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Caribbean disturbance 93L no threat; remembering the Edmund Fitzgerald storm

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 1:31 PM GMT on November 10, 2010

An area of disturbed weather (Invest 93L) near Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands is drifting northwards. The heavy thunderstorm activity associated with 93L is rather limited, due in part to some surrounding dry air. Wind shear is a moderate 10 - 15 knots and SSTs are very warm, 29°C, but 93L is headed into a region of very high wind shear, and does not have time to develop. None of the reliable global forecast models for predicting tropical cyclone formation (GFS, NOGAPS, ECMWF, and UKMET) are developing 93L into a tropical depression over the coming week, and NHC is giving 93L a 10% chance of developing by Friday.

The GFS and NOGAPS models predict a strong tropical disturbance will form in the southern Caribbean off the coast of Colombia 6 - 7 days from now, and move west-northwest towards Nicaragua.

Figure 1. Rainfall totals for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands from Invest 93L.

35th anniversary of the "Edmund Fitzgerald" storm
Thirty five years ago today, on November 10, 1975, one of the strongest storms in Great Lakes history sank the ore carrier Edmund Fitzgerald on Lake Superior, with the loss of all 29 men aboard. Our Weather Extremes blogger Christopher C. Burt has a look back at this date in weather history, which also features four other remarkable record-setting storms: the 1911 Great Cold Front, the 1913 "White Hurricane", the 1940 Armistice Day Blizzard, and the 1998 Super Cyclone.

Figure 2. The S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald in calmer waters. Photo from NOAA.

I'll have a new post Thursday morning.

Jeff Masters


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