Restoring confidence in NHC

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 12:24 PM GMT on July 11, 2007

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There are no threat areas in the tropical Atlantic to discuss, and none of the computer models are forecasting tropical storm formation over the coming week. In the Pacific, an exceptionally large Category 4 typhoon, Man-Yi, will pass close to Okinawa on Friday, and hit Japan on Saturday. Winds at Okinawa have been as high as 50 mph with gusts to 70 mph.

Some links on Man-Yi, sent to me by Jim Edds:

Live camera feed from Southern Okinawa:

click on the pic arrow on the bottom right.

Okinawa radar.
click on Okinawa to zoom in - awesome shot

Camera feed with some audio.
click on the first "no image" box then select "report 17/66"


Latest satellite image of Typhoon Man-Yi, courtesy of NOAA.

Restoring confidence in the NHC
Interim National Hurricane Director Dr. Ed Rappaport has two immediate tasks--restoring morale fractured by Bill Proenza's turbulent 6-month tenure, and restoring public confidence in the Hurricane Center's ability to do their job. With the steadying influence of Dr. Rappaport, a highly respected and talented hurricane scientist, I expect that the staff of NHC will put out their best hurricane forecasts ever this season. Aiding in this endeavor will be the availability of a new hurricane tracking, intensity, and storm surge model called the HWRF--Hurricane Weather and Research Forecast Model. In addition, several of the other reliable models used by the forecasters, such as the GFS and GFDL, have had upgrades since last hurricane season. Furthermore, the Air Force Hurricane Hunters will be carrying the SFMR instrument for the first time, which can measure winds speeds at the ocean surface everywhere the aircraft fly.

Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center made their best track forecasts ever for storms in the Atlantic in 2006. The mean track errors for 12 to 72 hour forecasts were 15% - 20% lower than during 2001-2005. Track errors for Atlantic storms have improved about 50% in the past 15 years (Figure 1), a remarkable achievement that has undoubtedly saved lives and hundreds of millions of dollars. The track error in 2006 for a 24 hour forecast was 58 miles; 112 miles for a 48 hour forecast; and 171 miles for a 72 hour forecast. Track errors for 96 and 120 hour forecasts were 236 miles and 305 miles--the second best on record (2003 set the record). NHC's long-range 120 hour forecasts had a significant bias to the west of 94 miles--about double the bias of what the computer models were forecasting. Thus, when the models correctly called for systems to recurve out to sea, NHC human forecasters tended to resist following what the models were saying.



Figure 1. Track forecast skill since 1990 in the Atlantic for the official NHC forecasts. Track errors are given in nautical miles (100 n mi = 115 miles). Skill is rated compared to a "zero skill" forecast using NHC's CLIPER5 model. The CLIPER model (short for CLImatology and PERsistence) is a model that makes a forecast based on historical paths hurricane have taken, along with the fact that hurricanes tend to keep moving in the direction they are going (i.e., their current motion persists).

Intensity forecasts
Intensity forecasts since 1990 have shown little or no improvement, and 2006 was no exception (Figure 2). One encouraging result was the emergence of the GFDL's intensity model as the best intensity model for 2006. This is the first time that a non-statistical model has made the best intensity forecasts. With the major improvements that were added for the 2007 version of the GFDL, plus the availability of the HWRF model, I am hopeful that this year will see the first noticeable improvement in intensity forecasts since 1990.



Figure 2. Intensity forecast skill since 1990 of the official NHC Atlantic forecasts. Intensity errors are given in knots (10 knots = 11.5 mph).

Jeff Masters

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438. Drakoen
8:47 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
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437. weathersp
8:45 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
Good Morning Sleepy Monster
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436. Drakoen
8:45 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
Posted By: RL3AO at 8:45 PM GMT on July 11, 2007.

I don't know what you mean by heavier, but Man-yi isn't even close to Wilma's intensity.


thats what i am thinking lol. I doubt Man-yi will be stronger than Wilma.
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435. Tropicnerd13
8:41 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
tru dat. i gotta go.
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434. RL3AO
3:44 PM CDT on July 11, 2007
I don't know what you mean by heavier, but Man-yi isn't even close to Wilma's intensity.
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433. StormHype
8:36 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
One point about living on FL west coast and storm tracks: If a storm stays offshore and goes north of your location, you still get hosed by the ripping S and SW winds off the gulf. If it goes ashore south of you, no worries.

