Andrea no help for Florida's fires

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 11:26 PM GMT on May 09, 2007

Subtropical Storm Andrea has changed little since it was named at 11am today. The amount of thunderstorm activity has decreased on the storm's west side, but become a little more concentrated on the east side. The organization of the spiral bands of rainfall visible on the Jacksonville, FL long range radar has remained about the same, and winds at some of the offshore buoys have remained fairly constant. Andrea remains a sloppy, disorganized storm. The main threat from the storm is coastal erosion due to the pounding surf it is generating--plus a possible fanning of the fires burning in Florida and Georgia (see below).

Wind shear has increased from 10 knots this morning to about 25 knots this evening. Shear is expected to increase to over 30 knots late tonight. Given the unfavorable wind shear, and the fact that the storm is over waters of 24-25 degrees C, I don't expect any significant intensification of Andrea. A slow decay as forecast by NHC seems reasonable.

Andrea and the Florida/Georgia fires
As Andrea began to form on Tuesday off the Carolina coast, the counter-clockwise circulation of air around the center of low pressure brought northerly winds over northern Florida and southern Georgia, where significant fires are burning. These north winds blew the smoke from the fires into the Tampa/St. Petersburg area, where unhealthy levels of particulate matter air pollution were recorded (Figure 1). The storm moved far enough west and south today that a more westerly flow of air has been carrying the smoke out over the Atlantic. Rainfall from Andrea has been less than 0.3 inches across the fires zones, which is not enough to douse them; in fact, the storm's high winds have served to fan the flames.

Andrea is a very dry storm; peak rainfall rates are only about 0.25 inches per hour, in the storm's southeastern rainbands. These rainbands are not expected to hit the coast in the next two days. Maximum total rainfall observed by the Jacksonville radar has been less than 1.5 inches.

Figure 1. NASA MODIS image of fires burning over Florida on May 8, 2007. Image credit: NASA Earth Observatory.

Early storms
The last time a named storm formed so early in the year was on April 18 2003, when Tropical Storm Ana formed near Bermuda. An unnamed subtropical storm also formed on April 21, 1992.

Longest period with a tropical cyclone ends
Andrea's formation brings to a close the longest period on record globally without a tropical cyclone. The last advisory issued on a tropical cyclone this year was at 06 GMT on April 6th, for Tropical Cyclone Cliff in the Southern Hemisphere. Today's 15 GMT advisory on Subtropical Storm Andrea ends the record longest period without a tropical cyclone at 33.4 days, besting the old record of 31.5 days set mid-April to mid-May in 1984. Reliable records of global tropical cyclone numbers go back to the beginning of the satellite era, about 1970.

I'll have an update in the morning. The next Quikscat pass is at about 8pm. The next Hurricane Hunter mission is not until 8am Thursday.

Jeff Masters

Smokey Florida Sunrise (Peacefulbon)
Southwest Florida is being affected by the fires burning on the Georgia/Florida border, some 300 miles away. The smoke plume reduced visability to less than half a mile yesterday, and this morning resulted in this hazy sun at 8 a.m.
Smokey Florida Sunrise
Smoke (BillyBob)
Smoke moving in to Central Florida from the fires in Georgia and Northern Florida created this interesting orange glow. I took this photo, this morning, looking east across Lake Henry near Winter Haven.

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

Sign In or Register Sign In or Register

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 359 - 309

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8Blog Index

359. ForecasterColby
8:17 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
MahFL, those contours on the map indicate rate of change on the shear with respect to time. The positive values around Andrea indicate shear is increasing.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
358. MahFL
10:17 AM EDT on May 10, 2007
Skyepony, I think you read that map incorrectly, if Andrea is drifting SW then she is moving into less shear which is more favourable for strengthing.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
357. skibrian95
1:47 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
it's terrible...and the wind won't die down enough for firefighters to get a handle on things...just a big blustery hot winded animal. she should **** or get off the pot...and pick one or the other now! u r right 23, she's only making things worse...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
356. hurricane23
9:43 AM EDT on May 10, 2007
The sad thing about all this is that andrea has only made problems worse across south florida and basically all of florida in general with the fire stituation.Its pushed very dry air down the state not helping the fire situation.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
355. Skyepony (Mod)
1:43 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
shear is only getting less favorable
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
354. Drakoen
1:36 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
i am sorrythat i haven't been here over the past two days. Andrea looks very ragged on the satellite imagery as it. slowly moves south ward.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
353. Tazmanian
6:33 AM PDT on May 10, 2007
23 was right the navy site this update and now the winds are olny 30kt
Member Since: May 21, 2006 Posts: 5101 Comments: 118247
352. skibrian95
1:29 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
damn it. Masters got it right...too much shear. As for us Florida folks...we NEED that rain...BAD!!!

That thing is really losing it. My prediction fell apart, and the obvious cause are the NWstrly shearing winds at the top that almost nobody on this blog saw yesterday, and even many, like me, questioned until someone posted the evidence for us.

I wake up, Andrea's not on the other side of the bed...Boo-Hoo.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
351. homegirl
1:27 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Oh, I'm not offended, I am here to learn. I know this started as a cold core system and was in transition, i was just confused. lots of posting and back and forth about this storm. very interesting and yes, a bit confusing, but thanks for the info! I'm sure MrP will be greatful as well.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
350. incogNeato
1:24 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
"Sorry guys, guess i need to do my homework."

Sorry, homegirl, I wasn't being critical. Just correcting. :-) Sub-tropical storms are always strange beasts that are tough to get ones arms around. By definition they are "in between" storms... so, they come in lots of shapes, sizes, constructions, etc.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
349. ricderr
1:24 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
She's just not vertically stacked anymore.

and thus......she dies
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
348. hurricane23
9:23 AM EDT on May 10, 2007
This most likely is down to TD status iam really not finding any winds higher then 30mph antleast not at the surface maybe higher at flight level.

Close-up view of andrea with radar and current nhc forcast.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
347. Skyepony (Mod)
1:21 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
She does look more tropical this morning but shear has decoupled the upper & lower centers of circulation. She's just not vertically stacked anymore.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
346. homegirl
1:21 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Sorry guys, guess i need to do my homework.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
345. Skyepony (Mod)
1:18 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
vortex message

Storm ANDREA: Observed by AF #307
Storm #01 In Atlantic Ocean
Total Flights For Storm #01: 02
Date/Time of Recon Report: May 10, 2007 11:31:00 Zulu
Position Of The Center: 30 07 ' N 079 49 ' W (30.12 N 79.82 W)
Minimum Height Measured At Standard Level Of Millibars: Meters (Normal: Meters)
Maximum Surface Winds Were Estimated At: 35 Knots (40.25 MPH)
Estimated Surface Winds Were Measured At: 053 Nautical Miles (60.95 miles) From Center At Bearing 312
Maximum Flight Level Winds Near Center Were 038 Knots (43.7 MPH) From 012
Maximum Flight Level Winds Were Measured 078 Nautical Miles (89.7 Miles) From Center At Bearing 309
Minimum Pressure: extrap 1002 Millibars (29.588 Inches)
Maxium Flight Level Temperature / Pressure Altitude Outside The Eye: 21C (69.8F) / 301 Meters
Maximum Flight Level Temperature / Pressure Altitude Inside The Eye: 22C (71.6F) / 303 Meters
Dewpoint Temperature / Sea Surface Temperature Inside The Eye: 16C (60.8F) / NAC (NAF)
Eye Wall Was Characterized As Being: NA
Eye Form Was Characterized As Being: NA
Center Fix Established Using: Penetration Wind Pressure
Center Fix Established At Level(s): 1500 Feet
Navigational Accuracy Measured At: 0.02 Nautical Miles
Meteorological Accuracy Measured At: 2 Nautical Miles

Other Information:
1: Maximum Flight Level Winds Were 38 KT NW Quadrant at 11:05:00 Z

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
344. incogNeato
1:14 PM GMT on May 10, 2007

Kori gave an excellent description. And the statement about development over sub-80F water is correct (Kori didn't seem too confident of that statement). In fact, there've been a few subtropical storms, like Ana in 2003, that formed over water as cool as 70F... but that's pretty extreme. And Kori's also correct that the transformation to tropical can also occur below 80F... Ana was over 75-78F water when she completed her tropical transformation.

