Revolt at NHC; tropical update

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:24 PM GMT on July 06, 2007

Share this Blog
1
+

The extraordinary political turmoil at the National Hurricane Center (NHC) continued yesterday, with the release of a statement signed by nearly half of the staff calling for the immediate dismissal of director Bill Proenza. Front page stories in both the Miami Herald and Florida Sun-Sentinel detail the letter, which reads: "An unfortunate public debate is now occurring over the ability of the National Hurricane Center to meet its mission. The undersigned staff of the National Hurricane Center has concluded that the center needs a new director. The effective functioning of the National Hurricane Center is at stake. The staff of the National Hurricane Center would like nothing more than to return to its primary mission of protecting life and property from hazardous tropical weather, and leave the political arena it now finds itself in." The letter is signed by 23 of the center's 49 employees, including almost the entire senior staff. Many NHC employees were on vacation, and did not have the opportunity to sign the letter.

The articles in the two newspapers also quote my blog from yesterday, where I present the case against Bill Proenza--his misrepresentation of the science of how much the QuikSCAT satellite influences hurricane track forecasts. I'll have more to say on the matter this afternoon, when I've had a chance to process some of the feedback on this.

Tropical update
A low pressure system (96L) with a well-defined spin is about 550 miles east of the Lesser Antilles Islands, moving westward towards the islands at 10-15 mph. This low continues to show sporadic heavy thunderstorm activity, but has been unable to overcome the large amount of dry air it is embedded in. It would appear that 96L's window of opportunity for developing into a tropical depression has closed, as wind shear has risen to 20 knots and is expected to remain at least 20 knots for the next two or three days. None of the reliable computer models develop the system into a tropical depression.


Figure 1. Model tracks for 96L, the low pressure system approaching the Lesser Antilles Islands.

New disturbance off the east coast of Florida
An area of disturbed weather has developed off the east coast of Florida along an old frontal boundary. Long range radar out of Melbourne, FL shows a large disorganized area of showers off the coast. The area is under 20-25 knots of wind shear, and the shear is forecast to remain above 20 knots for at least the next two days in the region, which should prevent any development. The GFS computer model shows this disturbance moving off to the northeast over the weekend, but it could bring heavy rains to Florida and the Northwest Bahamas Friday and Saturday before it does so. None of the reliable computer models develop the system into a tropical depression.

Jeff Masters

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 115 - 65

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10Blog Index

115. ihave27windows
10:30 AM CDT on July 06, 2007
I don't really care about this BS. This shouldn't be happening during hurricane season. I want my home, family, and everyone else in harms way looked after and protected.

Could this not have waited until December????
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
114. wunderwomen
11:31 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
i just think this whole thing is stupid and proenza should stay and we see how it goes
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
113. phillyfan909
10:18 AM EST on July 06, 2007
I don't see any reason to think Dr Masters has an axe to grind. He's playing it as fair as he can. But it's a little strange to see his quotes from this blog being used in the newspapers and maybe at some point by people who are involved or investigating. There's no way yet any of us can know which side's right.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
112. wunderwomen
11:30 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
for once i think i agree misterperfect
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
111. MisterPerfect
3:29 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
not to call for the person to resign or to be fired.

Tell that to Keith Olberman
Member Since: November 1, 2006 Posts: 71 Comments: 20139
110. wunderwomen
11:28 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
poor Proenza
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
108. bigtrucker
11:26 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
very correct rocket. People need to use the news as an outlet than form their own opinions. otherwise your a puppet to the media
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
107. wunderwomen
11:26 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
but whatever happen to freedom of speech in this case i mean is that no longer able to be used without someone screaming at you geez what will the world come to next
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
106. Snowfire
3:10 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Proenza's argument in favor of a Quickscat replacement probably was flawed; but I've seen flawed arguments in science before. The usual response is merely to point out the flaws in the argument and to present a counterargument, not to call for the person to resign or to be fired. What has he done to provoke everyone to turn on him like this? Obviously, there is more to this than merely a dispute over the validity of the science. Would the forecasters have been so hasty to turn on one of their own, promoted from within?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
105. WPBHurricane05
11:26 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
Shes naked like 96L Visible
Member Since: July 31, 2006 Posts: 56 Comments: 8112
104. mobal
10:26 AM CDT on July 06, 2007
The Hurricane Center appears to be in the middle of a storm.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
103. outrocket
10:17 AM CDT on July 06, 2007
way I see it pat,the weather news sadly is politics right now and the NHC is center stage of a political takeover..its all about power..Just like it was all power plays from every government level that left most of our gulf coast in turmoil after Katrina..