Cat 4 Charlie went into Punta Gorda, only about 25 miles SSE of my home and we saw *nothing* as far as winds above 40mph. However, a friend who lives 30 miles due east of Ft Myers had a lot of his shingles removed with 80+mph winds. But when Josephine and Gordon (a TS and Cat1 respectively) passed my place offshore and made a landfall farther north, we got a good spanking from both wind and surge.
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432. Drakoen
8:40 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
It is still rather disorganized.
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430. Tropicnerd13
8:25 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
interesting. zoomed in it looks kinda like wilma.
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427. RL3AO
3:38 PM CDT on July 11, 2007
The JTWC has Man-yi at 115kts (Cat 4).
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426. hurricane91
8:35 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
ok thanks, i was living over in Boca Raton at the time and i was very young, now live a lttle south of sarsota
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425. Drakoen
8:35 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
HurricaneHunters have to be more alert and do more missions with systems like these. Although its hard i think they shoudl be doing 24 hours observations especially with systems that are in an environment favorable for rapid inensification.
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424. RL3AO
3:35 PM CDT on July 11, 2007
Wilmas pressure is pretty accurate since they flew into it. It was maybe 879 or 880.
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423. Drakoen
8:34 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
Wilma definately was stronger than the given 882mb. Look at the convection. How organized and deep it is. the eye only a pin could fit through. Make Man-yi Look like nothing lol.
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421. StormHype
8:32 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
It was early march. I shot pictures of the sunk boats bashing the seawall in Sarasota bay. Very cold wind and rain lasted all day.
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418. groundman
8:28 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
Being N of Biloxi I don't like Accuweathers cone of probability.

Oh and as far as mental health after a hurricane randommichael, be REALLY nice to the FEMA workers and subcontractors. Just HAD to throw that in. LOL

417. hurricane91
8:29 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
stomhype, that strange you metion that, i was going back through newspapers about that storm and andrew too, said winds gusted to 90-100 mph, it caused a lot of damage, wat month did that occur in, was it feb?
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416. Drakoen
8:29 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
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415. StormHype
8:28 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
Tropicnerd. Yes, Elena Cat 3 in 1985:
Elena track path
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413. RL3AO
3:27 PM CDT on July 11, 2007
I still believe that Wilma was the most intense storm ever recorded considering the pressure gradient difference from the Pacific and Atlantic.
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412. StormHype
8:20 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
The march 1993 no-name (cold-core) storm was so horrible for FL because nobody expected it thus nobody prepared. I watched the the action unfold along the coast in Sarasota then. The winds were in the 60+mph range but it lasted for about 10 hours on Saturday. Lots of boats in the bay broke loose and hit seawalls, sinking. Same story all the way up the coast to the big bend plus many surge related drownings in Taylor county.

So, the element of surprise can make things much worse than a warned storm. I was told that heads rolled at TBW NWS office cause of the lack of warning with this storm. Not sure if that is rumor or verified true.
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410. Patrap
3:26 PM CDT on July 11, 2007
One can use the NOAA search engines to find such info.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 127913
409. Tropicnerd13
8:22 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
has there ever been a storm that stayed some what stationary in the gulf or off shore from it besides allison 2001?
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408. Drakoen
8:24 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
tip
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407. Drakoen
8:22 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
(WIKIPEDIA)

Typhoon Tip was the largest and most intense tropical cyclone on record. The nineteenth tropical storm, twelfth typhoon, and third super typhoon of the 1979 Pacific typhoon season, Tip developed out of a disturbance in the monsoon trough on October 4 near Pohnpei. Initially, a tropical storm to its northwest hindered the development and motion of Tip, though after it tracked further north Tip was able to intensify. After passing Guam, it rapidly intensified and reached peak winds of 305 km/h (190 mph) and a worldwide record low pressure of 870 mbar (hPa) on October 12. At its peak strength, it was also the largest tropical cyclone on record with a diameter of 2220 km (1380 mi). It slowly weakened as it continued west-northwestward, and later turned to the northeast under the influence of an approaching trough. Tip made landfall on southern Japan on October 19, and became an extratropical cyclone shortly thereafter.

