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Another Madagascar cyclone; first typhoon of the season

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 3:31 PM GMT on April 02, 2007

We don't pay much attention to Madagascar, the impoverished island of 18 million off the southeast coast of Africa. However, that island has seen a remarkable series of devastating tropical cyclones during the current Southern Hemisphere hurricane season, which peaks in March and is now in its waning months. Tropical Cyclone Jaya, a Category 2 storm poised to strike the island on Tuesday, is the sixth tropical cyclone to bring heavy rains to the island since December--the most number of cyclones to affect the island in such a short period of time. The previous storm, Tropical Cyclone Indlala, hit Madagascar on March 15, killing 80 and leaving 105,000 homeless. The torrential rains of Indlala, in addition to setting world rainfall records for a 72-hour period on nearby La Reunion Island, flooded much of northern Madagascar, wiping out large portions of the rice crop. Earlier this year, 45,000 Madagascarans were left homeless by Cyclone Bondo (25 December 2006), Cyclone Clovis (3 January 2007), Cyclone Favio (18 January 2007), and Cyclone Gamede (26 February 2007). In addition, the seasonal rains have been heavier than usual this year, as the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) has been further south than normal.

Jaya is a small cyclone, and is not expected to bring more than about six inches of rain to northern Madagascar. However, the island has not recovered from the flooding from the previous five cyclones, and Jaya's rains will cause great hardship. Madagascar has appealed for $242 million in international aid to help put the country back together.

Figure 1. Visible image of Category 2 Tropical Cyclone Jaya at 06:45 UTC February 2, 2007, as it approached Madagascar. Image credit: NASA.

First typhoon of the year
In the Western Pacific, we have our first typhoon of the 2007 typhoon season, Category 1 Kong-rey. This is a fairly typical time to get the first tropical cyclone in the Western Pacific, where the waters are warm enough year-round to support typhoons. Kong-rey is expected to pass through the Mariana Islands north of Guam as a Category 1 storm, and recurve out to sea. Some of the global computer models we use to forecast hurricanes--the GFS, NOGAPS, and ECMWF--did a remarkable job forecasting the formation of this typhoon as early as seven days in advance. Hopefully, this skill will extend to the coming Atlantic hurricane season!

Jeff Masters

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

Its been a rough year for the Lemurs and Geckos
Small point of correction: Madagascar is in the Indian Ocean -- southeast of Africa.
10 min sustained winds are 50 knots on Kong-rey so that still makes is a Severe Tropical Storm. The Next RMSC Tokyo Advisory is out at 18:00pm
The Philippines had several typhoons in 2006, some Category 1, which I forget what was, Xangsane(4), Cimaron (5), Chebi (3), Durian (4), and Utor (3). It seems that Madagascar is to be hit by tropical cyclones in rapid succession in 2007 like the Philippines were in 2006. Let us pray for those people, it's always hard to lose your home, because I have before, so I know what it's like. Good blog, Dr. Masters!
The worst of the Indian Ocean season is over.Jaya could possibly be the last cyclone of the season to hit the island.
Looks like a very interesting season coming up. With La Nina will areas like the Philippines be spared what they got last year? Let's hope so.
Some more on this season from Joe bastardi...


Increasing Threat for Florida/Gulf in 2007

Looking at analogs and current patterns greatly impacts the upcoming
hurricane season. The major disruptive and damaging hurricane threat
area will be in the area that was damaged back in '04 and '05 across
the Gulf. It's not the number of storms, but the intensity that will
be the main concern. Since we are in the early stages of the AMO, the
events of the late '30s is the basis of the upcoming hurricane
forecast, but until spring is over, nothing can be specifically
pinpointed on direct impact. We can see the intensity of the season
similar to 1935, but the numbers equivalent to 1936. Trying to
determine what part of a 3- to 4-year cycle we are in is difficult to
determine. 1995-96 were big landfall years followed by a drought in
1997, only to pick up again in 1998-99. Perhaps, last year could have
been that similar drought year.

