Igor delivers punishing blow to Newfoundland; 95L growing more organized

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 1:21 PM GMT on September 22, 2010

Hurricane Igor delivered a punishing blow to Newfoundland Canada, which suffered one of its worst poundings by a hurricane in the past century. Igor made it all the way to southeast Newfoundland yesterday as a Category 1 hurricane, bringing a peak wind gust of 107 mph to Cape Pine in Southeast Newfoundland. Igor brought sustained winds of 58 mph, gusting to 85 mph, to Newfoundland's capital, St John's. The city recorded a remarkably low pressure of 958 mb, and picked up 3.99" of rain during Igor's passage. Widespread rain amounts of 5 - 9 inches fell over much of southeast Newfoundland's rocky terrain, which is unable to absorb so much water. The resulting severe flooding washed out hundreds of roads, collapsed several major bridges, and forced numerous rescues of people trapped on the second stories of their homes by flood waters. Igor generated swells of 6 - 8 meters (20 - 26 feet) that pounded the southern coast of Newfoundland last night and this morning; significant wave heights reached 39 feet at the Newfoundland Grand Banks Buoy, and a storm surge of a meters (3.28 feet) hit the northeast shores of Newfoundland last night. Igor is now a large and powerful extratropical storm off Greenland and Labrador, and continues to generate hurricane force winds over water--winds at Angisoq, Greenland were sustained at 66 mph this morning.

It is not that unusual for hurricanes to penetrate as far north as Newfoundland's latitude; over 40 hurricanes have done so. The last time this occurred was in 2003, when Hurricane Fabian made it to latitude 48.7°N as a hurricane. The all time record is held by Hurricane Faith of 1966, which followed the Gulf Stream and maintained hurricane status all the way north to latitude 61.1°N, just off the coast of Norway.

Figure 1. Little Barsway bridge 10 km north of Grand Bank, Newfoundland, after floodwaters from Hurricane Igor swept it away. Image credit: George J.B. Rose.

Figure 2. Hurricane Igor at 11:47am EDT on Wednesday, September 21, as it pounded Newfoundland as a Category 1 hurricane with 75 mph winds. Image credit: Environment Canada.

Figure 3. Video of impressive flooding on Newfoundland's Burin Peninsula, whose 20,000 residents were cut off from the rest of the province by flooded roads and closed bridges.

Dangerous Caribbean disturbance 95L growing more organized
A tropical wave (Invest 95L) moving westward at 15 mph though the south-central Caribbean is bringing gusty winds and heavy rain to the northern coast of Venezuela and the islands of Curacao, Aruba, and Bonaire this morning. A wind gust of 38 mph was recorded at Curacao last night. Radar from Curacao and satellite loops show that 95L's thunderstorms have a pronounced rotation, with a center of circulation located just off the coast of South America. Thunderstorm activity is fairly limited, but is slowly increasing in areal coverage and intensity. Wind shear over the Caribbean is low, 5 - 10 knots, and is forecast to remain low to moderate, 5 - 15 knots, for the rest of the week. NHC is giving the disturbance a 60% chance of developing into a tropical depression by Thursday. I'd put the odds higher, at 70%. The Hurricane Hunters are scheduled to investigate 95L this afternoon.

The wave should continue moving westward near 15 mph through Friday afternoon, when it will arrive near the northern coast of Nicaragua. Most of the models show some development of 95L by Thursday or Friday, and the disturbance will bring heavy rains to the Netherlands Antilles Islands and north coast of South America on today and Thursday as passes to the north. Heavy rains may also spread to Southwest Haiti and Jamaica on Thursday, and the Cayman Islands, Cuba, Honduras, and Nicaragua on Friday. When 95L moves over or just north of Honduras on Saturday, a trough of low pressure diving southwards over the Eastern U.S. will weaken the steering currents over the Western Caribbean and cause 95L to turn more to the northwest and slow. If the center of 95L remains over water, the storm could easily develop into powerful and dangerous Hurricane Matthew over the Western Caribbean early next week. Even if the center stays over land, the circulation of the storm may be capable of generating dangerous flooding rains over Central America. Steering currents will be weak over the Western Caribbean through the middle of next week, and 95L may spend up to a week over the Western Caribbean, drenching the region with very heavy rains. Another possibility is that the trough of low pressure over the Eastern U.S. will be strong enough to draw 95L northwards across western Cuba and into the Gulf of Mexico 6 - 8 days from now. This solution is not being emphasized as much in today's model's runs as yesterday's, and the danger to the U.S. is uncertain at this point.

Figure 4. Morning satellite image of 95L.

Tropical Storm Lisa
Tropical Storm Lisa continues to churn the waters of the far Eastern Atlantic. By Friday night, upper level winds out of the west are expected to increase, bringing high wind shear of 20 - 45 knots over Lisa. The high shear may be capable of destroying the storm by early next week. It appears unlikely that Lisa will affect any land areas.

Georgette headed towards Arizona
Tropical Depression Georgette hit the tip of Baja California as a weak tropical storm with 40 mph winds yesterday, but dropped little rain. Georgette is in the Gulf of California, headed northwards, and could bring heavy rains to Arizona on Thursday.

Hurricane Karl's aftermath
Mexico continues to clean up from Hurricane Karl, which made landfall last Friday in Veracruz state as a Category 3 hurricane with 115 mph winds. Karl dumped approximately one foot of rain in the Sierra Madre Oriental Mountains, which cause some rivers to rise to unprecedented levels. The death toll from Karl's flooding and mudslides stands at 16, and ten of thousands remain in shelters after being displaced from their flooded homes. Insurance company AIR Worldwide is estimating insured losses at $100 - $200 million. Actual damage is estimated to be as much as $3.9 billion, since insurance take-up rates are low in Mexico. Karl is the second billion-dollar hurricane to hit Mexico this year; in June, Hurricane Alex hit just south of the Texas border as a Category 2 storm, killing 51 and doing $1.9 billion in damage.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The GFS model predicts a new tropical depression might develop in the Central Caribbean about seven days from now. The NOGAPS model predicts a new tropical depression will form off the coast of Africa about seven days from now.

My next post will be Thursday morning.

Jeff Masters

Uprooted Buoy (Maciejewski)
A buoy is left stranded on the beach from the storm waves of Hurricane Igor...
Uprooted Buoy

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AL, 95, 2010092300, , BEST, 0, 128N, 716W, 30, 1007, DB,
nearly a TD
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15578
1510. xcool

12z cmc ensemble
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15714
Quoting kshipre1:
thanks orcasystems. are these the 8PM models? They look like the ones from earlier today

They are the latest I have...and its only 6pm here :)
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Complete Update

95L - Models are having problems with the Intensity of 95, but the major ones are still calling for a Cat 1-2 at landfall. A good number of models are showing the "hockey stick" pattern into the GOM.

The late models are showing tracks into almost every state bordering the GOM

Lisa - Who knows? Its is still following the WUBlog NFI model and forecast.



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1505. xcool

18z GFS Ensemble to nola
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15714
1502. xcool

Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15714
thanks orcasystems. are these the 8PM models? They look like the ones from earlier today
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Oh, and for those of you about to accuse me of doomcasting or wishcasting, please notice that I did offer the disclaimer "IF this model holds out..."

I no more want a major hurricane to hit Florida or the Eastern Seaboard any more than I want one to hit South Louisiana. I'd rather this hurricane season get over with quickly so that everyone can move on to cooler weather. All I'm doing is commenting on what I see; take it with the usual grains of salt and a gallon of PowerAde.

All we can do -- all anyone here can do -- is prepare for the worst, watch events develop, hope for the best, and, if the threat does materialize, wherever you are, take the needed action to protect your lives, property, and family. And, if they say for you to evacuate, don't give it a second thought.

Right now, though, it's all about watching, making preliminary actions, and hoping for the best.

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Quoting hurricanehunter27:

There is not a lot of convection. Convection needs to increase and needs to keep the convection going for about 6 hours.

Not necessarily true. In the past when a potential killer has been in the neighborhood and every indication was that a storm would grow, neither the NHC nor ATCF was as hesitant to pull the trigger as they are when it's, say, in the far east Atlantic.

95L's CoC is at 12.8N/71.6W, or just a dozen miles or so north of Colombia's Guajira Peninsula. There's currently convection--a small bit--firing up right at the center. I suppose we'll see, as always, but I believe TD15 will be born later tonight. If not, definitely first thing in the morning.
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 15112
1497. will40
Quoting weatherman566:
Someone asked why 95L is not classified if it has a COC.

Answer: the COC needs to be more defined and it needs to be closed off. Also, we need to see more convection not only develop, but maintain itself for 6 hours.

it doesn't have to maintain for 6 hrs
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I hope it doesn't come to NE Florida! How long has it been since we had an actual cane here?? We had our share of a couple of tropical systems in '04/'05 but not a cane in forever.
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Quoting kshipre1:
where in florida are they pointing?

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thanks. are there more lines than before? I ask because I do not have access to what you all are looking at.
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where in florida are they pointing?
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Quoting kshipre1:
do any of the official late run models show the west coast of florida still in the mix?

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95L is in cloak mode. Will have to check back later. Have a nice evening everyone.

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Quoting sammywammybamy:

Models Bad News for South Florida as Well as the Carolina's.

I live like 10 miles north of you in WPB. Neighbor. =)
You and I got Wilma bad. So did many others on this blog, too.

There are a lot of PBC people here.
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Quoting GeoffreyWPB:
18z Early Cycle NHC Dynamic Model Tracks

I don't like the looks of where they are pointing right now I tell ya that!
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Someone asked why 95L is not classified if it has a COC.

Answer: the COC needs to be more defined and it needs to be closed off. Also, we need to see more convection not only develop, but maintain itself for 6 hours.
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do any of the official late run models show the west coast of florida still in the mix?
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1483. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
Japan Meteorological Agency
Tropical Cyclone Advisory #19
9:00 AM JST September 23 2010

SUBJECT: Category Two Typhoon Near The Marianas

At 0:00 AM UTC, Severe Tropical Storm Malakas (980 hPa) located at 19.8N 141.0E has 10 minute sustained winds of 55 knots with gusts of 80 knots. The cyclone is reported as moving west northwest slowly

Dvorak Intensity: T3.5

Storm Force Winds
50 NM from the center

Gale Force Winds
240 NM from the center in eastern quadrant
160 NM from the center in western quadrant

Forecast and Intensity
24 HRS: 23.4N 140.2E - 65 knots (CAT 3/Typhoon)
48 HRS: 31.2N 143.3E - 75 knots (CAT 3/Typhoon)
72 HRS: 41.5N 151.5E - EXTRATROPICAL
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do any of them show a path towards the west coast of florida?
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Good Evening.

Does anyone have the archives of Wilma's environment as far as Shear and SSTs and the like when it was at peak?
I know it must've been perfect, but how does that compare to what's forecasted for 95L?
I hate to make a Wilma comparison this early, but just out of curiosity.

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1479. xcool
OPPS my errors
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15714
Quoting xcool:
weatherman12345 Hurricanes101 .FROM Neapolitan:

he said should go to TD by 2am, but in reality 95L is not close to TD status yet due to a lack of organized convection. Lets see what it does tonight, but I don't see this being a TD before tomorrow afternoon and that may be too soon as well.
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The right turn part of the model forecast is interesting.
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1476. xcool
weatherman12345 Hurricanes101 .FROM Neapolitan:
Member Since: September 26, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 15714
1474. leo305
Quoting anyotherliestotell:
20 models and only 2 have them hitting southeast florida. we're good!

those are just the AP models
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Quoting HarryMc:

http://mag.ncep.noaa.gov/NCOMAGWEB/appcontroller?prevpage=Param&MainPage=indexℑ=&page=Par am&cycle =09%2F22%2F2010+18UTC&rname=SFC-LAYER+PARMS&pname=10m_wnd_precip&model=GFS&area=ATLA NTIC&cat=&areaDe sc=Atlantic+region&fcast=Loop+All

WOW. Just....WOW.

The really, really scary thing is that the first blow isn't really that bad (looks like Ca1 1 or low-end Cat 2) for S FL until Matthew gets into the Gulf Stream near the Carolinas. And even then, the transition to a gale center/nor'easter isn't too extreme for this time of the year.

The second blow, on the other hand, looks like Wilma shifted just 50 miles southward, and without the weakening. A Cat 3 or 4 smacking the Keys and South Florida from SSW to NNE...even we up here in South LA can feel the ramifications of that.

If that model holds out, than may God and the Goddess have mercy on Miami and South Florida. And Cuba. And everyone from Jacksonville/Daytona Beach southward. And even, maybe, the rest of the Eastern Seaboard/OBX.

This looks bad. Really, really BAD. And not in the way of the Michael Jackson song of the same name.


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Quoting marmark:
AP16 looks like a question mark. That about sums it up-Ha!

That's AP03, but the point remains the same. Grrr, I wish there was even just a little more consensus. Well, I guess I could be happy that there is a heck of alot more consensus here than there is with Lisa...
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18z Early Cycle NHC Dynamic Model Tracks

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Lisa finally headed NW
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Reason I wouldn't want another Hurricane ever hitting Florida.
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1461. will40
i doubt if they do anything with it until recon has finished observing it
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Dr. Masters co-founded wunderground in 1995. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters 1986-1990. Co-blogging with him: Bob Henson, @bhensonweather

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