Noel hits Cuba and weakens significantly

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 2:46 PM GMT on October 30, 2007

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Tropical Storm Noel made landfall in eastern Cuba this morning, and has weakened significantly as a result. Top winds are now 45 mph near the center, but this morning's QuikSCAT pass also noted winds up to 50 mph about 150 miles to the north of Noel's center, in the central Bahamas. Top winds measured in Cuba this morning have been at Canagua, where the winds were 28 mph gusting to 39 mph at 8am EDT. Canagua is on the north central coast of Cuba, south of Andros Island in the Bahamas. Georgetown in the central Bahamas measured sustained winds of 27 mph gusting to 36 mph at 7am EDT. A good way to track current wind readings along Noel's path is to use our Google Maps interface, zoomed in on Canagua, Cuba.


Figure 1. Satellite estimated rainfall rate at 2:58 am EDT Tuesday 10/30/07 for Tropical Storm Noel. The heaviest rains of one inch per hour were observed in the central Bahamas. Heavy rains up to 1/2 inch per hour were still affecting Haiti and the Dominican Republic on the island of Hispaniola. Image credit: NOAA.

Noel's rains
Noel's main threat continues to be heavy rains. Rainfall rates of up to one inch per hour are affecting the central Bahamas today (Figure 1), and Haiti and the Dominican Republic are getting up to 1/2 inch per hour. The heaviest rains from Noel have fallen over the southern coast of the Dominican Republic near the capital of Santo Domingo, where over a foot of rain has fallen (Figure 2). A nation-wide power outage knocked out power to all of the Dominican Republic for two hours yesterday, and flooding damage is reportedly heavy. Haiti has fared better, with peak rainfall totals of 6-8 inches in regions near the Dominican Republic border. Both nations can expect to receive another 5-7 inches in isolated regions before the rains finally subside Wednesday night. These rains will cause very dangerous flash floods, particularly in Haiti, where deforestation has left only 1.4% of the original forest cover remaining. Media reports put the death toll so far in the Dominican Republic at 20, with 20 more missing, and this toll is almost certain to go higher. Noel is the deadliest tropical cyclone to affect the Dominican Republic since Hurricane Georges hit Hispaniola in 1998, killing 380 Dominicans and causing over $1 billion in damage to the county.


Figure 2. Satellite estimated rainfall for the week ending at 11pm EDT Monday 10/29/07. Image credit: NASA.

Links to follow for Noel
Satellite loop
Holguin, Cuba radar
Google Maps interface, zoomed in on Canagua, Cuba

The forecast
The latest computer model runs from 00Z and 06Z this morning had the luxury of using data from last night's flight of the NOAA jet. This usually produces track forecasts that are 20% better. The models are in good agreement that Noel will move west-northwest to northwest during the next 24 hours, then recurve sharply to the north, just offshore the coast of South Florida. The models are off to a bad start, because Noel is tracking almost due west this morning, something the models did not anticipate. This increases the chance that Noel will recurve father to the west and pass over South Florida. However, passage over Cuba is weakening Noel, and it is looking much less likely Noel will be able to attain Category 1 hurricane strength. I give Noel a 30% chance of making a direct hit on South Florida, with a 5% chance that such a strike will be as a Category 1 hurricane. The most likely scenario is that Noel will pass 50-200 miles off the coast of South Florida Halloween night through Thursday morning as a weak but strengthening tropical storm, with top winds of 40-50 mph. Winds will probably be sustained at 20-30 mph with gusts to 40 mph along the coast. Florida will be on the dry side of Noel, thanks to upper level winds from the west that will be creating about 20 knots of wind shear over the storm. Expect occasional heavy rain showers with rain amounts totaling 1-3 inches if you live along the Southeast Florida coast. Most of Noel's heavy rains should stay offshore.

I'll have an update late this afternoon.

Jeff Masters

Overflowing Creek (DRWeather)
This is a small creek that runs through town, usually 1 foot wide. About 1 ft. of shore has been lost and is threatening the treeline.
Overflowing Creek
Damaged Roads (DRWeather)
The water level is down from last night...don't know yet if there is still a bridge under there...
Damaged Roads

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1083. hurricane23
8:47 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13629
1082. Floodman
8:46 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
1074. CatastrophicDL 3:29 PM CDT on October 30, 2007
Flood, it is always interesting to be in areas where you have weather experience others don't. I was in Salt Lake City during the 99 tornado. I looked out my window, saw the color of the sky and a large piece of a tree fly by and told everyone to get away from the windows there was a tornado coming. I hadn't even seen it yet, but being on the 14th floor and seeing a huge chunck of tree, plus having been in a few, you just know. No one believed me and a minute and a half later sure enough it went right by our building.



