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Caribbean disturbance splits in two

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 4:56 PM GMT on September 26, 2005

Caribbean tropical disturbance
The main area of concern today is a tropical disturbance in the central Caribbean sea, south of Hispanolia. This disturbance has now split in two, which should slow down its development. Wind shear values have increased this morning over the leading (western) portion of the disturbance, and are now about 10 knots, which is only marginally favorable for a tropical depression to form. The trailing (eastern) portion of the disturbance south of Puerto Rico has less shear (5 - 10 knots) over it, and this portion of the disturbance is showing the greatest growth in deep convection this afternoon. This portion of the disturbance has the best chance of development. The shear is forecast to remain constant or decrease over the next 48 hours as the disturbance tracks west-northwest at 15 mph. While surface pressures have started to fall, there are currently no signs of a surface circulation, and the disturbance is still relatively small and disorganized. A reconnaissance airplane is scheduled to visit the area on Tuesday, if necessary.

An upper-level low pressure system over Cuba is forecast to weaken and move northwards during the next three days, which would lessen the shear over the disturbance and steer it more to the northwest, as seen in the early track model forecast from the BAMM model, shown below. The latest 12Z (8am EDT) run of the GFS model takes the disturbance across western Cuba and into the Gulf of Mexico by Saturday. These model results are not reliable, given that the disturbance has split in two and that this was not anticipated by the models.

I give this disturbance a 60% chance of becoming a tropical storm by Friday.

Mid-Atlantic disturbance
A tropical disturbance located about 1200 miles east of the Lesser Antilles remains poorly organized, and is suffering from wind shear imparted by a large upper-level low pressure system to its west. Development of this disturbance is not expected for the next two days.

Elsewhere in the tropics
A cluster of thunderstorms accosiated with the tail end of the cold front that pulled Rita northeast across the U.S. is now emerging over the northern Gulf of Mexico, near the Florida panhandle. Strong upper levels winds should prevent any development in this area for the next two days.

Long range models show the possibility of tropical storm development off the coast of Africa during the week, as well as the Caribbean. We still have about three weeks remaining of the peak period of hurricane season, and I expect two or three more tropical storms will form between now and mid-October.

I mentioned in my blog yesterday how Port Arthur got a direct hit by the eye or Rita, but escaped catastropic storm surge damage. The image below, constructed by NOAA's Hurricane Research Division based on data taken by the NOAA hurricane hunter aircraft, confirms that this occurred because the east eyewall of Rita with its powerful southerly winds never blew over the bay Port Arthur lies on. Thus, water from the open ocean was not forced up into the bay by the eyewall's winds. The maximum storm surge hit a very sparsely populated area of the Southwest Louisiana coast. The small town of Cameron (population 2000) was the largest town along this stretch of coast, and suffered damage similar to what was seen in Mississippi from Hurricane Katrina. The winds of the east side of the eyewall made landfall due south of Lake Charles, pushing the worst storm surge up to that city.

Figure 2. Winds of Rita at landfall as measured by the Stepped Frequency Microwave Radiometer (SFMR) instrument on the NOAA hurricane hunter aircraft.

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

Somebody tell Lefty 96kts does not equal catagor 4 or above.

Dr. Master's....could this become two different tropical systems since it has split up? How long will it take for the model runs to catch up with the new split? thanks.....
manny, Stepped Frequency Microwave Radiometer are used to determine windfields not wind sppeds. thats why we use dropsondes and t-numbers. maybe u didn't know that
I can tell you here in Terrebonne Parish after 10 PM and until the wee hours we had hurricane force winds for Rita.
also,Stepped Frequency Microwave Radiometer , have big errors if the system is over 100kts and it is making landfall or in shallow water. that is from the nhc 2004 anylasis of smfr showed that at hig spped or low speed there could be an error of 20 kts. error of 20 kts for landfalling systems as well. the reason for this is the smfr records microwave data from the sea and when its in shallow water or above 100 kts the sea spray and water in the air gives a lower reading

