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Severe Weather Potential Thursday Night

October 1st, 2014 at 8:25 am by under Weather

spc

This is the latest Categorical Outlook map for severe weather from the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, OK.  They show the KXAN viewing area inside of the tail end of the yellow “slight risk” area for severe weather.  This means the potential for storms including gusty winds large hail, and heavy downpours will be around Thursday night.  Here is the latest write-up from the National Weather service:

SPC AC 010424
DAY 2 CONVECTIVE OUTLOOK  
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
1124 PM CDT TUE SEP 30 2014

   VALID 021200Z - 031200Z

   ...THERE IS A SLGT RISK OF SVR TSTMS FROM THE MIDWEST TO CNTRL TX...

   ...SUMMARY...
   BAND OF THUNDERSTORMS SHOULD FORM ALONG COLD FRONT AS IT PROGRESSES
   ACROSS THE PLAINS INTO THE MISSISSIPPI VALLEY.  DAMAGING WIND GUSTS
   ARE THE PRIMARY SEVERE THREAT WITH THE STRONGEST STORMS.

   ...MIDWEST TO CNTRL TX...

   LOW LATITUDE SHORT-WAVE TROUGH WILL EJECT ACROSS THE SRN
   ROCKIES/HIGH PLAINS EARLY IN THE PERIOD BEFORE EJECTING RAPIDLY NEWD
   INTO THE LOWER OH VALLEY AFTER MIDNIGHT.  PRIMARY FEATURE
   RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS RAPID EJECTION IS AN INTENSIFYING SPEED MAX
   THAT WILL DIG INTO THE CNTRL PLAINS BY 03/12Z.  THIS SECONDARY
   FEATURE SHOULD AID DEEPENING CYCLONE/SHARPENING FRONTAL BOUNDARY
   OVER THE UPPER GREAT LAKES LATE.

   ALTHOUGH FRONTAL INTENSIFICATION IS NOT EXPECTED UNTIL LATE IN THE
   PERIOD...CONVECTION IS EXPECTED TO DEVELOP ALONG PROGRESSIVE
   BOUNDARY BEGINNING FAIRLY EARLY IN THE PERIOD.  LATEST MODEL
   GUIDANCE SUGGEST AMPLE BOUNDARY LAYER MOISTURE WILL ADVANCE AS FAR
   NORTH AS NRN IL BY LATE AFTERNOON WITH PW VALUES AOA 1.5 INCHES. 
   WHAT LITTLE CINH IS OBSERVED AT 12Z AHEAD OF THE FRONT WILL DIMINISH
   BY 17-18Z SUCH THAT THUNDERSTORMS SHOULD READILY DEVELOP ALONG WIND
   SHIFT ACROSS ERN KS/OK.  THIS ACTIVITY SHOULD MATURE INTO A
   EXTENSIVE SQUALL LINE STRETCHING FROM THE MID MS VALLEY...SWWD INTO
   NERN TX BY LATE AFTERNOON.  GREATEST BUOYANCY IS EXPECTED TO RESIDE
   FROM THE OZARK PLATEAU SWWD INTO TX AND HAIL IS MOST LIKELY ALONG
   THIS PORTION OF THE SQUALL LINE.  MEAN SWLY WIND WILL BE ON THE
   ORDER OF 30-35KT...MORE THAN ADEQUATE FOR PROGRESSIVE SQUALL LINE
   THAT SHOULD ADVANCE TOWARD THE MS RIVER DURING THE EVENING HOURS. 
   WHILE DEEP LAYER SHEAR IS MORE THAN ADEQUATE FOR DEEP
   ROTATION...STORM MODE FAVORS LINEAR DEVELOPMENT AND DAMAGING WINDS
   ARE THE PRIMARY SEVERE THREAT.

Also dont forget to follow along with the storms 24/7 with our Interactive Radar!


The Butterfly Effect

September 26th, 2014 at 9:43 pm by under Weather

Sorry Ashton fans, we’re not talking about the movie.  Rather, an event that had NWS members scratching their heads.   Meteorological minds were bending to figure out what could possibly be the cause of a blue “blob” that was showing up on their St. Louis radar.  Eventually, they figured it out.  The came to the conclusion that it wasn’t rain, snow, sleet, or hail.   Here’s the article explaining their theory of the mysterious blue blob  from USA Today.