Well, I always was one to stick my head out the window to see which way the wind was blowing LOL
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
1081. hurricane23
8:44 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13629
1080. hurricane23
8:42 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
WTNT31 KNHC 302037
TCPAT1
BULLETIN
TROPICAL STORM NOEL ADVISORY NUMBER 13
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL162007
500 PM EDT TUE OCT 30 2007

...NOEL STILL CENTERED INLAND OVER CUBA...

AT 500 PM EDT...2100 UTC...THE GOVERNMENT OF CUBA HAS EXTENDED THE
TROPICAL STORM WARNING FOR CUBA WESTWARD AND SOUTHWARD. A TROPICAL
STORM WARNING IS NOW IN EFFECT FOR THE CUBAN PROVINCES OF SANCTI
SPIRITUS...CIEGO DE AVILA...CAMAGUEY...LAS TUNAS...GRANMA...
HOLGUIN...SANTIAGO DE CUBA...AND GUANTANAMO.

A TROPICAL STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR THE CENTRAL AND
NORTHWESTERN BAHAMAS.

INTERESTS IN SOUTHERN FLORIDA SHOULD MONITOR THE PROGRESS OF NOEL.
A TROPICAL STORM WATCH COULD BE REQUIRED FOR PORTIONS OF
SOUTHEASTERN FLORIDA TONIGHT OR TOMORROW.

FOR STORM INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO YOUR AREA...INCLUDING POSSIBLE
INLAND WATCHES AND WARNINGS...PLEASE MONITOR PRODUCTS ISSUED
BY YOUR LOCAL WEATHER OFFICE.

AT 500 PM EDT...2100Z...THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM NOEL WAS
LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 21.0 NORTH...LONGITUDE 78.0 WEST OR ABOUT 30
MILES... 45 KM...SOUTH-SOUTHWEST OF CAMAGUEY CUBA AND ABOUT 280
MILES...450 KM...SOUTH OF NASSAU.

NOEL IS MOVING TOWARD THE WEST NEAR 8 MPH...13 KM/HR. A GRADUAL
TURN TOWARD THE NORTHWEST IS FORECAST DURING THE NEXT 24 HOURS. ON
THIS TRACK...THE CENTER OF NOEL IS EXPECTED TO REMAIN OVER CUBA
TODAY AND TONIGHT...BUT EMERGE OFF THE NORTHERN COAST OF CUBA
TOMORROW.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS ARE NEAR 40 MPH...65 KM/HR...WITH HIGHER
GUSTS. LITTLE CHANGE IN STRENGTH IS FORECAST DURING THE NEXT 24
HOURS.

TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 175 MILES...280
KM...MAINLY TO THE NORTHEAST FROM THE CENTER.

ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 1001 MB...29.56 INCHES.

ABOVE NORMAL TIDES ARE LIKELY WITHIN THE WARNING AREAS.

NOEL IS EXPECTED TO PRODUCE TOTAL RAINFALL ACCUMULATIONS OF 10 TO 20
INCHES OVER HISPANIOLA...WITH POSSIBLE ISOLATED MAXIMUM TOTALS OF
30 INCHES. TOTAL ACCUMULATIONS OF 5 TO 10 INCHES...WITH POSSIBLE
MAXIMUM AMOUNTS OF 15 INCHES...ARE POSSIBLE OVER SOUTHEASTERN CUBA
AND THE BAHAMAS. THESE RAINS...PARTICULARLY IN HISPANIOLA... ARE
EXPECTED TO CAUSE LIFE-THREATENING FLASH FLOODS AND MUD SLIDES.

REPEATING THE 500 PM EDT POSITION...21.0 N...78.0 W. MOVEMENT
TOWARD...WEST NEAR 8 MPH. MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...40 MPH.
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...1001 MB.

AN INTERMEDIATE ADVISORY WILL BE ISSUED BY THE NATIONAL HURRICANE
CENTER AT 800 PM EDT FOLLOWED BY THE NEXT COMPLETE ADVISORY AT 1100
PM EDT.

$$
FORECASTER KNABB/LANDSEA
Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13629
1079. hurricane23
8:42 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Just updated!

Member Since: May 14, 2006 Posts: 8 Comments: 13629
1078. BahaHurican
8:41 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
5 p. m. advisory is out.
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 21516
1077. BahaHurican
8:39 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
1027. Drakoen 4:10 PM EDT on October 30, 2007
I still think it could go to the north. Before it gets caught under that high pressure ridge there is still a trough to the north you can see it on the water vapor loop.


Drak, is this trough u are talking about around 30N? I'm asking because Beell earlier today was talking about a weakness that might cause Noel to curve around the high.
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 21516
1076. DallasGumby
8:34 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
1059. Floodman 8:20 PM GMT on October 30, 2007

I was in San Antonio when it snowed in '84(?).