WU is reporting the news you may not see on the national news ,none really are journalist here so maybe thats why their is a bias??..Take the news and use your own mind and disregard their personal opinion...Then again I understand that maybe strangers don't see or read everyday as we do so I do see your point...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
101. Patrap
10:24 AM CDT on July 06, 2007
more of a STINK,..than a smell in my nostrils..
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128865
99. bigtrucker
11:19 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
And Pat is right. This never should have made the public domain. It should have been an internal affair.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
98. bluehaze27
3:19 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
It got way out of hand when NOAA sent him a Letter of Reprimand. Granted, he showed no real tact in dealing with the issue, but he was new to the job and NOAA could have handled it differently. By them keeping the issue in the limelight they made matters worse...and now it has the smell of politics.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
97. WPBHurricane05
11:22 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
Wow everyone is caught up in the Proenza fiasco that we forgot to post the TWO. Well here it is

TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
1130 AM EDT FRI JUL 6 2007

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

A WEAK LOW PRESSURE AREA...LOCATED ABOUT 75 MILES EAST OF
JACKSONVILLE FLORIDA...IS PRODUCING DISORGANIZED SHOWERS AND
THUNDERSTORMS FROM THE NORTHERN BAHAMAS NORTHEASTWARD INTO THE
ATLANTIC FOR SEVERAL HUNDRED MILES. UPPER-LEVEL WINDS ARE NOT
FAVORABLE FOR DEVELOPMENT.

THE AREA OF LOW PRESSURE LOCATED ABOUT 450 MILES EAST OF THE
SOUTHERN WINDWARD ISLANDS IS DEGENERATING INTO A TROPICAL WAVE.
ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS ARE NOT FAVORABLE FOR DEVELOPMENT AS THIS
SYSTEM MOVES WESTWARD.

ELSEWHERE...TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION IS NOT EXPECTED DURING THE
NEXT 48 HOURS.

$$
FORECASTER BROWN



Member Since: July 31, 2006 Posts: 56 Comments: 8112
96. StoryOfTheCane
3:19 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
another tropical low is emerging off Verde

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
95. MikeOhio
3:19 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Posted By: bigtrucker at 3:19 PM GMT on July 06, 2007.
i guess your right mike, ive been mooted all the time.. LOL I guess what Im trying to say is i wish our money was better spent on saving lives than a few remarks made about an agimg satellite that far exceeded its life span


Now there I agree with you. This leads me back to what I said a couple days ago - mainly, I said Proenza wasn't the person certain elements of NHC wanted to lead them.

This happens every once in a while, but I've not really ever seen it public like this. Normally these things tend to stay internal.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
94. StoryOfTheCane
3:19 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
93. Patrap
10:16 AM CDT on July 06, 2007
They dont have the NHC seat. Those guys are not bound to the public trust. The mutiny at the NHC is over an internal struggle.It could have been handled there..not in a blog forum.Not in the public eyes.
The damage is done to the Public trust for this season.Regardless if Bill stays or goes.

The Public trust is not ..was not..and continues not to be the focus as it should. Instead. We have a glitzie Insider Edition of the NHC.

Sad.dad days...