 

blue blob

A swarm of butterflies, winging its way south for the winter, was “spotted” as large blue blobs on weather radar last week over southern Illinois and central Missouri.

“We think these targets are Monarch butterflies,” the National Weather Service in St. Louis noted on its Facebook page, which also includes a technical explanation of how the weather service came to this conclusion.

The monarchs were flapping their way south toward their winter home in Mexico. As noted earlier this year, the colorful insects were under stress this spring because of ongoing drought, an unusually cold winter and a lack of milkweed, their primary food source.

This isn’t the first time weather radar has “seen” bugs this year: Both grasshoppers in New Mexico and mayflies in Wisconsin were spotted on radar.

Scientists are finding that weather radar is proving useful to track birds, bats and insects. While this information is just clutter to the weather folks, it is just the thing biologists need to study the activities of flying creatures, a science newly christened “aeroecology.”

As for the butterflies, the weather service in St. Louis wished “good luck and a safe journey to these amazing little creatures on their long journey south!”

butterflys


A Few Models, Our Outlook Thusfar, & The Latest NWS Write-Up

September 17th, 2014 at 9:40 am by under Weather

 

 

HERE IS THE LATEST RELEASE FROM THE AUSTIN/SAN ANTONIO NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE OFFICE:

 

HEADLINE…Tropical air mass will bring threat of heavy rainfall and isolated flooding/flash flooding threat through Friday…

AREA OF CONCERN…Areas mainly east of a line from Rocksprings to Pleasanton.  This is roughly the eastern 2/3rds of South Central Texas.  This includes  the Hill Country, the I-35 Corridor from Austin to San Antonio, and the coastal plains east of I-35.

IMPACTS…Locally heavy rainfall with rain rates that may exceed 2-3 inches per hour.  Minor flooding, isolated flash flooding possible in those areas. Isolated rain totals of 3-5 inches.

TIMING…Peak of the thunderstorm activity should be Wednesday afternoon and evening.  While some decrease is expected overnight Wednesday, some activity will linger overnight.  A repeat is possible again on Thursday afternoon and evening.  Lesser chances on Friday.

CONFIDENCE…Moderate to High.

DISCUSSION…The atmosphere over South Central Texas is primed for locally heavy rainfall as moisture from what was once Hurricane Odile in the Pacific is spilling into the desert Southwest and portions of West Texas.  This mid and high level tropical moisture is combining with rich Gulf of Mexico moisture, setting the stage for shower and thunderstorm development later today…and again on Thursday and maybe even Friday.   While we are lacking a good trigger for storm development, daytime heating will be just enough of a trigger to develop scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms late this morning into this afternoon and evening.  Like we saw on Tuesday, the storms will be slow moving, while bringing rain rates of 2-3 inches per hour.  This will lead to urban type flooding of streets and drainages as well as small stream flooding.  We could easily see isolated rain totals of 3-5 inches today somewhere in South Central Texas.  Because there is no real good focus for storm development, we do not see any favored locations of where the heaviest rain might set up.
We will continue to watch the weather models and radar trends carefully the next 12-24 hours.  If trends become apparent, a Flash Flood Watch may be issued.

The storms are expected to be most numerous across the eastern 2/3rds of South Central Texas…mainly east of a Rocksprings to Pleasanton line. Look for the activity to peak during the late afternoon/early evening hours and then linger through the first part of the night, maybe even past midnight.  So isolated flash flooding may be occurring later tonight.  Remember that most of our Flash Flood Fatalities are related to driving at night.  Thursday will see a repeat of the storm activity, mainly firing with daytime heating.  Again we will carry the threat of isolated flooding/flash flooding with isolated totals of 3-5 inches possible.

Rain chances will finally decrease by Friday into Saturday although isolated to scattered storms are still possible.

