As of the latest advisory, hurricane Matthew is a category 4 hurricane with peak sustained winds of 140 mph.
So wheres he headed? Matthew should make landfall or pass just west of Haiti tomorrow morning, then later tomorrow, Matthew's center should make landfall over far eastern Cuba. Land interaction should weaken Matthew to a category 3 hurricane by tomorrow night. After moving off of Cuba, Matthew will move into the Bahamas. Hurricanes have been known to explode in intensity over the Bahamas, as there aren't any high mountain peaks to damage circulation, and waters are always extremely warm. However, Matthew will have some trouble strengthening in the Bahamas as the wind shear will be quite high. The NHC's cone does a good job of demonstrating the gradual weakening of Matthew.
Luckily, the wind field with Matthew is quite small. If you look at the graphic below you can see just how small the area of hurricane force winds are. Towns that get hit directly by Matthew will still suffer serious wind damage, but it still doesn't look like winds will be the main issue with Matthew.
Even without a massive wind field, a natural disaster is still unfolding in Haiti in the form of rain. Rainfall amounts of over ten inches will be widespread across Haiti, with rainfall amounts of 20 to as much as 40 inches in some of the mountainous western regions. Towns and villages will flood, and mudslides will be widespread. Its also important to remember how unprepared Haiti is for a storm like this. The last time a major hurricane hit Haiti from the south was hurricane Hazel in 1954, and it killed 400 people.
Once hitting the Caribbean and the Bahamas, its looking increasingly likely that Matthew will ride up the east coast, likely affecting us in some way. I think I might do a post on this later this afternoon or evening.
Be sure to check out my twitter @conweather and follow!
Hurricane Matthew has developed in the eastern Caribbean and he's strengthening.
Matthew will continue to strengthen over the next couple days, likely hitting Jamaica and eastern Cuba Monday into Tuesday. The Bahamas will also feel Matthew's impacts Tuesday through Thursday.
Things are unclear past five days for now, so I'm not really going to go into whether or not we could be affected. I will say that the majority of the models do take Matthew out to sea after hitting the Bahamas so I'd lean towards that solution.
Be sure to check out my twitter @conweather and follow!
,Some questions on Hermine's track still exist, but surge is a certainty...
There's been a lot of disagreement today over where exactly Hermine is headed. So I'm going to try to clear up some of that confusion.
Hermine is currently a 70 mph post-tropical storm, that is located to the east of Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina. Her center is dry, but strong at the moment. The dry air entrenched in Hermine isn't going away soon, so rain really doesn't look to be a problem at all. Therefore, I won't be making any new rainfall maps.
Because Hermine has tracked a little bit farther east than some expected, a lot of misinformation has spread around. Hermine has been a little more stubborn than some expected turning north, and some people are jumping to conclusions on this. Its way too early for some of this talk, and we need to wait and watch and see what she does next. If you look closely at the loop above, you can kind of see a switch to a more northerly movement in my opinion.
So where do I think Hermine is headed? I'll go and side with the NHC cone. But please notice the whole cone, and realize that its possible for Hermine to go on the far eastern/western edge of the cone.
For storm surge its just a question of will it be bad, really bad or absolutely terrible. Tonight's high tide which happens around 10 PM should be pretty interesting, as the high tide this morning already caused some coastal flooding in Wildwood, which I didn't expect.
It still looks like Monday will feature the worst surge for the Jersey shore. Long Island will get hit pretty hard Tuesday into Wednesday too. This really won't be a storm at all for inland areas, with just some gusty winds possible over the next couple days.
I've heard some reports that people are starting to take this storm seriously along the Jersey shore which is a good sign. We should have a much better idea of the track Hermine will take by around noon tomorrow. Be sure to follow my twitter @conweather for more details on Hermine.
Hermine is done with Florida and is currently moving into South Carolina as a tropical storm, with peak sustained winds of about 50 miles per hour.
Hermine should stay at this strength as it moves over the Carolinas today and tomorrow morning. Once it moves off the coast tomorrow afternoon, Hermine should restrengthen and then stall out. By Monday, the NHC has Hermine at hurricane strength again, to the east of Delmarva. Over the next few days, Hermine will crawl north-north-east eroding the coastline. The worst erosion and surge looks to take place on the Jersey shore. Winds will also be an issue as tropical storm watches have been issued for the entire coastline of New Jersey, New York and Connecticut.
