Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Katia now a hurricane

Katia become the second hurricane of the Atlantic storm season, the National Hurricane Center reported in its 11 p.m. advisory Wednesday.

The storm has maximum sustained winds of 75 mph and could hit major hurricane strength come the weekend.

Here are all the particulars from the hurricane center.

Katia, far right, already looks impressive.

As Katia churns, new potential trouble emerges in Caribbean

As Tropical Storm Katia churns across the Atlantic toward hurricane status and an uncertain proximity to Florida, another potential trouble spot has emerged in the Caribbean Sea.

The National Hurricane Center reports that a tropical wave, made up "disorganized cloudiness and showers," has developed in the northwestern Caribbean Sea and adjacent land areas. It was expected to move west-northwestward across the northern portion of the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico and into the southern Gulf of Mexico during the next day or two.

That said, the Hurricane Center said there was only a 10 percent, or "low", chance of the system developing into a tropical storm within the next two days.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

11 p.m. Irene update

From the latest National Hurricane Center advisory:


Irene is maintaining its maximum sustained winds of 80 mph. Pressure is up slightly to 954 mb.

A wind gust of 67 mph was recently reported at Cape Hatteras, N.C., and one of 52 mph was reported at Philadelphia International Airport.

Here's the full advisory with links to maps and such.

9 p.m. Irene update from the National Weather Service

At this hour:

• Hurricane Irene is lashing Virginia’s Tidewater region and the southern Delmarva peninsula with heavy rains and hurricane-force gusts.

• Despite being over land for much of the day, Irene still has maximum sustained winds of 80 mph.

• This is a huge storm. Rain from it currently extends from Maine all the way south to North Carolina. Tropical storm-force winds still extend up to 290 miles from the center of circulation, while hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 85 miles.
• Irene is picking up the pace on her forward speed, now booking north-northeast at 16 mph.

• Central pressure still remains a significantly low 951 mb.

• The storm is expected to maintain hurricane strength as it moves up the coast and through Long Island. A drop in strength is expected after its center strikes New England.

• A wind gust of 76 mph was recently reported at the Williamsburg-Jamestown, Va., airport.

• A storm surge of about 5 feet has been observed at Oregon Inlet, N.C.

• A storm surge of 4 feet has occurred thus far at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay.

• Rainfall totals of 10-14 inches have already occurred over a large portion of eastern North Carolina and extreme southeastern Virginia.

• The highest rainfall total of 14.0 inches was reported at Bunyan, N.C.

• Isolated maximum amounts of 20 inches are still possible throughout the storm area.

• Isolated tornadoes are possible along the coasts of Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey through tonight.

Friday, August 26, 2011

11 p.m. Irene update: Closing in on Outer Banks

Details as Hurricane Irene makes its way toward a U.S. landfall:

* Irene is a Cat. 2 with 100 mph winds and pressure of 951 mb.

* It's eased up on forward speed to 13 mph, heading north-northeast.

* It is 140 miles south of Cape Lookout, N.C.

* The forecast track now has Irene clipping the Outer Banks, then staying out over the ocean until slamming into Long Island at the Nassau-Suffolk county line.

* No strengthening is expected before landfall with North Carolina, although a decrease in strength is likely before another landfall up the Eastern Seaboard.

* Hurricane-force winds extend 90 miles from the center of circulation. Tropical storm-force winds extend out 290 miles.

Get a good glimpse of where Irene is at right now here.

Video: First look at damage in Bahamas

Thursday, August 25, 2011

11 p.m. Irene update: Pressure down; now heading north

Highlights of the 11 p.m. advisory from the National Hurricane Center.

* The central pressure has dropped again, this time down to 942 mb.

* Winds remain same at 115 mph. Some strengthening possible Friday.

* Forward speed direction is now north, still at 14 mph.

* Irene's impact has a tremendous reach. Tropical storm-force winds extend 290 miles out from the center of circulation. Hurricane-force winds extend 80 miles from the center.

All hurricane center details here.

Hurricane Irene leaving Bahamas in its wake

The GOES-13 satellite captures Hurricane Irene moving through the Bahamas at 10:02 a.m. Thursday. Credit: NASA/NOAA GOES Project

As of 8 p.m., Hurricane Irene is pulling away from the Bahamas, and all signs point to strengthening as its central pressure has dropped to 946 mb from 950 mb at the 5 p.m. update.

Maximum sustained winds remain at 115 mph. Forward movement is still north-northwest at 14 mph.

The forecast cone is tightening, meaning forecasters are becoming even more certain of its path.

