By: cyclonekid , 2:26 PM GMT on February 13, 2011
Figure 1: The Joint Typhoon Warning Center's latest image on Bingiza.
Tropical Cyclone Bingiza, Category 3 tropical cyclone, is heading straight for Madagascar. With winds estimated to be around 115mph, Bingiza could be a disaster for the country. Some strengthening is possible before its landfall as conditions are now extremely favorable for strengthening.
The tropical history of Bingiza is very interesting. Bingiza developed out of a tropical disturbance that MFR designated as Tropical Disturbance 05. 05 later became a tropical depression. The JTWC was closely monitoring this system closely by issuing a Tropical Cyclone Formation Alert about 24 hours before genesis. The next day, the JTWC started issuing advisories on Tropical Cyclone Bingiza. Bingiza, at the time, was moving quasi-stationary and wasn't in a favorable environment for strengthening, so Bingiza started to weaken. The weakening phase was brief and the environment quickly became favorable for rapid intensification. Bingiza quickly intensified from a 50mph to a tropical storm to a 90mph cyclone in less than a 12 hour period. The Joint Typhoon Warning Center and the MFR reported that rapid strengthening was taking place because an eye was becoming visible. Bingiza turned to the west and is now picking up speed heading for the island of Madagascar.
Bingiza could strengthen as it nears the island as a potent tropical cyclone. I suspect that Bingiza may strengthen before landfall, but I don't expect a Category 4 tropical cyclone out of this.
The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.
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