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Fiji Pounded by its First Category 5 Storm on Record: Tropical Cyclone Winston

By: Jeff Masters and Bob Henson 10:22 PM GMT on February 19, 2016

Mighty Category 5 Tropical Cyclone Winston, upgraded to 165 mph winds at 1 pm EDT Friday by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC), is now the strongest tropical cyclone and first Category 5 storm on record to hit the South Pacific island nation of Fiji. The eye of Winston passed over the small Fiji island of Vanua Balavu near 1 pm EST Friday, when the storm was at Category 5 strength. At that time, the island's airport was in the western eyewall of Winston, and measured 10-minute average winds of 106 mph (perhaps roughly equivalent to 120 mph winds using the U.S. 1-minute averaging time.) Winston's central pressure was estimated at 920 mb at 1 pm EST Friday by the Fiji Meteorological Service. Winston is tracking north of its previous forecast track, and is now expected to make landfall on Fiji's second largest island, Vanua Levu, near Nambouwalu at approximately 0600 UTC (1 am EST) Saturday, as a Category 5 storm with 185 mph winds, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC). This would make Winston the strongest tropical cyclone ever recorded in the South Pacific waters east of Australia.


Figure 1. Radar image from the Fiji weather service showing Tropical Cyclone Winston bringing rain to Fiji at 2121 UTC Friday, February 19, 2016.

On Friday afternoon, Winston was in a nearly ideal environment for intensification, with wind shear a moderate 10 - 15 knots, excellent upper-level outflow channels to both the north and the south, and sea surface temperatures (SSTs) near 31°C (88°F). These SSTs are about 1.5°C (2.7°F) above average. Unusually warm waters extend to great depth, giving Winston a high Tropical Cyclone Heat Potential (TCHP) in excess of 75 kJ/cm^2, a value which is often associated with rapid intensification. Satellite imagery on Friday afternoon showed that Winston had a large area of heavy thunderstorms concentrated in a donut shape around a 18-mile diameter eye, with very few outer spiral bands. This structure may qualify Winston as an "annular" hurricane--a special subclass of hurricanes which are more resistant to weakening than regular hurricanes. With such an annular structure, and with SSTs that will warm even further as Winston moves closer to Fiji, the storm should be able to maintain its Category 5 intensity until landfall.


Figure 2. Visible image from the Himawari satellite of Tropical Cyclone Winston taken at 2100 UTC (4 pm EST) February 19, 2016. At the time, WInston was a Category 5 storm with 165 mph winds. Image credit: Japan Meteorological Agency.

Winston only the 11th Category 5 storm east of Australia since 1970
Winston joins a very select club of Category 5 storms ever recorded to churn the South Pacific waters east of Australia. Since satellite records began in 1970, just eleven Cat 5s (including Winston) have been observed in the South Pacific east of Australia. The strongest tropical cyclones in the Joint Typhoon Warning Center’s records are Zoe (2002/2003) and Monica (2006), which topped out with 180 mph winds (thanks go to Phil Klotzbach of CSU for this stat.) Only two of the ten previous Cat 5s have made landfall as a Category 5. The most recent was last year's Cyclone Pam, which was at its peak strength, with 165-mph Category 5 winds, when it passed over several small Vanuatu Islands to the north of Efate Island, Vanuatu's most populous island (population 66,000.) The other Category 5 landfall was by the strongest tropical cyclone on record in the basin, Cyclone Zoe of 2002. Zoe made a direct hit as a Category 5 storm on several small islands in the Temotu Province of the Solomon Islands with a total population of 1700. There was one other close call, though: the eye of Category 5 Tropical Cyclone Olaf passed 15 miles east of Ta'u, American Samoa, on February 16, 2005, but caused minimal damage.


Figure 3. Track of all Category 5 storms in the South Pacific (east of 135°E) since satellite records began in 1970. The strongest tropical cyclones in the Joint Typhoon Warning Center’s records are Zoe (2002/2003) and Monica (2006), which topped out with 180 mph. Image credit: Michael Lowry, TWC.

Fiji's tropical cyclone history
Category 4 Tropical Cyclone Evan of December 17, 2012 walloped Fiji with sustained winds of 135 mph, as the storm's southern eyewall--the most intense part of the storm--brought hurricane conditions to a long stretch of the north and west coasts of Fiji's main island, Viti Levu. According to a database maintained by NOAA's Coastal Service Center, Evan was the strongest tropical cyclone on record to affect Fiji's main island, with records going back to 1941 (however, accurate satellite records extend back to only about 1990.) Evan did $109 million in damage (2012 dollars) to Fiji, making it the second most destructive storm in their history. The most devastating cyclone to affect Fiji in recent decades was Category 2 Cyclone Kina of January 1993, which killed 23 people and did $100 million in damage (1993 dollars.) The only deadlier storm than Kina was Category 3 Cyclone Eric of 1985, which made a direct hit on the capital of Suva, killing 25.


Figure 4. Tracks of all Category 1 and stronger tropical cyclones to pass within 100 miles of Fiji's main island of Viti Levu since 1941. Evan of 2012 (Category 4 with 135 mph winds) was the strongest cyclone on record to affect Fiji, but Winston of 2016 is stronger. Image credit: NOAA's Coastal Service Center.

Climate change and Fiji
Storm surge from Winston is of particular concern for Fiji, where sea level rise and coastal erosion have already begun to displace people. The nation includes more than 300 islands; some are volcanic in origin, while many of the smaller islands are low-lying coral atolls especially vulnerable to sea level rise. The nation has already assisted one small village, Vunidogolo, in moving to a new location as part of its climate change adaptation program. More than 30 other Fijian villages have been identified as vulnerable.

Although it represents only a tiny share of the world’s fossil fuel emissions, Fiji is doing its part to reduce them. On February 12, Fiji became the first nation on Earth to ratify the global pact on reducing greenhouse emissions that was hammered out at the UN Conference of Parties meeting (COP15) last December in Paris. Fiji has pledged to boost the renewable share of its electricity generation from around 60% in 2013 to near 100% by 2030. Together with energy efficiency improvements, this will reduce Fiji’s carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels in 2030 by roughly 30% compared to a business-as-usual approach.


Figure 5. In February 2014, the village of Vunidogoloa on Vanua Levu became the first community in Fiji to relocate because of coastal erosion and flooding attributed in part to climate change. The village moved to higher ground two kilometers inland. Image credit: Nansen Initiative, courtesy UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

Links
Radar images from the Fiji weather service
Long radar loop of Winston
Satellite imagery from NOAA/NESDIS.
Fiji weather observations from wunderground.

We'll be back on Saturday with an update on Winston.

Jeff Masters and Bob Henson

Hurricane

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

Horrible...

Does anyone have webcam links or news streams to follow?
Just wanted to make a quick note that Olaf '05 was the one that just missed Ta'u, not Percy '05.
Interesting. The locals on Kadavu specifically mentioned a bad cyclone affecting the island and Suva to the north in 1965, but it doesn't show up on the tracks shown here.

It was probably the 1985 cyclone and i just misheard.
Quoting 3. skycycle:

Does anyone have webcam links or news streams to follow?


There are webcams for the capital, Savu, and the resort islands to the west, but none that I could find near where the eyewall will go nearest. The northern part of Viti Levu is sparsely populated, as is the southern shore of Vanua Levu.

Quoting 134. sar2401:

There are very few people on the north coast of Viti Levu compared to the urban areas of Nadi/Lautoka and Suva. Even the road system, such as it is, leaves the coast east of Rakiraki and heads inland over the hills because of the cliff landscape east of there. I don't know what the population of the districts on the north coast is but I'd guess less than 50,000, most of whom live nearer to Lautoka than Rakiraki. We had to take a bus, such as it was, from Suva to Lautoka to get to our boat. We were lucky enough to be there in the middle of a military coup, and the airports were shut down. It was a long, hot, dusty trip.