The forecast right now puts landfall just west of Morehead City, N.C., at around 2 p.m. Saturday, then skirting up the coast, mostly inland through North Carolina, Virginia, Delaware, New Jersey and smack into New York City on Sunday afternoon.

Get National Hurricane Center details and maps here.

And check out this cool tracking website here.

8 p.m. forecast track

Monday, August 22, 2011

Hurricane Irene still a potential threat to Bradenton

Being as Bradenton and the rest of Tampa Bay is still in Hurricane Irene's "cone of uncertainty," it is too early to breathe easy. But slowly, various computer models keep moving the project path of the the storm -- which slammed Puerto Rico early Monday morning -- to the east of the region.

Here's what the latest models, including two that are much too close to us for comfort, show:

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Video: An in-depth look at Irene

A YouTube video posted by "xtremeweathertracker" gives a closer look at the details of Tropical Storm Irene (then Invest 97L). It gives a good sense of the factors playing into the storm's possible path.

Tropical Storm Irene forms; Florida in five-day forecast cone

Tropical Storm Irene has formed Saturday night east of the Leeward Islands and early indicators have Florida as a potential target late next week.

With maximum sustained winds of 50 mph, Irene’s center was 215 miles east-southeast of Guadeloupe at 7 p.m., according to a special advisory from the National Hurricane Center.

A tropical storm warning is in effect for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, as well as several other islands in the region. Hurricane conditions could occur in the Dominican Republic late Monday.

Tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 120 miles from the center of circulation.

Any potential strike on Florida will hinge on Irene's trek through the Caribbean, and whether it stays south over water or crosses over land masses such as the mountainous Hispaniola.

Florida residents are advised to monitor Irene's track over the coming days.

Find more maps and particulars on Irene here.

Irene just right of center Saturday night.

Tropical Storm Harvey makes landfall over Belize

MIAMI (AP) -- Tropical Storm Harvey has made landfall over Belize and is expected to move into northern Guatemala later Saturday.

At 5 p.m., Harvey had winds of 50 mph, was center 45 miles west-southwest of Belize City and was moving west-northwest at about 13 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Harvey is expected to start weakening now that it's moving over land. The storm is expected to bring as much as 6 inches of rain to parts of Honduras, Guatemala, Belize and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Forecasters say flash floods and mudslides are possible.
Tropical storm warnings were still in effect for coastal Belize south of Belize City.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Harvey picking up steam

Tropical Storm Harvey has ratcheted up in strength Friday night as it skirts along the northern coast of Honduras with winds now up to 60 mph, according to the 11 p.m. advisory from the NHC.

A landfall, possibly at hurricane strength, is expected to come somewhere along the coast of Belize.

Get the latest maps here.

Find a video forecast here.

Tropical Storm Harvey forms; new waves looming

Tropical Storm Harvey formed Friday off Honduras but the system Florida ought to keep an eye on next week trails 2,500 miles behind in the Atlantic Ocean.

Harvey became the eighth named storm of a season just entering its traditional peak period, with two more waves looming that the National Hurricane Center gave a medium chance of developing.

Harvey posed a threat to Central America, where it was expected to brush the Honduran coast before making landfall in Belize sometime Saturday. Forecasters said the storm could bring winds of up to 40 mph and three to five inches of rain across Honduras, Belize, Guatemala and Mexico, potentially enough to trigger flooding and mudslides.

Forecasters also were watching a large tropical wave 800 miles east of the Lesser Antilles. The wave was moving from dry air into an area more conducive to development, center spokesman Dennis Feltgen said.

“Most of the computer models have latched on to this and are spinning it up,’’ he said.

It could strengthen over the weekend and impact Puerto Rico by Monday and, potentially, the Dominican Republic and Haiti Tuesday or Wednesday. From there, several models steer it generally toward Florida and the East Coast.

But Feltgen stressed that forecasts out five days or more can change dramatically. Just two weeks ago, for instance, Tropical Storm Emily broke apart as it crossed Hispaniola.

Computer models also suggested a second broad low pressure system off the African coast posed less of a threat, with its path potentially heading more northwest into the open Atlantic.

-- Curtis Morgan, Miami Herald

Tropical depression forms in western Caribbean

A tropical depression has formed in the western Caribbean, according to the 11 p.m. Thursday advisory from the National Hurricane Center.

The system is about 80 miles east-northeast of the Nicaragua/Honduras border. Maximum sustained winds are 35 mph. Potential strengthening into a tropical storm could occur Friday.