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128865
92. MikeOhio
3:18 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Posted By: nash28 at 3:15 PM GMT on July 06, 2007.
Proenza has said this morning that he is not going to resign.


So did Nixon :-D
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
91. bigtrucker
11:12 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
i guess your right mike, ive been mooted all the time.. LOL I guess what Im trying to say is i wish our money was better spent on saving lives than a few remarks made about an aging satellite that far exceeded its life span
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
90. bluehaze27
3:11 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Crownwx, not only that but look what Reagan did to the Air Traffic controllers. I work at Miami Wx observatory. We work under a government contractor that changes every three to four years mostly fly-by night scammers who bounce checks ( Nantom, Ed Tech). We are unionized but since we are under an FAA contract, we cannot strike. There is a no walk out clause in the government contract.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
88. nash28
3:02 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Proenza has said this morning that he is not going to resign.
Member Since: July 11, 2005 Posts: 190 Comments: 16972
87. auburn (Mod)
10:12 AM CDT on July 06, 2007
anyone have any thought on the year 2012?if so read the article in my blog and post your thoughts...Thanks..
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
86. bluehaze27
3:04 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Patrap, you don't think Chris Landsea's and William Grey's politics don't affect their forecasting(ie global warming effects on hurricanes)? I think they have an agenda that is mixed with their science just as I'm sure it is in on the other side. Everything today has become polarized and science is now used to justify agendas. In fact, it is naive to think it hasn't always been this way.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
85. crownwx
11:05 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
Posted By: sporteguy03 at 2:54 PM GMT on July 06, 2007.
Could the NHC staff walk out on the job if Proenza is not ousted?


Actually, no federal employees are not allowed to strike and in fact it is against the law for federal employees to strike. This came about when postal workers went on strike in the early 1980s when Reagan was in office.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
84. bigtrucker
11:04 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
yea blue. that was mine first here in CT. Slept out for the show and was first in line!!!! what a way to start my concert scene.
Now its all about money
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
83. weatherboyfsu
3:04 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Cosmic.......As my mom use to say.....the proof is in the pudding........I believe we have access to the archives on here.....And i am willing to bet that half the people that were on here then are not now.........And half of the people that are on here now were still in high school.......theres nothing wrong with that...but when i get some time i will visit the archives and bring back some quotes....Maybe even from you cosmicevents.......lol
Member Since: July 17, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 1025
82. MisterPerfect
3:06 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Proenza and Kobe Bryant should do lunch together....they are in similar turmoil
Member Since: November 1, 2006 Posts: 71 Comments: 20139
80. MikeOhio
3:05 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Posted By: bigtrucker at 3:03 PM GMT on July 06, 2007.
ummmm i know that mike, but We the people who fund it have zero say in the dealings


That's all well and good, but you don't have crap to say about the politics in the DEA or DOD or HHS or any of the others......rendering your points moot....
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
79. MikeOhio
3:03 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Posted By: sporteguy03 at 2:54 PM GMT on July 06, 2007.
Could the NHC staff walk out on the job if Proenza is not ousted?


Could they? yes, but it would be terribly unprofessional and I'm unsure of their AFGE (American Federation of Government Employees - i.e. the FedGov workers union) standing or if they are even members, some won't be. If they are contractors, they can leave at any time, but that risks their employment.

I'd say that Proenza resigns here sooner or later.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
78. bigtrucker
11:02 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
ummmm i know that mike, but We the people who fund it have zero say in the dealings
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
77. Patrap
10:00 AM CDT on July 06, 2007
The wu land has been fun..but very little substance has come out of the featured heirarchy above the group bloggers below.

How many souls can the wundergrond chew up and spit out? Im done here mostly.Its futile...Ive banged these keys for a year. With little result for the area to show for it. I might have raised a lil conscience levels..and the overall response has been welcomed. I choose to continue in another vein mostly.
It pains me to see someone "elevate" their cause..at the expense of a public trust ..or an Individual. All over some Quikscat mis quotes.