You always have a story, you're like the guy in the Dos Equis commercials. Did your mother have a tattoo that says 'son' by chance?
Winston seems to be taking on those annular characteristics more and more as time passes by.
Quoting 5. Patrap:




He's winding up, more symmetric
Quoting 4. 1900hurricane:

Just wanted to make a quick note that Olaf '05 was the one that just missed Ta'u, not Percy '05.


Fixed--thanks!
12. bwi

Weather for Fiji -- (some of these stations might not be current)
Place Alerts Temp. Conditions Humidity Pressure Wind
Lambasa 79 °F Thunderstorm 95% n/a West at 42 mph
Levuka 82 °F Mostly Cloudy 89% 29.39 in SSE at 18 mph
Matei 83 °F Thunderstorm 88% n/a NNW at 51 mph
Matuku 81 °F Thunderstorm 79% 29.58 in SE at 40 mph
Nadi 86 °F Mostly Cloudy 74% 29.53 in SSE at 15 mph
Savusavu 85 °F Thunderstorm 90% n/a SW at 60 mph
Vanua Balavu Island 80 °F Thunderstorm 96% 28.68 in ENE at 83 mph
Vunisea 81 °F Light Rain 78% 29.56 in South at 34 mph
Radar Loop from Brian McNoldy
Cyclone Meli from 1979 is tropical cyclone that may have been of similar intensity to that of Winston, although best track only lists a category 4. Hursat archived imagery (linked below) indicates that it was likely very strong when it passed just south of Suva at 0900Z on March 27th. Unfortunately, intensity estimates weren't very good at the time in the South Pacific.

Warning: KMZ (Google Earth) Link
16. bwi
Looks like the eye continues to improve symmetry while the overall circle of the storm gets even more compact.

Strengthening, but maybe also shrinking?
Some initial video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kRrTUvFlTCM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VYdURR2cUBo
I believe the Fiji radar is off line...trying a different link....Nevermind..The one NRT posted is still up....Link
Day Convective Storm RGB

Crazy that 2 hurricanes have hit Syria, a hurricane has hit Vanuatu, Fiji, Cape Verde Islands all this year. Yet Florida has not been hit by a hurricane in 10 years... Weird
Quoting 21. Camerooski:

Crazy that 2 hurricanes have hit Syria, a hurricane has hit Vanuatu, Fiji, Cape Verde Islands all this year. Yet Florida has not been hit by a hurricane in 10 years... Weird
That will change soon enough.
  Thanks for the updates Gentlemen.....
Quoting 21. Camerooski:

Crazy that 2 hurricanes have hit Syria, a hurricane has hit Vanuatu, Fiji, Cape Verde Islands all this year. Yet Florida has not been hit by a hurricane in 10 years... Weird

I think you have the wrong Middle East country there.
Quoting 21. Camerooski:

Crazy that 2 hurricanes have hit Syria, a hurricane has hit Vanuatu, Fiji, Cape Verde Islands all this year. Yet Florida has not been hit by a hurricane in 10 years... Weird


Not Syria, but Yemen. Still weird. Florida might be threatened by hurricanes this year more than many years before, especially if La Niña materializes.
Quoting 25. Patrap:



Looks like Winston is now crossing the International Date Line.
Quoting 21. Camerooski:

Crazy that 2 hurricanes have hit Syria,

Excuse me. You have a link for these????       
Quoting 18. hydrus:


Well it wasn't dry air. Is even stronger now!
Quoting 27. 1900hurricane:


Looks like Winston is now crossing the International Date Line.


Indeed...and what a Epic Storm at that.

Quoting 29. PedleyCA:

Excuse me. You have a link for these????       

https://weather.com/storms/hurricane/news/cyclone- megh-five-yemen-socotra-somalia-arabian-peninsula
https://weather.com/storms/hurricane/news/cyclone -chapala-yemen-oman-arabian-peninsula
Quoting 31. Patrap:



Indeed...and what a Epic Storm at that.


People on the island directly west of Winston must be freaked..It could hit them with the highest windspeeds....ERC would be nice,.......
Constant Live Streaming of updates by for TC Winston...

Link
Quoting 33. hydrus:

People on the island directly west of Winston must be freaked..It could hit them with the highest windspeeds....ERC would be nice,.......

Uhh ohh. Bad cyclone. Next little island in its direct path (western, maybe even strongest southwestern eyewall) would be Koro, with a population of at least 4.500.

Quoting 34. GeoffreyWPB:

Constant Live Streaming of updates by Meteorologists for TC Winston...

Link


One of the "Meteorologist" a few minutes ago said that a larger eye would indicate the storm is strengthening. I've never heard anyone say that about a hurricane.
did people evacuate, do these islands with populations of 1,000 still have people on them?
Quoting 33. hydrus:

People on the island directly west of Winston must be freaked..It could hit them with the highest windspeeds....ERC would be nice,.......


The eye is rather large, probably larger than 20 miles. If so, I don't see how the north coast of FIJI escapes this. Best case scenario is if we can get some dry air entrapment from down-sloping winds off the mountains of FIJI. Hopefully the worst of the winds stay offshore of the main landmasses, but even the best case scenario will still likely impact the coastlines with 100 knot winds at the least. But that would be better than 160 knots.

It's hard to judge by radar, but at the moment there seems to be an ever so slightly bend in the track to the south of west. Maybe just a couple degrees south of west(think 360 degrees full circle), but not much, but it could be enough to play havoc with nadi.
Quoting 37. Sfloridacat5:



One of the "Meteorologist" a few minutes ago said that a larger eye would indicate the storm is strengthening. I've never heard anyone say that about a hurricane.


Agree. Took that word out. I copied and pasted from the Fijian Government facebook page.
Destructive hurricane force winds expected this afternoon
fijivillage.com, by Semi Turaga, Saturday 20/02/2016
Viti Levu and Vanua Levu will experience very destructive hurricane force winds from this afternoon.
Tropical Cyclone Winston which is now a Category 5 system is expected to pass between Viti Levu and Vanua Levu tonight. ...
Tropical Cyclone Winston hit Vanuabalavu early this morning.
A resident in Vanuabalavu spoke to Fijivillage via a satellite phone from Nabavatu village and said that some houses were badly damaged early this morning and people rushed to other houses to seek shelter.
She said that her house which was one of the most substantial structures on the island was destroyed.
She has termed Tropical Cyclone Winston as a terrible monster.
There is also confirmation that three houses in Tubou village in Lakeba had their rooftops blown away by strong winds this morning.
Four other houses in the village were badly damaged.
Tubou villager Ilaitia Delaimoala says the families are now staying at the Tubou village hall.
The National Disaster Management Office has opened all its 758 evacuation centres around the country. ...


Live Blog: Tropical Cyclone Winston
Quoting 43. 1900hurricane:

JTWC is analyzing 160 kt at 00Z!


903 mb wow.

11P WINSTON 160220 0000 17.2S 179.9W SHEM 160 903
11P WINSTON 160220 0000 17.2S 179.9W SHEM 160 903
11P WINSTON 160219 1800 17.2S 178.9W SHEM 145 914
11P WINSTON 160219 1800 17.2S 178.9W SHEM 145 914
11P WINSTON 160219 1800 17.2S 178.9W SHEM 145 914
11P WINSTON 160219 1200 17.3S 177.5W SHEM 125 929

also 1 tenth of degree further south and right now that is crucial for down the road implications.
Fiji Population GIS Maps based on the 2007 Population and Housing Census data

Population of Fiji 837,271 (2007 census)
Population estimate July 2015 by CIA 909,389
Thunderstorm chances seem greatest to the north of the Houston area during Sun-Mon. time frame. Or am I wishcasting again?
Quoting 47. BaltimoreBrian:

Fiji Population GIS Maps based on the 2007 Population and Housing Census data

Around 43 years ago penpalships had been offered at my German school to us pupils. I was always looking for one from Fiji which was the most exotic country I could think of. Of course I failed as not many were available from there. Got some from the Philippines, Hong Kong, Pakistan, Kenya, Jamaica and many more though, which was nearly as good :-)
Quoting 22. hydrus:

That will change soon enough.
We say that every year and nothing happens.My haunch is that Florida will be spared again this year.
That's wonderful Barbamz! I was pen pals with people in Norway, Switzerland and Kenya. All petered out when I was in my mid 20s after joining the Army, and now I am wondering what happened to them.
Still the best: A climatic scene from The Hurricane, a 1937 film by John Ford which is a re-imagining of Victor Hugo's Les Miserables and set on a south Pacific island.