so 96kts is most likely to low and wind speeds could be 116kts or higher.
Pretty good here, rainy though, we have just had 5 inches of rain in 2 hours.. lol Roads are flooded
Sorry, didn't know there was a new blog....
Posted By: stormydee at 5:32 PM GMT on September 26, 2005.
Okay, this is the final one that I found interesting, then Im done...
Do hurricanes affect the coastline?
Yes, and quite literally. In 1853, a barrier island called Isle Derniere off the Lousiana coastline was split into four segments by a hurricane. Scientists studying these reapidlyeroding islands thought that at least two of the Isles Dernieres would disappear between 2001 and 2006. Then came Hurricane Andrew contributing mightily to the islands erosion.
NOTE-does anyone know if its still there now?
Several of the inlest and cuts in the Outer Banks of North Carolina were carved by passing hurricanes during the last 150 years. Sediment cores from Florida's west coast indicate huge freshwater floods during strong hurricanes more than a thousands years ago. Geologists have found layers of sediment in an Alabama lake that were probably carried inland by intense hurricanes some 3,000 years ago.
Amazing, isn't it???
It should be moving out soon though...
Yeah lefty some places got 8 inches...

"The Handy Weather Answer Book" by Walter Lyons in 1997.
Cool information Stormy, just amazing, thanks =)
Here's one:
Hurricane direct hits on the mainland for individual states 1851-2004 by Saffir/Simpson category. Top 3
Florida with 110 35 of those CAT 3-5
Texas with 59 19 of those CAT 3-5
Louisiana with 49 18 of those CAT 3-5
North Carolina is a close 4th with 46 and 12 of those CAT 3-5
State with the least? Pennsylvania with 1
and manny in case u wanted a defenition of sfmr here it is. u must notice how it says estimation of surface winds. thats what we do. we estimate surface winds thru many means. so windspeed is subjective. that was my point when saying rita was likely stronger specially since she was a sub 940mb system

Measurement of the hurricane surface wind field, and in particular the estimation of wind maxima, has long been a requirement of the Tropical Prediction Center/National Hurricane Center. The NOAA/Hurricane Research Division's Stepped-Frequency Microwave Radiometer (SFMR) is the prototype for a new generation of airborne remote sensing instruments designed for operational surface wind estimation in hurricanes
So lefty, what's your take on the "blob" down in the Carribean?

Dr. Master's....could this become two different tropical systems since it has split up? How long will it take for the model runs to catch up with the new split? thanks.....

The two parts are too close to each other for both to become tropical systems. One will grow at the expense of the other. The trailing (eastern) portion has the best chance. The 00Z model runs (tonight at 8pm, and not available until Tue morning) will have a better handle on this. However, the models do really poorly with developing systems, and I won't trust tonight's model runs much, either.

Jeff Masters
Thanks Jeff..
i think in 24-36 hrs the upper level winds will be favorable enough for development. with the pressure falls and a possible borad area of low pressure forming and the sst of the carribean i belive once thoe upper winds slack off she will blow up
here is the nhc take

Here is the discussion from the MIA NWS that came out a few minutes ago:

fxus62 kmfl 261809

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service Miami Florida
209 PM EDT Monday Sep 26 2005

Discussion...middle level trough southwest of Andros moving west and approaching South Florida showing up well on water vapor. 12z sounding showed cooling from 700 mb to h4 but we still have a weak subsidence cap around 600 mb. Short wave and front to move into North Florida and northeast Gulf and stall. GFS shows a low developing in the northeast Gulf of Mexico possibly on the south end of the front. That seems to weaken and fade away by Friday but another low forms over the northwest Caribbean and moves northwest through the Yucatan Channel early Saturday. This one really needs to be monitored."
subtropic, sounds like they're talking about Rita off NE gulf...looks that way right now, but if it even formed, would they call it Rita again?????
stormy, if they can identify the low level circulation as the remnants of Rita, it is certainly possible (ala Ivan), but if there is any doubt, they will probably go with a new TD if it ever gets that far. That would be my guess anyway. I suspect that nothing much will come of that one either way. With a front sinking that far south, there is bound to be abundent dry air in the vicinity (to the northwest) during the critical strenghtening phase. Again, just a guess. We will have to see where the dew points settle once the front stalls. I would think it will some take time for that airmass to modify.
okay, what about earthquakes? Link Regarding a slow earthquake that happened over in the Cascades...pretty interesting reading if you are bored.....
what about volcanoes? Link static view of Mt St Helens, catch it quick before it reloads and you'll see a fly on the camera. lol
There was some discussion a few days ago about how Tampa is kind of protected from a bad hurricane due to cooler, shallower water by it. (Or maybe just the luck of the draw!). Does anyone know what the water table off Naples is like? We're a little more jutted into the state, kind of between Marco Island and Sanibel...
Dr. Master, in this "relative lull" I'd like to know your opinion on the prediction of increased tropical cyclone activity in the years to come. What are the experts unoficially thinking?