Find the forecast maps here.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Tropical Storm Gert strengthens in Atlantic Ocean

U.S. forecasters say Tropical Storm Gert has strengthened in the Atlantic Ocean and could approach Bermuda Sunday night or early Monday.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said Sunday that a tropical storm warning has been issued for Bermuda, though Gert's center was still about 255 miles (410 kilometers) from the islands.

Gert was moving north-northwest at 8 mph (13 kph) and had maximum sustained winds of 45 mph (72 kph). It could get stronger as it makes its way toward Bermuda.

Forecasters say Gert is projected to remain well away from the U.S. East Coast.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Emily breaks apart over Hispaniola; 20 inches of rain possible in isolated areas

Emily is the big mass just to the left of center.

Former Tropical Storm Emily has broken apart after causing floods and damaging hundreds of homes in Haiti.

National Hurricane Center forecasters in Miami said late Thursday afternoon that the storm is now a low pressure system that is dumping rains over Hispaniola. All watches and warnings have been canceled.

Strong winds whipped through palm trees in the capital of Haiti, while heavier rains fell further north, damaging homes, as well as a cholera treatment center. But there were no reports of deaths.

Although Emily has weakened, it is still capable of producing total rainfall amounts of 6 to 12 inches, with isolated amounts of 20 inches possible over the Dominican Republic and Haiti, according to the hurricane center's 5 p.m. advisory. These rains could cause life-threatening flash floods and mudslides.

Total rain accumulations of 2 to 4 inches are expected across eastern Cuba, the Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands.

Forecasters are monitoring the system for redevelopment.

For now, Florida isn't in Emily's cone -- but keep watching

For now, South Florida remains out of the cone for Tropical Storm Emily but forecasters say the slow-moving system should be closely monitored. Here's the latest full report.

Tropical Storm Emily bearing down on Haiti

Here's the 11 a.m. update on Tropical Storm Emily from The National Hurricane Center:


Emily's winds were holding steady at 50 mph, but the center expects some weakening in the next 24 hours as the storm hits the high terrain of Haiti and Eastern Cuba. The winds extend outward up to 115 miles.

A tropical storm warning is in effect for the Dominican Republic, Haiti, the Bahamas, Turks and Caicos Islands, Guantanamo and Holguin in Eastern Cuba. To see the effects so far, check out this photo gallery.

The projected path still has South Florida in its target.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Where is Emily going?

Here are the latest computer models, thanks to Weather Underground.

Haiti, Dominican Republic await rain wrath of Emily

Tropical Storm Emily is still moving westward with sustained winds of 50 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center's 11 p.m. advisory.

Heavy rains are expected to slam Hispaniola on Thursday. The Dominican Republic and Haiti could see isolated amounts of 10 inches of rain in spots. Flash flooding and massive landslides are feared in mountainous regions.

Find the latest maps and charts here.

Read the latest Associated Press story here.

11 p.m. advisory forecast track for Emily

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Emily watch: Haiti, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic in line for heavy rains, mudslides

Tropical Storm Emily, which continues to move west at this hour with winds of 50 mph, could bring torrential rains and possibly life-threatening flash floods and mudslides to regions of Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic and Haiti over the coming days, according to the National Hurricane Center's 8 p.m. advisory.

Emily is expected to produce 4 to 6 inches of rain throughout those countries through Thursday, including isolated amounts of 10 inches.

Emily sits about 165 miles south of San Juan, Puerto Rico, and has a forward speed of 14 mph. A gradual turn to the northwest is expected during the next 24 to 48 hours.

Tropical storm-force winds extend 105 miles out from the center.
A tropical storm warning is in effect for Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and Haiti. A tropical storm watch is in effect for the U.S. Virgin Islands, southeast Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos.

On the forecast track, the center of Emily will move across Hispaniola late Wednesday and into the southeastern Bahamas on Thursday.

The predicted path also has Emily's center well off the Atlantic coast of central Florida at 2 p.m. Tuesday.

Bradenton possibly in Emily's way -- but just barely

With each update from the National Hurricane Center, Tropical Storm Emily appears to be less of a threat to the Tampa Bay region.

With all things tropical, the projections could change but as of 11 a.m. EDT Tuesday, this was the Hurricane's latest projection on where the storm may be heading. Note that the Bradenton area is on the western limit of the "cone of uncertainty."

But remember, it may be too early to determine exactly where Emily is going, as this map showing projections of various computer models indicates:

Monday, August 1, 2011

Is Tropical Storm Emily coming to Florida? UPDATED

Tropical Storm Emily has formed southeast of Puerto Rico, and a couple of early projection maps suggest it might be smart for Floridians to pay attention.

UPDATED, 10:55 p.m. EDT -- This looks better for Florida: