The end of the unusually quiet Atlantic hurricane season of 2013 is at hand. The final tally of thirteen named storms was above the average of eleven for a season, but the two hurricanes (Ingrid and Humberto) and zero major hurricanes were well below the average from 1950 - 2012 of six and three, respectively. The 2013 season ranked as the sixth-least-active Atlantic hurricane season since 1950, in terms of the collective strength and duration of named storms and hurricanes (ACE index).
JeffMasters, • 3:53 PM GMT on November 29, 2013
The busiest travel day of the year in the U.S. is at hand this Wednesday, and Winter Storm Boreas continues to slow travel over much of the Eastern U.S. with a nasty mix of snow, sleet, freezing rain, heavy rain, and high winds. Dangerous snowy and icy travel will continue to cause trouble in many of the high elevation areas from the Smoky Mountains to Maine Wednesday.
JeffMasters, • 3:04 PM GMT on November 27, 2013
Powerful Winter Storm Boreas is plowing up the Eastern seaboard, bringing a nasty mix of snow, sleet, freezing rain, heavy rain, high winds, and severe thunderstorms. Woe to ye who attempt to traverse the Pennsylvania Turnpike through Western Pennsylvania; Tuesday's forecast calls for freezing rain of up to 1/10" ice accumulation, accompanied by 1 - 3" of snow, followed by rain and freeing rain Tuesday night, followed by another 2 - 4" of snow on Wednesday.
JeffMasters, • 3:31 PM GMT on November 26, 2013
Dangerous Category 1 Cyclone Lehar is intensifying as it heads west-northwest at 8 mph towards India's Bay of Bengal coast. With wind shear a moderate 10 - 20 knots and ocean temperatures a very warm 28 - 29°C, Lehar is expected to continue to intensify to a major Category 3 storm until just before landfall, which is expected to occur near 03 UTC Thursday, November 28 in the Andhra Pradesh state of India.
JeffMasters, • 3:52 PM GMT on November 25, 2013
October 2013 was the globe's 7th warmest October since records began in 1880, according to NOAA's National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). NASA rated it the 8th warmest October on record. The year-to-date period of January - October has been the 7th warmest such period on record. October 2013 global land temperatures were the 8th warmest on record, and global ocean temperatures were also the 8th warmest on record.
JeffMasters, • 4:04 PM GMT on November 22, 2013
Expect increased chances of a warmer than average winter across much of the Southern U.S. and New England, and a cooler than average winter across portions of the Northern Plains near the Canadian border, said NOAA in their annual Winter Outlook, released on November 21. The forecast also calls for drought to persist and intensify over much of the Southwest U.S., and to develop over the Southeast U.S.
JeffMasters, • 4:49 PM GMT on November 21, 2013
Slow-moving and powerful Extratropical Storm Cleopatra (called Ruven by the Free University of Berlin) dumped prodigious rains over the Mediterranean island of Sardinia on Monday, triggering floods that have killed at least eighteen people. The highest 24-hour rainfall recorded at an official station was 385.6 mm (15.18"), and the peak 24-hour rain on the island was 467 mm (18.39") measured at a private gauge.
JeffMasters, • 3:56 PM GMT on November 20, 2013
Damage surveys continue in the Midwest U.S. after a stunning and violent late-season severe weather outbreak swept through on Sunday, killing at least eight people and leaving widespread significant damage. Two violent EF-4 tornadoes and one strong EF-3 tornado hit Illinois, killing six, making Sunday Illinois' deadliest November day for tornadoes in its history. The grand total of 572 severe weather reports for the day were the most of any day of 2013, surpassing the 538 total reports from June 13.
JeffMasters, • 3:59 PM GMT on November 19, 2013
A rare and deadly late-season tornado and severe weather outbreak blitzed the Midwest U.S. on Sunday, killing at least six people and leaving widespread significant damage. A violent EF-4 touched down in New Minden, Illinois, killing two people and blowing semi trucks off of I-64. The twister was one of only twenty EF-4s to occur in the U.S. in November dating back to 1950, and was the third most northerly November EF-4 ever observed.
JeffMasters, • 3:23 PM GMT on November 18, 2013
A rare and very dangerous late-season severe weather outbreak is underway over the Midwest U.S., where NOAA's Storm Prediction Center is predicting a "High Risk" of severe weather--their highest level of alert--over most of Indiana and Illinois, plus portions of Southern Lower Michigan and Western Ohio. This is just the second "High Risk" forecast for 2013, and the area at risk of severe weather is unusually large.
JeffMasters, • 4:30 PM GMT on November 17, 2013
A full week after one of the strongest tropical cyclones in world history devastated the Philippines, the full extent of the death and destruction wrought by Super Typhoon Haiyan is still not fully known, nor do we have actual ground measurements of the storm's peak winds and lowest pressure. The Philippines National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council estimates 3432 people were killed, and the U.N. puts this number at 4,460.
JeffMasters, • 5:10 PM GMT on November 15, 2013
A remarkable warming of the sub-surface Pacific waters east of the Philippines in recent decades, due to a shift in atmospheric circulation patterns and ocean currents that began in the early 1990s, could be responsible for the rapid intensification of Super Typhoon Haiyan. The waters at a depth of 100 meters (328 feet) beneath Haiyan during its rapid intensification phase were a huge 4 - 5°C (7 - 9°F) above average.