Major points:

1) The overall numbers are a red herring in the forecast for the
amount of impact on the United States. If one looks at the '33-'38
seasons, the two most intense hurricanes in what is a very similar
period in the AMO, the early to midperiod of warming, hit in
relatively down years. In addition, there was no strong El Nino or La
Nina signal in any of those years. The point is that the most
legendary U.S. and Northeast hurricanes were the 1935 Labor Day Storm
and the 1938 Long Island Express. The shift of the QBO to westerly
means the greater threat for stronger storms than last year.

2) There is an increased threat in Florida/Gulf. With the exception of
the western Gulf, which was jacked up because of the '54/'99 analogs,
the Gulf forecast was hugely bearish for hurricane activity. The pure
numbers I had were almost zero in the eastern Gulf and had to be
adjusted up to get the forecast to where it was. It is not unlike the
Gray Klotzbach adjustment up from the raw number to 17. In other
words, the actual objective idea was on target and perhaps the
shell-shock of the past couple of years contributed to what would have
been a bold, perfect forecast (although you would have considered me
mad as I simply said, "no Gulf action at all", and probably would have
considered Bill and Phil underdone). But this year, I think major
disruptive and damaging hurricanes are back into the areas that were
damaged in '04 and '05. It is the intensity threat that scares me, not
the number or overall storms at this time.

3) New England is fair game from now on until 2025, although the most
frequent threats to the Northeast should be later in the run of the
cycle. Last year, the statement that two major hurricanes would hit
the Northeast within the next 10 years, sooner rather than later, and
the worry as of this year, fortunately did not carry weight last year.
The summer temperature and hurricane pattern was so close to 1954 it
can mean one of two things ... we were unlucky in '54 or lucky last
year. Ernesto came on the exact date of Carol, but the track some 100
miles west of Carol up the East Coast spared what should have been a
devastating hurricane. As it was, damage to the coastal areas north of
Cape Hatteras was greater than Floyd. Florence was 250 miles east of
Edna's path on the very same day as 1954. The number one target area
last year, relative to averages, was the Canadian maritimes. In
addition, the Gray/Klotzbach objective raw guidance, which I weighed
in as far as a number frequency to landfall relationship I have
developed, was only 10.6 seeing well in advance the major parameters
as they have developed them in saying this was not a huge number year.
The moral is that the East Coast is open, but I do not at this time
have the same kind of support I had for last year of shifting tracks
east. Since I believe we are in the early to middle stages of the AMO,
the backdrop of the late 30s is the canvas on which the hurricane
forecast is being painted, but it takes until spring is done for me to
really hone in on where I think where impact is most likely.
I actually agree with Joe for the first time ever!..LOL Especially, about the intensity threat this season. I am glad he put in this part...but it takes until spring is done for me to
really hone in on where I think where impact is most likely.
No hype for once..LOL
Although, he did backtrack on the Northeast thing!..LOL
Yeah,he did.
Intensity is what also has me concerned hopefully they stay away from florida.
All it takes is one intense landfalling Hurricane to devastate peoples lives in the Caribbean or in the U.S. (Florida/Gulf Coast); I agree with the intensity issue and that "someone" may get walloped with a Cat 3-4 this Season......

If those situations continue to erode and major storms hit the Gulf Coast we could see gasoline prices shoot beyond $4 a gallon, especially in California and other high tax states

i dont want to be rude or wishing a hurricane on any one but i want to keep the stronger hurricane out of the gulf i dont to pay $4 a gallon for gas no way and the hurricane has to go some where i send them to FL not the gulf coast any thing but the gulf FL can have them we need to get the gas down overe her we dont need them any higher then what they are now so send them to FL or out to sea but not the gulf coast
Very comforting hurricane23...but you do have a point.
Typhoon Kong-rey seems to be having trouble with eye formation.
or cat 5 lol
My pick this season at being at high risk is florida meaning east and west.Hopefully iam wrong but i just have a feeling a big one might make it in somewere in florida this season.