We will need to watch this scenario closely.  Everybody associated with emergency management/road conditions/ etc…need to monitor the weather over the next 48 hours.  Whenever you are dealing with tropical moisture from left over tropical storms/hurricanes…it bears watching over South Central Texas.
You can see the latest forecasts and watches/warnings/advisories by going to the Austin-San Antonio National Weather Service website at www.weather.gov/austin
HERE ARE THE TOTALS BEING PREDICTED BY A FEW OF OUR IN HOUSE MODELS
(Through Saturday Evening)
This particular model is our high resolution (HD) 3km model.  As you can see it predicts a lengthy swath of heavy rain from Llano through eastern Fayette County.  It even brings roughly 6″ of rain to the Bastrop area by  6:00 pm Wednesday.  We are still a little hesitant with this outlook due to its rookie status on handling remnants of a tropical system stirring up the wet weather.  We shall see!
2-5 Thurs Details
Meanwhile the lower resolution house model shows much less rainfall over the next 30-36 hours.
1 SPC
Here is the what the NWS is leaning toward as we enter Friday morning:
1 SPC
Finally here is our current outlook from the First Warning Weather Center:
2-5 Thurs Details
REMEMBER:  TURN AROUND DON’T DROWN!!!!!!!!!

NWS Releases Statement About Weekend Rainfall

September 12th, 2014 at 5:08 am by under Weather
NOAA
HEADLINE  –  Locally heavy rain possible from late afternoon through sunset Saturday.

AREA OF CONCERN  -  All of South Central Texas this afternoon and tonight. The Rio Grande Plains on Saturday.

IMPACTS  -  Most locations will receive 1 to 2 inches of rain. Localized heavy rain up to 4 inches and minor flooding possible.  Friday night football games and Saturday youth sports leagues are at risk for lightning.

TIMING  -  The main threat time will be 4 pm this afternoon through 6 am Saturday morning.

CONFIDENCE  -  Moderate to High.

DISCUSSION  -  A tropical easterly wave, first strong cold front of the fall, and an upper level trough will produce widespread showers and thunderstorms from this afternoon through sunset Saturday. Nearly everyone will see significant rainfall, and some spots could receive up to 4 inches in the next 36 hours. Since the ground is still very dry and the rainfall expected to be spread out over a number of hours, life-threatening flash flooding is not expected, however, minor flooding of low-lying spots is likely.

The main safety concern is Friday night football games and Saturday youth sports leagues, especially for lightning safety, as well as travel impacts to/from games. Please encourage safety officials to have shelter and delay plans in place and be ready to act upon them. If buildings are not nearby, the best plan is for spectators to shelter in their vehicles until the storm passes. The safety rule is: If Thunder Roars, Go Indoors. If you hear thunder, you are close enough to be hit by lightning.

You can see the latest forecasts and watches/warnings/advisories by going to the Austin-San Antonio National Weather Service website at www.weather.gov/austin

1 SPC

Latest Hazardous Weather Statement From NWS

THIS HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK IS FOR SOUTH CENTRAL TEXAS.

.DAY ONE...TODAY AND TONIGHT.

LOCALLY HEAVY RAINFALL IS POSSIBLE THIS AFTERNOON AND TONIGHT
ACROSS ALL OF SOUTH CENTRAL TEXAS. WIDESPREAD RAINFALL TOTALS
OF 1 TO 2 INCHES WILL BE POSSIBLE WITH ISOLATED TOTALS UP TO 4
INCHES.

.DAYS TWO THROUGH SEVEN...SATURDAY THROUGH THURSDAY.

THE THREAT FOR LOCALLY HEAVY RAINFALL CONTINUES SATURDAY. AN
ADDITIONAL HALF INCH TO AN INCH OF RAIN IS POSSIBLE. THE GREATEST
THREAT FOR HEAVY RAIN SATURDAY WILL BE ACROSS THE RIO GRANDE
PLAINS.

.SPOTTER INFORMATION STATEMENT...

SPOTTER ACTIVATION IS NOT ANTICIPATED.

 

Lightning Tips & Safety

September 9th, 2014 at 1:08 am by under Weather

lion lightning

Lightning: What You Need to Know

  • NO PLACE outside is safe when thunderstorms are in the area!!
  • If you hear thunder, lightning is close enough to strike you.
  • When you hear thunder, immediately move to safe shelter: a substantial building with electricity or plumbing or an enclosed, metal-topped vehicle with windows up.
  • Stay in safe shelter at least 30 minutes after you hear the last sound of thunder.

Indoor Lightning Safety

  • Stay off corded phones, computers and other electrical equipment that put you in direct contact with electricity.
  • Avoid plumbing, including sinks, baths and faucets.
  • Stay away from windows and doors, and stay off porches.
  • Do not lie on concrete floors, and do not lean against concrete walls.

