Probe recommends Proenza's permanent removal; Atlantic and Hawaiian tropical update

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:11 PM GMT on July 20, 2007

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At a Congressional hearing yesterday, results of the independent probe sent by NOAA to investigate management problems at the National Hurricane Center were presented by Dr. Jim Turner. Dr. Turner is deputy director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and was leader of the independent team of five people sent to NHC on July 2. Their report (Attachment 9) recommended the permanent removal of Bill Proenza as director of NHC (also called the Tropical Prediction Center, or TPC):

"The current TPC director should be reassigned and not be allowed to return to his position at the center. This should be done due to his failure to demonstrate leadership within the TPC rather than his public statements about the QuikSCAT satellite or NOAA leadership."

In his testimony, the administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Conrad Lautenbacher, presented some very damaging evidence against Mr. Proenza. Lautenbacher's written testimony includes a letter (Attachment 2) providing a detailed description of a conference call requested by 11 NHC employees (including 7 of 9 of the hurricane forecasters), with the acting head of the National Weather Service, Mary Glackin. If you want to better understand the NHC controversy, read Attachment 2 describing what was said during the June 19 meeting.

I'll make one more post this afternoon analyzing the science of what was presented at the Congressional hearing. Then, it's time to let this issue fade until the next Congressional hearing on the issue, tentatively planned for December or January. The tropics are starting to heat up, and it's time to focus on the coming hurricane season.

Tropical wave near Puerto Rico
A tropical wave near Puerto Rico is spreading clouds and thunderstorms over a wide area of the Eastern Caribbean, northern Lesser Antilles Islands, and surrounding waters. This wave is under about 20-30 knots of wind shear, thanks to the presence of an upper-level low pressure system to its northwest (Figure 1). This upper low is expected to stay in place an continue to bring hostile wind shear to the area the next few days. I don't expect the shear will allow anything to develop from this tropical wave.


Figure 1. Water vapor image from this morning showing the tropical wave near Puerto Rico, and the upper level low with dry air (dark colors) to its northwest. This upper level low sucking in moist air from the tropical wave, and is bringing hostile wind shear of 20-30 knots over it.

We will need to watch the waters off the Carolina coast on Saturday, when a cold front is expected to push off the coast. Most of the models are predicting the formation of a low pressure system along the tail end of this front by Sunday. This low may be an ordinary extratropical storm--or possibly a subtropical storm--due to the presence of high wind shear. NHC has put a Hurricane Hunter aircraft on standby to investigate the region on Sunday afternoon, if necessary. Even if the low is extratropical, it may be able to suck up plenty of tropical moisture and douse the mid-Atlantic coast and/or New England with heavy rains as early as Monday.

Cosme to skirt Hawaii
Residents of the Hawaiian Islands can relax a bit now, as it appears that Tropical Depression Cosme, will pass well south of the Big Island on Saturday. The edges of the outermost spiral bands will probably bring rains of 1-3 inches to the east side of the Big Island. Wind shear has fallen to 5-10 knots, and ocean temperatures are beginning to warm to 80F under the storm, and I expect Cosme will regain minimal tropical storm strength by Saturday. Satellite imagery of the storm shows that the amount of heavy thunderstorm activity has remained about constant so far today.

Jeff Masters

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169. Patrap
5:28 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
The Mosaic Atlantic and Globe Stitched..Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 128240
167. emagirl
5:27 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
drakeon on you picture you posted this may be a dumb question but on into africa are those other areas disturbances that will be coming off the coast like the one now??
166. Bonedog
5:23 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
I love the wide view especially using the water vapor loop. get to see the whole picture from africa to the gulf. sooooo nice. thank you nhc
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
165. hurricane23
5:23 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Good afternoon...

Nothing to worry about this afternoon as the waters close to home are pretty much dominated by ULL'S right now.The moisture of the wave near puerto rico has moved north but the wave axis has basically continued moving west in the caribbean and may run into a little better environment in the next couple of days.No signs of chantel for the time being so we'll see what next week brings.Adrian


Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13786
164. Drakoen
5:21 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30489
163. Drakoen
5:17 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Posted By: MelbourneTom at 5:15 PM GMT on July 20, 2007.

Drak, I think your black area is about 3 degrees too far east.

What happens to the ULL when it suddenly gets this much moisture?


All i did was generalize the area that they are going to investigate from the TCPOD.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30489
162. Bonedog
5:16 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
those coordinates are also where the models are showing the Low to develope from the frontal system give or take a few degrees.

Maybe the Low will pull in the moisture from this northern disturbance and basically jump start it
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
161. TheCaneWhisperer
5:15 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
I love new toys! Atlantic Wide View.
160. MelbourneTom
5:15 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Drak, I think your black area is about 3 degrees too far east.

What happens to the ULL when it suddenly gets this much moisture?
Member Since: June 2, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 619
159. DaytonaBeachWatcher
5:12 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
well like i posted above, Dr. M. seems to think that is what the invest is on... per his blog.. maybe not. I dont think NHC would post a possible invest for 3 days away on a tropical wave that is dieing but again i could be wrong. we will just have to wait and see
Not shooting the messenger at all .... just posing another prospective.
Member Since: June 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
158. groundswell
5:12 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Just curious-the upper low seems pretty strong and is wrapping in moisture to its east-looks like 180 degrees worth-now a frontal boundary approaches from the west with ample moisture--does this wrap in from the west? Can this mix then transform to the surface or does it weaken or elongate the upper low?
Member Since: August 28, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 381
157. StormJunkie
5:07 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
How could anything end up between those 2 giant ULLs?
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 16505
156. StormJunkie
5:06 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Afternoon all

Drak, where recon may go ☺ big may right now.

Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 16505
155. Drakoen
5:06 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
somewhere in the black area i put
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30489
154. Drakoen
5:03 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Those are the coordinates for where the RECON will be.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30489
153. HurricaneKing
5:03 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Thats in between the wave and the cold front.
Member Since: July 6, 2005 Posts: 71 Comments: 2481
152. charley04survivor
5:02 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Drakoen -What does that mean
151. Drakoen
5:01 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Don't shoot the messenger:

000
NOUS42 KNHC 201330
WEATHER RECONNAISSANCE FLIGHTS
CARCAH, NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER, MIAMI, FL.
0930 AM EDT FRI 20 JULY 2007
SUBJECT: TROPICAL CYCLONE PLAN OF THE DAY (TCPOD)
VALID 21/1100Z TO 22/1100Z JULY 2007
TCPOD NUMBER.....07-058

I. ATLANTIC REQUIREMENTS
1. NEGATIVE RECONNAISSANCE REQUIREMENTS.
2. OUTLOOK FOR SUCCEEDING DAY: PSBL LOW LEVEL INVEST
NEAR 33N AND 66W FOR 22/1800Z.

II.PACIFIC REQUIREMENTS
1. NEGATIVE RECONNAISSANCE REQUIREMENTS.
2. SUCCEEDING DAY OUTLOOK.....NEGATIVE.
WVW
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30489
150. DaytonaBeachWatcher
4:58 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
FROM DR. MASTERS BLOG:

We will need to watch the waters off the Carolina coast on Saturday, when a cold front is expected to push off the coast. Most of the models are predicting the formation of a low pressure system along the tail end of this front by Sunday. This low may be an ordinary extratropical storm--or possibly a subtropical storm--due to the presence of high wind shear. NHC has put a Hurricane Hunter aircraft on standby to investigate the region on Sunday afternoon, if necessary. Even if the low is extratropical, it may be able to suck up plenty of tropical moisture and douse the mid-Atlantic coast and/or New England with heavy rains as early as Monday.
Member Since: June 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
149. gthsii
4:55 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
wow, mainland africa has filled in the train since yesterday at this time
148. charley04survivor
4:57 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
California is overdue for a large quake.
147. Bonedog
4:55 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Just have to watch for another quake stronger this time to south of SF. According to the moment tension sensors it shifted the plate to the north but put stress to the 2 adjacent faults to the south.
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
146. Drakoen
4:55 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Posted By: DaytonaBeachWatcher at 4:55 PM GMT on July 20, 2007.

DRAK:
the recon on that possible invest isnt for the caribbean system that is dieing - it is for the possible invest they expect to come of the east coast...... i believe


Look at the cooridinates...of the RECON flight.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30489
145. DaytonaBeachWatcher
4:51 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
DRAK:
the recon on that possible invest isnt for the caribbean system that is dieing - it is for the possible invest they expect to come of the east coast...... i believe
it is set for sunday as of now
Member Since: June 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 1136
144. WPBHurricane05
12:53 PM EDT on July 20, 2007
4.2 are just a little rockers. Will wake you up, but dont cause much damage.
Member Since: July 31, 2006 Posts: 56 Comments: 8112
143. Patrap
11:53 AM CDT on July 20, 2007
The Mosaic Atlantic and Globe Stitched..Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 128240
142. Tazmanian
4:52 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
: StormW evere thing is ok
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141. Tazmanian
4:51 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
good thing WU made it ok
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140. Patrap
11:51 AM CDT on July 20, 2007
The Global Africa NRL view...Link
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 128240
139. weatherguy03
12:50 PM EDT on July 20, 2007
I would explain what is happening right now in the tropics but I dont have alot of time. You can check out my blog that I just updated. See ya all later.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
138. charley04survivor
4:49 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Oh no, Cheney is going to nuke something.
137. saveabeagle
4:49 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
thank you Taz, glad to see there wasn't another one.
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135. Bonedog
4:48 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
the quake in SF was at 4:42:22AM 4.2 at a depth of 3.6miles. Ground shock for 53 seconds.


Link
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
132. Tazmanian
4:48 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
SAN FRANCISCO - An earthquake jolted San Francisco Bay area residents awake early Friday, breaking glass and rattling nerves, although there were no immediate reports of injuries.



The earthquake was recorded about 2 miles east of Oakland and had a preliminary magnitude of 4.2, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. It could be felt for up to 10 seconds on both sides of the San Francisco Bay after striking shortly after 4:40 a.m.

More than 1,000 customers in the Oakland area lost power, a Pacific Gas & Electric Co. spokesman said. Crews were investigating the outages.

A dispatcher at the Oakland Police Department said police were getting calls about alarms going off. In Berkeley, an employee at a Safeway grocery store said two large windows broke but there were no injuries.
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130. saveabeagle
4:46 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
was there another earthquake? the first one happened at 4:22 am which was a litt bit more than an hour agao:)
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126. Drakoen
4:45 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Hopefully the wave of Africa will pick up some speed so that we can get 30 min updates on it.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30489
124. Bonedog
4:43 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
I know that Drakoen I am just saying that this time around it might happen.

Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
122. Patrap
11:43 AM CDT on July 20, 2007
Thats comforting...
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 128240
121. Patrap
11:42 AM CDT on July 20, 2007
Cheney will be in Charge during the procedure...
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 423 Comments: 128240
120. Drakoen
4:41 PM GMT on July 20, 2007
Bonedog they don't need to fly into a system to give it invest Status.
Member Since: October 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30489

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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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