Now is the time to prepare dont wait till june1 use this time wisely.Adrian

Adrian's Weather
Allen was not a Cat 4 at landfall....and I seriously doubt Texas will see a Cat 4 landfall this year.
For Floridians, we pray for a strong Bermuda High to keep them away from our East Coast....
Well Mike,as JB pointed out n H23's comment,we are in a pattern like the '30s right now.There were no Cat 4's during the 30's in Texas.
Besides,climatologically,the odds are low.

Bill Grays april numbers....

April 3, 2007

Named Storms (NS) (9.6)

Named Storm Days (NSD) (49.1)

Hurricanes (H)(5.9)

Hurricane Days HD) (24.5)

Intense Hurricanes (IH) (2.3)

Intense Hurricane Days (IHD)(5.0)

Accumulated Cyclone Engery (ACE) (96.1)

Net Tropical Cyclone Activity (NTC)(100%)
Where'd you get that Adrian?
hmmmm.........can we say that here?...that accuweather....and joe bastardi....might actually have sound information?.....oh my......LOL
23 is the the 2007 hurricane forcast?
yes where?
A friend of mine sent it to me kris earlier this morning.He's complete update will be out tommorow.
Those are the December numbers.
How come there are two rows of numbers?
The bottom half is the new numbers for april 3rd.
Jaya has intensified..

Nice with the early info 23..
Oh cool 23,thanks.He upped 'em all.
well i am staying with my hurricane forcast

wish is

30 name storm 15 hurricane 10 of them being cat 3 or higher and 7 cat 5 and 9 US land fall or more
Nothing new really unexpected on this update but definately looking forward for his sneek peak at steering currents.
How is that nothing new?We went up 3 storms and 2 hurricanes.and...2 majors!
So how'd you get that?You know someone at CSU?
No kris my boy who's been a hurricane and tornado chaser for almost 30 years has alot of connections out there.
After watching the SH season ya just hate to see Madagascar get smacked again.

It's time for that~ get your final preparations in order thing again.
17/9/5...Not likeing those 5 majors.
Me neither.Still...another part of me is hoping it verifies.Active seasons are exciting.
Taz, may have ment~ which is, but I like the irony...

Taz~ You have made some outragously yet correct #s forcasts. Most memorably the A to Z of '05. Months before we ended on Zeta or even before the end of the 1st alfabet, which didn't even have a Z storm.. I just hope that forecast isn't right.
Active seasons are exciting if the form out in the middle of the atlantic and stay out to sea.Dont want to see any more devastation.
Yeah,I hope Taz isn't right.
My blog is pretty blank, but I will make sure to update it later today, or within the next few hours.
Personally, I think we will see around 13(1) named storms, 6(1) hurricanes, and 3(1) major hurricanes this season.
Well it seems like a crap-shoot to me, picking numbers like this...is there a winner? Not really. Bragging rights, maybe. Maybe you guys can pick the first four horses that finish in the Kentucky Derby for me. I promise I'll buy you a WU T-Shirt if you do and I win...

dr m have WU e mail from me lol
What exactly are you "eeking" about? That map looks perfectly normal.
ok loop at the loop eddy in the gulf or what evere that is look how far that loop eddy is to the gulf coast
...I figured that is what you were referring to; however, I don't see any real reason to be concerned about it.
hurricanic, i have posted in your blog
not yet any way this wait in tell june or july gets her then you will
When does the Steering Current Forecast come out??