I was in Austin during that snow event, and talk about a shock -- a foot of snow in Central Texas!!! I had tire chains that were a gift from my grandmother, sitting in the trunk, so I was one of the few who could get around the hills of West Austin.
Member Since: August 22, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 376
1075. BahaHurican
8:32 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Tropical Storm Warning:
A warning that sustained winds within the range of 34 to 63 kt (39 to 73 mph or 63 to 118 km/hr) associated with a tropical cyclone are expected in a specified coastal area within 24 hours or less.


Tropical Storm Watch:
An announcement for specific coastal areas that tropical storm conditions are possible within 36 hours.

Hey. People. NHC is unlikely to issue either of these for a storm IF THE CRITERION HAS NOT BEEN MET!!!

I strongly believe the reason why NHC has not posted watches is because they don't expect tropical storm conditions to affect Florida before Thursday morning at the earliest. When they think the storm could potentially hit the FL coast in 36 hours or less, they will post a warning.

Sheesh.
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 21516
1074. CatastrophicDL
8:29 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Flood, it is always interesting to be in areas where you have weather experience others don't. I was in Salt Lake City during the 99 tornado. I looked out my window, saw the color of the sky and a large piece of a tree fly by and told everyone to get away from the windows there was a tornado coming. I hadn't even seen it yet, but being on the 14th floor and seeing a huge chunck of tree, plus having been in a few, you just know. No one believed me and a minute and a half later sure enough it went right by our building.
Member Since: September 3, 2007 Posts: 3 Comments: 1519
1073. BahaHurican
8:27 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
978. IceSlater 7:50 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Why does Vivian Brown on TWC say "right now WE aren't putting any watches up for FL yet, but WE'RE watching it to see if WE have to change that"... She doesn't do anything, how funny. Talking like she's the NHC... Keeps saying WE pertaining to the NHC info.



Maybe she means "we the people". Speaking through our designated voice.
Member Since: October 25, 2005 Posts: 19 Comments: 21516
1072. chevycanes
8:27 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
if you want a good radar, go to the hurricane center website and pull up the radar.
Member Since: August 6, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 693
1070. HurricaneGeek
8:23 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
I wonder if the NHC is having trouble. Do they check the blog to see what we think.....UH OH!!! LOL
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 110 Comments: 7039
1069. freepatriot
8:22 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Dr. Masters has a new blog entry, for those who are just following this thread :)
1068. HurricaneGeek
8:22 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
so fa 37mph is the highest. here i recored just at my house.
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 110 Comments: 7039
1067. TampaSpin
8:22 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
1012. vortfix 4:04 PM EDT on October 30, 2007
TampaSpin.......AT 250 HPA TWO HIGH CENTERS ARE ANALYZED OVER THE CARIBBEAN...ONE
EAST OF BELIZE/YUCATAN AND THE OTHER SOUTH OF PUERTO RICO. BETWEEN
THESE TWO ANTICYCLONES...THERE IS A PRONOUNCED WEAKNESS IN THE
RIDGE NEAR THE CENTER OF TS NOEL...WITH A TROUGH AXIS EXTENDING
FROM EASTERN CUBA TO EAST OF JAMAICA.
From the HPC Carib discussion.


That weakness is very high for strong storms. How will this storm feel the weakness that high?
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
1066. Bonedog
8:22 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
off topic alert

anyone hear that the US Navy helped a North Korean freighter fight off pirates?


Link

shows the integrety of the Navy. Even though we have no diplomatic relation with North Korea they still answered the distress call and aided the men abaord and are no currently treating the wounded onboard the US Navy ship.

ok back to Noel
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
1065. WPBHurricane05
8:22 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Since Noel is moving more W, I'm sure the NHC will prob. shift the cone further East. lol

lol They know the wunderbloggers think it should be shifted west so they shift it east
Member Since: July 31, 2006 Posts: 56 Comments: 8112
1063. StormJunkie
8:21 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Afternoon all ☺

Dr M has a new blog up.
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 15666
1062. WPBWeatherBoy
8:21 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
lol 52......my sustained is 26 mph ENE with 32 mph gusts
Member Since: August 27, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 104
1061. HurricaneGeek
8:21 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
HHUunter. west palm/ Lake worth.
If you are not from here you probley know west palm better.
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 110 Comments: 7039
1059. Floodman
8:20 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
1032. CatastrophicDL 3:12 PM CDT on October 30, 2007
Flood, I moved from there a couple years ago we actually had measurable snowfall each of the two years we were there. Everything closed when it snowed. Being from Utah I couldn't figure out what the big deal was until someone told me the problem was that the cities don't have the trucks and materials available to clear the roads.