I've updated the Aware, Alert, Action map to include our coastline in it. If you're living right on the coast, its a good idea to do some preparations today. You can finish up tomorrow. Sunday is when things begin to go downhill for the Jersey shore and Delmarva, then NYC and Long Island will start to feel the storm Monday.
This isn't really looking like a big storm for inland areas. Unless it moves closer to shore, the winds should stick to coast, and most of the rain will stay offshore.
Be sure to check out my twitter and follow! I'll have an update on the models later today.
Not going to be doing posts on the website today except for maybe something on our possible impacts. Instead I'll be busy on my twitter tracking Hermine. Be sure to follow if you haven't done so yet.
Hermine is on its way...
Tropical Storm Hermine has max winds of 50 mph at this hour, and is looking decent. Its lacking some convection, particularly on the west side of it, but overnight it should get more organized. Convection likes to blow up at night so Hermine could look more interesting tomorrow morning.
Hermine should hit Florida tomorrow night as a strong tropical storm or category one hurricane. The NHC has Hermine striking as a 70 mph tropical storm, which is so close to hurricane force its basically a coin-flip at this point.
If your under a tropical storm warning/hurricane watch right now in Florida, now is the time to prepare. The weather should be good enough tomorrow morning to prepare, but make sure you're done by the afternoon . Firstly, and most importantly pay attention to evacuations. A few evacuations have been put in place, here's a link to them. www.wctv.tv/content/news/Tropical-Depression-Nine-Evacuations-Closings-Service-Changes-391891931.html
Secondly, make sure you have flashlights and batteries, plenty of drinking water, medication, food (non-perishable), pet food, a generator if possible and anything else you would need, since you won't be able to leave your house.
Finally, prepare your house for the storm. Bring in anything outside, boarding up windows and collecting sand bags is a good idea too. I said this last because its really most important to prepare yourself for the storm, before you prepare your house and belongings.
Most in Florida already know all of this information, but its a good idea to say it again. Its been 11 years since Florida had a hurricane, and if Hermine is a hurricane at landfall, it will break this streak.
Besides the obvious winds and surge, Hermine will impact Florida in a few other ways.
Rainfall amounts with Hermine will be quite high. In Tampa as much as 5 inches of rain has fell just in the last 24 hours, with another 3-5 inches likely over the next couple days. Where Hermine makes landfall the NHC is forecasting 6+ inches of rain. As the storm moves northeast through the Carolina's 6+ inches of rain is likely.
Another threat with Hermine will be tornadoes. The SPC has issued a slight risk for tomorrow, which I think could get upgraded to an enhanced risk tomorrow. It may seem out-of-the-ordinary, but 5% of hurricane deaths are from tornadoes, compared to 10% of hurricane deaths caused by strong winds. Its just something to watch tomorrow night.
So after hitting Florida, whats next for Hermine? It should track through eastern Georgia, and then the Carolina's Friday and Saturday. On Sunday is when things will get interesting for our area. Hermine will be located off the coast of Delmarva or the Jersey shore, stalled out. However, the storm won't be Hermine at this point but will turn into an extratropical nor'easter, as it will be mixed with cold air. Below is a cool picture of the high temperatures forecasted from the GFS for Sunday.
In this model output the center of the storm is located over Cape May. You can see in the picture its pulling cold air from the northwest, hence the 50 degree highs in central Pennsylvania. Then on the flip-side you can see warm air being pulled from the southeast, hence the 70 degrees highs on Long Island. This temperature contrast develops a sharp baroclinic zone, which helps strengthen the storm. The GFS isn't very bullish on the intensity of this storm, so if it were stronger, this temperature contrast could be even bigger.
This nor'easter will be quite potent, so a high impact storm is possible. Widespread rain amounts will likely be of a typical rain storm (1 to 3 inches), but in some areas locally higher amounts of 3-6+ are possible. Hopefully this will happen in eastern New England with their drought.
Wind and surge will also be a problem. Here's the euro foretasted air pressure for Sunday morning. The pressure difference between the strong high to the storms northeast will further increase the winds and surge.
