Atlantic Sat Image

Atlantic Sat Image
Clouds over Atlantic

Monday, June 6, 2016

Poorly Organized "Colin"

Tropical Storm "Colin" is not a heathy system, but don't let that fool you. There's plenty of rain aiming for us and if that doesn't fall apart, the chances remain high for a big soaking this week.  As of the late morning update, strong storms are impacting areas from Ft. Myers north thru Tamps and points North.Flooding will be a major concern for the Tampa Area.

If you look at "Colin", you can't even tell its a tropical storm. No cloud cover to the west as upper winds interact with it shearing it apart. Most of the cloud cover and rain is either to the east or south of the poorly organized center.

It is such a ragged system that a morning recon mission noted "at least two small-scale circulation centers", this is not a good looking storm.

Working against it:

  • Strong upper winds will keep it in check.
  • It is also moving faster, moving at 14 mph, last night it was traveling to the North at 9 mph. 
This will not allow it to pick up the heat energy it needs to intensify.  Intensity forecasts call for no additional strengthening before making landfall.

BUT remember, intensity forecasting is not as precise as track forecasting.

Working for it:

  • It is traveling over the birth place of the Gulf Stream current, the "Loop Current". Tropical systems need at least 80F degrees of sea surface temps to grow and the temps here are in the mid 80s. Systems are like sponges soaking up all that heat but "Colin" is moving too fast to benefit from the jet fuel sitting in the Gulf.  Later on as it moves away from Florida and re-enters the Western Atlantic, it will once again travel over the Gulf Stream giving a small chance to pick up some intensity.

Where is it headed?

  • All the model data is convinced it will impact Florida's Big Bend, just north of Tampa, crossing over Jacksonville and entering the Atlantic Coastal waters afterwards. This is reflected in the forecast cone from NHC.

South Florida's impact:

  • Since the system is poorly organized and moving faster,  the impact forecast is not that clear for  Broward, Miami Dade, the Keys and Bahamas. 
  • The models pick up the lagging moisture and push it our way, whether it arrives is another story. If it does make it, it should arrive by tonight and Tuesday morning. 
  • These rain forecasts keep getting delayed and don't be surprised if they get pushed back again.

But if the rain makes it there's the possibility for heavy downpours and some street flooding.

What to watch?:

  • Here's the kicker. There's a front north of Florida that will continue to drag "Colin" Norttheast. 
  • Once the storm is in the Atlantic, that same front will drag the lingering moisture our way.  
  • This means the possibility of heavy rain. 

Thats what you should be monitoring. Stay tuned for the latest.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Rainy week from Colin

As of late Sunday night, Tropical Storm Colin remains a storm headed for Florida. The system itself looks rather week with most of the rain to the east of the center and that could be our worry. Also as the system gets trapped by a front across Northern Florida, more moisture could be headed our way. Notice all the clouds and rain over the Yucatan. That should move our way over the next 24-48 hours. If this pans out, it could be a soggy week ahead.

The forecast cone is still sending Colin to North Florida, but our impacts will be in the form of rain. Be attentive as some of the rain could be accompanied by gusty winds.

More updates as they warrant.

Tropical Storm Colin

As of 4:30 Sunday afternoon, what had been tropical depression three was upgraded to Tropical Storm "Colin". This makes it the earliest Tropical Storm on record to form in the Atlantic Basin.

As of 8pm, it had 40 mph winds, and was headed due North. But most of the rain is East and headed towards Cuba and Florida.

Here's the Latest Info:

  • Its moving North at around 10 miles per hour
  • As the loop shows, its not well organized as the western side is almost cloud free as upper winds interact with it.
  • Most of the heavy rain (Shown in the dark red colors) is aiming for Western Cuba and Florida.

Where is it headed?

The official cone from NHC suggests a possible landfall north of Tampa. The entire West Coast could get a huge soaking.

There is a flood advisory for SW Florida as they may get up to 5 inches of rain.

There is also the possibility of coastal flooding and erosion due to the strong surf. The strongest it may get, is 50mph and that's from going over the warm waters of the Gulf.

Its moving too fast for it to capitalize on that warmth.

