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Rita upgraded to hurricane

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 1:06 PM GMT on September 20, 2005

Rita was upgraded to a hurricane with a special 9:15 am advisory. The 9:15am EDT hurricane hunter mission found winds at 5000 feet of 78 knots (90 mph), which corresponds to surface winds of minimal hurricane force (74 mph).The central pressure was 982 mb, down 3 mb in the past 1 1/2 hours. The Key West radar loop is most impressive the past three hours, showing a transformation from a disorganized, elliptical system to a more circular storm with much more intense spiral banding. An large eye with a 35 mile diameter has formed, but is still organizing and has gaps. Infrared sateliite images now show a warm spot where the eye is forming.



Here are the peak wind gusts as of 11:00 am EDT from Rita:

53 mph at Marathon Airport
50 mph at Key West International Airport
58 mph at Molasses Reef light
48 mph at Long Key light
72 mph at Sombrero Key light
47 mph at Sand Key light
38 mph at Dry Tortugas light

Sustained tropical force winds of 40 mph or higher will spread over the entire Keys chain this morning, extending as far north as Miami. The eye of Rita is shrinking, and the northern eyewall will pass over or just south of the lower Keys and Key West between noon and 3 pm today. Sustained winds of 70 - 80 mph and gusts of 100 mph will accompany passage of the northern eyewall. If the eyewall misses to the south, the lower Keys will escape with sustained winds of 50 - 60 mph and gusts to 85 mph. A storm surge of 5 - 7 feet will accompany the arrival of the eyewall, flooding parts of the coastal highway and low-lying areas. Moderate roof damage and extensive damage to mobile homes is also expected in the lower Keys.

Rita in the Gulf
Once Rita emerges into the Gulf of Mexico this afternoon, continued strengthening is expected--but not explosive deepening. The center of the upper-level high that Rita needs to carry away all the air her eyewall convection is injecting into the upper atmosphere is located to the east of her, and thus the outflow over Rita is poor in some areas, particularly the south side. This situation is predicted to improve some and allow Rita to strengthen to a Category 3 hurricane by Thursday. Water temperatures over the middle of the Gulf of Mexico are 1 - 2C cooler than those near Key West, thanks to all the cold water stirred up by Katrina. This may keep Rita as a strong Category 2 hurricane. Once Rita approaches the coast of Texas, the cold water wake of Katrina ends and water temperatures warm up again, which may allow some more intensification. Rita is not expected to reach Category 4 status.


Figure 2.Sea Surface temperatures for Sunday, September 18. Note the cooler wake in the center of the Gulf left by Katrina.

Threat to Louisiana fades
Last night, the NOAA jet flew its first mission into Rita, and collected high-density data used to initialize last night's computer model runs. The models are more tightly clustered than before, and now all the models point to a landfall in Texas Saturday, somewhere between Brownsville and Galveston. She is expected to be a Category 2 or 3 at landfall. Western Louisiana is still at high risk, but New Orleans will miss this hurricane. However, if Rita makes landfall in western Louisiana, she may push 1 - 2 feet of storm surge into Lake Pontchartrain. This could cause problems with the weakened New Orleans levee system and possibly destroy the temporary patches that were installed, allowing the areas of the city that are starting to drain to flood once more.

Philippe
Philippe is slowly strengthening but heading northward out to sea. Philippe will continue to strengthen and head north, and is not expected to affect any land areas, including Bermuda.

Wave between Africa and the Antilles
A large low pressure system is halfway between Africa and the Antilles islands. While this system does have a surface circulation and considerable deep convection, 15-20 knots of upper-level wind shear will keep this system from developing into a tropical depression. Later in the week, the shear over the central Atlantic is expected to decrease, and we could see another tropical storm form in this region, but probably not from the current area of disturbed weather mentioned above.

Jeff Masters

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

Looks like the grotto might have spared Key West another direct hit.
Good Morning -I like that Dr. Masters says she won't be a 4 -sounds good to me
It is now official...Hurricane Rita.
Takes just a little bit to load, but is pretty neat!

http://www.schoonerwharf.com/webcam.htm
Pick the streaming video on the schooner wharf cam...
good.... cat 3 is bad enough

relief to have less worry about something worse
IKE did you find your way over to this board? You sure are a pesty little weather hater.
well thius is the exact same thing i tried to tell you guys yesterdat RITA was not going to hiy la or miss but hit somewhere between corpus christi and galveston texas...the strong high that is protecting us will last until RITA gets on shore in texas on friday night...the trough all you people were talking about will no way erode the high pressure area thats over us....louisiana and miss are safer then they have ever been...i have been saying this for 2 days and also if you are worried about the P storm dont it will be for the fish only....so dont listen to the rumors you here on this board..Dr Masters is in full agreement of what i have been saying all along and also the people at the NHC....so relax louisiana and miss lets get our people home AND REBUILD OUR GREAR CITY....NEW ORLEANS
HURRICANE RITA TROPICAL CYCLONE UPDATE
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
915 AM EDT TUE SEP 20 2005

DOPPLER RADAR DATA...SATELLITE PRESENTATION AND PRESSURE FALLS FROM THE RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT INDICATE THAT RITA HAS REACHED CATEGORY ONE HURRICANE STRENGTH ON THE SAFFIR/SIMPSON HURRICANE SCALE. THIS WILL BE REFLECTED ON THE 11 AM...1500Z ADVISORY.
Good Morning from Nassau, The Bahamas :)
We had gusts up to 46, mph at 2 a.m. at sustained winds at around 34 mph. I wasn't that bad, except for when my year-old son got restless with the heavy squalls during the highest gusts and the fact that water beat in through my front door for most of the night, even though I have a threshold. :(
A couple towels and T-shirts sufficed, however, and it didn't get near any furniture.
Wishing the best to all with this one and I am glad the track shifted more away from the Keys :)
MICHAEL THIS IS THE STRONGEST HIGH I SEEN THIS SEASON LOL...THERE IS NO TROUGH GOING TO ERODE THIS BABY...I FEEL FOR THE PEOPLE OF TEXAS BUT ITS BETTER THEM THEN US....
New vort msg 982 mb. 79 Kt NW quad. She's definitely deepening quickly.
winds have picked up here in ft lauderdale and south beach is now experiencing hurricane force winds

Stormtop, just want to say again how glad i am to see you back on here :)
where is get real who had this huge high moving ne yesterday and him lefty and especially HOOKED ON THE TROPICS who consistently posted my posts yesterday..you guys need to learn how to read weather data better..this storm is heading for texas like i said all along and PHILLIPE is going to be a fish storm which i called on saturday..thats where your strong trough went get real...no problems for a good while in the tropics after rita goes on shore friday in texas....chalk another 2 up for STORMTOP...
THANKS TO EVEYONE FOR THE WARM WELCOME BACK I APPRECIATE IT...
Michael
Tx does need to be prepared but they also need to update your storm statements. Rita is a Cat1
and Stormtop you are very welcome and apreciated too :)
Well I was headed down to south of the homestead area but cancelled at the last moment......just had the feeling that there wasnt much going to happen...and its looking like I was right......maybe a gust to 50mph.....
im sorry micheal you have to endure this im afraid the temps are warm enough to support cat 4 strength before it reaches texas and i see no shear at all to keep her from developing rapidly as she reaches the gulf.
Michael are they going to do voluntary evacs in galveston today??? Just curious
Nice to see you back STORMTOP. Your Katrina forecast was excellent. Eerily accurate.. hope all is well with you sir.
WELL STORMTOP CHECK OUT THAT TROF THAT IS NOW DIGGING SOUTH FURTHER THAN EXPECTED IN MS AND AL. THERE IS A WEAKNESS THAT EXTENDS SOUTHEAST FROM THAT TROF DOWN TOWARDS RITA. BUT I GUESS YOU HAVEN'T HAD YOUR CHOCLATE MILK THIS MORNING YET, AND HAD TIME TO CHECK WATER VAPOR LOOPS.
It looks like it will be far enough south of galveston they should be spared...
Coral Gables just is currently in a band....high winds, rain, power flickering, etc.....will update as able
what are you thinking on a landfall getreal??
STROMTOP, glad to see you back!! Your well-being was of concern to many....
thanks rhindle we are doing fine cant wait to start the repairs...now maybe the mayor will start to leave the people back in the city and the dam govt who was 5 days late will stay out of the mayors business like PRESIDENT LATE GEORGE BUSH...I CAN TELL YOU THIS IF FLA WOULD OF GOTTEN HIT LIKE WE DID BUSH WOULD OF BEEN THERE WITH FEMA IN A HEARTBEAT...THIS MAN SHOULD BE IMPEACHED..THE 5TH VISIT HE IS MAKING DOWN HERE TODAY..YOU WANT TO TALK ABOUT A MAN WITH A GUILTY CONCIOUS THATS GEORGE BUSH.
Here in Key West it's a little windy with periodic rain squalls. Power went out in Bahama Village for about an hour and a half due to a tree on the lines, but City Electric cleaned it up and we're empowered once again.