Last Resort Outdoor Risk Reduction Tips

If you are caught outside with no safe shelter anywhere nearby the following actions mayreduce your risk:

  • Immediately get off elevated areas such as hills, mountain ridges or peaks
  • Never lie flat on the ground
  • Never shelter under an isolated tree
  • Never use a cliff or rocky overhang for shelter
  • Immediately get out and away from ponds, lakes and other bodies of water
  • Stay away from objects that conduct electricity (barbed wire fences, power lines, windmills, etc.)

noaa_logo

 LIGHTNING MYTHS AND FACTS

LIGHTNING AND CARS

Do the rubber tires on your car protect you if you are OUTside the car and you’re leaning on it? NO! Like trees, houses, and people, anything outside is at risk of being struck by lightning when thunderstorms are in the area, including cars. The good news though is that the outer metal shell of hard-topped metal vehicles does provide protection to those inside a vehicle with the windows closed. Unfortunately though, the vehicle doesn’t always fare so well.

A typical cloud-to-ground, actually cloud-to-vehicle, lightning strike will either strike the antenna of the vehicle or along the roofline. The lightning will then pass through the vehicle’s outer metal shell, then through the tires to the ground.

Although every lightning strike is different, damage to the antenna, electrical system, rear windshield, and tires is common. The heat from a lightning strike is sufficient to partially melt the antenna of a vehicle and can cause what seems like a small explosion of sparks as tiny fragments of metal melt and burn. A portion of the discharge may find its way into the vehicle’s electrical system and may damage or destroy electronic components, potentially leaving the car inoperable. The lightning may also find its way into the small defrosting wires that are embedded in rear windows causing the windows to shatter. Finally, it’s very common for the lightning to destroy one or more tires as it passes through the steel belts to the ground. It’s also possible for the lightning to ignite a fire which could destroy the vehicle.

 

Myth: Lightning never strikes the same place twice.
Fact: Lightning often strikes the same place repeatedly, especially if it’s a tall, pointy, isolated object. The Empire State Building is hit nearly 100 times a year.

Myth: If it’s not raining or there aren’t clouds overhead, you’re safe from lightning.
Fact: Lightning often strikes more than three miles from the center of the thunderstorm, far outside the rain or thunderstorm cloud. “Bolts from the blue” can strike 10-15 miles from the thunderstorm.

Myth: Rubber tires on a car protect you from lightning by insulating you from the ground.
Fact: Most cars are safe from lightning, but it is the metal roof and metal sides that protect you, NOT the rubber tires. Remember, convertibles, motorcycles, bicycles, open-shelled outdoor recreational vehicles and cars with fiberglass shells offer no protection from lightning. When lightning strikes a vehicle, it goes through the metal frame into the ground. Don’t lean on doors during a thunderstorm.

Myth: A lightning victim is electrified. If you touch them, you’ll be electrocuted.
Fact: The human body does not store electricity. It is perfectly safe to touch a lightning victim to give them first aid. This is the most chilling of lightning Myths. Imagine if someone died because people were afraid to give CPR!

Myth: If outside in a thunderstorm, you should seek shelter under a tree to stay dry.
Fact: Being underneath a tree is the second leading cause of lightning casualties. Better to get wet than fried!

Myth: If you are in a house, you are 100% safe from lightning.
Fact: A house is a safe place to be during a thunderstorm as long as you avoid anything that conducts electricity. This means staying off corded phones, electrical appliances, wires, TV cables, computers, plumbing, metal doors and windows. Windows are hazardous for two reasons: wind generated during a thunderstorm can blow objects into the window, breaking it and causing glass to shatter and second, in older homes, in rare instances, lightning can come in cracks in the sides of windows.

Myth: If thunderstorms threaten while you are outside playing a game, it is okay to finish it before seeking shelter.
Fact: Many lightning casualties occur because people do not seek shelter soon enough. No game is worth death or life-long injuries. Seek proper shelter immediately if you hear thunder. Adults are responsible for the safety of children.

Myth: Structures with metal, or metal on the body (jewelry, cell phones,Mp3 players, watches, etc), attract lightning.
Fact: Height, pointy shape, and isolation are the dominant factors controlling where a lightning bolt will strike. The presence of metal makes absolutely no difference on where lightning strikes. Mountains are made of stone but get struck by lightning many times a year. When lightning threatens, take proper protective action immediately by seeking a safe shelter – don’t waste time removing metal. While metal does not attract lightning, it does conduct it so stay away from metal fences, railing, bleachers, etc.