Beat me to the radar Gearsts...:)
Quoting 51. BaltimoreBrian:

That's wonderful Barbamz! I was pen pals with people in Norway, Switzerland and Kenya. All petered out when I was in my mid 20s after joining the Army, and now I am wondering what happened to them.

Ah, yeah, it was something like this international blog or the whole internet - but now this is a real time thing you couldn't have imagined back then. You'd have to wait for an answer to your own letter for many, many weeks! As a 15 years old I always waylayed the postman - in case he had one of those airmail envelopes from one of my penpals with exciting colorful stamps for me. The content of our letters in very plain English wasn't exciting at all though, lol. But I was always asking for photos or postcards, as in those times - with only little allowance to watch TV (earlier even in black and white) and very few illustrated journals at hand - I was CRAWING for pictures of those exotic destinations far away in the world. My (female) penpals mostly had other interests though - asking f.e. for lipsticks and eyeshadow, umm. Now you know why I still like to watch and post youtube videos from those remote locations where a cyclone may hit, hoping that it won't destroy the beauty.
now this gives me the creeps

Link
Quoting 50. washingtonian115:

We say that every year and nothing happens.My haunch is that Florida will be spared again this year.
We.? I do not say that every year..Florida lucked out because of wuss storms and Bermuda high configuration...other reasons too . My bet is that 2016 has a potential landfall for Florida...Especially since there will likely be neutral conditions with Nino.
Quoting 54. hydrus:

Beat me to the radar Gearsts...:)
Looks like is slowing down on radar.
Quoting 53. Gearsts:




Looks like a slight dip, maybe the worst of the eyewall moseys on in between the two main islands. Koro Island is the one getting slammed right now.
Koro is in the what is likely the strongest part of Winston. Eye will move over them any minute , if not already.
Entire northern coast of the southern big island will likely suffer a direct hit if Winston continues current track...terrible.
Quoting 56. Tazmanian:

now this gives me the creeps

Link


I didn't know you knew Portuguese.

Quoting 56. Tazmanian:

now this gives me the creeps

Link
Which part? Lack of rain or the Mosquitoes?
COLORADO - NEW STATE RECORD FASTEST WIND GUST: The record all-time fastest wind gust speed anywhere in Colorado of 148 MPH / 238 km/hr was at Monarch Pass on February 18, 2016.

Link
Quoting 62. hydrus:

Entire northern coast of the southern big island will likely suffer a direct hit if Winston continues current track...terrible.



It looks like a ssw shift in track but just over the last 2 hours of the frame.
Quoting 65. PedleyCA:


Which part? Lack of rain or the Mosquitoes?



Mosquitoes
Quoting 50. washingtonian115:

We say that every year and nothing happens.My haunch is that Florida will be spared again this year.
Well is been like 16 years since PR got punch by a hurricane. TC track from the last 6 years have been far north with very little westward tracks in to the northern leeward islands.

BOM Australia @BOM_au 10 Min ago.
Latest forecast track for #CycloneWinston from Fiji Met Service, issued 12:19 AEDT.
Quoting 21. Camerooski:

Crazy that 2 hurricanes have hit Syria, a hurricane has hit Vanuatu, Fiji, Cape Verde Islands all this year. Yet Florida has not been hit by a hurricane in 10 years... Weird


You mean Yemen (Chapala & Megh), and the Azores Islands (Alex). Yemen was hit last year, and so was Vanuatu (Pam).
Winston looks to be moving SSW
Just a few hours ago
.DISCUSSION...
CLOUDS ACROSS THE AREA CLEARING OUT STEADILY WITH MIXING. EXPECT
THE CLOUDS TO RETURN OVERNIGHT ESPECIALLY AFTER MIDNIGHT
BLANKETING THE NORTHERN AREAS AND THEN EXPANDING SOUTHWARD. OVER
THE WEEKEND PLEASANT WEATHER ON TAP WITH SOUTHERLY FLOW AND
CONTINUED MOISTENING. THREAT OF SEA FOG INCREASING THROUGH THE
WEEKEND AND EXPECT THAT PATCHY RADIATIONAL FOG WILL DEVELOP MAINLY
SOUTH OF A COLUMBUS TO CONROE LINE WITH SOME PATCHY SEA FOG
POSSIBLE NEAR THE COAST. THE FOG THREAT SHOULD BE GREATER SUNDAY
MORNING AS SLIGHTLY HIGHER DEWPOINTS ARRIVE AND FLOW OVER THE
COOLER SHELF WATERS. SUNDAY AFTERNOON THE SEA FOG THREAT SHOULD
RAMP UP DRAMATICALLY WITH WINDS MORE SOUTHEASTERLY AND LIGHT WITH
THE MORE MOIST AIR IN PLACE. A WEAK COLD FRONT IN NORTH TEXAS IS
SAGGING SOUTHWARD AND SHOULD GET INTO THE COLLEGE STATION AREA
MONDAY MORNING AROUND SUNRISE AND RAIN CHANCES IMPROVE OVER THE
NORTH BEFORE THE FRONT ARRIVES. UPPER JET STRUCTURE STILL DOESN`T
LOOK VERY FAVORABLE FOR WIDESPREAD RAINFALL ACROSS THE SOUTH BUT
DOES FAVOR IT ACROSS THE NORTH MONDAY MORNING THROUGH AFTERNOON.
SOME THUNDERSTORMS ARE LIKELY TO DEVELOP MONDAY AND CAN`T RULE OUT
SOME BRIEF HEAVY RAINS.
THE FRONT WASHES OUT IN THE GULF WITH A
VIGOROUS S/W DROPPING THROUGH THE SOUTHERN PLAINS WILL BRING A
MORE POTENT COLD FRONT THROUGH THE AREA EARLY WEDNESDAY. RAIN
CHANCES GO BACK UP WITH THE SECOND FRONT BUT SHOULD HAVE LESS
MOISTURE TO WORK WITH AND MORE CAPPED SO PROBABLY ONLY LIGHT RAIN
AND BANDS OF SHOWERS.

What does all this mean? Do they expect a greater danger of strong thunderstorms w/heavy rain NORTH of Houston, or ALL OVER SE Texas, Houston metro included? Please get back with me as soon as you can.
Quoting 69. Gearsts:

Well is been like 16 years since PR got punch by a hurricane. TC track from the last 6 years have been far north with very little westward tracks in to the northern leeward islands.


I'd be weary of any CV storm aiming at PR, if the st ridge isn't too strong and is more like an Azores high than a Bermuda high, those like to give the Carolinas a visit.
Quoting 74. AussieStorm:

Just a few hours ago



Northern eyewall went right over that island

Cyclone Winston: Incredible conditions in Savusavu, Fiji | 20 02 2016

Fijian Government, 10 minutes ago.
MESSAGE FROM THE PRIME MINISTER
My fellow Fijians,
Tropical Cyclone Winston has begun its assault on Fiji. It is being described as one of the powerful in recorded history - a Category 5 cyclone with winds approaching 300 kilometres an hour. As a nation, we are facing an ordeal of the most grievous kind. We must stick together as a people and look after each other. Be alert and be prepared.
I urge you all, if you haven't already done so, to finalise your own preparations to survive this terrible event. We cannot afford to be complacent. And I am especially concerned that some people in urban areas of the country in particular do not appear to have heeded the warnings about the seriousness of the threat we all face. ...