My opinion (not forecast) is that here in the Keys Rita will be less disruptive than Katrina.

A media low point occurred on tv about 7am when NOTHING was happening and this wide-eyed novice reporter was out in front of La Concha Hotel on Duval Street. "Look at this drain pipe. That's the water coming off the roof. And look over there. That's a puddle and it's getting bigger." Seriously. We'd all be better if they'd report news as it happens and not try to make it.
wOMBAT, FOR THE SAKE OF "CONTINUITY", STICKING WITH CENTRAL OR WEST LA LANDFALL MAX CAT 3 AT LANDFALL.
going against the models and forecast I like that.. I guess that would be the far east of the cone.. what do you think the chances of a houston landfall are?
ALSO APPALACHICOLA, FL APPEARS TO BE SAFE!!
GET REAL YOU DONT GIVE UP.you need to learn how to read the pressures around the storm the conditions developing around the storms enviroment before you make a prediction like that...you also need to go to the wv and ir and read them better...it showed the high very nicely that would build in to protect the gulf states....your trough is taking phillipe up in the n atlantic it wont have anything to do with RITA...
Greetings from Hufffman TX
Looks like all you gloom and doomers have more gloom to look forward to, Rita is going into Kennedy Co. Texas just south of Armstrong, where it will no doubt nail a couple of cows. Looks like Key west will be spared since the storm will pass about 45 miles to the South, it may see wind gusts
up to 70 MPH About 2PM CDT. Hope all you hopers that are still hoping got enough sleep last night.Strong cat 2 when it passes over the Padre Island National Seashore.
KEEP THE POLITICS OFF THIS BOARD!

I and many others HAVE and WILL report EVERY off-topic post.
HOUSTON IS IN MORE DANGER THAN S. TEXAS IN MY OPINION
DIPCHIP I'm beginning to agree with that - cows, cacti and hyenas will get this baby - which I fine with us in Houston
So all this screaming and hollerin is for naught y'all
A LARGE BUT DISORGANIZED AREA OF DISTURBED WEATHER IS LOCATED ABOUT 900 MILES EAST-NORTHEAST OF THE NORTHERN LEEWARD ISLANDS. UPPER-LEVEL WINDS ARE NOT FAVORABLE FOR DEVELOPMENT.
I got this from this Link...I guess thats the blob between Rita and Philippe...anyone think it may develop later this week?
Stormtop---YOU COULDN'T BE FARTHER FROM THE TRUTH ABOUT BUSH!! It's the INCOMPETENCE of the LOUSYANA GOV and NO MAYOR that created the whole mess. It's not surprising since LA is the most corrupt state in the nation. FEMA gave money to NO to study Evac plans for the poor, and they decide to use the money looking at a bridge. During Hugo, It took 5-7 days for FEMA to come down to SC. But we were smart enough to know how to take care of ourselves until FEMA arrived. So get your facts straight!! (By the way, Welcome back)
MICHAEL I CAN TELL YOU THIS...BE SMART AND MAKE SURE ALL THE PEOPLE ARE EVACUATED IN TEXAS I PRAY IT DOESNT HIT GALVESTON BUT IT GOES WEST OF THEM...I WILL EMAIL YOU AND TELL YOU WHAT WE WENT THROUGH AND WHATS UP IN THE AIR RIGHT NOW WHICH I CANT DISCUSS HERE...I ALSO HAVE A CD MIKE WITH ABOUT 200 PICS FROM KATRINA WHICH I TOOK IN THE HEIGHT OF THE STORM WHEN WE HAD SUSTAINED WINDS OF 130 GUSTING TO 150 FOR 5 HOURS STRAIGHT....IF YOU SEND ME YOUR ADDRESS I CAN TRY TO GET IT TO YOU....
cool thanks
This is a weather blog, not a politics blog. If you want to repeatedly mash your hands on the keyboard while slinging blame, feel free to head to the MSN Slate boards.

Now as for the weather, I'm VERY glad to hear the (still extremely early) predictions that this will not be a Cat4. Hopefully the NE quadrant ends up well south of Houston, if she has to land in TX. 26% of oil production out would hurt everyone.
Stormtop, Do you have a link you can send me that shows the High. TY Put
Hello...from Seawall Blvd. on Galveston Island

Yep, I live RIGHT on the Seawall...lovely huh? ;-)

My apartment building (made of wood and not the best-built building) can't take a Cat 1, I don't think. My place sustained lots of roof damage when Hurricane Claudette hit 100(?) miles south of Galveston in 2003 and water poured in through my ceiling. I live on the 3rd floor (top floor) so while it's doubtful the water would reach this high, I'm screwed because the wind will take my roof. Even if this thing hits Corpus I'm expecting damage being on the "dirty" side.

The truth of the matter is I am completely stressed out over this. I'm scared as hell. (How scared is hell? lol)I'm planning to evacuate tonight or EARLY tomorrow.

The lines for gas are long in Galveston. Everyone I talk to is pretty worried. I guess a lot of you can relate. Don't think I'll have a chance to post again unless this thing takes a serius turn (with the computer models in alignment) towards the Texas-Mexico border.

Take care and stay safe all...
STORMTOP WE'LL SEE WHAT THE CARDS HOLD FOR RITA TOMORROW AFTERNOON. YOU OF ALL PEOPLE, TO HAVE SO MUCH FAITH IN THESE MODELS OVER 72 HOURS OUT. I CAN'T BELIEVE THAT YOU ARE SELLING OUT SO FAST. I MUST HAVE STEPPED IN YOUR CHERRIOS SOMEWHERE EARLIER? IF I'M WRONG I'LL DO A MIA CULPA, AND BOW DOWN TO STORMTOP AS GOD.
According to the NOAA charts, the warm water in the W Gulf is rather thin. How intense Rita gets in this area will depend on how quickly she moves. If she slows down, she will start bringing up cold water in a hurry. This is not apparent merely by looking at the SST chart, incidentally.
hens you just dont know the full story believe me i could shock you if i told you what i found out..i cant though at least not on this board its under investigation thats why ther feds are here...i will say nothing else lets concentrate on the people of texas and say say many prayers today for them...MICHAEL im really concerned about your area and cat 4 status on rita..i hope she keeps moving fast like 18 mph so she wont have enough time to strengthen to a cat 4...
Good luck to you hairball and get out of there!
Good Luck to you Hairball. We will be hoping for the best!
STORMTOP, your Katrina experience & photos might help some of those who consider staying for a Cat 4 or 5 reconsider evacuation! Maybe you could post some of the pics and commentary... And were you in NO? in the Lake Pon. area?
hairball, start packing and good luck. Get out early if you are leaving. Don't want to get stuck on a highway or looking for gas
once again, anyone have a comment reg. the blob above Philippe? Will it disipate cause conditions are not favorable or does it have a fraction of a chance? Anyone?
JUST FOR THE RECORD STORMTOP (GOD), WHERE EXACTLY IS YOUR CALL FOR LANDFALL AND AT WHAT STRENGTH??
Just a favor to ask, guys. Can you please stop posting in all caps? That's normally for official weather updates. Plus it's plain annoying, especially when coupled with "teh brokenz AOLer engilshhes lol lmao!!!oneeleven!1." Thanks in advance.