Would you guess this increase of storm frequency will last for the predicted ten years / twenty years / more? Does this increase mean we could see 16 named storms per year?

It's hard to believe that this is actually happening, that we are really going into a period where every year pretty much guarantees a major hurricane hit on the US mainland. However, after last year and this year it is all too real.

Perhaps it's time to pre-cut some plywood and have it ready to go, even here in Jax.
west coast tsunamis - Link latest Tsunami report Link
Pacific tsunamis Link their latest report Link
list of most recent tsunamis Link
Here's a nice loop of the tropical wave splitting~ Link
ya 21, if the tropics are quiet, I just catch up on earthquakes...they are my next favorite thing to keep an eye on....even though FL isn't earthquake proned, there have been at least 1 for sure that happened in the St Augustine, which may explain why Casadaga is so hilly (ancient fault line)Link on that FL earthquake...
wanabe forst o neevr said it would hit a gulf state, one could form and hit mexico lol. next the heat content is suffice to support a cat3 storm. ask dr.masters about that. next yes i play video games. not all the time. i have not played a agme for 2-3 weeks. but ofcourse what does that matter.

next just so you know if the carribean wave forms and takes a dennise or charley path it will be a cat 3 in the gulf so u might be eating crow in 7 days lol
wnnabe, why are u so cuasght up on what i think or say. this is america and if i want to say or belive something thats on me. not you.

now whats the point of the bet. what are we betting. next are we talking bout forming in the gulf or moving into the gulf from the carribean?
Lefty I ahve offered MY predition. NO MORE CAT 3+ STORMS STRIKING THE GULF COAST IN 2005.
Old enough to be your daddy wannabe. Depending on where the storm was headed yes I agree that the Gulf could still support a three. S TX or E FL track coming out of the HOT Carib could surley support a CAT 3.

Yea headed to work now. Just wanted to expose wannabe's ignorance before I left.

Hey wannabe since the left is so great, I don't here you saying much about Nagin and Blanco. THe are some real winners huh?
Lefty I ahve offered MY predition. NO MORE CAT 3+ STORMS STRIKING THE GULF COAST IN 2005. Will YOU take the contrary position or not?
WOW, Drama Drama
i ma not gouing to bet another storm will hit the gulf states. ur sick man. now if u want to bet there will be no more cat 3's pr higher at anytime int he gulf for the rest of the season ur on. as if u look at the heat content just 3 days later its already rebounding, so its a bet u will lose but its also a cath 22 bet, as no one knows if a storm will ever get into the gulf with upper enviroment to form a major cane, so tis a catch 22. but to make u happy ur on
Once again your true colors are shining through LEFTY. A cat 3+ in the Gulf - yeah I agree that could happen. There are lots of ways that could happen. That's not the bet, LEFTY.
lol wannabe whats the bet. i am not saying a cat 3 or higehr will hit the gulf states. never did and never will. now. u have problems.
That is a large part of your problem wannabe. You are a narrow minded individual. Confidence?lol. We are talking about tropical systems! Confidence-What an idiot. THe NHC was not confident that Rita was going to miss Galveston until about 24 to 36 hrs in advance.

BTW your confidence is no better than flipping a coin.

I am confident that there could be a a CAT 3 in the gulf.
Lefty was simply making HIS PREDICTIONS... He wasn't holding a gun to anyones head
We were all here making predictions as to Rita's instensity and landfall and lots of people bet on the weather.

LEfty is so sure of himself and his theories on tropical system formation and intensification. I want to see Lefty take a stand.
yep 65, I bet there is a gray cloud to my west right now, may poss produce some rain...no wait, Ill BET it will produce rain.... LOL
Predition, bet - WTF ever people. LEFTY will you make a prediction, based on YOUR theories about tropical heat potential in the gulf for the reaminder of the 2005 hurricane season, that we will have another cat 3+ that strikes the gulf coast of the USA. LEFTY makes predictions ALL the time here (mostly they turn out to be wrong), so why not this time? Come on Lefty -
What's with the lack of Cape Verde storms this year? Is it the dry air and Saharan dust that's zapping the moisture out of the ITCZ? Normally the east coast seems like a target this time of year. However, the only real brush we have had this year was Ophelia, which developed in the Bahamas. I've watched some monster waves coming off the African coast (like the one moving off of it right now) but they all seem zapped of energy within 48 hours.
Hey lefty, do you agree now that this was not the catastrophic storm the media and others anticipated?
wannabe i am pretty spot on alot, thats why i ahve alot of support. thats why users of this blog have invited me to their homes while chasing. thats why plenty more would be happy to chase with me. so u think i have put up some kind of smoke and mirrors and fooled free thinking adults lol. thats even more funny than the bet
wx, we got lucky she hit where she did, but for thos efolks in sw la. it was a catastrophe and be glad it hit where ti did and not anyplace else. 90-100 percent of cameron, creole and another small town i forget the name off were wipped away. just destroyed. just like the gulf coasts states form katrina. we got lucky but some peopl;e did not. they lost their homes, jobs, and some lost there lives
lol the blob in the caaribean will form in to a td in 24-48 hrs. there u go a prediciton lol. lest see if i am right
What do all think about the area of rita that is moving into the golf
LOL stormy!
Ok...I'll be very careful!!!!
sensitive - I have a better sense of humor than the rest of you, I've been laughing for an hour - this is all pretty funny. BUT none of it is as funny as LEFTY's reluctance to jsut make s simple little predition for the last 2 months of the 2005 hurricane season based on his previously stated tropical weather theroies. Come on LEFTY it won't hurt that much to be wrong AGAIN! LOL
hey lefty how r u today? u see anything down the road this week that may possibly become STAN? or where it may head??
My prediction: the blob in the caribbean will for into a category five hurricane and hit Louisiana in 1 week.

LOL, nah, it's going into Mehico and dissipates.
Great, now my legitimate question will never be seen by Dr. Masters because of all the rubbish that precedes my post.

Like many things, it only takes a few to ruin it for the mases.
storm, i think there is a good chance the usrface low south of pr will be stan. and ifg her fails to form there, there is a impressive wave south of the cape vered isalnds that the gfs forms into a cyclone, but that will likely be a fish storm
if the pr surface low forms it will likley pass over cuba or beteween cuba and the yucatan and into the gulf. but storm remebr track is hard to tie down till u have a formed system
I saw a bamm model that takes whatever forms in carribean NW into SE gulf?? not sure from there where it goes?? ships model says 80mph winds in 5 days??? soo who knows
sorry about that willjax
early model runs....

I apologize Willjax
If anyone wants an answer from Dr Masters, please click his name and it will give u the option to email him, so that way, if there's bickering going on and u don't think he saw ur ?, send it directly...he has responded to me via email and very quickly might I add. :-)
those model runs look scary WEATHERDUDE huh < central gulf coast again??
storm...they do, but it is hard for the models to really pick up on something that hasn't even formed yet, so we will just wait and see.
Investigative models really frighten me... =(

Darnit, here we go again...
LBAR REALLY scares me because it somes right over where I live...but like I said, have to wait and see.
Weatherdude, you are exactly right.. =)
where u live weather dude?? im up in panhandle pc , mexico beach area
whos LBAR??? That model run....nope, LBAR, please predict something else...there goes the FL east coast...nope, won't believe it...gonna be a gulf storm if one at all...(I hope)
I wouldn't worry too much about the lbar just yet. It STILL thinks Andrew will hit Boca. ;-)
just west of Cocoa Beach...little place called Rockledge
Thanks stormy, that's a good idea. I will repost my question along with Dr. Masters' response so we may all see it.

And I apologize for my words, I was a bit frustrated to check back and only to find the type of posts I did. Try not to respond to the immaturity of one person. That's like feeding a hurricane some nice 90-degree water... they feed on it!

lol willjax, so true...
Everyone, had enough fun for one day. Have a great night, see ya in here tomorrow!
alright stormy catch u later
Those models are a little scary. We've gotten extremely lucky here in the PC Beach area. Hopefully, it will stay that way...
I'm heading out as well....everyone have a good night. I'll check back in tomorrow
LEFTY will a hurricane be able to maintain or strengthen cat 3+ for the rest of the 2005 season? That gives you a little wiggle room - BASED on NHC not YOUR ratings however. I've known politicians that are more straightforward than you, Lefty.

In the Gulf, of course.
wannabe what's your problem? If you don't like Lefty's opinion, then don't listen to it.. Why do you hide behind your computer and take shots at people you hardly know??

If you don't care about lefty and his opinions so much, then stop talking about it. I know that I speak for alot on this board when I say I am tired of reading your posts..