Myth: If trapped outside and lightning is about to strike, I should lie flat on the ground.
Fact: Lying flat increases your chance of being affected by potentially deadly ground current. If you are caught outside in a thunderstorm, you keep moving toward a safe shelter.

 

8-26 Bolt from the blue - noaa

 

5 Ways People Are Struck By Lightning

1.  DIRECT STRIKE - A person struck directly by lightning becomes a part of the main lightning discharge channel. Most often, direct strikes occur to victims who are in open areas. Direct strikes are not as common as the other ways people are struck by lightning, but they are potentially the most deadly. In most direct strikes, a portion of the current moves along and just over the skin surface (called flashover) and a portion of the current moves through the body-usually through the cardiovascular and/or nervous systems. The heat produced when lightning moves over the skin can produce burns, but the current moving through the body is of greatest concern. While the ability to survive any lightning strike is related to immediate medical attention, the amount of current moving through the body is also a factor.

animation of direct lightning strike

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.  SIDE FLASH -   -A side flash (also called a side splash) occurs when lightning strikes a taller object near the victim and a portion of the current jumps from taller object to the victim. In essence, the person acts as a “short circuit” for some of energy in the lightning discharge. Side flashes generally occur when the victim is within a foot or two of the object that is struck. Most often, side flash victims have taken shelter under a tree to avoid rain or hail.

animation of side lightning strike

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3.  GROUND CURRENT –  When lightning strikes a tree or other object, much of the energy travels outward from the strike in and along the ground surface. This is known as the ground current. Anyone outside near a lightning strike is potentially a victim of ground current. In addition, ground current can travels in garage floors with conductive materials. Because the ground current affects a much larger area than the other causes of lightning casualties, the ground current causes the most lightning deaths and injuries. animation 2 of ground current direct lightning strikeGround current also kills many farm animals. Typically, the lightning enters the body at the contact point closest to the lightning strike, travels through the cardiovascular and/or nervous systems, and exits the body at the contact point farthest from the lightning. The greater the distance between contact points, the greater the potential for death or serious injury. Because large farm animals have a relatively large body-span, ground current from a nearby lightning strike is often fatal to livestock.

 

 

 

 

4.  CONDUCTION – Lightning can travel long distances in wires or other metal surfaces. Metal does not attract lightning, but it provides a path for the lightning to follow. Most indoor lightning casualties and some outdoor casualties are due to conduction. Whether inside or outside, anyone in contact with anything connected to metal wires, plumbing, or metal surfaces that extend outside is at risk. This includes anything that plugs into an electrical outlet, water faucets and showers, corded phones, and windows and doors.

animation of conduction lightning strike

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5.  STREAMERS - While not as common as the other types of lightning injuries, people caught in “streamers” are at risk of being killed or injured by lightning. Streamers develop as the downward-moving leader approaches the ground. Typically, only one of the streamers makes contact with the leader as it approaches the ground and provides the path for the bright return stroke; however, when the main channel discharges, so do all the other streamers in the area. If a person is part of one of these streamers, they could be killed or injured during the streamer discharge even though the lightning channel was not completed between the cloud and the upward streamer. See Robert’s story as an example of a streamer injury.

animation of streamers lightning strike


Texas Water Development Board Meeting Open To Public

September 3rd, 2014 at 7:56 am by under Weather
TWDB_splashLogo_verysmall
FROM:
Texas Water Development Board (TWDB)
WHAT:
The public and interested stakeholders are invited to attend a TWDB Board  meeting.
WHEN:
Thursday, September 4, 2014, at 9:30 a.m.
 
WHERE:
Stephen F. Austin Building   
1700 North Congress Avenue
Room 170
Austin, TX 78701
WHY:
The Board will consider financial assistance for communities looking to address water and wastewater needs within their regions. Communities requesting financial assistance include the cities of Early, Hutto, McAllen, and Los Fresnos, as well as the Beaver Creek Water Control and Improvement District No. 1 and the Lower Colorado River Authority. The Board will also hear an overview of the Texas Natural Resources Information System. 
WHO:
TWDB staff will be on hand to answer questions and accept public comment.