As for the hurricane: when is the next report due out? And when do you think these models will solidify in accuracy?
putin all you have to do is check the water vapor imagery...its the strongest high i seen this year...you can check your barometer and you can see for your self how the pressure will rise for the next 5 days...it will be hot upper 90s but i would rather take the heat then another cat 4..i stood in the face of katrina and i must be crazy but that is what i do collect data and pic on the storm..i had to tie myself down at a few points but i got some great video of this devastaing storm which no one will ever forget...
I can see the ole stormtop is back.....you got one right.....and o'my goodness the prediction are coming.....stormtop please tell me something that the NHC isnt....the NHC has been saying that PHILLIPE was a fish storm for days.....they have also been saying that texas and maybe louisiana were in the path of RITA.....so tell something that the NHC hasnt already......like what city and what strength, what time?....precisely stormtop, just like you did with katrina which you happen to hit right on the head just a little before the NHC did.....interesting..........otherwise, how ya doing STORMY....you sound like you havent missed a beat......lol
Hey Getreal, can you post a link to the water vapor loops?

Thanks =)
Hairball - I just looked on MSN earth and saw where Seawall Blvd is...........gulp! It looks like an awesome place to live - normally. I'll be thinking of you in the days to come and hope the squall misses you.
PENSECOLA GO TO www.ssd.noaa.gov/PS/TROP/DATA/RT/nwatl-wv-loop.html
Thank Ya!
hey FSU, uploaded aftermath pics for Frances this AM...if you wanna look...no one wants to answer my questions...I guess Ill wait for Lefty, he seemingly pays attention to my silly questions...gonna go Yoga till after lunch...catch up later... :-)
gGET REAL I HAVE NOT CHANGED MY MIND SINCE SUNDAY..I HAVE CALLED IT BETWEEN CORPUS CHRISTI AND GALVESTON AND I MIGHT ADD IF IT CONTINUES ON THE SAME SPEED A GOOD POSSIBILITY OF A CAT 4 HITTING TEXAS FRIDAY NIGHT...IF YOU WANT ME TO PINPOINT AND AREA IM HOPING ITS 100 MILES WEST OF GALVESTON....
very strong squall here in plantation/ft laud area. TV reports from Miami Beach show very strong winds:

www.cbs4news.com
www.nbc6.net
www.local10.com
www.wsvn.com
www.upn33.com
www.wiod.com(radio)

miami stations also serve the keys...lots of live footage
Who wants to bet on a CAT 2 by 2:00
Joe's Take, and you have to love his honesty

TUESDAY 8:27 A.M.: 985 MB AT 23.7 NORTH, 80.3 WEST.
Flight level winds are up to near 80 knots. This is now deeper then when Katrina hit South Florida. It is well behind my idea of 965 by morning, but the question is, looking at the pics and radar, am I simply a bit fast? Folks on Key West should expect the storm to produce the Saffir-Simpson wind based on pressure and pay attention to that pressure drop over the next 6-12 hours as Katrina approaches. With the center passing 15-30 miles south of Key West, there may be in an intensifying eyewall for a few hours.

The 6Z GFS is back to near Galveston again, so the case of swinging model(ians) and a double shot of tropical love will continue. Here is my latest track thinking, which is not very different from yesterday. In fact, it's almost on top of it.

Verification (12z): 23.7, 80.3, 985 mb, 70 knots. Track error 40 miles, pressure 20 mb too low on my part, but let's see what happens today. Wind on my part was 20 knots too high.

New forecast (times 12z):

WEDNESDAY: 24.2, 86.0, 945 MB, 110 KNOTS.

THURSDAY: 25.0, 91.0, 935 MB, 120 KNOTS.

FRIDAY: 27.5, 95.0, 935 MB, 120 KNOTS.

SATURDAY: 32.0, 96.0, 985 MB, 50 KNOTS.

My jaw-dropping deepening has not yet started, though we are down 6 mb in the last six hours. Which means for now, about this matter, my jaw will be wired shut.
If this is a Cat 3 or 4 and heads to Harris county, it will take about 30 hours to evacuate Clear Lake. http://www.srh.noaa.gov/hgx/tropical/evac_map/gifs/harris.gif
I hear ya hairball i was in bama when ivan hit and i think this could be as strong and i was about 50 west of landfall and it was quite a ride.. even 100 miles south of houston landfall could cause nasty weather in the area.. good luck.
CORPUS CHRISTI TO GALVESTON THAT'S CLOSE ENOUGH, NO NEED TO GET ANY TIGHTER THAN THAT.
Hey Stormtop,

Is she going to be far enough out in the gulf that you won't have to worry about rains.(I'm not sure what the distance is) I've read some reports that evan strong thunderstorms could breach the levees again
I WOULD BET A CAT 2 BY 2:00PM
I'm not very smart about this kind of thing. It just seems to me that the high pressure is moving more east...?? Maybe making landfall further east than expected? I trust you Stormtop... but could you please tell me why it looks that way?
Looks like the computer models put me in the bullseye. I live in Victoria, Texas. Victoria is a city of approx. 60,000 people and it is the largest city between Corpus Christi and Houston. It is 40 miles inland off Matagorda Bay. We rode out Claudette 3 years ago and that was a borderline Cat 1-2. Lots of downed trees and no power for a week. I am new to this board and VERY concerned with this storm. I don't think I will stick around to see what a Cat 3 can do. There is some great information on this board and some very knowledgable people. Lots to learn here. I will stay tuned and post from time to time. Thanks.
i hav updated my blog
PENSECOLA 21 DID YOU GET TO THAT SIGHT, AND IF YOU DID WHAT WAS YOUR OBS.
Please see my comment below Getreal...