If you think you are entertaining.. think again.
HurricaneZane - I am asking for lefty's opinion here, not yours. This IS a weather Blog, so it's fair game to parse other members for their opinions. IF you don't like it take a hike.
Lefty.. I personally enjoy your opinions, but most of all your overall personality. So keep it up brother..
thanks zane i aprecciate that

wannabe if a storm got inot the gulf it couldmaintain atleast a cat3 status. i have said that befor.
HurricaneZane - go start a new BLog fopr Lefty - not everyone shares your opinion. Talk about tropical weather or leave.
snippy hurricane lovers....ah.

I'll make a prediction. If a hurricane gets to the Gulf of Mexico, it easily can become a Cat 3, even now. And if Stan makes it there, it too could get to 120, that is easily done in there now. Cat 4? if it gets good outflow. Cat 5? not for a few weeks.
thanks zane i apreciate it.

wannabe i said it alreasy. the gulfright now couldmaintain atleast a cat 3.
LEFTY thanks - see how easy that was.
wannabe i said that 100 times already. i said it yesterday. i said it today. u have a problemand i hope u get help soon
SaCaCh yes there have been some sensitive folks here today.

I disagree, I say that the Gulf cannot sustain a major hurricane now and that the potential for cat 3+ is over for the year. My prediction is no more major canes will survive in the Gulf this year.
Lefty: you have mail.
is it too cold in the gulf because of the wake of both Katrina and Rita to have a major hurricane there again for the rest of the season?
I know that huricanes cause up welling but rita unlike ophelia didnt almost go staionary to cause up welling, and the eastern gulf hasnt really had a bad storm pass thru so if a storm made it there it would prob become powerful barring any shear,, right lefty??
LEFTY - just to make it perfectly clear, though, the Cane has to maintain and sustain 3+. To me that indicates landfall is required.
hate, sure no problem man
yeah storm
I saw somewhere where a peice of rita may break off in NE gulf and may make a low?
well to require landfall is kinda cheap as a whole mess of other factors would come into play once a cane got close to shore.
sorry hate. thanks
SaCaCh is there any other way that a Cane would be able to maintain cat 3+ status? A single warm eddy causing intensification shouldn't count - it would have to make to a 3+ and then stay there until it ran out of water - like Dennis, Emily, Rita, Katrina. Maria would count becuase she ran into a extra tropical part of the Atlantic.
Is that why you don't think there will be another Cat 3+ in the Gulf? Because all the other hurricanes have left cooler wakes?? or it's just the time of year that the gulf cools down?

It may be a stupid question, but I am a total novice when it comes to canes..

ask me about criminal law and I would be able to talk you ear off...

Zane - basically both. Criminal Law - sounds fascinating. I remember those classes.
Based on this image alone, it seems to me that the GofM has plenty of warm water left. Also, IMHO, a storm that reaches a higher intensity and then weakens will still retains some of the charecteristics of a more intense storm. We saw that with Rita's storm surge...

Willjax we will put you down on the Cat 3+ side
okay got it! thx

Yes, job is pretty cool.

See, I am not such a bad person. Didn't mean to come off sensitive -- I am just used to sticking up for people, as you can imagine.

I like lefty.. He's always nice when I ask stupid questions.. :S

Check with y'all tomorrow.
can you put me bown for a cat 4 or a cat 5
Zane - np. Thanks
four models for the Carribean system
A bouy near 75 West 15 North id reporting winds form the ENE at 10 knots with gusts to 12 knots... and a water temperature of 86 DEGREES! The wave is near 72 West 17 North, and the bouy is in its likely path. Note this information is from when I posted this comment at 9:25 GMT. The pressure is currently 29.80" and falling.
Well we still have the October 20th peak to go, and since many of the storms in this time of year will curve into the Gulf, there's no telling what we'll see. Given this season, I wouldn't be suprised to see another major cane. This year has already seen two of the five most intense hurricanes ever recorded in the Atlantic basin.

For those interested, here's a portion of an article that discussed the Oct. 20th peak:

You might well ask why is there such an increase in storm activity in early October when all indicators tell us the Atlantic region is cooling? The answer lies with the increase in frequency and strength of mid-latitude, low-pressure systems. These systems are triggered by the intrusion of cold air from Canada, replacing the retreating warm air. As low-pressure systems sweep across the US, their cold fronts move south and in doing so displace and push upward the remaining warm air.

Why does this cause an upsurge in tropical activity? Because when warm moist tropical air is pushed aloft by powerful fall cold fronts, the warm air cools, condensing moisture into clouds which release heat encouraging air to rise further. This rising effect causes a lowering of pressure on the earths surface, often just sufficient to bring about the pressure differential (gradient) needed to trigger formation of tropical storms or hurricanes.