Air Force reconnaissance flew into the typhoon for 60 missions, making Tip one of the most closely observed tropical cyclones of all time.[1] Rainfall from the typhoon breached a flood-retaining wall at a United States Marine Corps training camp in the Kanagawa Prefecture of Japan, leading to a fire which injured 68 and killed 13 Marines. Elsewhere in the country, it led to widespread flooding and 42 deaths. 44 were killed or left unaccounted for due to shipwrecks offshore.



Link
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406. Patrap
3:23 PM CDT on July 11, 2007
WEST-Pacific Full Disk IR with Man-yi

Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 127913
405. weathersp
8:23 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
How low was Tip? 870 ish?

NVM Question Answered^^
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404. RL3AO
3:23 PM CDT on July 11, 2007
Tip is the strongest storm ever recorded worldwide at 870mb.
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403. RL3AO
3:23 PM CDT on July 11, 2007
This is a 872mb system from 1997

1
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402. Drakoen
8:20 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
I don't think Tip will be number 1 for much longer. Systems are getting stronger and more intense it won't be long till something surpasses Tip.
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401. Tropicnerd13
8:17 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
lets get back to talking about man yi. what was the deal about tip? can someone inform me about it? i usually dont pay atention to pacific storms.
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400. Drakoen
8:19 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
randommichael i don't think Florida can escape the wrath of hurricanes in any given season.
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398. nash28
8:19 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
Thanks for commenting on my blog guys. Let's just hope this pattern DOES NOT anchor during the meat of the season.

It would be bad news.
Member Since: July 11, 2005 Posts: 190 Comments: 16972
396. koneofdeath
8:19 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
EASING HURRICANE RELATED STRESS

Surfing helps Alot!
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395. Drakoen
8:18 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
Super Typhoon Man-yi has winds of 140kts.
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394. hurricane91
8:14 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
thanks guyes, for all ur responses
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393. Drakoen
8:16 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
Floyd did something like that. Staying of shore. I don't think it did much wind of Flooding damage.

(wikipedia)

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392. Tropicnerd13
8:13 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
how high are the winds in manyi now? oh, thanks drak. if that mid atlantic even becomes anything like 96l then since there isnt anything it would have to fight off it will probably go straight into the carribean and become either a rita or a wilma or an emily. doubt it will be a katrina. it may hit there but not the same path... i dont want to talk about this wave anymore... sounds dangerous.
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391. weathermanwannabe
3:12 PM CDT on July 11, 2007
True Random......In fact, the last time that they experienced hurricane force winds over there (which damaged small coastal resort area and the like around the Big Bend)was not from a Hurricane but in March of 1993 (maybe before your time)when the "Spring Perfect Storm", which battered the entire East Coast of the US...I was visiting a friend in Clermont (North of Orlando) at the time and the wind (as well as tornados) did a lot of damage...Tropic; correct; a possible worst case scenario for the Big Bend (not counting the land crossing storms) would be a more eastward strike say like at Apalachicola where the Big Bend would be in the NE Quadrant....As it is now (for the last several years), the Big Bend suffers a lot of storm surge/tide damage as the storms have "passed to our south" on the way to the Panhandle and parts Westward...
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9075
390. nash28
8:14 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
Ok guys, I see we're overhyping the "what if Tampa is hit" again....

Bottom line is this... We are at a HIGH RISK every season. The fact that Tampa has not had a direct hit since 1921 is also alarming...

Having said that, EVERYONE on the Gulf Coast is at a HIGH RISK. Be prepared, because the day will eventually come when 1921 will no longer be compared.
Member Since: July 11, 2005 Posts: 190 Comments: 16972
389. hurricane23
4:15 PM EDT on July 11, 2007
Posted By: nash28 at 4:13 PM EDT on July 11, 2007. (hide)
Hey guys. Been a long day and no time for blogging (until now).

What's up?

Did you see the email Jeff Masters sent me?
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388. Drakoen
8:15 PM GMT on July 11, 2007
Posted By: RL3AO at 8:14 PM GMT on July 11, 2007.

Comeon Man-yi. 30 more mb.


LOL. It is extremly impressive but i don't think its the next Tip. Alot of hurricanes we thought would be the next Tip.I don't think this is one of them.
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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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