But I wanted to add that a previous statement that sub-tropical storms are cold core is incorrect. As they are storms "in transition", they usually have a flat thermal field (neither warm nor cold core). Yesterday, recon reports indicated just such a flat thermal field. This morning's recon is showing Andrea to be very, very slightly warm core.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
343. Skyepony (Mod)
1:16 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Ya'll watchin recon?

Highest winds find on RECCO I saw.

Thu May 10 2007
1102 GMT
Latitude 31.1 N
Longitude 81.1 W
No turbulence
Currently flying in the clear
Flight altitude 1017 feet (310 meters)
Flight level winds 10 degrees at 36 knots (41 mph)
Temperature 18 C Dewpoint 16 C
Surface Pressure 1008 millibars
Surface winds 360 at 25 knots (28 mph)
Remarks: AF307 0201A ANDREA OB 03


Thu May 10 2007
1247 GMT
Latitude 31.3 N
Longitude 78.5 W
No turbulence
Currently flying in the clear
Flight altitude 984 feet (300 meters)
Flight level winds 110 degrees at 26 knots (29 mph)
Temperature 18 C Dewpoint 18 C
Surface Pressure 1010 millibars
Surface winds 110 at 25 knots (28 mph)
Remarks: AF307 0201A ANDREA OB 07
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
342. hurricane23
09:11 EDT le 10 mai 2007
Good morning guys,

We'll as expected andrea is still basically stationary and posses no threat right to the florida coast as it remains very weak and very few areas i could find to TS strength my thinking is those winds were found at flight level and most likely are not to the surface.Its movement currently appears to be to the SE very slowly.The only real chance i see this thing strengthing a bit cause right now its dealing with 20-30kt over it is when it crosses the gulfstream on its way out to sea.But this is just a warm-up and should be used as a wake up call to those who have not gotten there supplies and there hurricane plan in place for this season.Adrian

Close-up view of Gulf stream

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
341. KoritheMan
1:04 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
MisterPerfect: To make it more clear, subtropical storms are different from tropical storms in a few ways:

1. The strongest winds are located well away from the center of circulation, thus subtropical storms typically have elongated wind fields, and elongated structures. Tropical storms concentrate the convection around the center of circulation, not away from it, like subtropical cyclones do.

2. They can form over waters that are around 73-76F, I would think, but I'm not positive, whereas a tropical storm generally needs waters of 80F or more to strengthen.

3. Subtropical storms never get their surface winds above 60 mph usually, whereas tropical storms can become monsters, as we all know.

4. Subtropical storms CAN transition into a tropical cyclone, if they move over waters that are warm enough for development (77+ may cause a transition, and only if there isn't 74 or less degree water below the 77 degree area on the surface of the water).
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
340. MissBennet
1:00 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Posted By: thelmores at 12:58 PM GMT on May 10, 2007.

LOL Thel, My husband and I got a good laugh from that model pic you put up. They really just have no freaking clue do they?! LOL!!!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
339. thelmores
1:02 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
ric...... this is more believable.....

"Winds in the area that day gusted up to 65 miles per hour and waves rose to about 40 feet, Wadlow said."
Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3833
338. thelmores
12:58 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
"Posted By: ricderr
thelmores....the first story.....115 mph winds?."

I can only tell you the 115mph value came off the radio.... I cannot confirm that value.... I also was mystified, but that is what came over the radio.......

Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3833
337. thelmores
12:57 PM GMT on May 10, 2007

seems the nogaps/gfdn is about the only models to see a ssw drift.....

course, its so jumbled up, hard to make out anything! LOL

I see no evidence of a new center.... only see the convection being "ripped" from the COC in the circle......

Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3833
336. MisterPerfect
12:56 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Thanks homegirl
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
334. WSI
12:50 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
GFDL has an interesting end game. Storm pulls off the coast, goes out to sea and tightens up, then turns into a Cat1 hurricane. All while getting close to Bermuda.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
333. ricderr
12:51 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
thelmores....the first story.....115 mph winds?.....sounds like they might have been doing a little crack...the second one....another darwin award winner
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
332. thelmores
12:48 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
two Andrea related storm story's......