Only between October 1 and 20 do the two necessary ingredients of residual tropical heat and intruding cold air exist to spark the formation of tropical weather.
29.80"= 1009.2 mb
Ok. Here's my prediction. Wannabe will someday get his butt kicked in a road rage incident. Dude, you need meds.
The Army Corps of Engineers couldn't do much with the New Orleans levy system in the three weeks that followed Katrina. What will they be able to do in the 7 days prior to the potential arrival of "Stan"? Given the weekend state of things, a strong tropical storm or weak hurricane may prove to be pretty devastating.
i hav updated my blog
"Triggered by an intrusion of cold air from Canada? Well, poo. I always liked those people.
Just tell me if it has any remote chance of affecting Pensacola and I'm good to go. ;)
Is it just my imagination or does the Carib. system look pretty ragged right now? And if there is any circulation, it looks clockwise, not counterclockwise....

But I have untrained eyes for these things

188. Manny

One thing of note is the Gulf has already had an enourmous amount of heat energy extracted from it by the last 2 major storms. Whether there is enough time for it to heat up enough to support another one is debateable but I feel its marginal at best. I think tropical development is still entirely possible in the Gulf, I just don't think major hurricane intensification is possible in the gulf.

If you look at those images, there has been a lot of heat extracted from the Gulf. Is there enough energy from other places to compensate for that?

I don't know for sure, but I suspect not.

189. Manny
Oh, and one thing I definetly agree with Lefty about is this:

The only reason this isn't as bad as we thought it would be is because it did not make landfall in a heavily populated area. This storm was bad, but it was bad in a swampland.
its all in the maps u look at. thats the tni version here is the reynolds. just a different perspective. to me looks like lots of heat content

Tell those in the "swampland" that it wasn't as bad as expected.
and the renyolds is used in the models as it is an adjustment of the tmi. this takes out the errors so the reynolds is a closer image of actual heat content and sst. the tmi is raw data that has large errors. that is hwy the reynolds method is used to filter out the noise and giive a clearer image of the sst in that region
I think the Gulf will see at least on more cat. 3 or cat. 4 this season, and I think that storm will be the disturbance (low) in the Caribbean.
the tmi is done with bouys. so where there is no bouiy its extrapulated.
heres a link so you can read up on both tmi and reynolds. but if u want to look at heat content the reynolds is the image used by noaa, tpc and all computer models.

also manny if u want to show heat content loos u need to show a image form closer to when rita formed. thats why i used the 18th as she was not formed then. as you can see not much heatwas taken from the gulf and most was taken from the loop which will replenish itself woth ease as the temps to 100 meters in the carribean are hott and the carribean is the source for the loop.
sorry hers the link on info from the tmi and the reynolds sst images

i would have responded earlier but there was a fire in my apt complex and i had to leave the apt for 20 minutes. talk about a rush. just a little kitchen fire so alls well
wow this caribbean thing is getting alot of hype already
Hello all...well I was gonna post last nite but the kiddie chatter got out of hand along with the comments of the thrill seeking Rita's-over-what's-next crowd...yeah, it's only Louisiana who gives a rat's behind. Well I'll tell you who - anyone with half a brain who understands the far reaching and long term impact we are left with.

Some may not care but let me give you an example:
Took the boat out yesterday to western Terrebonne Parish (Gibson) to see how far the storm surge had travelled inland - it was too flooded to try going south of Houma. I knew what I'd see, but STILL was shocked at what I saw. Keep in mind, this area is not salty or brackish, but river fed freshwater habitat...or it was - the surge flooded these waterways with 3 to 4 ft. of SALTWATER. The result will be seen within a few days - there will be MASSIVE FISH KILLS ALONG ENTIRE LA COAST as far as 90 miles inland. Already got reports confirming. Commercial fishermen will not have a source to ply their trade for years, although saltwater finfish on the coast will rebound quickly after the now mixed floodwaters drain back into the Gulf. However, that mixed water will negatively affect shrimp and oysters with too much freshwater. We're screwed.

All this happened after Andrew (of course, unknown outside LA) - in the Atchafalaya Basin alone over 175 million fish -90%- of all species perished, wreaking what was one of the premier sportfishing attractions of this country. It took a minimum of 3 years for natural regeneration and many areas have never recovered fully to what they were before. I'm afraid Rita's kill will extend 5 times that...disturbing news for a lot of us.