More see link above.
Quoting 70. barbamz:


BOM Australia @BOM_au 10 Min ago.
Latest forecast track for #CycloneWinston from Fiji Met Service, issued 12:19 AEDT.


That and the latest trends are not good for the north shores of Viti Levu
If anyone wants to watch a livestream about winston just copy and paste this link in the web bar.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IpBUSjQwo_s
Quoting 69. Gearsts:

Well is been like 16 years since PR got punch by a hurricane. TC track from the last 6 years have been far north with very little westward tracks in to the northern leeward islands.


In the Northernmost Leewards Islands, Earl and Gonzalo had significant impact. If both storms did track W instead of NW, the impact over PR would have been significant too.

Like PR, the butterfly island has been spared since hurricane Georges. That's remarkable. But who knows what 2016 may bring...

A message from the Prime Minister of Fiji



One of the really strange and evil tracks. Best, best wishes to the islands of Fiji, and good night abroad.
Quoting 83. CaribBoy:



In the Northernmost Leewards Islands, Earl and Gonzalo had significant impact. If both storms did track W instead of NW, the impact over PR would have been significant too.

Like PR, the butterfly island has been spared since hurricane Georges. That's remarkable. But who knows what 2016 may bring...


We'll probably see the same steering pattern we've been in for 5 years now for 2016.
Quoting 86. washingtonian115:

We'll probably see the same steering pattern we've been in for 5 years now for 2016.


Probably...

Hopefully I won't feel the need of complaining every day during this hurricane season lol.
Quoting 8. win1gamegiantsplease:



There are webcams for the capital, Savu, and the resort islands to the west, but none that I could find near where the eyewall will go nearest. The northern part of Viti Levu is sparsely populated, as is the southern shore of Vanua Levu.



You always have a story, you're like the guy in the Dos Equis commercials. Did your mother have a tattoo that says 'son' by chance?
LOL. I seem to have a way of finding trouble wherever I go. In this case, we had landed just before George Speight and his merry band of pranksters took over the Fiji Parliament and held everyone hostage, followed by the torching of Indo-Fijian businesses in Suva and Nadi. One of the things that made my bus trip so long was military checkpoints set up all around the island. Nothing like seeing a bunch of guys holding M-16's with the safety off who had been drinking kava all day. We were OK once we made it to the boat in Lautoka. Out in Yasawa chain, the people there were only dimly aware that a government in Suva even existed.
917 pressure from the RSMC. 125 knot winds forecast for 24+ hours..

Fiji Meteorological Services
Tropical Disturbance Advisory #40
HURRICANE WARNING
=============================
Near northern Lau Islands (Fiji)

A HURRICANE WARNING is in force for Vanua Levu, Taveuni And The Nearby Smaller Islands, northern half of Viti Levu, Ovalau, Gau, Batiki, Nairai, Koro, Vanuabalavu, Yacata, Mago, Cicia, Tuvuca, Nayau, and Vanuavatu

A STORM WARNING is in force for Lakeba, Oneata, Moce, Komo, Namuka, Ogea, Moala, southern half of Viti Levu, Yasawa, and Mamanuca group

A GALE WARNING is in force for rest of Fiji Islands


At 0:00 AM UTC, Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston, Category Five (917 hPa) located at 17.0S 179.9W has 10 minute sustained winds of 125 knots. The cyclone is reported as moving west at 13 knots. Position good based on hourly multispectral enhanced infrared and radar images.

Hurricane Force Winds
==============
25 NM from the center

Storm Force Winds
==============
50 NM from the center

Gale Force Winds
==============
100 NM from the center

Eye well defined. Deep convection remains persistent. Eye warming and cloud tops cooling past 6 hours. Organization remains good. Sea surface temperature is around 29-30C. System lies in low sheared environment. Outflow good to the south and west. Dvorak analysis based on OW eye in CMG surround yields DT=7.0, MET and PT agree. Final Dvorak intensity based on DT.

Dvorak Intensity: T7.0/7.0/D1.0/24 HRS

Forecast and Intensity
==============
12 HRS 17.1S 178.1E - 125 knots (CAT 5)
24 HRS 17.3S 176.7E - 125 knots (CAT 5)
48 HRS 18.2S 175.2E - 105 knots (CAT 4)
Quoting 88. sar2401:

LOL. I seem to have a way of finding trouble wherever I go. In this case, we had landed just before George Speight and his merry band of pranksters took over the Fiji Parliament and held everyone hostage, followed by the torching of Indo-Fijian businesses in Suva and Nadi. One of the things that made my bus trip so long was military checkpoints set up all around the island. Nothing like seeing a bunch of guys holding M-16's with the safety off who had been drinking kava all day. We were OK once we made it to the boat in Lautoka. Out in Yasawa chain, the people there were only dimly aware that a government in Suva even existed.


I've seen Anthony Bourdain drink kava, says it's sort of like the effects of ethanol without the hangover.
does anyone know Winston's current pressure?
On average, how often would you guys say that central/south AL, MS, LA and the Florida panhandle gets a major snow/ice storm. Please make the estimate as specific as possible and in years. By the way I am doing this for a research project. Thanks!
Quoting 89. HadesGodWyvern:

917 pressure from the RSMC. 125 knot winds forecast for 24+ hours..

Fiji Meteorological Services
Tropical Disturbance Advisory #40
HURRICANE WARNING
=============================
Near northern Lau Islands (Fiji)

A HURRICANE WARNING is in force for Vanua Levu, Taveuni And The Nearby Smaller Islands, northern half of Viti Levu, Ovalau, Gau, Batiki, Nairai, Koro, Vanuabalavu, Yacata, Mago, Cicia, Tuvuca, Nayau, and Vanuavatu

A STORM WARNING is in force for Lakeba, Oneata, Moce, Komo, Namuka, Ogea, Moala, southern half of Viti Levu, Yasawa, and Mamanuca group

A GALE WARNING is in force for rest of Fiji Islands


At 0:00 AM UTC, Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston, Category Five (917 hPa) located at 17.0S 179.9W has 10 minute sustained winds of 125 knots. The cyclone is reported as moving west at 13 knots. Position good based on hourly multispectral enhanced infrared and radar images.

Hurricane Force Winds
==============
25 NM from the center

Storm Force Winds
==============
50 NM from the center

Gale Force Winds
==============
100 NM from the center

Eye well defined. Deep convection remains persistent. Eye warming and cloud tops cooling past 6 hours. Organization remains good. Sea surface temperature is around 29-30C. System lies in low sheared environment. Outflow good to the south and west. Dvorak analysis based on OW eye in CMG surround yields DT=7.0, MET and PT agree. Final Dvorak intensity based on DT.

Dvorak Intensity: T7.0/7.0/D1.0/24 HRS

Forecast and Intensity
==============
12 HRS 17.1S 178.1E - 125 knots (CAT 5)
24 HRS 17.3S 176.7E - 125 knots (CAT 5)
48 HRS 18.2S 175.2E - 105 knots (CAT 4)


Still moving west, the southern dip was just for a couple hours. That westward movement might be the best bet, by just a bit.
Quoting 90. win1gamegiantsplease:



I've seen Anthony Bourdain drink kava, says it's sort of like the effects of ethanol without the hangover.
Well, you kind of have to drink kava if you're going to the out islands. Every island we landed on had a chief, and we had to meet with him, drink some kava, and hand over the appropriate amount of money to be allowed to stay and dive off the island. My experience was that a couple of cups full and you were pretty buzzed. When I couldn't feel my lower lip, I knew that was enough. Unfortunately, it's made by the locals on the islands with local water. I got a good case of giardia from that part of my little adventure. The Fiji water you see in the store doesn't come from that part of Fiji. :-)
The Fiji Sun online newspaper

The Fiji Times online newspaper
Quoting 91. pureet1948:



Wow. Kinda like what I'm expecting in Houston on Monday.
Not even close
Quoting 93. Tcwx2:

On average, how often would you guys say that central/south AL, MS, LA and the Florida panhandle gets a major snow/ice storm. Please make the estimate as specific as possible and in years. By the way I am doing this for a research project. Thanks!
There's a whole bunch of winter weather info from BMX here. However, you really should be doing your own research with as easy as it is to track down what you want using Google. Might as well learn how now. It won't get easier in college.
Quoting 98. Geoboy645:

Not even close
That comment from pureet certainly confirms his troll status for me.
101. Tcwx2
It's really a simple project but I'm going over the top. Thank you though!!
Quoting 99. sar2401:

There's a whole bunch of winter weather info from BMX here. However, you really should be doing your own research with as easy as it is to track down what you want using Google. Might as well learn how now. It won't get easier in college.
Quoting 92. Dragod66:

does anyone know Winston's current pressure?