South Florida impacts:
The Keys can expect rough surf, specially on the Gulf side, with gusty winds and some rain totals of up to 4" are possible.

Miami Dade and Broward:
Our main impact will be in the form of rain. If any of that big blob of rain continues to move NE, the rain should start to move in on Monday. The timing will be up to "Colin". There is a chance for some gusty winds and possible street flooding.  This soggy weather may stick around through midweek.

New tropical Depression 3 in Gulf

NHC is now issuing advisories on newly formed Tropical Depression Three. This is the latest :

The center of Tropical Depression Three
was located near latitude 21.9 North, longitude 88.1 West. The
depression is moving toward the north near 8 mph (13 km/h).  A
north-northeastward motion at a faster forward speed is expected
later today through Monday. On this track, the center of the
depression is forecast to approach the coast of the Florida Big Bend
area Monday afternoon.

Maximum sustained winds are near 35 mph (55 km/h) with higher gusts.
Some strengthening is forecast, and the depression is expected to
become a tropical storm before reaching the coast of Florida.

The estimated minimum central pressure is 1005 mb (29.68 inches).

As of this update:
  • The depression is accompanied by a large swath of showers and storms    
  • The winds have picked up to 35 mph
  • The pressure continues to drop which is a true tell-tale sign that the depression is intensifying and should become Tropical Storm "Colin" later Sunday evening.

The radar out of Cuba:

Is detecting heavy rain moving North into the Florida Straits. These pockets of rain will stay on a Northerly track throughout Sunday with most of them staying over the SW Coastal waters.  

One or two of these batches of rain may stray east impacting our area throughout the day.

Winds should pick up out of the South.

Sunday Morning Models:

They insist on taking TD 3 near Florida's Big Bend Area. This keeps So FL away from the main strike, but the side impacts may be just as strong.

We will be on the NE side of the system , AKA the "Dirty Sector", and this will mean :

Locally heavy rain and flooding possible, specially for the Florida Keys, SW Florida and the Tri County area.

Official NHC Cone:
Keeps would be "Colin" near the Big Bend.

What to prepare for:
Please keep in mind our impacts will all depend on the exact track and speed of the storm. If it stays on the road the models are suggesting, then this is what we can expect.

NWS says: Our main worry will be in the form of heavy rain

  • We may see totals between 2 and 5  inches, with even higher totals by SW Florida. 
  • Strong Storms 
  • Windy at times
  • The possibility of tornadoes specially for Collier County Sunday night-Monday morning.
  • Broward and Miami-Dade may see a slight tornado risk by Monday afternoon.
  • They Keys: Will see t-storms with possible offshore winds around 40 mph at times. Expect some pockets of heavy rain.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Storm in Gulf?

The area of clouds and rain in the Northwestern Caribbean Sea appears to be getting its act together this late Saturday . NHC says that surface observations show a broad area of low pressure forming. There are poorly organized thunderstorms starting to impact Cuba, mostly to the East of the alleged center.

The low will continue moving towards the Yucatan overnight, possibly moving into the Gulf of Mexico on Sunday.

This is when we expect the low to develop. NHC gives it a 80% chance that it could become a depression or a storm by then.

If it becomes a Storm it will be called, "Colin". We had "Bonnie" last month (and again this month) and "Alex" spun up in January.

Forecast track?

If it does develop, most of the models are indicating a path North of the Tampa area.

But these are preliminary runs. Since nothing has developed yet, there is no good starting point for the computers to use.

No good starting point means no good ending point. We should keep our eyes on this over the rest of the weekend.

What should we do?
For the time being, tune in from time to time and monitor the progress of this feature. This is a good reminder we are in hurricane season and you should be prepared for whatever Mother Nature sends our way.

  • Even if this low does not develop, we can expect possible heavy rainfall by the start of next week.  
  • Models are showing totals as high as 3-4 inches, with the higher totals by Collier County.  This may lead to localized street flooding, and even the potential for tornadoes.
  • A tornado worry may happen Sunday night for SW Florida and for the East Coast by Monday afternoon.  Make sure to have your notifications ON, on you favorite weather app. A weather radio is also a good idea to have.