So how much wind and surge exactly will we get? That's really too early to get into. Winds associated with the storm could gust to near hurricane force, but that doesn't mean those winds are going to hit the shore. The same goes for surge, it all boils down to how close this storm gets to shore.
I don't have all the answers yet, but I can say that we'll be tracking this storm for a long time. It's already day 12 of tracking this system, and I'd say we have at least a week left before we can finally say bye-bye to Harambe. Oops I mean Hermine.
Be sure to pay attention to the forecast if on the shore from Florida to Massachusetts. And if you're told to evacuate, do it, please. Be sure to follow my twitter @conweather, I'll have lots of updates tomorrow as Hermine nears Florida.
Tropical Depression Nine is organizing, and its not just threatening Florida.
TD 9 has some very deep convection firing this evening. However, it still looks a bit sloppy. This should change tomorrow as the MLC (mid-level center) and the LLC (low-level center) come together.
I only have one problem with the NHC's cone, the turn. While yes, TD 9 is making the turn, its not happening as sharply as the NHC is forecasting. If you look at the movement of TD 9, its moving west-north-west or northwest. However, on the cone the movement is north-north-east. So is TD 9 going to surprise and hit Texas? No. All I can say is I'm leaning towards the northwest side of the cone at least until it hits Florida late Thursday.
I also think that the issuance of a hurricane watch was a great call by the NHC, as it is certainly possible Hermine could strengthen into a weak hurricane before landfall.
A lot of rain is also likely with Hermine. As much as 10 inches in fact in the Big Bend. 6+ inches of rain should fall in Tampa over the next 72 hours.
So whats next after hitting Florida? Hermine will likely cause tropical storm conditions along the Carolina coastline Friday, and then start to head out to sea. However, a blocking high to the north may prevent it from going completely out to sea. Its looking increasingly likely that it could curve back west, and possibly threaten the Northeast this weekend.
The GFS ensemble is the most aggressive with this scenario right now, as many different ensemble members take a tropical storm or even hurricane force low somewhere between Delmarva and New England this weekend.
All of this is five plus days out, so I don't know too much about it. This is especially true since the models really only recently brought up this potential. What I can say is that storms that recurve into the Northeast usually mean business as they don't have to deal with as much land interaction. In addition to that, the angle these storms come in push even more surge into the beaches, and hit more land.
Even if TD 9/Hermine doesn't hit the northeast, waters will still be extremely rough for Labor Day Weekend. Be sure to check out my twitter @conweather and follow!
After 11 days of tracking Invest 99L, it's FINALLY developed into Tropical Depression Nine...
Tropical Depression Nine is looking OK this evening. It's moving off off Cuba tomorrow morning so that should help it develop. Shear will also be lower then. TD Nine has its convection messed up with afternoon thunderstorms off Cuba again today, and its pretty hard to tell whats what. We'll only know until it pulls off Cuba tomorrow morning.
While there is still some uncertainty, it looks like we have a good idea of whats going to happen with TD 9. Below is the NHC's cone that I can't really disagree with. It develops TD 9 into a tropical storm tomorrow afternoon, and then it takes it into the Big Bend of Florida Thursday night as a 50 mph storm.
I've heard some people saying that TD 9 will get more intense, but I think for the amount of shear right now in the Gulf, its perfect. If the shear changes, I'm sure the NHC will adjust intensities accordingly.
After Florida gets hit, the tropical storm will likely continue to develop east of Florida. Waters are pretty warm here with the gulf stream, so strengthening isn't impossible once it gets out of the Gulf. Then we have to watch whether it could affect the Carolinas, and then possibly down the road, eastern New England. For now I think the storm will go out to sea, but things could obviously change.
Hurricane Gaston strengthened into our first major hurricane of the 2016 season. It's also the first major hurricane since Joaquin last year. He's looking absolutely gorgeous tonight, and is a sight to behold.
Gaston will continue to strengthen a bit over the next 24-36 hours before weakening a bit and heading east.
Invest 91L organized itself into TD 8 today and it looks like garbage. It's circulation is absolutely naked and conditions aren't great for convection to bubble up.
The NHC wants to develop this into a tropical storm and skim North Carolina, but I'm not so sure that's going to happen.