This is unofficial, but using the Knaff-Zehr-Courtney wind to pressure relationship (the same one that was used to derive the 872 mb for Patricia) with inputs of 160 kt, 17.2 degrees from the equator, an average gale radius of 95 nm, a forward speed of 10 kt, and an environmental pressure of 1008 mb (all from JTWC except for the environmental pressure, which is from ECMWF data), I ended up with a pressure of 898.5 mb.
Quoting 100. sar2401:

That comment from pureet certainly confirms his troll status for me.



Sorry, 'bout that. Would like for someone to see if I'm understanding the HGX disco from post #74 correctly, though.
(Clue: Houston lies in the southern zone of their CWA, I think).
Quoting 92. Dragod66:

does anyone know Winston's current pressure?


A mod posted the newest update just a few down arrow key presses under you. 917 hPa or 917 mb.
Quoting 55. barbamz:


Ah, yeah, it was something like this international blog or the whole internet - but now this is a real time thing you couldn't have imagined back then. You'd have to wait for an answer to your own letter for many, many weeks! As a 15 years old I always waylayed the postman - in case he had one of those airmail envelopes from one of my penpals with exciting colorful stamps for me. The content of our letters in very plain English wasn't exciting at all though, lol. But I was always asking for photos or postcards, as in those times - with only little allowance to watch TV (earlier even in black and white) and very few illustrated journals at hand - I was CRAWING for pictures of those exotic destinations far away in the world. My (female) penpals mostly had other interests though - asking f.e. for lipsticks and eyeshadow, umm. Now you know why I still like to watch and post youtube videos from those remote locations where a cyclone may hit, hoping that it won't destroy the beauty.
I had a bunch of pen pals when I was a kid too, and used to waylay our postman just like you. Mine were all boys (I think there was some kind of rule about that) and we used to talk about things like model airplanes and football. I had one pen pal that lived in Macau when it was still Portuguese, and he was the only one I talked politics with. You have to be of a "certain age" to have had pen pals, I guess. I don't know when that ended, but I've never heard of anyone my son's age (45) having a pen pal. Too bad, because getting those envelopes from far off lands was pretty exciting in the days of black and white TV.
Quoting 91. pureet1948:



Wow. Kinda like what I'm expecting in Houston on Monday.


Stop trolling please.
Quoting 101. Tcwx2:

It's really a simple project but I'm going over the top. Thank you though!!
Look at it as practice then. The student who knows how to find things on the net is going to get better grades than the ones who don't.
Quoting 106. Bucsboltsfan:



Stop trolling please.


The hyperlink to the right of the one I just used now is our best bet
109. Tcwx2
Ok I'll wait until tomorrow I'm tired. Thanks for the advice!
Quoting 107. sar2401:

Look at it as practice then. The student who knows how to find things on the net is going to get better grades than the ones who don't.
Quoting 90. win1gamegiantsplease:



I've seen Anthony Bourdain drink kava, says it's sort of like the effects of ethanol without the hangover.
. I wish people would only discuss Weather related topics, instead they say immature stuff like this.
Quoting 105. sar2401:

I had a bunch of pen pals when I was a kid too, and used to waylay our postman just like you. Mine were all boys (I think there was some kind of rule about that) and we used to talk about things like model airplanes and football. I had one pen pal that lived in Macau when it was still Portuguese, and he was the only one I talked politics with. You have to be of a "certain age" to have had pen pals, I guess. I don't know when that ended, but I've never heard of anyone my son's age (45) having a pen pal. Too bad, because getting those envelopes from far off lands was pretty exciting in the days of black and white TV.


We had to write kids from other schools in French (well the nearby schools that taught French instead of Spanish, which was a small sample) at my elementary school. Of course this was the late 90's-early 00's so definitely colored TV and no gender allocation.
While one part of the world is experiencing possibly the worst natural disaster in their recorded history this weekend, I'm on the exact opposite side of the fence. But you know what they say, what goes around comes around.

.SHORT TERM /6 AM SATURDAY MORNING THROUGH SUNDAY NIGHT/...
AS OF 300 PM FRIDAY...EXPECT UNSEASONABLY WARM TEMPERATURES
THROUGH THE WEEKEND AS A DEEP...MILD WESTERLY FLOW PREVAILS WITH A
FLATTENED RIDGE ALOFT. AT THE SURFACE A RIDGE OVER THE WESTERN
ATLANTIC RETREATS FURTHER EAST AS A COLD FRONT DROPS DOWN FROM THE
NW. THIS PATTERN WILL MAINTAIN A WARM SOUTHWESTERLY FLOW THROUGH
ALMOST THE ENTIRE PERIOD. THE COLD FRONT WILL DROP OVER THE
EASTERN CAROLINAS BY AROUND DAYBREAK ON MONDAY MORNING...WITH
SURFACE FLOW TURNING MORE WESTERLY. RAIN CHANCES BECOME ENHANCED
OVERNIGHT ON SUNDAY BUT DUE TO MODEST NATURE OF LIFT AND MOISTURE
ASSOCIATED WITH FRONT AND LACK OF INSTABILITY WILL KEEP POPS
CAPPED AT SLIGHT CHANCE...WITH QPF LIMITED TO A FEW HUNDREDTHS OF
AN INCH. HIGHS WILL RANGE FROM THE UPPER 60S ON SATURDAY TO AROUND
70 ON SUNDAY...WITH LOWS OF AROUND 50 SATURDAY NIGHT AND THE MID
50S SUNDAY NIGHT.
Looks like Koro Island with its 4,500 population took a direct hit. That island is going to be devastated. Wishing them safety.
Track likely over the big island.
Quoting 91.


Flagged and ignored.
Winston is incredible. From Haiyan to Patricia to now Winston, not to mention the march of Cat. 5 storms last year with SST's off the chart; these storms are getting stronger clearly. More heat and more energy how could it not. With SST's this season likely to be well above average across the globe, we could be in for another very wild ride this season. Let's hope no one tells the Atlantic basin. Agree with Washi though, this last five years does seem to represent a trend of re-curves and lower number of storms. As 2005 showed though, the Atlantic with ideal conditions and SST's super charged by man, can produce mind boggling seasons. Just expect this lull to end spectacularly when it does.
What level of surge is expected with Winston?
TPS31 PGTW 200300
MSGID/GENADMIN/JOINT TYPHOON WRNCEN PEARL HARBOR HI//
SUBJ/TROPICAL CYCLONE 11P (WINSTON) WARNING NR 028//
RMKS/
1. TROPICAL CYCLONE 11P (WINSTON) WARNING NR 028
01 ACTIVE TROPICAL CYCLONE IN SOUTHPAC
MAX SUSTAINED WINDS BASED ON ONE-MINUTE AVERAGE
WIND RADII VALID OVER OPEN WATER ONLY
---
WARNING POSITION:
200000Z --- NEAR 17.2S 179.9W
MOVEMENT PAST SIX HOURS - 270 DEGREES AT 10 KTS
POSITION ACCURATE TO WITHIN 010 NM
POSITION BASED ON EYE FIXED BY A COMBINATION OF
SATELLITE AND RADAR
PRESENT WIND DISTRIBUTION:
MAX SUSTAINED WINDS - 160 KT, GUSTS 195 KT
WIND RADII VALID OVER OPEN WATER ONLY
RADIUS OF 064 KT WINDS - 020 NM NORTHEAST QUADRANT
030 NM SOUTHEAST QUADRANT
025 NM SOUTHWEST QUADRANT
025 NM NORTHWEST QUADRANT
RADIUS OF 050 KT WINDS - 050 NM NORTHEAST QUADRANT
070 NM SOUTHEAST QUADRANT
060 NM SOUTHWEST QUADRANT
060 NM NORTHWEST QUADRANT
RADIUS OF 034 KT WINDS - 080 NM NORTHEAST QUADRANT
120 NM SOUTHEAST QUADRANT
090 NM SOUTHWEST QUADRANT
090 NM NORTHWEST QUADRANT
REPEAT POSIT: 17.2S 179.9W
Philip Klotzbach ‏@philklotzbach 3 hHace 3 horas Walnut Creek, CA
#Winston is now 160 knots - the strongest TC on record for the Southern Hemisphere
Quoting 116. Gearsts:

Track likely over the big island.



Holy crap, that inner core structure is terrifyingly organized, amazing.
Winston it's covering all Fiji islands right now, WOW!!
Quoting 58. hydrus:




Unfortunately it's looking like it's at it's worst yet right now despite being close to land, no sign of weakening. It reminds me very much of Charley and Andrew.
I wonder how deep the inlet between the two main islands (where the coc of Winston looks to bisect) is; those waves are likely breaking so tall; and shallower pools of very warm water are like espresso shots. The cyclone is looking very impressive.
Quoting 110. hotroddan:

. I wish people would only discuss Weather related topics, instead they say immature stuff like this.


Sorry to get sidetracked, it went from Winston>Fiji>kava, just a flash in the pan
Quoting 128. Jedkins01:



Unfortunately it's looking like it's at it's worst yet right now despite being close to land, no sign of weakening. It reminds me very much of Charley and Andrew.


Revisiting the Channel 4 coverage of Andrew on YT was unreal. Every time they went back to the radar image the eyewall looked better and better. It's an awesome sight to see in the literal sense of the word.
122. It's a nasty one, Gro, that's for sure.
Quoting 129. win1gamegiantsplease:

I wonder how deep the inlet between the two main islands (where the coc of Winston looks to bisect) is; those waves are likely breaking so tall; and shallower pools of very warm water are like espresso shots. The cyclone is looking very impressive.
It's very deep. Many thousands of feet at least, and the water depth is sufficient that the depth shouldn't have any effect on wave height. The surface temperature down to several hundred feet is very warm though, probably still 80 at 200 feet. Plenty of fuel for Winston, unfortunately. It looks like there has been a slight ping pong ball effect with the storm hitting Vanua Levu and heading a bit more south toward Viti Levu. This is going to be big trouble for the most heavily urbanized areas of Fiji.
Quoting 130. win1gamegiantsplease:



Sorry to get sidetracked, it went from Winston>Fiji>kava, just a flash in the pan
You're forgiven. :-)
136. SLR
What happened to the 7-day forecast? Since yesterday it has terminated at sunset on Wednesday, 2/24 and hasn't provided any data beyond that, no matter which region of the country I choose.

Quoting 136. SLR:

What happened to the 7-day forecast? Since yesterday it has terminated at sunset on Wednesday, 2/24 and hasn't provided any data beyond that, no matter which region of the country I choose.
What Link/Page are you using?
Past my bedtime, I'm out of here....
Quoting 133. Gearsts:



Now that's ugly! The recent jog to the southwest on top of the continuously improving radar presentation spells out "major disaster" for Fiji's main island. It also looks like landfall with be occurring very shortly.
Looking at that, I think landfall has all ready occurred.


Quoting 139. Ameister12:


Now that's ugly! The recent jog to the southwest on top of the continuously improving radar presentation spells out "major disaster" for Fiji's main island. It also looks like landfall with be occurring very shortly.
Quoting 140. swflurker:

Looking at that, I think landfall has all ready occurred.

Yeah. The eye is definitely moving ashore now.
Give this anemometer an A. Winds 121 mph, sustained, pressure 28.43" 3-hourly reports. Near the southwestern tip of Vanua Levu, the northern large island. The eyewall hasn't over Nambouwalu, and it is on the right side of the cyclone, the less strong side in the southern hemisphere.

Large detailed map of Viti Levu, the southern large island of Fiji.
Quoting 128. Jedkins01:



Unfortunately it's looking like it's at it's worst yet right now despite being close to land, no sign of weakening. It reminds me very much of Charley and Andrew.
Hey Jed..


any islands in the direct path had catastrophic damage. it looks very serious. loss of life is almost a certainty...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lZodSkHxq6I
CMC hates Fiji. Go to tropicaltidbits, model page, choose hurricane, CMC, Winston, animate. Choose the 00Z Saturday, Feb 20th run. After hitting Fiji today, the CMC has Winston looping around and hitting Fiji two more times.
Fiji Meteorological Services
Tropical Disturbance Advisory #41
HURRICANE WARNING
SEVERE TROPICAL CYCLONE WINSTON, CATEGORY FIVE (09F)
18:00 PM FST February 20 2016
=============================
Nearby Viti Levu (Fiji)

A HURRICANE WARNING is in force for southern half of Vanua Levu, northwestern half of Viti Levu from Korolevu to Korovou, Yasawa and Mamanuca group, and Ovalau

A STORM WARNING is in force for the rest Of Viti Levu, Yasawa and Mamanuca group, Koro, Nairai, Gau, and Batiki

A GALE WARNING is in force for rest of Fiji Islands


At 6:00 AM UTC, Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston, Category Five (915 hPa) located at 17.4S 178.7E has 10 minute sustained winds of 125 knots. The cyclone is reported as moving west southwest at 12 knots. Position good based on hourly multispectral enhanced infrared radar image and peripheral surface reports.

Hurricane Force Winds
==============
30 NM from the center

Storm Force Winds
==============
50 NM from the center

Gale Force Winds
==============
120 NM from the center

Eye well defined. Deep convection remains persistent. Eye warming past 3 hours. Organization remains good. Sea surface temperature is around 30C. System lies in a strong upper divergence region and in a low to moderate sheared environment. Outflow good. System tracking along the northern periphery of the sub-tropical ridge located to the south. Dvorak analysis based on OW eye in CMG surround yields DT=7.0, MET=7.0 and PT=6.0, Final Dvorak intensity based on DT.

Dvorak Intensity: T7.0/7.0/D0.5/24 HRS

Forecast and Intensity
==============
12 HRS 17.7S 177.3E - 120 knots (CAT 5)
24 HRS 18.1S 176.4E - 115 knots (CAT 5)
48 HRS 19.4S 175.9E - 110 knots (CAT 5)
Pretty bad hit, Nadi airport recorded sustained winds of 45 knots with hurricane force gusts. I would expect that Fiji s second most populous city Lautoka which appears to be some 20 kilometres north of the airport will get some of the worst damage.
I can't get used to it.
Another awakening in Holland here to a completely terrifying sight, as shocking as I've experienced with Haiyan, Patricia, the objects that went for poor Yemen.
Interaction with Fiji/ mountains looks to have weakened Winston considerably?
Vast destruction feared as Winston makes landfall on Fiji's Viti Levu
Radio New Zealand, Updated at 11:18 pm on 20 February 2016
The category five Cyclone Winston made landfall of Fiji's main island, Viti Levu, late on Saturday night hitting the country with winds as high as 325km/h.
The country spent much of Saturday in lockdown, with transport cancelled and a nationwide curfew and state of emergency declared by the government.
There were initial reports of severe damage across the country, including some houses being flattened by devastating winds and heavy swells washing away sea walls.
Unconfirmed reports suggested one person died when they were struck by falling debris on Koro island, according to local media, but a police spokesperson was unable to confirm that.
The Fiji Meteorological Service said the cyclone made landfall near Rakiraki, a district of close to 30,000 people on the northern coast of the main island, Viti Levu.
Winston had average winds of 230 km/h, gusting as high as 325 km/h, and was forecast to track west along the northern coast at about 25km/h overnight.
The Meteorological Service director, Ravind Kumar, said the cyclone would come within 20km of Nadi, near the country's main international airport and tourist areas, at about 6am on Sunday.
"The scenario is not good," said Mr Kumar in a phone interview. "It is a category five system, it is very compact, and it has got very destructive hurricane force winds.
"Over the island of Vanuabalavu we recorded winds gusting to 145 knots (268km/h), so you can imagine the destruction that it may leave behind," he said.
Winston struck Viti Levu after passing across Fiji's eastern Lau group of islands. Authorities said contact with the scattered group had been lost and it was unclear what the extent of the damage there was.
Late on Saturday night, there were reports of widespread blackouts and communications outages across the country, particularly in the north and east. ...