Looks iffy to me.....
how far is victoria from houston??
PROSAC ALL WE HAVE TO BE CONCERNED ABOUT IS WHEN SHE IS ABOUT 400 MILES TO THE SOUTH OF NEW ORLEANS WE WILL BE GETTING THE EASTERLY WINDS AND THAT MAY BRING THE WATER BACK IN ST BERNARD AND NEW ORLEANS EAST AREAS BECAUSE OF THE TIDES...WE ARE NOT AT LEAST I AM NOT EXPECTING ANY RAIN FROM RITA THAT WILL FLOOD THE CITY...RITA IS NOT OUR PROBLEMS ITS TEXAS NOW....
high pressure is moving east Pens..good analysis..how far it moves east and how much the weak trough erodes the western side of that high will tell us were she is going and how far north she will get.
88. BigM
stormtop, lefty, or anyone else who can help, from the predictions of landfall I feel like I'm a deer in headlights. I live in Richmond/Rosenberg, TX about an hour NE from Palacios (Matagorda) and an hour WNW from Galveston. If the models hold true and the storm hits in that area, what is the likelihood that it will turn and head our way once on land? im trying to see if it heads on a more westerly track, then we'll get some rain but it wont be too bad. but if it heads a more northerly direction, ill probably need to get outta dodge. your collective thoughts?
storm top glad your ok you know i love you brother but if the levees had not broken we on the ms coast by the waY we did took the brunt of katrina. i totally disagree with you about bush the majority of folks on ms. coast disagree with you. but i will agree you have the worst governor in the u.s. i got half a house left in laws lost everything my office is gone my wife has cancer who im home with we are sick and tired here in ms. being left out because of no and thier crooked state politicians who embezzeled money instead of using on levee problem taht they were warned for years. i do admire ray nagin. oh by the way landreu refused fed help before storm. i agree lets let politics drop but had to awnser from forgotten ms coast who demo. media fails to mention only get mentioned because robin roberts is from pass crist. you really need landreau skinned take care and its the same old saints lol.
Victoria is 120 miles down the coast from Houston -- south on Hwy. 59.
I'm glad you don't need to worry, All those poor people who evacuated to Texas are going to start feeling like they have bulleyes on thier butts
Hey ya-all: Just putting you on, don't have a clue But feel
much more relaxed this mornin than last night. If I were in Galveston,or Baytown and south I would be getting my stuff together,And out today.A mile of freeway at 40 foot interval
is 132 cars per mile. So 45N to Dallas holds about 65,000 in
2 lanes for 240 miles. Can you say a million cars. Better beat the rush! If I have to leave I'm staying till Thursday and sneak out the back roads of East Tx. Im 62 miles N of Galveston. To locate the center of the Storm make a right angle with your arms, Face into the wind and point you left
hand into the wind and your right will be pointing at the center of the storm. if over a long period of time you keep pointing in the same direction and the wind gets stronger, you'r in a heap of trouble.
Wombats,
My sis and son were in the FWB, FL area in Ivan. My sis thought her roof was going to go several times. She was scared poopless, listening to the joists groaning like that. She is a medical professional and could not leave in time to get out safely before Dennis. By the time she could leave, gas was in short supply. She was terrified since Dennis looked like a strong Cat 4 in the hours preceding landfall. They say there are no atheists in foxholes...well, let me tell you, I think my sis lost her atheism waiting to die in that hurricane. My son, being 20 and thinking he is invincible and that I taught him all he needs to know about riding out a hurricane safely ignored my pleas to leave. Fortunately, Dennis blinked. Hopefully, by the next major hurricane to hit that area, I will be moved down to SE Alabama to rpovide close shelter to all my family and friends. I plan to isntall a natural gas generator, have broadband and satelite brodband access to the internet, and tons of aerobeds so I can provide shelter to my friends and family and their pets...I should be far enough inland that only tornadic activity will be a problem...but still close enough that gas shortages won't be a problem for them...plus afterwards, unless the roads are totally wiped out, they can get home quickly to check on damage before looting begins. The best of both worlds...
Don't forget to put your predictions on my blog so we can keep score of those who know (lucky) and those who do not (unlucky)
95. BigM
hey vic, im prayin you guys get spared...used to go to victoria all the time when i lived in palacios...as it is im praying for my little pea by the sea (palacios) as it seems to be in the bullseye
Thanks Weatherguy, it sure looks to me that it may be faster that previously thought..?

Just my very very very uneducated guess, lol..
I have been in both Ivan and Dennis (in Pensacola) Ivan was far worse (as he did stay a long time)..
I hear you vivor i was lucky being on the west side of the storm i heard the east side of that storm was terrible.
The east side of Ivan was like being in the "pits of hell" if you will, lol....
SAINTHURRIFAN
I'm so sorry to hear of the loss of your business and the damage to your home. My prayers will be with you and your wife as she battle cancer. I am a cancer survivor and my husband is currently battling cancer of the larynx. I used to be a distric manager with stores from Jax FL to Hattiesburg, MS. I spent a lot of time in Guatier. I also have ex-inlaws living in MS. It is awful what you guys have suffered..and that you are being virtually ignored. The scenes out of MS remind me of the scens post Andrew. My thoughts and prayers are with you guys.
big m i'm in katy just north of richmond i think you may get a little wind and a lot of rain but you should be fine.. may lose power for a little while.. maybe just a day with no power not to bad..
WXGUY3 WATCH IT WITH THAT ANALYSIS OF THAT EASTWARD MOVING HIGH. YOU MAY CATCH THE WRATH OF GOD (STORMTOP) LOL.
103. BigM
thanks wombats...wife and kids were getting antsy and i didnt know if we should stay or head up north
BIG M I WOULD SAY YOU ARE IN THE LINE OF FIRE AND I WOULD START TO GET THINGS together and dont wait for the last minute take care of things today and find you some high ground..im afraid you guys will have to endure what we did for katrina...im looking for KATRINA TO BE A CAT 4 AND HITTING SOMEWHERE BETWEEN CORPUS AND GALVESTON FRIDAY NIGHT WITH WINDS OF 14O...IM HOPING IT DOESNT GET AS FAR NORTH AS GALVESTON BECAUSE YOU COULD HAVE ANOTHER SITUATION LIKE WE HAD DOWN HERE..I'LL PRAY FOR YOU GUYS...
My grandfather passed away right after Ivan hit. My sis came to the funeral. She had just gotten her electricity back on after over a week. I have a very mischeviouls streak and in the recieving line I told people to be nice to my sis...she had just gotten her power back on and taken her first shower in over a week. His funeral was in SE Alabama, so even the locals were picking up storm debris and understood what she had been through. Some family had to come in from Lafayette and had trouble gettign to Alabama because of the devastation between Mobile and Pensacola. It was a mess.
yeah but richmond is at least 50 to 60 miles from the gulf and this storm will probably hit 100 miles south of galveston the eye may actual pass over the richmond area but it would have been over land for a little while he will be fine..
WINDS UP TP 85
Hey folks just over the Kenedy cow county line is Corpus with abut 400,000 plus plus; we're pushing rita north!!!
I live in central Ms. took over a week to get power back at my house. Some of my family here and a little South (Hattisburg) STILL don't have power. Prepare for the worse, and if it doesn't happen...have a party, or better yet send the survival goodies to those that still need them in Ms., La.
CBS MIAMI: video of US1 washed out in Keys Mile Marker 75
Blobby wants to be a BIG hurrican SO bad - she just doesn't have the rest of what it takes. Of course you can't spell Katrina without Rita. Come on Blobby - let's see what you got

Im surprised know one has started calling this one KAT-RITA
looks like the track is west wasn't this expected?
wxguy3 check your mail!
Stormtop. SHHHH! you'll wake everyone! We can see your posts if they ar not in CAPS!! (Don't get excited that was C A P S) not CAT5Cat5Cat5.

Glad you are safe!
Hi All, Is it safe to assume that the FL panhandle is out of trouble? Unfortunately, I can't think of a "good" place for this storm to hit on the gulf coast. No matter where it hits, it's going to affect the Katrina evacuees:(
Ahh i can take it GetReal..LOL..I've seen old stormy for mos. now..I've seen the good and the bad predictions..LOL...Most of ya didnt see the bad ones..LOL..But right now he gets some respect for Katrina so we give him that one..LOL..
She is getting her act together. Check out RAMSDIS and look at the eyewall formation.

Link
survivor thank you and god bless you maybe they leave us out because we recovered from camille bigger and better and will from this one with out the whining complaining and fingerpointing thats the courage of south ms. and thank you again.
STORMTOP,

Had Bush stepped in immediately, people like you would have screamed "Federal abuse of state sovereignty!!!!", "Presidential showboating!!!!"and "Posse comitatus violation!!!! So please just stick with the weather here and take the politics elsewhere.
Bush sucks
123. wpb05
well i said early early this morning, when she started closing off her eye around 2:30 AM that she would be a cane at 11...I guess I just barely missed.....looks like we will be getting our first and last big rainband here in west palm soon
2ifbyc - Aren't you hypocritical.. LOL
125. wpb05
Michael:

don't know what radar youy are looking at, but she is slowly looking better and better
I really think we are in for it. So, for all of you who have gone through recent storms, I need some advise. I am gathering my hurricane supplies and am curious if I have forgotten something. Other than the essentials (cash, food, water, batteries), what items will come in handy? Is there something you forgot and wish you hadn't?

Also, I live 40 miles inland. Should I board my windows? I did not for Claudette (Cat1-2)and no problems. What about a Cat 3?

