 Comments: 26252
425. MichaelSTL
4:51 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
Here is a graphic that illustrates what I am referring to:



The effects here are the opposite... although the drought over the last two years is due to other factors as well (the maps on NOAA's winter outlook also show this).
Member Since: February 22, 2006 Posts: 94 Comments: 32744
424. Patrap
4:49 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
gnight..tucks..
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
423. Patrap
4:49 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
another wet puppy.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
422. Patrap
4:48 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
Here ya go aquak9..Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089
421. aquak9
4:43 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
With the afformentioned lower displacement of the sub-tropical jetstream, adjusting for furtherly true eastward vs norhtheastward movement of northerly troughs, as well as continued warm SST's in the gulf, a pup can only hope for a wet winter.

But what do I know?
Member Since: August 13, 2005 Posts: 171 Comments: 26252
420. JUSTRICK
4:41 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
damn he's good
419. aquak9
4:40 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
...and Elvis is in the house. Oh I so deserve to be banned from this blog....hullo StL!

Member Since: August 13, 2005 Posts: 171 Comments: 26252
418. MichaelSTL
4:38 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
I've heard that an El Nino event in winter will cause higher than average rainfall in FL. Anybody have an explanation why? Is it the steaming pacific water (and air) wafting to the east?

It is due to the same reason shear across the Atlantic is higher than normal and the South is cooler than normal - the subtropical jetstream is displaced to the south.

As for El Nino, it intensified considerably over the last week:

Member Since: February 22, 2006 Posts: 94 Comments: 32744
417. Patrap
4:38 AM GMT on October 18, 2006
my next invest..Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 129089

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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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