Whole article see link above.


Saved current loop. Winston is reorganizing after landfall.
Good morning. Praying for the people of Fiji. Love the weather but unfortunately someone has to take the brunt of the bad weather. 64 here and fog in Destrehan La. Have a good day.
154. MahFL
Quoting 147. BaltimoreBrian:

CMC hates Fiji. Go to tropicaltidbits, model page, choose hurricane, CMC, Winston, animate. Choose the 00Z Saturday, Feb 20th run. After hitting Fiji today, the CMC has Winston looping around and hitting Fiji two more times.


That would be an unfortunate track. Not familiar with tracks in that part of the world.
155. elioe
Quoting 147. BaltimoreBrian:

CMC hates Fiji. Go to tropicaltidbits, model page, choose hurricane, CMC, Winston, animate. Choose the 00Z Saturday, Feb 20th run. After hitting Fiji today, the CMC has Winston looping around and hitting Fiji two more times.


Such a track would be even more extraordinary than what Winston has done so far. Meanwhile GFS makes Winston go almost over Norfolk Island, and eventually its remnant circulation paralleling Queensland coast, going northwest. Favorable upper-level winds and sufficient instability forecast, but no regeneration.
Cyclone Winston: Live developments as Fiji hit by storm
Stuff.co.nz, last updated 00:17, February 21 2016
if i remember right in spring 98 some islands part of tahiti were criss crossed repeatingly by a cyclone
And the CAT (5) came back...the very next day..

Looking at the radar, it seems as though Winston peaked in intensity right before landfall. That's when the cyclone looked its best on picture. Very sad, it just kept jogging sw, putting the ugly side of the eyewall square on Viti Levu.
Prayers for Fiji this morning... this is a horrible situation affecting many people.
163. vis0
Quoting 86. washingtonian115:

We'll probably see the same steering pattern we've been in for 5 years now for 2016.
Quoting 87. CaribBoy:



Probably...

Hopefully I won't feel the need of complaining every day during this hurricane season lol.
If i my ADJUquote '"'Probably... knot''"  (4 to 5 yrs left - via my **-* theories)  to fit  in 2 bad years for FL.) Similarly, in the NE as in the next 4-5 years NEast has to go through 2 droughts one very bad other moderate yet long in duration but that's ~1 nuts opinion.
Weird as that kind of fits on to some laws of physics as a HIGH over the NE or just off shore has a better chance of creating a tropical superhighway of storms towards the SEast  / Caribbean.  Wish it would not occur just as i wish humans would learn from previous errors but i guess each generation has to re-learn     English   from their own mistakes when they prefer not to learn from those that went through the same errors i.e. elders.

Maybe by all the youngins today  recording how they break their bones 2, 3 , 4 times doing silly tricks on skate boards the future generation in seeing it on wikkitube and feeling the pain via wifi port connected 3D virtual nerve-pain  suits (not yet invented) will MAYBE think hmm lets not try that, lets break our bones jumping on the moon (tied on weighted skateboards). See our older generation even if they could not read could explain things in vivid colour. That inability to explain things in full colour has recent generation(s) loose touch with reality and maybe it''ll take a 3D reality suit to wake some up  or not.

Back to the disastrous Pac 2016 Hurricane Winston.

Click to enlarge.
Quoting 160. win1gamegiantsplease:

Looking at the radar, it seems as though Winston peaked in intensity right before landfall. That's when the cyclone looked its best on picture. Very sad, it just kept jogging sw, putting the ugly side of the eyewall square on Viti Levu.
I was hoping Winston might split the goalposts, but it doesn't look like that hope has come true. On the upside, it appears that the weather station at Nadi International is still broadcasting. It appears the weather station at Suva is off the air but that's not surprising. The station at Suva airport is not as strong an installation as the one at Nadi. Fiji.gov is still up but I don't know if they are using offshore servers. Fiji weather radar is also still up, a big plus for a country with a very rickety system when I was there 15 years ago.

It looks like Winston made a direct hit on Rikiriki on the north shore and then over Lautoka before going back out to sea. Lautoka is an old colonial city with lots of buildings packed in close together in the main town. The mountains above Lautoka also contain many of Fiji's hydropower plants, and Lautoka is a center of the sugar and lumber industries. The Fiji government has a good set of shelters available in the area so I'm hoping the loss of life will be small. It's three in the morning there, and we won't know the extent of material loss until daylight. I'll continue to hope for the best.
Good Morning !
No snow. No rain. Dry. Windy. All is well here.

It's just another Day in Paradox.
Enjoy the day, all.
Winter-spring flood outlook for SE NC and NE SC [Link]
Quoting 167. pottery:

Good Morning !
No snow. No rain. Dry. Windy. All is well here.

It's just another Day in Paradox.
Enjoy the day, all.
Good morning, Pott. Nice day up here as well. 62 headed for a high of 75 or so. Some breezy southerly winds as a trough from the west swings this way. On and off rain for Sunday through Tuesday but it looks spread out enough that flooding won't be a problem. The severe weather risk is supposedly low, but the continuing south winds makes me a little suspicious of that forecast. Regardless, a very nice day today for late February as we get a taste of spring.
Good Saturday morning to everyone ....

I close my wx eyes for 3 days and a cat 5 storm hits Fiji .....

Quoting 116. Gearsts:

Track likely over the big island.

Track along the N coast looks pretty similar to 1985 storm.
Quoting 147. BaltimoreBrian:

CMC hates Fiji. Go to tropicaltidbits, model page, choose hurricane, CMC, Winston, animate. Choose the 00Z Saturday, Feb 20th run. After hitting Fiji today, the CMC has Winston looping around and hitting Fiji two more times.
We sure hope that's an "on Crack" forecast......

Looks like Nadi is going to avoid the heavy surge, especially if the eyewall stays north ....

[Revised to take into account S hemisphere clockwise motion..,...]










early damage pictures from Winston

Read more here:

Link

Quoting 172. Patrap:

Tropical Cyclone Winston is packing winds over 145 mph with gusts up to 175 mph, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center, and could strengthen a bit more before the eye of the storm hits the islands late Saturday



Isn't it Sunday morning their time now? or am I too far ahead timewise?
Up to 9.75" of rain for feb, supposedly its going to get nice out tody and tomorrow should put us over 10". Wind free ond 38° here in Acme, wa, snow is around 1500' low enough to smell it outside. Mt Baker ski area reporting 14" of fresh fluff for their legendary banked slalom race. Going horseback riding for my wifes 40th today… only been on a horse once before… back in 6th grade.
4:10 a.m. on Sunday 21st in Suva right now. Some of the smaller islands are going to the east will start seeing how bad the damage is by now....
Lookin much more interesting..Better chance for a large storm.