A boat traveling from the Virgin Islands to Annapolis, Md., sent an SOS on Tuesday I believe, and were found yesterday.... they experienced 35foot sea's and 115mph winds!!!

Another story, a couple days ago near Charleston, a couple Kayaker's set off with fishing poles and no life vests..... one of the Kayaker's was found, one is still missing....§ion=localnews

I just have to wonder what goes through these people's minds! Not much apparently!
Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3833
331. rxse7en
8:45 AM EDT on May 10, 2007
Looks like either the new convection is being sheared off or it may be trying to reform the COC east of the current one on visible?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
330. homegirl
12:43 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Hey MrP, I'm newbie, can't give a detailed answer but, subtropical basically means it's a cold core system.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
329. homegirl
12:40 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Morning Ya'll recon is there and reports are coming in: Link
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
328. MisterPerfect
12:39 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Can someone please tell me what makes a storm SUB-tropical rather than tropical? What's the difference?

--Someone at work has asked me that question...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
327. chessrascal
12:32 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
The Quickscat shows that Andrea still has a good circulation so I should think she would have a CHANCE of "coming back to life."
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
326. spiceymonster
12:27 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Uh-oh, its time for the blobs again, just picking at ya sporte.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
325. weathermanwannabe
8:21 AM EDT on May 10, 2007
Hey Nash; nice seeing you since last year.....Agree with your asessment on the slight possibility of slow strengthening if the storm can hold together against the sheer over the next 24 hours...To what degree does the storms proximity to the Gulf Stream factor in?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
324. sporteguy03
12:23 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Anyone notice that blob of convection pulling off the South American/C American Coast?
Member Since: July 7, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 5694
323. MZT
12:23 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Yesterday some people were saying that sending a plane into there was not worth it. I think I could agree this morning.
Member Since: September 24, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 812
322. chessrascal
12:20 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Does anyone think its kind of getting whats left of its act back together
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
321. nash28
12:16 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Pressure dropped 1mb from last advisory. Need the 2nd recon flight to confirm. Drifting southward might provide some short lived fuel for slow strengthening. That being said, the shear is still very harsh.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
320. apocalyps
02:06 PM CEST op 10 Mei, 2007
maybe it will rise from the dead as
it goes southwest?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
318. StormJunkie
12:03 PM GMT on May 10, 2007
Morning all.

Andrea looks ragged and beat. Gonna be interesting to see if she ends up moving down towards the Bahamas and restrengthen a little as the GFDL has been suggesting.

Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 26 Comments: 17164
317. apocalyps
01:59 PM CEST op 10 Mei, 2007
Great watch here.
Keep on the good work everybody.
Whats with andrea?
Strenghtening or weakening?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
315. thelmores
11:49 AM GMT on May 10, 2007
with all that shear, you won't see much on the west side! :)
Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3833
314. MahFL
6:32 AM EDT on May 10, 2007
Some convection is starting to fire again on the western side. The radar looks more lively.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
313. thelmores
11:40 AM GMT on May 10, 2007

picture worth a thousand words! shear indeed!
Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3833
312. thelmores
11:28 AM GMT on May 10, 2007
from my half asleep look, it seems the the COC is somewhat decoupled from the convection.

we'll have to watch and see if Andrea can pull a rabbit outta the hat, and and create another COC ENE.........
Member Since: September 8, 2005 Posts: 0 Comments: 3833
311. turtlehurricane
11:07 AM GMT on May 10, 2007
Andrea didnt re-organize much last night, perhaps a little more convection. I made a full 7 AM update here:

Hurricane Warning
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
310. Comatose
10:10 AM GMT on May 10, 2007
Wow, Andrea's looking bad this morning.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 359 - 309

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8Blog Index

Top of Page
Ad Blocker Enabled

Dr. Jeff Masters' WunderBlog


Dr. Masters co-founded wunderground in 1995. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters 1986-1990. Co-blogging with him: Bob Henson, @bhensonweather

JeffMasters's Recent Photos

Grizzlies in Lake Clark National Park
Mount Redoubt Lava Dome
Matanuska Glacier
Icebergs From Columbia Glacier