OK, sorry if the hydrological impact of hurricanes is off topic here - I had to vent. You sure as hell won't learn this on CNN/Fox (damn - they're still in Houston!).

Dr. Masters analysis earlier was spot-on about the Carib. trop wave...
the western blob had convection trying to form or wrap around a center near 15N 74W for about 4 hours then got sheared/blown off as it out ran the apparent low. Convection will likely renew as the eastern flank catches up. I expect TD19 to be recognized by NHC by noon tomorrow, certainly by the 5pm advisory and probably TS Stan (50mph) on Wed. with continued WNW (285) movement @ 15 to 17 mph.

At this point I see 2 viable solutions on it's future track - as Lefty mentioned earlier, a Charley type track or heading west toward TX/MX. If the 2nd track, too early to tell if it curves and slams Corpus Christi or further N and E. Will have better handle when I see the motion of it's LeadingLow, as I call the upper low features that often carve out paths for trop sytems. If the LeadingLow - now over Keys- shifts west and stalls, should be track 1. And if it continues moving west toward MX, track 2.

Also noticed the 1011mb low that dropped down off Rita's tail, now about 60 miles S of Pensacola, moving SSW. Any development would be slow, if at all. Should merge with frontal system approaching from NW by Wed.

Check back later.

200. MJH
That is a big blob in the carib. Will it fizzle or start to sizzle. If it sizzles it will sizzle up into the gulf. Lot of warm water to work with in the carib.
Does anyone remember Hurricane Juan?
good post doc
Yes Robert I do. A lot of flooding here in Terrebonne Parish.

Anyone think that what is left of rita will re form in the golf? Link
which juan. 1985 or 2003?
DOC that was awesome. I read this blog for posts like that.
The 1985 version, Lefty. If I remember correctly, the 1985 Juan formed from the same type of low, or very similar, to the low now off the Florida Panhandle. It never made it above CAT-1, but it caused an incredible amount of flooding. If anything develops from this system, I expect it to be very much like the 1985 storm.
Lefty.........man o man.....people like fussin with ya dont they..........lol.......whether another hurricane can maintain cat 3 or better is easy.......heck yaaaaaaaaa.......no problem.........in the right situation..........has anyone looked at the caribbean....its practically boiling........as I said about 5 hours ago on here........a charley type storm could mess up florida or something that could develop in the bay of campeche could wallop corpus christy......there are still scenarios that could be played out....this season we had to major hurricanes in JULY.....Are you listening.....JULY......Ok....ENOUGH said....we have just had the strongest duo of Hurricanes in the gulf EVER.......so im telling anyone that anything is possible.....especially this year....and maybe more years to come..........and one last thing.....nobody on here has to argue about anything....all the proof is on all the blogs....the time, the words.....the predictions....the proof is in the pudding.....we all know whose predictions are whose.....right or wrong.....who cares .....we are on a blogggggggggggggggggg........lol....we are definitely not professors at a round table for the university of phoenix.........lol
I thought Charley took it's path(hard right) because of a trough digging in....not an upper level low. It doesn't really matter what could cause it to do so, but I got smacked really good by the chuckster and I swear it did not break off to the right cuz of an upper level..am I wrong?
One of the worst hurricanes that I can remember was in November, I believe. Hurricane Joan in Nicaragua was a massive storm. It made it all the way to the Pacific side without dropping below hurricane strength. It was promptly given a new name.
In your honest opinion Lefty, do YOU think that a major hurricane could strike SW FL in the next week by way of Blobby Jr.?
Tornadoty...where r u?
I know this....if one comes to florida again like charley.....i will be ready.....
It seems like to me that there is more of a tendency for late season storms, coming out of the western Carribean, to cross western Cuba, and then continue north across the Florida peninsula, and then into the Atlantic.
Actually, I'm in NW IN, but I have grandparents in C FL, and a strike on SW FL at this time could bring bad conditions to them (Charley came within 50 miles, and they were absolutely CLOBBERED by Frances and Jeanne).

P.S. Today is the anniversary of Jeanne.
Heh Lefty,
Thanks man...sorry to hear about that fire, glad it wasn't serious...
Question..what were you cooking? You know you can't blog and cook at the same time...lol.
I can see the Caribbean disturbance getting caught in the trough associated with the cold front and going across western Cuba or the Yucatan channel before getting shunted NNE towards the west coast of FL. The heat content south of Cuba is insanely high so I can see a Cat 4/5 developing south of Cuba, if all goes right in the atmosphere, and then weakening to a strong Cat 2, or lower Cat 3.
Two predictions about such a storm, if it materializes. It will not have a tight inner core, instead being a bit sloppy.