Any tips are greatly appreciated.
It jumped quite a bit in the last hour! I'm sure it was a hurricane all morning, just the NHC never caught it...anyway, here are my latest estimates:

Current - 23.8/81.0 - 982mb - 85mph
6 hrs - 24.0/81.8 - 969mb - 105mph Near Key West
12 hrs - 24.4/82.9 - 951mb - 115mph Near Dry Tortugas
24 hrs - 24.7/85.6 - 954mb - 110mph
36 hrs - 25.2/87.7 - 945mb - 115mph
48 hrs - 25.8/90.2 - 933mb - 145mph
60 hrs - 26.4/92.6 - 918mb - 165mph
72 hrs - 27.5/94.4 - 920mb - 160mph
90 hrs - 28.7/96.3 - 925mb - 145mph Landfall
96 hrs - 30.8/96.3 - 958mb - 90mph Inland
120 hrs - 34.4/95.9 - 985mb - 35mph Inland
Southern Lady, where are you locate? My son's grandparents and brother are in Stringer/Laurel area.
GetReal you have mail!!
I sincerely hope that some of you hoping to see a huge storm remember that many of us are directly in this thing's predicted path. I enjoy experiencing a good storm as much as anyone... but if this is greater than a weak 3, I may be enjoying this storm from pool float in my living room.
131. wpb05
Crazy......it was not probably a hurricane till slighlty after 6 AM this morning.....the eyewall finally started closing off at 2:30 this monring.....
I predict that Rita, being steered by Intelligent Design, will make a bee line Crawford Texas and achieve a never before seen Category 7.5 intesity as it jumps the Texas Coast to land squarly on top of the Bush ranch.
VicTex, freeze the water!!! We did and it was nice to use for cooling other stuff, plus it was cold also...It was nearly impossible to get ice for 3 days, so make all you can, especially in larger chunks, they melt slower.
got to go before lefty takes over this blog god bless those wh o are in path of storm. stormtop take care sorry you seem to always ignore my posts with a awnser thats ok lefty does it because if its not about amodel or a wobble or the gods of nhc he is not interested. and for those who get mad about some one mentioning STORM RELATED POLITICAL ISSUES well that tells me you dont live here. last time i checked this was afree country freedom of speech.
Headed for the Mexico/Texas border
Sir...I'm in Magee, but thanks to ST and Lefty, I left amd wemt to Pearl with all my goodies. It was a good thing too, my son is Handicapped and has seizures, can't take the heat, Mom got here elect. the next day...
Hairball- I'd go ahead and leave as soon as your responsibilities (job, etc.) allow you to. There's no point in staying, and even a grazing blow will make you uncomfortable.

The bright side is that you won't have to go far. The N side of Houston is far enough inland to protect you from the worst aspects of most hurricanes, save for a freak CAT5 or a rogue tornado.

For some reason I've decided that this thing will hit High Island and not bother the metro area too much. But on that track, Galveston (and your apartment) would take some wind and water.

If I were you, I'd take a long weekend, starting Wednesday.
My hubby is from Illinois, I'm from SE Alabama/NW Florida. He calls me his Steel Magnolia. He says he never understood that term till he met me. The southern lady has always been like a magnoia blossom in appearnace...delicate and dainty. But underneath all that femininity we have a steel backbone that will carry us through. Whether it is running a farm without our men folks to do the heavy labor after a war, or whether it is rebuilding a city after a hurricane. we always step up to the plate and do what has to be done. I hate the way Southern women are portrayed in Gone with the Wind...selfish and spoiled. But I do like Scarlett's way of dealing with disaster..."I'll think about that tomorrow!" In other words, let's get in there and do what we have to do and let tomorrow take care of itself.
139. gagal
weatherwannabe -- thanks for my laugh of the morning. Too funny!
PLEASE HELP!

Hello again from Seawall Blvd. in Galveston..

Dr. Masters or whoever,

I have reservations at a 2-story Holiday Inn in Seguin, Texas (just outside San Antonio off I-10). Is this a bad idea given the current track of the storm? I don't want to leave Galveston only to find myself in deeper sh**!!!

Should I be headed to Dallas instead? I just don't know what to do! It's probably too late to get a hotel room in Dallas.
wxguy03 nothing came across, send again if possible.
The problem with anything hitting down here in south TX, is if I go inland, I'm watching for tornados...and if I stay at my house, I'm...well, sure to get soggy (the problem with living on "Ocean Drive").
I hate trying to decide which is worse. :-/
Southern Lady,
Glad to hear that somebody listens to us 'doom and gloomers'! Glad you guys are safe. I hear you about the handicapped son. My hubby has been in cncer treatment for the last three mnths...with radiation in his throat causing thrid degree burns. We had terrible storms right after he started treatmetn and the power went out. He had medical equipemtn to help him breathe with only a 2 hour battery backup. The power was out for two days. We had to go stay in a hotel so he could breathe...and he absolutely could not handle the heat with those 3rd degree radiation burns in his throat. Every breath without AC was like fire going down his airway. So gald to hear that you are OK.
ok i will sorry..computer at work stinks..lol..i will in a few minutes..

weatherwannabe:
i admire the way you handled the playground early this morning, everyone else was in the dark. you were able to diffuse with great skill a worsening situation. kudos.
further, to encourage rather than shut down totally, all of you who understand weather and this site could participate just a little harder
and give the kids that want to know and don't know how
a little easy research to do for all here. what's a small bit of info search going to do? generate learning.
146. crow
I am no weather expert, BUT, Having seen 9 of these in my lifetime, I think RITA will gain substantial force , soon after entering the Gulf of Mexico. It has been extremely warm for Sept in the South. Water temps also.

This is a BIG!

TEX and LA....beware.

JMO
Yep SirVivor, I've had the leather gloves on for over 2 weeks! I'm single so no man around to help...I'm not picking up another dang limb until hurricane season is over!!!hehe

I've got to have a new roof and carport though...
149. wpb05
she will max out as a 3....the water temps have peaked for the year and part of the gulf is still cooler than the area Rita is over now.......
i agree wannabee let RITA pay george a visit at his ranch..i would love to see that happen...
Seguin is fine no matter where the storm eventually goes. SA and Central Texas will get some thunderstorms from a South Texas landfall but it is nothing you as a Texan have never seen before. Yes there might be a tornado but this is Texas there are always tornadoes so I'd say no big deal.
Reporting blatant semi-political bashing posts...
153. wpb05
80 mph surface wind in the NW quad using the 90%
Blue Watch you're on Ocean dr in CC? I'm off Yorktown in FB. Trying to decide what to do.
VicTex,
definately ice, ice, ice. Hand sanitizer, those little battery power fans are great with no power and living in a boarded up cave.
Southern Lady,
Cleaning up after a hurricane during the height of hurricane season is sort of like making the bed when you have the flu. Why bother when it is just going to be a mess again in a little while?

Hope you have better luck getting the roof repaired than NW FL has had post Ivan. Some of thos folks still have 'blue roofs' from the FEMA tarps...most of which have been replaced by tarps bought at Walmart or even old billboard vinyl. I saw where one guy had an old billboard vinyl advertising KISS in concert on his roof. Talk about surreal. My son's next door neighbor just got thier Ivan damaged roof repaired the day before Dennis came through. My sister's neighbor paid $10k for a new roof that would have cost $5k two years ago. It is crazy.
Key West NEXRAD just registered a 99 knot wind speed. She is getting stronger
You are right about that Survivor.. Alot of our neighbors still have blue roofs...
cctex -

yup, in corpus. I have friends in SA, but like i said, tornados. i can't really leave until Thursday anyway (work), so i'll probably just rough it out unless it looks like it's going to be REALLY bad.
same cell now reported at 116 knots. It is cell X4 on the Key West NEXRAD

Link
It is the cell in the NW Eyewall
For those interested, We got through both Francis and Jeanne with a power inverter. Lot cheaper than a generator and it's amazing how much better life without AC is with a fan. We were without power 8 days for both storms and the real concern after basics were taken care of was heat. You can run a inverter off your car battery, just don't let it go dead. This year I bought an extra battery so I won't have to hook directly to car, hopefully I wont have to use my set up at all.
When do the latest models update?
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Visit WhiteWabit's City/State Blog
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Feel Free To List Your Locale (or general area for the shy).