 

HERE IS THE LATEST AREA DROUGHT STATUS MAP COURTESY OF THE US DROUGHT MONITOR:

Drought

Since the last map was issued the “Exceptional” (highest level”  drought status in Gillespie County has expanded a bit.  The “Extreme” drought has spread into Blanco and Llano counties this time around.  Finally, Metro and Eastern conditions have worsenend too.  A few weeks ago, the lowest level of drought, “Abnormally Dry” spread from Travis County through many of our Eastern Areas.  Now, “Moderate” to “Severe” drought statuses have overcome those same spots.

 

TWDB Homepage Link:     http://www.twdb.texas.gov/

 


Heat Advisory Out For Eastern Areas

August 22nd, 2014 at 1:31 pm by under Weather

NOAA













beat the heat













A HEAT ADVISORY IS IN EFFECT FROM AUSTIN/SAN ANTONIO NWS OFFICES FROM 1PM-7PM FOR FAYETTE COUNTY.


URGENT - WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE AUSTIN/SAN ANTONIO TX
334 AM CDT FRI AUG 22 2014

...POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS HEAT INDICES TODAY...

.WARM TEMPERATURES AND HIGH DEW POINTS WILL COMBINE TO RESULT IN
HIGH AFTERNOON AND EVENING HEAT INDEX VALUES FROM 105 TO 108
ACROSS THE SOUTHEAST PORTIONS OF CENTRAL TEXAS. THE DANGEROUS HEAT
INDICES WILL BE ALONG AND SOUTH OF A LINE FROM LA GRANGE TO
GONZALES TO FLORESVILLE.

heat index
















FAYETTE-WILSON-KARNES-GONZALES-DE WITT-LAVACA-
INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...LA GRANGE...FLORESVILLE...KARNES CITY...
GONZALES...CUERO...HALLETTSVILLE
334 AM CDT FRI AUG 22 2014

...HEAT ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 1 PM THIS AFTERNOON TO 7 PM CDT
THIS EVENING...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN AUSTIN/SAN ANTONIO HAS ISSUED A
HEAT ADVISORY...WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM 1 PM THIS AFTERNOON TO
7 PM CDT THIS EVENING.

* TEMPERATURE...HEAT INDICES OF 105 TO 108 DEGREES DURING THE
  AFTERNOON AND EARLY EVENING HOURS.

* IMPACTS...EXTENDED OUTDOOR ACTIVITY COULD LEAD TO
  DEHYDRATION...HEAT EXHAUSTION OR HEAT STROKE IF PROPER
  PRECAUTIONS ARE NOT TAKEN.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

TAKE EXTRA PRECAUTIONS IF YOU WORK OR SPEND TIME OUTSIDE. WHEN
POSSIBLE...RESCHEDULE STRENUOUS ACTIVITIES TO EARLY MORNING OR
EVENING. KNOW THE SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF HEAT EXHAUSTION AND HEAT
STROKE. WEAR LIGHT WEIGHT AND LOOSE FITTING CLOTHING WHEN
POSSIBLE AND DRINK PLENTY OF WATER. TO REDUCE RISK DURING OUTDOOR
WORK THE OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ADMINISTRATION RECOMMENDS
SCHEDULING FREQUENT REST BREAKS IN SHADED OR AIR CONDITIONED
ENVIRONMENTS. ANYONE OVERCOME BY HEAT SHOULD BE MOVED TO A COOL
AND SHADED LOCATION. HEAT STROKE IS AN EMERGENCY...CALL 911.

HERE'S A LINK TO NOAA'S "BEAT THE HEAT" SAFETY PAGE:  http://www.nws.noaa.gov/os/heat/index.shtml



Updated Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook Released

August 7th, 2014 at 12:29 pm by under Weather

noaa_logo

NOAA’s updated Atlantic hurricane season outlook calls for an increased chance of a below-normal season

 

August 7, 2014
Forecasters with NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center raised the likelihood for a below-normal season in today’s update to the Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook. The update predicts a 70 percent chance of a below-normal season, a 25 percent chance of a near-normal season and only a five percent chance of an above-normal season. The probabilities in the initial outlook issued on May 22 were 50 percent, 40 percent and 10 percent, respectively.
“We are more confident that a below-normal season will occur because atmospheric and oceanic conditions that suppress cyclone formation have developed and will persist through the season.” said Gerry Bell, Ph.D., lead seasonal hurricane forecaster at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service. “Nonetheless, tropical