Quoting 174. BahaHurican:

Isn't it Sunday morning their time now? or am I too far ahead timewise?
Yes, 0441 Sunday as I write this. I assume the story was posted at an earlier date. The main body of the storm did hit on Saturday Fji time.
Quoting 173. justmehouston:











early damage pictures from Winston

Read more here:

Link


Unfortunately, the fake photos are already all over FB. The one with the leaning power pole is actually from Cyclone Nargis that hit Burma in 2008, and the picture first showed up on this German website. The Daily Mail is really notorious for sensationalism and poor fact checking. It shouldn't be relied on for current news or pictures from Fiji.

EDIT: The damaged house is from Cyclone Evan that hit Fiji in 2012. The picture first shows up on the Australian Broadcasting Company site. We can pretty safely assume that anything from this Ronal Singh character is fake. It looks like the first two and the last may actually be from Fiji yesterday.
Today's Wx in Nassau, The Bahamas:





Took these about an hour or so ago ....

It's warmed up to 81 so far.... pretty typical for February. Nights are generally still cool, but as long as a front isn't passing, we will normally get into the low 80s by afternoon. February can be a really good month here.
Couldn't vent on the main blog so did it on mine :).The temperatures will be spring like today with the higher sun angle so I'll be outdoors to take advantage,Later.
Quoting 181. sar2401:

Unfortunately, the fake photos are already all over FB. The one with the leaning power pole is actually from Cyclone Nargis that hit Burma in 2008, and the picture first showed up on this German website. The Daily Mail is really notorious for sensationalism and poor fact checking. It shouldn't be relied on for current news or pictures from Fiji.

EDIT: The damaged house is from Cyclone Evan that hit Fiji in 2012. The picture first shows up on the Australian Broadcasting Company site. We can pretty safely assume that anything from this Ronal Singh character is fake. It looks like the first two and the last may actually be from Fiji yesterday.
Most of what is posted atm is going to be from yesterday .. it's just now getting to be light enough to see post storm damage. I'm waiting to hear how the smaller eastern islands fared ... islands like Vanua Balavu, Naitauba, Yacata, Koro and Makogai had the eye and / or eyewall pass over them while the storm was at cat 5 or at best strong cat 4 ....
185. JRRP
Quoting 183. washingtonian115:

Couldn't vent on the main blog so did it on mine :).The temperatures will be spring like today with the higher sun angle so I'll be outdoors to take advantage,Later.

I'm off as well, and I'm hoping I get to take some decent photos while the wx is good .... I'll check in later for Winston damage info.


DAY 1 CONVECTIVE OUTLOOK
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
1023 AM CST SAT FEB 20 2016

VALID 201630Z - 211200Z

...THERE IS A MRGL RISK OF SVR TSTMS THIS EVENING ACROSS SRN MO INTO
SRN IL EARLY TONIGHT...

...SUMMARY...
THUNDERSTORMS WILL BE POSSIBLE THIS AFTERNOON THROUGH TONIGHT FROM
EASTERN OKLAHOMA INTO THE OZARKS AND MIDDLE MISSISSIPPI VALLEY. SOME
ISOLATED SEVERE HAIL WILL BE POSSIBLE THIS EVENING INTO EARLY
TONIGHT ACROSS PORTIONS OF CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN MISSOURI AND
SOUTHERN ILLINOIS.

...SRN MO AND VICINITY TONIGHT...
A LOW-AMPLITUDE/ZONAL REGIME PERSISTS OVER THE CONUS WITH THE
PRIMARY BELT OF WLYS ACROSS THE NRN TIER OF STATES...AND A
SUBTROPICAL JET FROM NRN BAJA TO THE MID SOUTH. SOME LOW-LEVEL
MOISTURE RETURN IS UNDERWAY INTO S AND E TX WHERE BOUNDARY LAYER
DEWPOINTS RANGE FROM 60-64F. THE NRN EXTENT OF THIS MOISTURE WILL
CONTINUE TO SPREAD NWD/NEWD ACROSS AR/MO TOWARD THE LOWER OH VALLEY
ALONG AND S OF A WEAK FRONT WHICH WILL STALL ACROSS MO. REGIONAL
12Z SOUNDINGS REVEALED STEEP MIDLEVEL LAPSE RATES OVER THE SRN
PLAINS THAT OVERLAPPED THE W EDGE OF THE RETURNING MOISTURE.

FORCING FOR ASCENT WILL BE WEAK AT BEST THROUGH THE DAY AS GRADUAL
DESTABILIZATION OCCURS INTO SRN MO WITH SURFACE HEATING AND MOISTURE
ADVECTION. THUNDERSTORM DEVELOPMENT WILL BECOME MORE PROBABLE THIS
EVENING INTO EARLY TONIGHT WITH WEAK WAA/FRONTOGENESIS FROM SRN MO
SPREADING EWD TO THE LOWER OH VALLEY. THERE WILL BE SOME RISK FOR
ISOLATED LARGE HAIL ACROSS SRN MO...IN PROXIMITY TO THE STRONGER
BUOYANCY /MUCAPE AROUND 1000 J PER KG/ AND WHERE DEEP-LAYER VERTICAL
SHEAR WILL BE SUFFICIENT FOR ORGANIZED/SUPERCELL STORMS FOR THE
FIRST FEW HOURS AFTER STORM INITIATION.

Computer, activate program Class 1 Outbreak.
I hope we get some good rain here in central Texas, but it doesn't look like we will get any good Rainfall...

Link
Quoting 185. JRRP:


I think it shows la nina?
190. JRRP
Quoting 189. Gearsts:

I think it shows la nina?

yeap

   Getting Warm again....
148 mph wind gust recorded Thursday on Monarch Pass

A blast of wind hit 148 mph on Monarch Pass Thursday, the highest gust recorded in Colorado by the National Weather Service.

The gust, out of the west, was recorded at 7:36 p.m.

Thunder and light snow accompanied the wicked wind, which included less volatile gusts of 98 and 62 mph in the area after 7 p.m. that night.

Thursday's Monarch Pass blast bests a previous gust of 147 mph on Jan. 25, 1971, recorded at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder.


Link
193. vis0

Quoting 192. RobertWC:

148 mph wind gust recorded Thursday on Monarch Pass

A blast of wind hit 148 mph on Monarch Pass Thursday, the highest gust recorded in Colorado by the National Weather Service.

The gust, out of the west, was recorded at 7:36 p.m.

Thunder and light snow accompanied the wicked wind, which included less volatile gusts of 98 and 62 mph in the area after 7 p.m. that night.

Thursday's Monarch Pass blast bests a previous gust of 147 mph on Jan. 25, 1971, recorded at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder.


Link
Was thinking of the MidWest-Chicago winds earlier and wondered if keeperofthegates experienced them?

Quoting 189. Gearsts:

I think it shows la nina?
I would differ with that. Please see the CSV that StormtrackerScott posts. They seem to indicate a slowly strengthening El Nino continuing.
My heart and thoughts go out to the people of Fiji. Today will be a difficult day of shock and assessment. Sadly, confirmed reports of the first fatality and severe damage are appearing in some media reports.

A little closer to home, the monthly precipitation total in Seattle is up to 4.54" for February (normal is 3.5), 11.97" since Jan 1 (should be around 8), and a remarkable 36.36" since October 1 (normal = 23.3"). This puts us at our 2nd record wettest water year to date. We would need to hit 37.33" to break the record Oct - Feb period. Our really wet months typically start in October or November. As such, our water year is measured from Oct - Sept.

Cliff Mass has an excellent summary of our wet winter here.
JeffMasters has created a new entry.
Quoting 194. Llamaluvr:

I would differ with that. Please see the CSV that StormtrackerScott posts. They seem to indicate a slowly strengthening El Nino continuing.
Maybe sometime after 2020.
Wow, I'm shell-shocked at some of the reports coming out of Fiji over the last few hours. The death toll has already reached 20, with 7 still missing out at sea. The scale of damage on the Fiji Islands is like something I have only ever seen once before, after Hurricane Patricia last year.