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Tropical Storm Arlene hits Mexico

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 2:44 PM GMT on June 30, 2011

Tropical Storm Arlene made landfall on the northeast coast of Mexico south of Tampico at 5am EDT this morning as an intensifying tropical storm with 65 mph winds. Wind gusts as high as 46 mph were recorded in Tampico last night, and intermittent heavy rain and winds gusting up to 34 mph have affected Brownsville, Texas today. The Brownsville Airport picked up 1.31" of rain as of 10am EDT, and Arlene has dropped rainfall amounts of 1 - 2 inches over extreme South Texas so far, according to radar-estimates of rainfall from the Brownsville radar. As Arlene pushes inland today, heavy rainfall amounts of 4 - 8 inches are likely over portions of Mexico, which will probably cause several million dollars in flooding damage. However, Arlene's rains are likely to provide a benefit to agriculture in the tens of millions of dollars, since the region of Mexico affected is experiencing their worst drought in over 50 years. It's fortunate that Arlene ran out of room in the Gulf of Mexico when it did; microwave satellite images of the storm at landfall show that Arlene was well on its way to establishing a complete eyewall, and would have likely become a hurricane if it had had another twelve hours over water.


Figure 1. Tropical Storm Arlene at landfall: 4:45am EDT June 20, 2011. Image credit: NASA/GSFC.


Figure 2. Rainfall amounts from Tropical Storm Arlene as estimated by the Brownsville, Texas radar. The radar is not able to see far enough to the south to capture the main rain areas from Arlene.

No additional action expected in the Atlantic over the coming week
There are no other areas of concern in the Atlantic today, and none of the computer models is predicting tropical cyclone formation in the Atlantic over the coming seven days. We've gotten our first storm of the season a bit on the early side; the typical first storm does not occur until July 9 in the Atlantic. High wind shear of 20 - 50 knots rules the Caribbean and the surrounding waters that tend to breed early season storms, which will make formation of an early July storm difficult.

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

Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


In the Pacific...

- Adrian
- Beatriz
- Calvin


it would be awesome if the 'H' storm was Hobbes.

NEW BLOG
Quoting bohonkweatherman:
OTHERWISE...SOUTH CENTRAL TEXAS WILL BE UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF
MID/UPPER RIDGING THROUGH THE FORECAST PERIOD. THE CURRENT RIDGE
SPREAD ACROSS THE SOUTHERN U.S. WILL GRADUALLY SHIFT EASTWARD OVER
THE WEEKEND. HOWEVER...A SECOND RIDGE WILL BEGIN TO DEVELOP ACROSS
THE DESERT STATES AND EXPAND WESTWARD EARLY NEXT WEEK. THE QUICK
REPLACEMENT OF THE FIRST RIDGE WILL LEAVE NO OPPORTUNITY FOR A
DISCERNIBLE PATTERN CHANGE. LITTLE DAY TO DAY VARIATION OF
TEMPERATURES IS EXPECTED...WITH HOT AFTERNOONS AND MILD NIGHTS.
SINCE WE WILL BE ON THE SOUTHERN PERIPHERY OF THE RIDGES THERE IS
THE POTENTIAL FOR SEA-BREEZE/DIURNAL HEATING SHOWERS AND
THUNDERSTORMS TO DEVELOP ACROSS THE COASTAL PLAINS DURING THE LATE
AFTERNOON AND EVENING HOURS. HOWEVER...CHANCES AND COVERAGE ARE
LOW SO HAVE GONE WITH 10 POPS AT BEST.

What is strange about this drought is that the Coastal areas of Texas usually have sea-breeze showers, this past year there have been very few of those I guess that is due to High pressure also.



I know the feeling. This drought has been brutal in Austin. But to answer your question, the strength of the high pressure just to the north of us is so strong and dominant, that it is capping even the sea breeze storms that you talk about.