Please be mindful all these possible impacts will depend on where exactly the system ends up.

A recon plane will go out on Sunday afternoon. Better idea by hen.

Friday, June 3, 2016

TS "Colin" by this weekend?

There is a good possibility we may have a tropical storm by the name of "Colin" in the Gulf of Mexico this weekend. If long range models are correct, the system could be near Tampa by the start of next week.

Lets catch up with the latest:
There is an area of disturbed weather in the Western Caribbean Sea that doesn't look like much right now, but models are being consistent that it will move into the Gulf by the weekend and organize.

The National Hurricane Center says there's a 70% chance that a depression or a storm could form in the area highlighted in red over the next 5 days.

The concern is, tropical systems need at least 80° of water temperature to grow and there's plenty of that in the Gulf.  Temps here are in the low to mid 80s. So there is enough fuel present to feed whatever develops.

If anything does develop it could track over the "Loop Current" which is one of the warmest spots in the Gulf and its also the birthplace of the Gulf Stream Current.

This area of concern has already been deemed Invest 93L (An area NHC would like to investigate further, the 3rd of the season in the Atlantic Basin) and very early computer model runs have been issued.  Take these with a grain of salt right now. Nothing has developed yet, and since there's no starting point, hence the ending points can be iffy.

Lets take a look at the European Model:
This one keeps whatever develops in the middle of the Gulf by Sunday with plenty of rain to the East that should start moving in here by Monday.

The GFS model:
Basically has the same set up with a little slower development. In this case the rain may move here later on Monday or Tuesday.

Hurricane Hunters:
A recon plane is on stand by for Saturday afternoon to investigate the area. This way the folks at NHC will get the crucial data they need to determine the possible development and track of this would be system.

The bottom line:
Regardless of formation, most models drag in a lot of moisture across South Florida by the start of next week. We could be dealing with heavy downpours, windy conditions, and even the possibility of isolated tornadoes.

This is the time to get prepared as hurricane season lasts through November and we've already seen plenty of activity in the Tropics.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Possible Low in Gulf this weekend

Activity is picking up in the Tropics. "Bonnie" came back to life after almost falling apart completely earlier this week. It is now a depression off the eastern Seaboard. It will continue to move away out to sea and be a worry only for the shipping lanes.

Something to Watch:
Even though there's nothing in the Gulf right now, NHC thinks that over the next 5 days, there's a 40% chance that an area of low pressure may develop there.


A look at the models:
The latest run from the GFS and Euro models are picking this up and reflecting it in their forecasts . Remember, at this point they are giving us an educated guess. Since nothing has developed yet, there's no good starting point. No starting point means no ending point and thus no precise area as to where it may end up. But these are two decent models and they are both showing a possible area of low pressure near Central Florida. 

The GFS:
The GFS places the low offshore Tampa by Tuesday. Mostly heavy rain there, some downpours for us. 

The Euro:
Its delaying the arrival of the low, meaning more possible rain for us. Trailing moisture should swing up from the Caribbean and if its correct, it could mean flooding for South Florida.

A recon plane is on stand-by to check out this area of the Gulf on Saturday.

I want to stress that NOTHING has organized yet. This is a great time to make sure you are ready in case Mother Nature throws something our way. I'll be keeping you updated.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

NHC looking at area in Gulf

Wednesday was the official start of hurricane season and with 2 systems under the belt already, we are looking at what may happen next.  NHC is eyeing the possibility of a low developing over the next 5 days in the Southeastern Gulf of Mexico. NOTHING has developed yet, but models are hinting at conditions being favorable for a "Low" to be stirring by the weekend.

NHC is giving this possibility, a 20% chance of actually developing over the next 5 days.

The GFS model shows what could be a real soggy mess for us with heavy rain by next Monday from Western Cuba through much of Florida.

This is worthy of watching because early in the hurricane season we focus on the NW Caribbean, the Gulf and the Coastal waters of  the Middle Atlantic States, as areas favorable for development.

 Even if nothing happens, it does appear we will see the possibility of breezy conditions and tropical downpours by the start of next week.  

Its been an active year thus far, even outside of hurricane season. We can already check off 2 names on the list for this season.