Finally, we have the tropical wave that's going to move off Africa Tuesday. I really don't have any interest in talking about this system, because well, it hasn't even moved off Africa yet. I'll talk more about this wave Tuesday night when we have a real Invest.
If you're in Florida, just be sure to keep an eye on the forecast for changes. A big hurricane isn't likely, but even tropical storms can be dangerous. Have a great night and be sure to follow my twitter @conweather!
Here's a quick overview of what the latest models are predicting for Invest 99L...
Euro - 12z run yesterday had a powerful hurricane going into the panhandle of Florida. The 12z run today that just came out, takes a weak tropical storm into the big bend of Florida. This model has been switching around so much, its hard to take it too seriously at this point. It just continues to flip flop.
GFS - GFS develops 99L into a weak tropical storm and hits the Big Bend of Florida. The GFS has been really consistent with this solution over the past few runs, so I'm paying close attention to it.
UKMET - The latest UKMET develops 99L into a moderate strength tropical storm and takes it into the Big Bend. Track has been pretty consistent on the UKMET, but intensity has wavered a bit. For example the 00z run was noticeably stronger than the 12z run.
CMC - I rarely use the CMC when forecasting the tropics, but it has been surprisingly consistent with 99L. For the past 4 runs, that's 48 hours its been showing this, the CMC has brought a strong tropical storm into the Panama Beach area. The CMC isn't great for the tropics but its consistency with this system has caught my eye.
Besides these models we also have the spaghetti models which I have posted below. I'll have a tropical discussion out this evening. Have a great afternoon!
Day 10 of Invest 99L watch and we still don't know whats going on. But 99L isn't the only thing going on in the tropics...
Before we look at the big story of 99L, there are some other things going on in the tropics. After weakening back to a tropical storm, Gaston is nearing hurricane strength again. However, it still looks like Gaston should miss all land, except maybe western Europe as an extratropical storm down the road.
The yellow x near the Bahamas has been designated as Invest 91L. It is currently fighting a lot of shear and dry air, and doesn't look great.
91L should track west over the next few days. The spaghetti plots skim North Carolina with some rain with this system. Some develop it, most don't, therefore, this isn't really a high priority to watch right now.
Other than 99L and 91L, another tropical wave will move off Africa Tuesday, which will be 92L. The NHC gives it a 40% chance of development in the next 5 days.
This wave looks really, really promising. A strong ridge to its north will push it due west across the MDR. By the time it reaches the Lesser Antilles next weekend, it'll probably already be a hurricane. After that, things are unclear. It could go out to sea, or it could hit land but that's all so far out I'm not even going to talk about probabilities.
Below is a satellite loop of Invest 99L, which is currently wedged between the Bahamas and Cuba.
In the beginning of the loop you can see thunderstorms exploding over Cuba. Several hours ago, there was a lot of afternoon thunderstorm activity over Cuba. This caused sinking air to develop around 99L which dryed out most of it's convection. You can see the convection over 99L just disappearing in the first few frames. However, storms have now struck back, and a big convective burst is ongoing to the east of the center of 99L. I'll be watching this burst on my twitter @conweather so be sure to follow that.
So whats next for 99L? It's still incredibly unclear. Like shockingly unclear. Where's it headed? No idea. How strong will it get? I don't know. With such uncertainty I decided to make the most useless cone ever.
I think its a given that intensity is pretty unclear at this point. But timing is also unclear. This is because with such a wide cone, if it were to track into Tampa, it would get there days before reaching Louisiana. There's also the fact that some models stall out 99L like the euro and UKMET which would take longer to make landfall too.
Speaking of the euro, boy did it take steroids today! After several runs of not developing 99L at all, it takes a strong, 964 millibar hurricane into the Alabama/Florida border. This is just one operational model, so I'm not putting too much stock in it. Also the ensembles aren't nearly as impressed.
I'm not going to go over all the models tonight, because that would be such a big waste of time. I really don't like talking about specific models on this website, but I do think I'm going to do a just models post tomorrow. This'll probably be out around late morning.
Isn't it the most wonderful time of the year? Have a great night everybody and if any gulf coasters are reading this, please play close attention to the weather. Things could change very fast.