I won't matter how strong the hurricanes are if the winds shift the systems out to sea....even during a La Nina.
Hello! I am new to this blog although I have been reading it since it began. I will try not to get off any subject that is currently going on. When the subject returns I would like to address the ongoing issue of global warming and give my observations and opinions. I reside in Portugal, just for a little info.
cloudcover very important point there!A sneak peak will be seen tommorow in grays full update.
hey H23 hows it going. Any idea about the bermuda high as far as where it will settle in at
Thanks 23...cya tomorrow.
ClearH2OFla iam doing ok how about yourself?We'll the high right now is in a bad location if you live in florida and the gulf but its still to early to know what steering pattern will set up this season.I think in about 2-3 months we will have a better idea.The way i see things shaping up i think florida in particular will have a few worries this season.Grays update should give us a tad more insight on what we might see.Adrian

Adrian's Weather
Supreme Court has ruled against the Bush administration in the global warming case
And, Madagascar is having the year we had in 2005
Tropical Cyclone Jaya, a Category 2 storm poised to strike the island on Tuesday

Make that a near-Category 4 instead:

Joe Bastardi's Hurricane Ideas - Pt. 2Updated: Monday, April 02, 2007 2:48 PMPart Two of Two


Increasing Threat for Florida/Gulf in 2007

4) Perceived large-scale pattern. I believe there is a greater driver
to the tropical season than we are looking at now. My forecast method
involves ascertaining how the pattern around North America acts in the
transition season of the spring against where the overall pattern is
across the Northern Hemisphere and trying to match up the best analog
years of both together, then bringing in modeling ideas on the summer
and fall. I believe we are in the period approximating 1935-1945 in
the AMO cycle and that the distortion of the Earth's feedback from the
ocean/atmospheric system brought about by cooling in the Pacific
waters in the means and the warming of the Atlantic has given us a
pattern that we were not able to measure and comprehend back in the
30s, 40s and 50s, and what I am using now is a combination of new
technique and modeling, that was developed in a climate cycle that is
unlike now, but using the large-scale visualization of what the
overall state of the atmosphere is like as background. It is almost as
if references to anything before the warming really took hold is not
able to be used as an analog, and the analogs before that were not
measured the way we measure them today. The intuitive result is that
one cannot trust statements about today as far as the overall state of
the atmosphere, and everything must be viewed with rational
skepticism. I expect anyone listening to this to do that, since I am
doing that also. For instance, I expect a hurricane season with the
threat of the intensity of 1935 again as far as reaching a peak, but
perhaps the numbers of 1936. While it seems like there is a three- to
four-year cycle that pulses, who's to say exactly where we are. 1995
and 1996 were big landfall years, '97 nothing, '98-'99 big, '01-'02
not so big, then we ramped up again. We see similar cycles in the
'30s-'50s, The parameters we look at, the very warm water for one and
the overall pattern, favor the idea of major storms back where they
were the '04/'05 years, but do not in any way now exclude the
Northeast. Keep in mind until last year each hurricane idea for New
England was a below-normal forecast.

5) I believe the El Nino was the driven, not the driver of the pattern
last year. I believe there is entirely too much hype surrounding El
Nino and La Nina. A strong La Nina is one that has been associated
with storms staying south of the United States for one, and the years
of most intensity in relation to our nation are many times not a La
Nina. I, for one, am tired of everyone blaming the two for whatever
goes on. If they are strong and driven from other sources (i.e.
volcanic activity, then the corresponding turn back) that is one
thing. However, this is getting entirely out of hand and is almost a
disservice. You can't, in one breath, blame El Nino last year for
shutting the hurricane season down when the '04 was a far stronger one
in the heart of the season and wound up beating on the U.S. like a
rented mule. So unless they are overpowering my arguments, it is the
larger scale is more important. One of the more entertaining debates
at our hurricane conference may be ME defending Bill and Phil's raw
forecast, if they are going to try to blame El Nino for causing the
problem with their adjusted one.

6) Bottom line: We live in a time of climatic hardship where hot, dry
summers in the West and Plains, and greater-than-normal hurricane
activity for our coasts, is more the norm rather than the extreme. The
extreme of the temperature pattern over the nation. In other words, a
hotter or cooler than normal by more than one standard deviations over
the West and Plains is very often a precursor to the big hit season as
far as intensity. I feel over the next 15 years, while the alarm has
been sounded for the Northeast to wake up, their day of most frequent
threats as far as yearly is still 10-15 years away. Not so farther
south, especially Florida, where I think '04 and '05 were ringing in a
return to the '40s. The bottom line is this is a much more bullish
forecast idea for threats to the energy of the U.S. than last year and
also one where last year may be looked at as a breather.

