Deadly Worldwide Coral Bleaching Episode Underway--Earth's 3rd on Record

By: Bob Henson, 12:47 PM GMT on October 09, 2015

Earth is entering its third worldwide coral bleaching event of the last 20 years--a disturbing example of how a warming planet can harm vital ecosystems--NOAA announced on Thursday. NOAA also released an eight-month outlook that projects even more bleaching to come in 2016. The only other global-scale bleachings in the modern era of observations happened in 1998 and 2010. Global bleaching is defined as an event that causes bleaching in each of the planet’s major c...

Heat Climate Change

Updated: 4:01 PM GMT on October 09, 2015

Ex-Hurricane Oho Going Where Few Hurricanes Have Gone Before: Alaska

By: Jeff Masters, 3:45 PM GMT on October 08, 2015

Alaska and British Columbia are on alert to receive a very unusual dose of tropical weather: the remains of Hurricane Oho, which are on track to hurtle into the Alaska Panhandle on Friday evening. Oho completed the transition from a hurricane to an extratropical storm with 70 mph winds on Thursday morning, and after short period of weakening, is expected to interact with a powerful jet stream over the Gulf of Alaska and intensify on Friday afternoon off the coast of...


Updated: 10:41 PM GMT on October 08, 2015

Last Known Position of the Missing Ship El Faro: the Eyewall of Category 3 Joaquin

By: Jeff Masters, 4:12 PM GMT on October 07, 2015

When the container ship El Faro left Jacksonville, Florida early on the morning of September 30, 2015, Tropical Storm Joaquin, with top winds of 70 mph, was located a few hundred miles northeast of the Central Bahama Islands. Joaquin was forecast to move west-southwest at 6 mph towards the islands and intensify into a Category 1 hurricane by the next morning. The Captain knew he was charting a course that would take him within 200 miles of what was expected to be a ...


Updated: 7:02 PM GMT on October 07, 2015

Why Did the ECMWF Forecast Joaquin So Well?

By: Bob Henson, 8:35 PM GMT on October 06, 2015

The post-mortems have begun on how well Hurricane Joaquin was predicted, and one of the key themes is why the flagship global model of the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) beat NOAA’s Global Forecast System (GFS) to the punch in forecasting that Joaquin would remain well offshore. On Wednesday, September 30, less than six days from a potential landfall, the ECMWF operational model was consistently keeping Joaquin offshore, even as the GFS...


Carolina Floods Breach 18 Dams and Kill 16 People; Tropics Quiet Down

By: Jeff Masters, 3:16 PM GMT on October 06, 2015

South Carolina and North Carolina's epic deluge has finally ended after five days of ceaseless rains. No rain is expected to fall in either state through Thursday, giving time for the swollen rivers to recede and flooded communities to recover. The storm has killed at least fourteen people in South Carolina (eight drownings and six traffic deaths); an additional two storm-related fatalities were reported in North Carolina. The peak 5-day rainfall amount from the sto...

Flood Hurricane

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Dr. Masters co-founded wunderground in 1995. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990. Co-blogging with him: Bob Henson, @bhensonweather

JeffMasters's Recent Photos

Gust front cloud, SE Michigan
Thunderstorm over Grand Teton
Double rainbow over Old Faithful
Rainbow in Riverside Geyser