I was in San Antonio when it snowed in '84(?)...my rig was the only vehicle moving on the roads...I was in Little Rock in the mid 90s for a snow/ice event, and I thought the weather guys were going to have heart attacks (they were using words like catastrophe)...just depends on where you are, I guess. Having been in a number of tornados, three or four good white outs, and on the ground in Minot ND when the temp outside was a balmy -41, nothing really phases me. In fact, I like the cold better...like grandad used to say, you can always put on another sweater, but once you're down to skin, that's it!
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
1058. IceSlater
8:20 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Since Noel is moving more W, I'm sure the NHC will prob. shift the cone further East. lol
Member Since: July 6, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 417
1057. nash28
8:20 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Weatherbyrd- It may not get to FL. Not with the ridge in place.
Member Since: July 11, 2005 Posts: 190 Comments: 16972
1056. NEwxguy
8:20 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
1049. HurricaneGeek 8:18 PM GMT on October 30, 2007

sorry 25 not 52
thats a big difference
--------
Sorry, i said mistake. just a typo. LOL

Just tell them you had one of the rain bands come through.
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 875 Comments: 15618
1055. HurricaneGeek
8:20 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Mostly likely Florida will move slightly back into the cone but very little like 1/50 of the cone.
------
I was thinking more like 1/49.LOL
But hey cone is cone.
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 110 Comments: 7039
1053. Hhunter
8:19 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
hurricane geek where are you?
Member Since: August 19, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 2973
1052. WeatherByrd
8:19 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
So I take it nobody is saying it will make landfall in Florida? That is good to hear.
1051. Bonedog
8:19 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
LOl Gotcha Geek. No harm no foul :)
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
1049. HurricaneGeek
8:18 PM GMT on October 30, 2007

sorry 25 not 52
thats a big difference
--------
Sorry, i said mistake. just a typo. LOL
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 110 Comments: 7039
1048. TampaSpin
8:18 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Noel is still chugging along and is actually pulling alot of cover with it now. Will clear Cuba in 6 hours if not sooner...
Member Since: September 2, 2007 Posts: 178 Comments: 20439
1047. HurricaneGeek
8:17 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Sorry Bonedog. I ment 25mph. Can't type.
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 110 Comments: 7039
1045. WPBHurricane05
8:17 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
sorry 25 not 52

thats a big difference
Member Since: July 31, 2006 Posts: 56 Comments: 8112
1044. JUSTCOASTING
8:16 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
AT 3:53 mELBOURNE HAD GUST OF 37 MPH
Member Since: August 15, 2006 Posts: 2 Comments: 666
1043. hahaguy
8:16 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
my winds are sustained at 25mph in port st lucie
Member Since: August 12, 2007 Posts: 2 Comments: 2838
1042. HurricaneGeek
8:16 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
sorry 25 not 52
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 110 Comments: 7039
1040. Bonedog
8:15 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Geek 52mph sustained? but you just said you had a gust to 31?
Member Since: July 14, 2005 Posts: 14 Comments: 7418
1039. Floodman
8:15 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Im sure this winter I'll have more than a enough to send all of you some snow.


Send away, NEwxguy!
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
1038. WeatherByrd
8:14 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
Yeah but is anybody predicting this storm Noel to make landfall anywhere in Florida?
1037. DallasGumby
8:14 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
1013. socaltexan 8:05 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
i just moved from the dfw area and the three years that i lived up there it snowed 2 times. from what i've been told, dfw gets ice. the snow that we got didn't, and can't compair to MO.


Well, I've lived in DFW for 47 years, so I can say that sometimes it snows, often it sleets or dumps ice/freezing rain. It all depends on the source of the precipitation. If we have a cold front at the surface overridden by upper level Gulf moisture, the upper levels tend to be too warm for snow, so we get ice or freezing rain -- it's so much fun!!!!! LOL! If the upper levels are cooler, especially if it's Pacific moisture, we tend to get snow.
Member Since: August 22, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 376
1036. Floodman
8:14 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
1029. IceSlater 3:10 PM CDT on October 30, 2007
Ok, let me get this right... Read the 2pm again... They don't mention ANYTHING about the COC moving off S coast of Cuba... just says N coast... so if it DOES move off the S Coast, what are they going to say then???



Ooops
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
1034. ecflawthr
8:13 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
hello all. I am in palm bay,florida which is just south of melbourne. i just had a huge wind gust that lasted about a minute and blew out part of my screens on my pool enclosure!! Must of been some gust.
Member Since: September 4, 2006 Posts: 1 Comments: 201
1033. HurricaneGeek
8:13 PM GMT on October 30, 2007
winds sustained here at 52 mph
Member Since: May 10, 2007 Posts: 110 Comments: 7039

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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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