The European climo model forecast that is out confirms suspicions that
this year may have the United States, centered on Florida and the
Gulf, and the Southeast, in its cross hairs for hurricanes. The
forecast of above-normal water temperatures, lower-than-normal
pressures, higher-than-normal rainfall in the 500-mile-wide swath from
east of the Leewards to Florida and into the southeast Gulf is giving
me more than the normal amount of confidence on the forecast from so
far out.

This DOES not exclude the Northeast coast as we did in the years '04
and '05; it simply identifies a possible spray of storms with Florida
as the center point of the spray.
I'd like to suggest a few corrections.
Favio struck in February 2007, not January. It was closely followed by Gamede, which broke rainfall records on La Reunion - it wasn't Indlala that did that. I assume the date under the image of Jaya should read April 2007.

I have found the Malagasy newsmedia very poor in relaying cyclone warnings, for as much as I can ascertain from the Net. Perhaps some of the aid could go to linking Madagascar to the RSMC at La Reunion - both places have French as a 1st or 2nd language.

I predict JOE BASTARDI will whine about people not listening to him twice in March, once in April, three times in May and then twice each month for June, July and August.
In Sept we will see a sharp decline in his whining as he crawls back into his hole until February of 2008 and then we will have to wait to see if he see's his own shadow when he comes out again to have any idea what the BASTARDI influence will be on forecasting for 2008.
These "forecasts" are nothing more than WAG (wild ___ guesses)

Here's last year's woefully incorrect early April forecast:

2006 Hurricane WAG - way off

And here is June 2005's WAG: (at least Dr M waited until June to bring this up)

2005 Hurricane WAG _esp comment about every 90,000 years at end! (ok, the above normal was on, but not as busy as 2004 was off)

I guess the bad news is out - Joe Bastardi of accuweather.com said that Florida is going to get pissed on this year by hurricanes. Can you say $3.50/gallon gasoline & higher homeowners insurance.

One more National Championship for Florida? Go Gators!
h23 sorry so long to get back working right now thank you for the info
Not so farther
south, especially Florida, where I think '04 and '05 were ringing in a
return to the '40s.
The bottom line is this is a much more bullish
forecast idea for threats to the energy of the U.S. than last year and
also one where last year may be looked at as a breather.

1940's were incredibly active for southeast florida in particular.

Lets go threw a few track seasons back in the 40's.

1945 season

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us

1948 season

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us

1941 season

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us

These "forecasts" are nothing more than WAG (wild ___ guesses)

Here's last year's woefully incorrect early April forecast:

2006 Hurricane WAG - way off

And here is June 2005's WAG: (at least Dr M waited until June to bring this up)

2005 Hurricane WAG _esp comment about every 90,000 years at end! (ok, the above normal was on, but not as busy as 2004 was off)


He said for those who live in Florida, and was refering to the chances of getting hit with 4 hurricane back to back, 3 of them major hurricanes, etc. Florida saw 3 hurricanes in 2005, Dennis, Katrina, and Wilma. Dennis and Wilma were both major hurricanes, but when Katrina hit south florida, it was a minimal hurricane. So his WAG wasnt so bad for 2005 as it was 2006.
I agree, all this early stuff is FWAG
Is anyone chatting tonight?
What is the chance of '07 being like '06 hurricane season when so many storms were blown back east when they came near the US coast?
Posted By: Chicklit at 9:14 PM EDT on April 02, 2007.

What is the chance of '07 being like '06 hurricane season when so many storms were blown back east when they came near the US coast?