Crazy. I think politics and forecasting is like Oil and vinager. They never mix well..till shaken. There some here in High places who think its their JOB to shake. Instead of doing what the PHD they hold calls for.... Thanks

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128865
76. CosmicEvents
2:50 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Posted By: weatherboyfsu at 2:42 PM GMT on July 06, 2007.

Question for all you weather enthusiasts......Does anyone remember where KATRINA came from, out of what disturbance? Does anyone remember that there was a little wantabe depression chugging along the atlantic with similar hostile environment as 96L..... Actually the depression like storm was completely dismissed by almost everyone and then it reappeared north of Puerto Rico.....Does anyone remember that?

.
.
I remember weatherboy. But what you write is not true. That's revisionist history. This board in general roots on any patch of clouds that it can latch on to and dreams about the possibilities. Katrina was no different. I think maybe 1 or 2 wrote her off. The rest rooted her on.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
75. bluehaze27
2:54 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
It has the smell of a silencing.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
74. sporteguy03
2:53 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Could the NHC staff walk out on the job if Proenza is not ousted?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
73. ralphfurley
2:47 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
the NHC mess is going to get worse...NBC Miami just had reporter state that "some" say this is another case of the Bush admin "trying to silence" its critics...Rep Ron Klein and Debbie Wasserman-Schultz(democrats) have already joined in to make this political.

I recall Max Mayfield on ABC 10 a few weeks refuting the whole Quicksat mess
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
72. bluehaze27
2:46 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Hey bigtrucker, Aerosmith was my first official rock concert. I was twelve, it was 1978, they were drunk (Frank Marino was good), my mom drove me and my friends(embarrassing), tickets were $11 general admission at what was known as the Hollywood Snortatorium in Hollywood Fl. Sorry for the hikack of the board.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
71. CosmicEvents
2:42 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Dr. M has become part of the story.
.
.
Oh, and in response to the poster who said something about some people at NHC being on vacation this time of year. Keep in mind the short July 4th holiday, which some may have stretched into a long weekend. And there is nothing doing in the tropics.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
70. MikeOhio
2:45 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Proenza's done. 96L is done. 97L (or what will become 97L) will never be....

Posted By: bigtrucker at 2:43 PM GMT on July 06, 2007.
the politics in the NHC is getting worse than our governments. scary part is we dont get a chance to vote these people in or out


Ummmmmmmm Bigtrucker, the politics at NHC are like the government because IT IS part of the government.

It works this way in just about every other governmental organization, but for whatever reason, this one is getting more press than most do, probably due to the recent spate of intense hurricanes in the past few seasons......
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
69. weatherboyfsu
2:44 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
This season is still very young.....Not even close to when some strong seasons have started...... Most of those impatience people are young.....which is ok......I get impatience some times.........lol
Member Since: July 17, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 1025
68. Melagoo
2:20 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Weatherboykris posted a Tri-acter LOL


Looks like the future of 96L is very unlikely
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
67. bigtrucker
10:43 AM EDT on July 06, 2007
Pat i was just about to say that...glad i refreshed the page ha ha
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
66. weatherboyfsu
2:42 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Yes I know that was at a different time of the Hurricane season.....yeah yeah..... 96L wants to do something....until its completely gone you never know.......
Member Since: July 17, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 1025
65. NormalGuy
2:37 PM GMT on July 06, 2007
Well, my boss is umm, well it's me and I just asked if I cared if I blogged a little and I said its okay. So I am going to give myself a little raise and do my own evaluation, tell me how good I am, and look forward to the weekend. By the way whats up with 96L, this thing pulled a disappearing act and would't you know it, he came back. I wish everyone would stop talking like a slow season so far is a bad thing, umm last time I checked death and property damage were the bad things. The season will speed up believe me, lets just not wish it along so fast.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 115 - 65

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10Blog Index

Top of Page

About

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

Local Weather

Overcast
54 °F
Overcast