JeffMasters, • 6:25 PM GMT on November 13, 2013
Super Typhoon Haiyan is gone, but not before adding China to its list of ravaged nations in Asia. Haiyan made landfall on the northern Vietnam coast near the Chinese border as a Category 1 storm with 75 mph winds on Sunday, and spread torrential rains into southern China, which caused up to $700 million in damage to agricultural, forestry, poultry and fishing industries there. Seven people were killed in China on hard-hit Hainan Island.
JeffMasters, • 3:44 PM GMT on November 12, 2013
Typhoon Haiyan made landfall on the northern Vietnam coast near the Chinese border as a Category 1 storm with 75 mph winds near 21 UTC Sunday. At least 13 people died and 81 were injured in Vietnam from the storm. Haiyan has been downgraded to a tropical depression and will dissipate later today, finally bringing to an end its catastrophic march through Asia.
JeffMasters, • 5:07 PM GMT on November 11, 2013
Typhoon Haiyan is closing in on the northern Vietnam coast near the Chinese border as a much-weakened Category 1 storm with 85 mph winds, after devastating the Philippines on Thursday and Friday as an extreme Category 5 storm with top winds of 195 mph. Satellite loops show that Haiyan no longer has a well-defined eye, but the typhoon still has a large area of intense thunderstorms which are bringing heavy rains of up to 1.5 inches per hour to Vietnam and Southeastern China.
JeffMasters, • 7:09 PM GMT on November 10, 2013
Typhoon Haiyan is headed across the South China Sea towards Vietnam as a much-weakened Category 3 storm with 115 mph winds after devastating the Philippines on Thursday and Friday as an extreme Category 5 storm with winds of 195 mph. With a preliminary death toll of 1,200, Haiyan already ranks as the 8th deadliest typhoon in Philippines history.
JeffMasters, • 6:46 PM GMT on November 09, 2013
After spending 48 hours at Category 5 strength, the strongest landfalling tropical cyclone in world history, Super Typhoon Haiyan, has finally weakened to a Category 4 storm. With top sustained winds of 155 mph, Haiyan is still an incredibly powerful super typhoon, but has now finished its rampage through the Central Philippine Islands, and is headed across the South China Sea towards Vietnam.
JeffMasters, • 3:50 PM GMT on November 08, 2013
Super Typhoon Haiyan has made landfall. According to PAGASA, Haiyan came ashore at 4 am local time near Guiuan, on the Philippine island of Samar. Two hours before landfall, the Joint Typhoon Warning Center assessed Haiyan’s sustained winds at 195 mph, gusting to 235 mph so the super typhoon likely made landfall with winds near 195 mph--the strongest tropical cyclone on record to make landfall in world history.
JeffMasters, • 10:58 PM GMT on November 07, 2013
Super Typhoon Haiyan is one of the most intense tropical cyclones in world history, with sustained winds an incredible 190 mph, gusting to 230 mph, said the Joint Typhoon Warning Center in their 15 UTC (10 am EST) November 7, 2013 advisory. Officially, the strongest tropical cyclone in world history was Super Typhoon Nancy of 1961, with sustained winds of 215 mph.
JeffMasters, • 4:41 PM GMT on November 07, 2013
Evacuations are underway in the Philippines Islands as extremely dangerous Category 5 Super Typhoon Haiyan heads west-northwest at 20 mph towards the islands. Haiyan, which is the Chinese word for a petrel seabird, is referred to as "Yolanda" in the Philippines, and became a Category 5 storm with 160 mph winds at 12 UTC (7 am EDT) Wednesday. Haiyan became a Cat 5 at an unusually low latitude (7.9°N), but this is not a record. The most southerly Cat 5 on record was Super Typhoon Louise of 1964 (7.3°N).
JeffMasters, • 3:05 PM GMT on November 06, 2013
Category 2 Typhoon Haiyan is rapidly intensifying as it steams west-northwest at 17 mph towards the Philippine Islands. With warm waters that extend to great depth, low wind shear, and excellent upper-level outflow, there is nothing to keep Haiyan from growing into a 150 mph super typhoon by Thursday. Haiyan will likely hit the central Philippines between 3 - 6 UTC on Friday.
JeffMasters, • 3:14 PM GMT on November 05, 2013
In the Eastern Pacific, Tropical Storm Sonia, the eighteenth named storm of the 2013 Eastern Pacific hurricane season, made landfall near midnight EST on Sunday near El Dorado, Mexico, as a minimal tropical storm with 40 mph winds. Heavy rains of 3 - 6 inches are expected in Mainland Mexico along the path of Sonia on Monday, potentially triggering flash floods and mudslides. There is a good chance that Sonia will be the last Eastern Pacific named storm of the year.
JeffMasters, • 2:50 PM GMT on November 04, 2013
The tropical Atlantic is quiet, with no threat areas to discuss, and no reliable models predicting development of a tropical cyclone during the coming five days. So, are we all done for 2013? Or will this unusually quiet hurricane season spawn a Tropical Storm Melissa? I predict that the Atlantic hurricane season of 2013 is over, with just a 20% chance of another named storm this season.
JeffMasters, • 3:01 PM GMT on November 01, 2013