storms and hurricanes can strike the U.S. during below-normal seasons, as we have already seen this year when Arthur made landfall in North Carolina a
s a category-2 hurricane. We urge everyone to
remain prepared and be on alert throughout the season.”
The primary factors influencing the increased chance of a below-normal season are:
  • Overall atmospheric conditions are not favorable for storm development. This includes strong vertical wind shear, a weaker West African monsoon, and the combination of increased atmospheric stability and sinking motion. These conditions mean fewer tropical systems are spawned off the African coast, and those that do form are less likely to become hurricanes. These conditions are stronger than originally predicted in May and are expected to last mid-August through October, the peak months of the hurricane season;
  • Overall oceanic conditions are not favorable for storm development. This includes below-average temperatures across the Tropical Atlantic, which are exceptionally cool relative to the remainder of the global Tropics. This cooling is even stronger than models predicted in May and is expected to persist through the hurricane season; and
  • El Niño is still likely to develop and to suppress storm development by increasing vertical wind shear, stability and sinking motion in the atmosphere.
The updated hurricane season outlook, which includes the activity to-date of hurricanes Arthur and Bertha, predicts a 70 percent chance of the following ranges: 7 to 12 named storms (top winds of 39 mph or higher), including 3 to 6 hurricanes (top winds of 74 mph or higher), of which 0 to 2 could become major hurricanes (Category 3, 4, 5; winds of at least 111 mph).
These ranges are centered below the 30-year seasonal averages of 12 named storms, six hurricanes and three major hurricanes. The initial outlook in May predicted 8 to 13 named storms, 3 to 6 hurricanes and 1 to 2 major hurricanes.

The Atlantic hurricane region comprises the North Atlantic Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea. NOAA’s seasonal hurricane outlook is not a hurricane landfall forecast; it does not predict how many storms will hit land or where a storm will strike. Forecasts for individual storms and their impacts will be provided throughout the season by NOAA’s National Hurricane Center.

 

The Climate Prediction Center also continued the El Niño watch today in its scheduled monthly El Niño/Southern Oscillation Diagnostic Discussion. Forecasters note that although sea surface temperatures across the central equatorial Pacific have recently returned to near average, this cooling is expected to be temporary. El Niño is now favored to emerge during August-October, and to peak at weak strength during the late fall and early winter. The likelihood of El Niño during August-October has decreased to 55 percent (from 75 percent in May), and its likelihood during the fall and winter has decreased to about 65 percent (from near 80 percent).


Tuesday Morning Tropical Update

August 5th, 2014 at 6:09 am by under Weather

Here is the latest from the National Hurricane Center, as they discuss the three current storms that are churning in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.  Also, there is a disturbance in the Pacific that is following the same line as the other 2 storms, and is expected to develop in the near future.  We’ll briefly touch on that as well.  

We start with Bertha in the Atlantic:

Bertha Now

SUMMARY OF 500 AM EDT...0900 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...33.4N 72.9W
ABOUT 475 MI...765 KM W OF BERMUDA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...65 MPH...100 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...NNE OR 15 DEGREES AT 22 MPH...35 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...1005 MB...29.68 INCHES

WATCHES AND WARNINGS
--------------------
THERE ARE NO COASTAL WATCHES OR WARNINGS IN EFFECT.

DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK
------------------------------
AT 500 AM EDT...0900 UTC...THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM BERTHA WAS
LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 33.4 NORTH...LONGITUDE 72.9 WEST. BERTHA IS
MOVING TOWARD THE NORTH-NORTHEAST NEAR 22 MPH...35 KM/H. A TURN
TOWARD THE NORTHEAST WITH INCREASING FORWARD SPEED IS EXPECTED
TO OCCUR LATER TODAY...AND CONTINUE THROUGH WEDNESDAY.  ON THE
FORECAST TRACK...BERTHA WILL PASS ABOUT MIDWAY BETWEEN THE U.S.
EAST COAST AND BERMUDA LATER THIS MORNING.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS HAVE DECREASED TO NEAR 65 MPH...100 KM/H...
WITH HIGHER GUSTS...OVER A SMALL AREA NORTHEAST OF THE CENTER.
GRADUAL WEAKENING IS FORECAST DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.

TROPICAL-STORM-FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 125
MILES...205 KM...PRIMARILY TO THE EAST OF THE CENTER.