0 to 5% at the most 2007 will not be like the year we had in 06 sorry that is like a evere now and then thing
2006 was not an "every now and then thing". Lets look at the last year with a very strong La Nina:

Notice that every single Atlantic storm without one exception recurved away from the U.S. mainland (the Lesser Antilles were not so lucky). It is too early to tell if this year will be like the above (main threat from Gulf and Caribbean storms) or like 2004/2005.
Taz: You said 0-5% will NOT BE LIKE that means there is at least a 95% chance it WILL BE LIKE '06.
there is no way this year is going to be like 06 no way and you said 95% wish is way to high
Here's the 1,000,000$ question...will Florida have a Cat. 5? I think there's a slim chance.
Jaya is pretty incredible on MIMIC at the moment. It has tracked slightly N of west as it is approaching Madagascar.

Antahala (map) may get the worst again.
Here is what Reunion has to say during their 12am UTC tropical cyclone advisory

CYCLONE Tropical Jaya (14R) has 10 min sustained winds of 85 knots with wind gusts up to 120 knots, moving west at 10 knots.

The system is located 765 km northwest of the coast of Reunion.

CI: T5.5

During the past few hours, the warm core structure has been disorganized and the convection has been eroded in the northeastern sector. Due to a mid tropospheric dry air intrusion and to a slight increase of the northerly vertical wind shear.. Jaya currently shows a slight weakening tendency as it keeps on tracking westward towards the Malgasy coastline.

The Tropical Cyclone is expected to make landfall in the vicinity of Antalaha within the next 6 to 12 hours. Heavy rains and strong winds are foreseen over northeastern Madagascar between Sainte Marie and Fanambana during the next 24 hours.

The remnants of Jaya may track over waters again in the Mozambique Channel in 2 days, but the potential for re-intensification currently is POOR.
Posted By: lilmax at 9:45 PM EDT on April 02
Here's the 1,000,000$ question...will Florida have a Cat. 5?

You mean the $100,000,000,000 question?
07 season new york city hit with cat 5 storm roars in off the atlantic maybe by mid august or there after but before september also noam on a whole shall have to endure a heat wave like never seen before possible 30 days of 100 degree temp starting in mid july right to mid august then storms will come not early late nuttin till then remember 06 it was a bore 07 will lull them to sleep as to catch them off guard then bang one after another till the end of sept.
Most recent Mimic. Jogged just south of west now, a direct hit on Antahala again, would be no suprise. This is the trend I see for the rest of '07, last year it was Australia & the Phillipines. Most likely somewhere in the N hemisphere will be smacked repeatadly.
Here's my prediction:

There will be at least 5 hurricaines in the north atlantic this year, and most of them will go out to sea. At least three tropical systems will impact the US.

I also predict that floods, drought, and fires will affect different areas of the US this year, and there will be at least one more big tornado outbreak this year.

I also predict that a lot of people will blame it all on global warming.

... and that ain't a WAG!!!!!!
you are way off there will be no 5 name storm this year there will be any where from 17 to 21 name storms this year
skyepony... Mimic looks like the central convection is dying down a bit... probably an eyewall replacement cycle. This is a blessing for Madagascar.
As of 6:00am UTC, CYCLONE Tropical Jaya (14R) had 10 min sustained winds of 75 knots with wind gusts up to 105 knots, and was reported moving west-northwest at 9 knots.

The system was located 870 km northwest of the coast of Reunion.

CI: T5.0

Linked to a mid tropospheric dry air intrusion and to a slight increase of the east-northeastly vertical wind shear. Tropical Cyclone Jaya has clearly disorganized, Undergoing a mid-level high cell on the Mozambican Channel it has recurved west-northwest.

The weakening is rather quick and the system is expected to make landfall in three hours (0900UTC) in the vincitiy of Sambava (Malagasy) at the minimal stage of tropical cyclone.

Heavy rainfall and strong winds are foreseen between Sainte Maria and Fanambana during the next 12 to 24 hours. Jaya should come back over sea at a tropical depression stage within the next night south of Nosy-be.

In a first time, the potential for an intensification would be poor but it should undergo an area of better environment within 48 hours in the Mozambican Channel.

Tropical Cyclone Jaya Outlook
12 Hrs. Overland
24 Hrs. 30 knots Tropical Depression
48 Hrs. 40 knots Tempte Tropicale Modere
72 Hrs. 50 knots Forte Tempte Tropicale
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Corps to bolster floodwall
Sand near sheet piles in 17th Street Canal

Tuesday, April 03, 2007
By Sheila Grissett

The Army Corps of Engineers will build rock and clay structures along the east bank of the 17th Street Canal to bolster 450 feet of floodwall on both sides of Veterans Memorial Boulevard, where new testing confirms that steel sheet piles anchoring the wall are closer to underground sand layers than allowed in safety standards adopted since Hurricane Katrina.

The construction, which is expected to raise dirt levees on both the water and the protected sides of the wall by as much as six feet in some spots, is designed to ensure that the floodwall doesn't breach during a tropical event that adds as much as six feet of surge in the canal, Army Corps of Engineers officials said Monday.

New geotechnical testing showed that the tips -- or bottoms -- of sheet pile walls in the 450-foot section are within two feet of unstable stratas of sand that run under the levees, and a decision was made to reinforce that stretch, said Col. Richard Wagenaar, commander of the corps' New Orleans district.

"This is a lesson learned from Katrina," Wagenaar said. "Our geotech sampling located a sand stratum that's within five feet of the tip of the sheet pile, and that's like an alarm that goes off. It's an area of concern, and we're taking proactive measures."

More restrictive safety standards adopted since Katrina, in which numerous breaches were responsible for flooding most of New Orleans and parts of East Jefferson, require that sheet pile tips be at least five feet away from sand.

The new restrictions were set to ensure that the floodwalls remain stable at the six-foot "safe water level" adopted by a corps-led forensic task force last year. If tropical storm surge raised the canal level above six feet, floodgates at Lake Pontchartrain would be closed. Wagenaar said the six-foot safe water elevation will be maintained during this hurricane season, which begins June 1.

Wagenaar said the discovery of sand within two feet of tips of the sheet piling, most of which is buried to only 14.5 feet in the "area of concern," won't restrict the amount of water allowed to be pumped into the canal.

District chief engineer Walter Baumy said the results of seepage and stability analyses indicated that even without reinforcement, the floodwall in that region wouldn't fail -- even with six feet of surge against it.

"What we're doing is actually adding insurance," he said.

The problem is most acute north of Veterans, where 350 feet of floodwall must be reinforced. In this area, he said, there is no more than 2 to 2.5 feet of earthen levee on the water side of the floodwallTo raise that levee section to 8 feet, Baumy said, a stone base will first be constructed in the canal, flush against the floodwall. The stone base will be about 50 feet wide beneath the water, but will gradually narrow to about 30 feet above the still water surface of the canal. The stone will also cover what small amount of earthen levee exists in this area, and the larger compacted-clay levee will be added atop the stone.

South of Veterans, where about 100 feet of floodwall is involved, Baumy said tests indicate that there is about 6.3 feet of earthen levee.

"We only need it to be six feet there to satisfy the design criteria, which it does, but we'll go ahead and raise it to eight feet," he said.

Some of the breaches during Katrina occurred when water traveled through sand and underneath the sheet piling, causing the floodwall and sheet pile base to deflect, or lean, away from the canals and toward the neighborhoods.

This deflection caused cracks to form all the way down to the sheet pile tips and gave water a fast seepage route that quickly caused the walls to breach.

"We don't expect a crack to form in this area because of the steps we're taking, but if that did happen, we've sealed the area in clay so that water can't get into the crack," Baumy said.

Baumy said detailed testing of the 17th Street Canal is now all but complete, and he doesn't expect to find any more problems.

The London Avenue Canal, with a safe water level of four feet, is still being tested, and no detailed work has been done at the Orleans Canal, which engineers have said was better constructed and has a water restriction of 8 feet
I have the most foolproof forcast for the upcoming hurricane season......

It will be light during the day and dark at night with a 50/50 chance or rain or sun each day :)

Happy Wishcasting Everyone
Jaya hit land. Still kicking 90kts using 1 min average.

what time will dr grays updated forecast be out today?
Hey everybody, I cant get FLAWEATHER.COM its not letting me through. Im trying to see the CMC,NOGAPS,UKMET MODELS!
i take "EVERY" forecast for the upcoming season, and throw them them out!!!

I can say with reasonable certainty, the activity of the season is still a guesstimate at best!!

I will feel more comfortable examining conditions and trends in 2-3 months..... then i think we can better make an "educated" guess......

till then, I would "refrain" from making predictions......

bottom line, at present, we are "on the fence" as to how the season will go......

i'd wait a couple months in hopes of "hedging" your bets! ;)
882~ try this link
hey thel, i can wait to see one of your famous stick drawings this year!!

I am also waiting for Dr. Gray's report.
H23 gave us a glimpse yesterday, friends in high places:)
Thursday's Workshop Schedule at the NHC conference Link
Kong-rey has got a very rugged eye


While Jaya is disorginized cause of contact with land

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106. JeffM

FORT COLLINS, Colo. The 2007 Atlantic hurricane season should be "very active," with 17 named storms, a top storms forecaster said Tuesday.

Those named storms are expected to include five intense or major hurricanes, according to forecaster William Gray's team at Colorado State University. Gray said there is a 74 percent probability of a major hurricane hitting the U.S. coast.

The team's forecasts are based global oceanic and atmospheric conditions.
75% chance of a major hurricane landfall this year in the U.S. .From Gray.
Does anyone know when the U.K. report for April will be out?

Seen to remember Dr Masters saying at the end of last season that there was no usable level of accuracy in any predictions made before August. But that everyone should keep trying. Wise words from the Doc I think. In the meantime, here in Belize, we watch and pray - this little country does not need a hurricane...who does. And poor Madagascar...
Dr. Gray's updated forecast:Link
April 3 Dr. Gray Forecast 2007 Atlantic Hurricane Season

17 Storms
9 Hurricanes
5 Intense Hurricanes
By April there is some accuracy.Not much,but some.
Since 2001,their April forecast has been off by an average of 4.5 storms,and they usually underestimate storm numbers.
It will be interesting to see if this forcast is more accurate using the new system outlined in the report. And those analog years outlined leave little to be desired for those of us living in Florida.
Really?I haven't checked out the analog years.
From the Report!

There were five hurricane seasons since 1949 with characteristics most similar to what we observe in February-March 2007 and characteristics that we expect to see in August-October 2007. The best analog years that we could find for the 2007 hurricane season are 1952, 1964, 1966, 1995 and 2003. We anticipate that 2007 seasonal hurricane activity will have activity slightly more than what was experienced in the average of these five years. We expect the 2007 hurricane season to be very active.

Yep,looks like 4 systems hit peninsular Florida in those years,with several big-storm near misses.
Not good news.
Looks to me,with the current 500mb height pattern anyway,like a season such as '04 is setting up.
120. Inyo
pure speculation!
This March:

March 2004:

You got anything better,Inyo?
We just need some rain down here! Things are really getting bad. The ground water took a huge unexpected dive last week and still falling. There are talks of raising the canal levels at the coast to protect saltwater from contaminating the ground water. If we don't get rain and that protection runs out, who knows what will happen. Links are in my blog to read the reports.
It's gonna take a 'cane to stop the drought.
What's going on with Kong-rey's southwestern eyewall quadrant? All the bad weather's in that area while the rest of the storm isn't so intense.

My personal feeling about '07 hurr. season:
17 Tropical Storms
8 Hurricanes
4 Cat. 3 <

Pretty similar to Dr. Gray's forecast but I still have a feeling that wind shear might be a problem...Not a WAG