Lurkers & Newbies, Don't be a Stranger...We Love to hear From First Time Posters!
PS VicTex,

Next couple nights plan dinner using the most expensive thing in your freezer 1st. Had to throw out everything twice last year, Just inconvience but gets expensive.

Blue roofs - My Aunt and Uncle finally gor thier new mobile home 2 months ago. Charlie totaled the last one and they are in Kissimmee
Key West will get worse than a Cat 1 - they will get hit by a strengthening strong cat 2 or weak cat 3 and as Katrina showed in Florida even a cat 1 can do a lot of damage if it is intensifying.
168. wpb05
key west will get a weak to mid Cat. 2 max.....
Using 90% model and NEXRAD data she already has winds over 100 knots.
wpb05. looks like a decent squall heading up towards you. It's still south of me a little. It's almost here. I will be curious what the winds jump up to.
172. wpb05
weather:

is it sustained or a gust...i am assuming a gust, and that would be in accordance with opst data
Even at 80% Rita would be a strong cat 2 based on radar data
Well I supposed it's almost time to break out the secret dry ice pellets.
Just curious. I've asked a similar question before but got no response. This time though, it's even worse.

My question is, how usual is it for 5 hurricanes to be blowing in the western hemisphere at the same time? looking at very long range radar is really quite an impressive sight right now.

What is the record for most hurricanes at one time?
the keys will get thers but the real devastation will come on her second landfall friday night in texas....
177. wpb05
yep, waiting for our first and probably last significant line to get here

all my radas, except for miami, have gone out lately...so hard to gauge its exact location
wpb05, same area of eye wall is continually reported in excess of 95 knot winds. I'd say these are sustained.
that southern eyewall...is getting a lil too close to cuba...may have some effect in the next few hours...what are your opinions on this?..
It's in Boynton right now. Almost to me.
181. BigM
Michael,

where did you get that information from?
183. wpb05
Cuba will have no effect on the strength of this storm
Speaking of using the stuff in your freezer, after Opal we lost power long enough to lose all our frozen goods. We were on the same grid as the hospital, so power came up relatively quickly for us...but not quickly enough to save all the trout in the freezer that my husband had caught all summer. We 'invited' all our friends and neighbors over for a fish fry. I had two coleman stoves going at the time frying up all that fish...we told everyone that the fish fry ws free...if they helped us with our downed trees. Folks showed up with their chain saws and leather gloves and within hours, we had three trees cut up and stacked for removal...and I had plenty of fried trout and lukewarm sodas and beer to go around.
Some hurricane tips:

Fill empty 2L bottles with water & put them in the freezer. This keeps your freezer colder longer and will become drinking water when they melt.

Fill up every container you can with fresh water and put them in the fridge, etc.

If you have an ice-maker empty it as often as it fulls into ice chests. Use your home's ice-making capability to the fullest until you lose power.

Fill your tub and any other basins that you have with clean fresh water.

Board your windows. DO NOT USE TAPE!

Put your precious photos and documents into a Ziploc bag and lock that bag in your dishwasher. It keeps water in, it will keep water out if your house floods.

Carry as much furniture as possible to your second floor (if you have one) this way you will not lose your furniture in the event of (minor) flooding.

Put your outdoor furniture, garbage cans, anything loose in your garage or a utility room. Anything outside will turn into a missile.

Fun tip: you can barbecue in your fireplace after you lose power! I've done it a few times.

If you're far enough inland (elevation 30ft./20 miles inland for a CAT3) and you want to ride it out:

Stock up on camping/barbecue supplies. Think about it.

But why gamble? Tornadoes happen. Trees fall. 60 miles inland is as far as you should need to go to avoid catastrophic damage. That is US 290 - North Loop 610 in the Houston area.
So I'm guessing that high pressure is really strong and stable?
MMmmm. Trout.
188. BigM
is it safe to say the counties/areas in this map are in the most danger (im in fort bend county)?

http://www.lib.utexas.edu:8080/search/txdot/map16.html
i agree michael a cat 4 sometime friday night...galveston needs to start taking action now...
190. wpb05
lol sub....smell good in that band???lol
so if the eyewall brushes the mountainest coast of cuba..there will be no affect...how so?
192. wpb05
the eyewall is not that close to Cuba, that's how.....it is moving west, and it is not close enough to Cuba
Canebear- Are you in Heritage Park? That's technically just outside the Cat5 evacuation zone. I know during Allison the older neighborhoods had a bunch of street flooding, but nothing in homes. If your house is newer (Hardie plank siding, e.g.), you should be fine, although there could be some wind damage, and tornados spawned can show up in odd places. I grew up in the area - was an infant during Carla, which took the roof off my family's house in Pasadena. Lots of development and subsidence since then, but my guess would be that access might be blocked by high water - otherwise damage would be limited. I think I'm going to stay put as long as she's Category 3 or less...
Sorry wpb05. I should have said that was in response to sirvivor's post. But now that you mention it.... It does seem strange in here.
Hey Wpb05, I am in Lake Worth, look toward the west, it is black, we are getting a nasty band, looks clear towards the airport, (that's where you are right?)
God help you all...I just hope this one doesn't do the destruction as far inland as Katrina did in Ms.
Good Afternoon Subtropic!
199. wpb05
yep...i am 1 mile sout of the airport.....winds picking up here but no rain yet
Looking at the Schooner Wharf webcam in Key West... it doesn't look that bad. I've seen people walking around untroubled.

A few pieces of garbage blowing in the wind and a boat bobbing in the harbor, but that's about it.

Webcam
Hi palmbeacher.
We are in for a good one, Wind is really kicking. The sky looks really amazing.
yes i agree michael you guys are going to be under the gun..the only advice i can give you is take everything out your freezer if you have to evacuate...it stinks worse then a dead body cleaning a freezer over a 2 week period...i had to throw all the stuff away in mind and the smell is atrocious....i feel for you guys mike..i hope she keeps picking up speed and doesnt have enough time to strengten to cat 4....
subtropic, go look at the sky, I am at the Fountains CC. I don't know where you are in LW. but look south west. Rain is really coming down now.
205. wpb05
i can see the black approaching out my window right now...wow
Odd. The wind seems to less than it was before it started raining. Not much of a "squall" if you ask me.
Well i got out of LA for Katrina and now i am in Houston for Rita. It dose look as if it will land west of us, but we still have a few days to see how things go. Highway patrol are now on 12hr shifts. I am not worried about this one, since the only thing i have to lose right now is my life. Everything else is gone. We all need to keep an eye on this storm.
For those who want to take a break from this soap opera of a blog, I recommend the following link. Awesome footage of the storm and the surge. Live streaming video
.
.

.
www.cbs4.com
www.cbs4.com
sub, the wind is howling here!
Really? I couldn't get a good kite going right now where I am.
Where are you, East or West?
Morning all... Hmmm, where are all those people that were having a screaming fit last evening when the NHC refused to upgrade Rita to a cane...? I see Rita just barely made it to a cane this morning as she came sliding by quite far south of Key West. Could call on the part of NHC. Have there even been any hurricane force winds reported in the Keys yet? Looks like the Keys event will be begin to fade shortly.
Gulf water temps appear to be at 85 degrees, which in the past has supported catagory 4 hurricanes (opal, ivan, and isabel in the atlantic). Also, rita has alot of circulation over cuba now, which is inhibiting it's growth, i see no reason why rita can't reach cat 4 in the gulf of mexico. If forward speed continues at 15mph, upwelling of cooler waters and cooling of surface waters by rita should not inhibit it's power by much. I don't understand why they are saying that the storm is unlikely to reach cat 4.
East of military north of hypoluxo. Now I am getting some gusts, but just back up to what it was before it started raining. Looks like you got the good stuff palmbeacher.
Pinko commie radar in Havana:

Cohibas and Ronrico
oh, made it back in time, its pouring here...just one of those kind of days...at least Im not further south...
The Keys were cut off an hour and a half ago in the face of a strengthening hurricane. People may have failed to evacuate based on the TS designation. How do you figure the NHC deserves a pat on the back for that?
218. wpb05
pouring here now...sideways
I live on Hypoluxo just west of 95, need rain on my lawn!! I am currently west of Jog north of Lantana, and we are getting nasty weather.
NHC just reported that Rita is near or already at Cat 2 intensity.
It's picking up here. One decent cell moving over me now. You will have that rain you need!! I see my brilliant neighbor put her trash out last night. She is east of me. Can you guess where her trash is now?
222. wpb05
wow...better than anything we had with katrina here
I have 4 Key West evacuees in my house now.
wannabe - It's like I said last evening - Darwinism at its best! The NWS issued repeated mandatory evacuation warnings for the last 24 to 48 hours -- and the NHC predicted a low end hurricane passing the Keys. It doesn't get much clearer than that! Yes - there's a road with water over it in the Keys - but who the heck would be out driving on US 1 at this point anyway?! I'd be having a drink on Duval instead.
subtropic if I were to guess, her trash is now at your door!?
Wannabe-So let me get this right, you wanted the NHC to report Rita a hurricane when it wasn't?
palmbeacher,

how did you rate that, Having a hurricane party?
I agree Wpb05
They do it all the time. It's called judgement. Which was seriously lacking at the NHC last night.
Orion, unfortunate for me, I am at work, No Party for Here
231. wpb05
gust registered at 55 at my place.......in the peak of that cell...now about 30 mph, gusts to 40
Palmbeacher,

Let me get this right, your at work. But thier are people at your house (hope you know them otherwise all the beer will be gone) (LOL)
wpb05, still getting it here, doesn't seem to be letting up
I'd say it is up to 85 knots (100 mph) now which would be a Category 2.

As for the "unlikely to reach Cat 4" comment, I think it will go over that heat bubble and become a Category 5 monster!
wow. cool. Around 40 was the max here. Oh well, Maybe it will pick up again and get rid of my neighbor's trash from my yard.
The purpoe of the NHC is to give factualinformation and warnings, they did both.
Rainbands coming in now here in West Palm Beach. Just had a brief power outage. Are we now blocked from saving the animated gif radar loops on Wunderground? I used to be able to do that. Sure would be nice to save the Key West loop.
hello fellow corpus christians...gas was only 2.55 last night...fixing to fill the tanks and stock the water up.
corpus hasn't has a bad cane since Celia in 1970....hopefully Rita will hit the pastures and not the city. I am taking no chances with 4 kids...leaving for Austin in a few days.
living near ocean drive makes me nervous in a house built in 1937.
stormtop..thanks for the reminder about the spoiled food...coming home to that stink would be awful.
glad to know also that you weathered the storm in NO..would love to have a first hand account of what you went through.
239. wpb05
where did NHC just report it is at Cat. 2?? I mean its obvious it is close, but where do you see that?? recon doesn't even indicate anything near cat 2
How do you guys rate??? I got just enough to filthy up my front yard and now nothing. I feel like a brides maid. And I am not even a chic.
sebastianjer, when the NHC categorized Rita this AM it did not have wind data to support the change in classification. They admitted such in the 9:15 advisory. They frequently make estimates based on satellite and radar data. Like I said last night, you don't ned a DNA test to know a wolf is stalking your sheep.

I don't see anything on Cat 2 either... Vortex doesn't support it. Eyewall is open to the north and west. There's a good band trying to wrap around now, but it's not there yet.
Orion, It is 2 adults and 2 kids (7 and 3) my house is tore upside down!
244. wpb05
it will not be a cat 5..it is possible it will not be a cat 4...what heat buble are you talking about?? it would have to take katrinas path to encounter the current.....it DOES NOT have 85 kt surface winds right now....
I'm famous for my wild hurricane parties..even though I've never thrown one, or even been to one. Amazing how rumors get started, isn't it? I always thought that heavy drinking in an energency when you need to have your wits about you is about as stupid as you can get. True Darwinian theory at work....survival of the fittest. OTOH, I do believe in being prepared and I always cook a HUGE pot of cajun dirty rice, or red beans and rice, or some such that I can feed people who take refuge with me, or stranded neighbors, or whoever needs a good meal. And I always have plenty of coleman stoves and lanterns, etc. BUT, that said, I would never try to ride out any storm higher than a CAT 3. PERIOD. And I would not ride out anything stronger than a CAT 1 unless I had a good strong home to protect me and mine.
LOL Subtropic...

Does anyone know when the new forecast models come out?
247. MJH
Pressure is getting higher in central gulf and texas. Pressure is dropping from a trof coming into alabama and mississippi.

How is that storm going to push through that very high pressure filling into the central gulf and texas.

And what is giong to keep it from being pulled into lower pressure from the panhandle to biloxi.
palmbeacher, we took in a 2 child family for Andrew (they would have been safer at home as it turned out). That was worse than the storm!!!
249. wpb05
new models are out at 1:30, incorporating the new upper air data from the NOAA plane early this morning
250. BigM
Michael/Stormtop

Is this map a pretty good track of where the storm will land and subsequently travel inland?

Link
251. wpb05
it is not going to push through the high...it is forecast to follow the periphery of it, as these storms do
Thanks WPB
subtropic, you are not far from me, can I send them to your house?
cat 2 statement came from NHC forecaster interviewd on Miami CBS station. It was based on pressure readings and contact with hurricane hunters.
corpuswatch - have fun in austin! i filled up my taknk yesterday...but found out today work won't let me leave unless there's a mandatory evac. Nice, huh?

Current - 23.8/81.0 - 982mb - 85mph
6 hrs - 24.0/81.8 - 969mb - 105mph Near Key West
12 hrs - 24.4/82.9 - 951mb - 115mph Near Dry Tortugas
24 hrs - 24.7/85.6 - 954mb - 110mph
36 hrs - 25.2/87.7 - 945mb - 115mph
48 hrs - 25.8/90.2 - 933mb - 145mph
60 hrs - 26.4/92.6 - 918mb - 165mph
72 hrs - 27.5/94.4 - 920mb - 160mph
90 hrs - 28.7/96.3 - 925mb - 145mph Landfall
96 hrs - 30.8/96.3 - 958mb - 90mph Inland
120 hrs - 34.4/95.9 - 985mb - 35mph Inland

anyone else see this as a poss? eyewall is still not defined but is having trouble over cuba.
257. wpb05
i would pay anything to get a trough to fdive down here and get rid of this frickin heat already
Palmbeacher,

OIC, and just yanking your thanks. Good for you letting people ride out the storm in yer house
MJH I am wondering the same thing.... Can anyone explain??
Corpus,
Are you kidding? I'd much rather ride out a storm in a house built in the '30s than in one buit this year! Those board and bat construction homes are little more than mobile homes attached to a foundation. My house is 115 years old. God only knows what all it has survived...and it is still as solid today as the day it was built...solid oak floors, walls and ceilings. Most homes built in the 30s were built in the bungalow style....many using kits sold by Sears. If it is still standing and in good shape, it was well built and is probably safer than anything built in the last decade (with the exception of brick homes or some of the 'hurrican'e proof' homes bult with steel isntead of lumber and concrete.)
I have to go back to work, but enjoyed chat, anyone that stayed in the Keys did so because they chose to, not because of the NHC. If you think otherwise then you don't give most people credit for having common sense. Without DNA test a doctor tells you a wolf is coming an you stay, then it's on you. It's not like the NHC said hey folks, it's only a tropical storm you don't have anything to worry about. They and other authorities said, hey a wolf is coming you better get the he.. out of there.
262. wpb05
000
URNT12 KNHC 201640Z
VORTEX DATA MESSAGE
A. 20/1601Z
B. 23 DEG 49 MIN N
81 DEG 10 MIN W
C. NA
D. NA
E. NA
F. 027 DEG 83 KT
G. 307 DEG 43 NM
H. 979 MB
I. 14 C/ 2429 M
J. 20 C/ 2446 M
K. 13 C/ NA
L. OPEN N
M. C50
N. 12345/NA
O. 1/1 NM
P. NOAA3 1118A RITA OB 05
MAX FL WIND 83 KT NW QUAD 1554Z
thanks corpus watch if you send me your email i can send you a few picks of the winds,damage and the high water that was in my neighborhood...
264. wpb05
still 85-90 mph winds.......possible a cat 2 exists..sincethis was the NW quad..pressure down 1 mb again
265. wpb05
50 mile wile eye...open to the north...cat. 2 at 2 PM
i hav updated my blog
I'm gonna get out of here. Looks like the WU server is getting slammed pretty good and there are people in need of info more than I. Be safe all. I'll check you later. palmbeacher... stay dry!
talk later subtropic, I'll send my guests to your house!!LOL
the eyewall is realy wrapping around - Rita is getting TIGHT
hey yall,


wow wp we finally got a cane huh
looks like outflow to the south is finally getting established. Starting to become round, which will let the eye wall complete.
Lefty,