THE MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE RECENTLY REPORTED BY AN AIR FORCE

Bertha Track

Now to the Pacific Ocean and the trio of storms there:

Pacific Storms Now

Hurricane Iselle:

SUMMARY OF 200 AM PDT...0900 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...15.9N 138.6W
ABOUT 1115 MI...1795 KM E OF HILO HAWAII
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...125 MPH...205 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...W OR 270 DEGREES AT 8 MPH...13 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...955 MB...28.20 INCHES

WATCHES AND WARNINGS
--------------------
THERE ARE NO COASTAL WATCHES OR WARNINGS IN EFFECT.

INTERESTS IN THE HAWAIIAN ISLANDS SHOULD MONITOR THE PROGRESS OF
ISELLE.  WATCHES MAY BE REQUIRED FOR PORTIONS OF THE ISLANDS BY
TONIGHT OR EARLY WEDNESDAY.

DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK
------------------------------
AT 200 AM PDT...0900 UTC...THE CENTER OF HURRICANE ISELLE WAS
LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 15.9 NORTH...LONGITUDE 138.6 WEST. ISELLE IS
MOVING TOWARD THE WEST NEAR 8 MPH...13 KM/H...AND THIS GENERAL
MOTION IS EXPECTED TO CONTINUE THIS MORNING.  ISELLE SHOULD TURN
TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST AT A FASTER FORWARD SPEED LATER TODAY AND
WEDNESDAY.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS ARE NEAR 125 MPH...205 KM/H...WITH HIGHER
GUSTS.  ISELLE IS A CATEGORY THREE HURRICANE ON THE SAFFIR-SIMPSON
HURRICANE WIND SCALE.  FURTHER WEAKENING IS FORECAST DURING THE
NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS.

HURRICANE FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 35 MILES...55 KM...FROM
THE CENTER...AND TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 105
MILES...165 KM.

THE ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 955 MB...28.20 INCHES.

Iselle Path

Tropical Storm Julio:

SUMMARY OF 200 AM PDT...0900 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...13.6N 123.7W
ABOUT 1110 MI...1785 KM WSW OF THE SOUTHERN TIP OF BAJA CALIFORNIA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...60 MPH...95 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...W OR 275 DEGREES AT 15 MPH...24 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...1000 MB...29.53 INCHES

WATCHES AND WARNINGS
--------------------
THERE ARE NO COASTAL WATCHES OR WARNINGS IN EFFECT.

DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK
------------------------------
AT 200 AM PDT...0900 UTC...THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM JULIO WAS
LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 13.6 NORTH...LONGITUDE 123.7 WEST. JULIO IS
MOVING TOWARD THE WEST NEAR 15 MPH...24 KM/H...AND THIS GENERAL
MOTION IS EXPECTED TO CONTINUE FOR THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS ARE NEAR 60 MPH...95 KM/H...WITH HIGHER
GUSTS.  STRENGTHENING IS FORECAST DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS AND
JULIO IS EXPECTED TO BECOME A HURRICANE ON WEDNESDAY.

TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 105 MILES...165 KM
FROM THE CENTER.

THE ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 1000 MB...29.53 INCHES.

Julio Path

Disturbance 1:  30% Chance of Cyclone Formation Within 48 hours:

Disturbance 1 Now

1. A small low pressure system is located several hundred miles
south-southeast of Acapulco, Mexico.  Shower and thunderstorm
activity has increased and become more concentrated near the center
of circulation during the past several hours, and  upper-level winds
are expected to gradually improve over the next few days while the
system moves west-northwestward at 10 to 15 mph.
* Formation chance through 48 hours...medium...30 percent.
* Formation chance through 5 days...medium...30 percent.

Our next Tropical Depression? The NWS thinks there’s a good chance.

July 29th, 2014 at 8:34 am by under Weather

NEXT TD

Tropical Weather Outlook Text

TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
800 AM EDT TUE JUL 29 2014

For the North Atlantic...Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico:

1. Satellite images indicate that showers and thunderstorms
associated with an area of low pressure located about 1600 miles
east of the southern Windward Islands continue to become better
organized.  This system could develop into a tropical depression
later today or tomorrow while it moves westward or
west-northwestward at 10 to 15 mph.
* Formation chance through 48 hours...high...70 percent.
* Formation chance through 5 days...high...80 percent.

TD PATH

 

IF this storm comes together it’s forecast path has it traveling toward the Gulf!