This means that the pressure wind/relationship will be a bit off as in Rita, maybe upper 950s mb for a strong Cat 2 and upper 940s mb for a low-end cat 3. My 'gut' tells me that such a storm after Florida will head out to sea and not track up the east coast.

Another possible scenario is for 'stan' to be surpressed south by the high pressure behind the cold front and crash into the Yucatan, and then get trapped in the Bay of Campeche, much like Roxanne did. In such a case it might wander the bay for a week until it either uses up all the heat content from the water there and dies or blunders into land, or gets picked up by a future trough and flung into the NE gulf coast as a tropical storm or Cat 1 hurricane.
Has anyone noticed how some of the more credible models are predicting a high that will stretch nearly parallel to 30N from the southeast US all the way across the Atlantic? If that were to occur I wonder if we would see some of those Cape Verde waves end up in the Caribbean.

Also Manny, I was thinking that, given the right conditions, a major hurricane could be supported by the SST's in portions of the Gulf (especially if the storm is moving relatively fast). I don't know, however, that a major hurricane could form over those waters.

thanks doc, wasn't my apt was the nieghbors and i dunno what he was cooking but it was minor fire. just a little freak as i was taking a nap and there this crazy banging on the door and the fire man was like go got get out now!!!!. i though maybe the apt building got hit by lightning or something as it was raining. i had to grab the kids and run out. didn;t have no shoes or nothing lol. but i was only out in the rain for 20 mins befor they gave the all clear
WillJax, fyi there is a blog called TheDiscussionBlog that Dr. Masters now uses to answer questions posted to him--he has bowed to the reality that this is a community bulletin board now.
yea will, that high is massive. Doesnt bode well for the east coast if something gets going in the atlantic
skeetobite has some intersting tracks! But somehow, I just see this 'stan' hooking to the NE across FL or maybe even to the east across Cuba/Bahamas, not heading NNW. But what do I know. My predictions are almost always wrong, ;-)
torn. if blobby jr gets goign in 24-48 hrs itwill be in an enviroment for explosive development and a major can could develop and take a ivan, charley, denis path accross cuba and into the gulf. where it goes we will ahve to see but alot of storms get steered ne when they hit the gulf this time of year so a florida strike would be a possibilty
Sorry for repeating, but I really need to know your thoughts on this question:

In your honest opinion Lefty, do YOU think that a major hurricane could strike SW FL in the next week by way of Blobby Jr.?

Sorry for that last post Lefty.
torn. if blobby jr gets goign in 24-48 hrs itwill be in an enviroment for explosive development and a major can could develop and take a ivan, charley, denis path accross cuba and into the gulf. where it goes we will ahve to see but alot of storms get steered ne when they hit the gulf this time of year so a florida strike would be a possibilty
Yes St. Simons, but I have yet to get any of my questions answered in the Discussion Blog.

My questions:

Question One: Is there an accepted storm dependant formula for estimating hurricane damage? (this came after he was discussing possible formulae for estimating damage).

Question Two
: What is your opinion on the predicted increase in tropical activity? What are the professionals "unofficially" thinking?
no problem torn lol
I dunno St. Simons, I was thinking a possible SW Florida landfall earlier today, or maybe even panhandle. Then again I humbly admit that I am no expert.

I'm also wondering what will happen if our Blob Jr. happens to encounter the remnants of Rita. If that were to happen then who knows what path the combined system could take.

Time will teach us!
i agree i believe that the caribbean thing will turn N then NE ahead of the upcoming trof, but then we always have to deal with the trof leaving whatever is left of the storm behind because with it being so far south at this point it most likely wouldnt be able to kick it all the way out into the open atlantic, which leaves it in the NE/E gulf or somewhere just off the east coast between SC and Florida....but thats just my guess at this point its got more of a chance to be wrong than right
JupiterFL, ...yeah, me too...I'm an info freak.

Buhdog, ...their's a frontal trof coming into the gulf now and another stronger due by weekend. If the upper feature I referred to moves west, then stalls, say near the Yucatan, TD19/Stan will be shunted northward across Cuba and into the Gulf - at which point the 2nd stonger trof will pick it up and pull it N & NE across FLA.

And yes, Cat3 or stronger is very likely possibility.
Looks like the hurricane season from hell has long way to go.

Be back later ya'll.