Where ya been? Sleeping in? Good to see ya.
yes big m i would say that was pretty accurate from the data i have right now...
Visible eye formation on all 3 sats - visible, IR and WV
stormtop...need your email address...would be glad to get your mail and pics.

blue....the boss ought to be slapped for not letting people go when they want...he doesn't know for sure how long it takes to get up interstate 37...unless you are going south to the valley and even then..the roads are not as good that way.
SIR...i went through hurricane celia...i am taking no chances...kids are small and husband is recovering from stroke. more stress we don't need.
276. wpb05
hey lefty....yep i guess at 9'30 this morning...i was pretty close saying 11......vortex starting to indicate we have a Cat. 2 now
yeah well was up till 6am so i am up now lol
yeah wp
SirVivor,

Been to a hurricane party once in my life, we snuck past the police roadblocks back to a friend's house that lived 5 miles off the beach (this was in NC). With a Cat2 coming onshore we started to drink with loud music (about suprised the cops didn't see us or hear us). The rain starting coming down and the wind picked up. We decided to tie a rope to his flagpole, put on a pair of skis and go wind skiing, it was fun till the wind ripped this one girl's shirt off (i would add a few comments but not here) then we started getting a little scared. We decided it was time to come in.. then the wind really picked up and the house started creakin about the time we ran out of booze (the power was out long before the party started).

Needless to say its not a thing I like to repeat..

I knew Rita wouldn't like Cuba, seems to be tearing the south side up and wrapping drier air around the east side, even though the eyewall is stronger on the south right now...it may even scoot her a .1 -.5 degrees north from the way the radar is looking, but I doubt it will affect its longterm forecast, just bring it closer to Key West unfortunately....
Latest 12Z GFS out...Link... Alittle harder turn north..near Houston again...
I hear you Corpus. In that case, I don't blame you. Get to safety and hunker down. You know the drill, get out early before the gas dries up and the rodas get too clogged. Stay safe. All the same, I'll bet your house fares well in the storm....but it is best to get your family to safety. Your hubby doens't need the stress, nor do you and the kids.
283. crow
lefty 420

I am leaving for LA area on border and gettin a Bro out. Borrowed a laptop. Stay busy BRO!

need Ya
More model stuff...Link..Awaiting the rest of the 12Z models...
streaming video out of miami love coverage of keywest


Link
Orion,
We all do things when we are young and think we are invincable taht we are amazed that we lived to tell about. It is part of learning. Fortunately, most of us survive our own stupidity and learn from it. It's the ones who don't learn from it that scare you! LOL! I'm not saying you are or were stupid...please don't take offense...just trying to say that getting drunk when you need your wits about you is not smart. Glad you survived your hurricane party of your youth and are here to laugh about it in hindsight.
Well Gang,
I gotta run for now. Got a ton of things to do before I run out of energy. Which doesn't take long when yu have lupus. LOL! Stay safe, guys, and if you need to evacuate, get out early.
Miami CBS still saying just a Cat 1 per recon flights...
289. wpb05
pressure down to 978.......winds in NE quad at the surface 86 mph
Pressure just reoprted by Norquist at 978 - pressure is still falling
Norquist thinks it will be cat 2 when she passes Key West
Yeah - still Cat 1... Might have a chance of making Cat 2 just as the eye starts moving away from Key West. Then it's all out to the fishes for a few days.
SirVivor,

I know that lesson very well, if not rest assure we would not be having this conversation. I should been dead from my own stupidity many times over. Let's just say that hurricane party was the safest of my youthful stupidity.

Big hint, They did cystal balls for each senior in high school (ie what would they be doing in 20 years). Mine was I would become the first person to build a homemade nuclear device without using radioactive material.
wannabee i wouldnt be surprised to see the pressure at 920mb when it hits the upper texas coast on friday night....this is growing in size and intensity...this could be katrina all over again for texas...
STORMTOP do you think the gulf heat potential is capable of sustaining a Cat 5?
looking at the radar...Link..northern eyewall still open..key west getting lucky again...
297. wpb05
she is starting to wrap around now and getting her act together pretty good
A very well defined eye is now visible on the sat.
cat2 per cbs
100 mph cat 2 cbs4.com
301. wpb05
cat. 2...100 mph winds now
that was quick - 3 hours from TS to Cat 2
wannabee i think it has the potential of a cat 5 but i think it all depends on how fast RITA moves as she enters the gulf..i would think RITA would be more of a strong cat 4 with winds at 145mph.....
wp, couple more hours befor she [asses the keys i might still get that cat 3 lol
Reckon' Bush will be a bit more responsive when Rita comes into his own state?
At this rate of intensification she could be cat 3 in less than 1.5 hours
307. wpb05
yes lefty you just might...if she can wrap around
308. wpb05
i think the impressive part is she still looks somehwat unorgazied, and she still has managed to hit cat. 2
im with you on that raindancer..he will be there lickity split...watch the difference..
wp could u imagine how strong she would have been if she had got her core togetehr yesterday

man that grotto is good
I beleive my forecast for stong strengthening cat 2 or weak cat 3 will be correct.
Masters has a new update...
000
WTNT63 KNHC 201711
TCUAT3
HURRICANE RITA TROPICAL CYCLONE UPDATE
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
115 PM EDT TUE SEP 20 2005

DATA FROM A NOAA PLANE INDICATE THAT RITA HAS REACHED 100 MH WINDS
AND IS NOW A CATEGORY TWO HURRICANE ON THE SAFFIR/SIMPSON HURRICANE
SCALE. THIS WILL BE REFLECTED IN A SPECIAL ADVISORY AT 2 PM EDT.

FORECASTER AVILA
wp, visible sat is more imoressive than radar sig.
Dr. masters has a new thread...
316. wpb05
she could have closed that eye 24 hours ago..if that had happened, oh boy
not good at all for the texas coast to hear that this early...now you have to wonder will this take in as much area as katrina did...this could really be devastating for texas...galveston i would not stay to much longer...
318. BigM
these are words i dont want to hear from lefty, wp, storm....
StormTop.....too much latent heat removed from the gulf from Katrina........too late in the year........cold front (trough) coming down.......will produce some shear.......cat. 2/weak 3 at the best....along the lines of Alicia at the worst.....

damn doomsday sayers......
Galv./Houston area is much better prepared for a large storm....even with all the refugees...............yes, refugees.........PC be damned.......even a major cat. 3 strike would be nothing like NOLA.....
STORMTOP.....ever been through a storm in Texas before?
I've resigned myself to the fact we're gonna get blown off the face of the earth after reading y'alls posts..............lolol........hopefully I'll be in the stands at Kyle Field Saturday to cheer on the Ags...........if not.......it's just a hurricane............lololol
323. wjdow
i spoke with a galveston army corps of engineers rep yesterday - their projection is that if katrina had hit galveston, the island would have been under 16 feet of water. i asked about potential flooding because my in-laws are there. i am leaving tonight from san antonio to help them pack & leave tomorrow