2005 Hurricane Season

Weather reports, questions and comment.

2005 Hurricane Season

Postby Paul Tallet » Mon May 23, 2005 8:09 pm

I have started this new thread to focus on the forthcoming Hurricane Season for 2005.

Hopefully, there will be no Hurricane developments for Tobago in 2005 … it is unlikely … but another above average season is predicted by the NOAA this year.


Prediction

It will be a matter of how far above average it will be.

The majority of the activity is predicted to take place in August, September and October when the Sea Surface Temperatures are at their highest.


Bases of the Prediction

The National Hurricane Centre has used the following factors in providing it’s prediction …

• Historical records
• Sea Surface Temperatures (SST)
• Trade Winds/Air Flows

Historically, there have been 2 active Hurricane periods in the Caribbean … up to 1970 and from 1995 to date.

The 25 year period from 1970 to 1994 (inclusive) was relatively quiet in terms of the number of Hurricanes that developed although there was the odd nasty one during this period.

During this 25 year period of reduced activity, the Sea Surface Temperatures were lower and the Trade Winds were consistent and strong.

Active Hurricane Seasons have, historically, been consistently associated with higher Sea Surface Temperatures and weak Trade Winds.

The current Sea Surface Temperatures (AKA … hurricane fuel !!) are very high and the Trade Winds are very weak which allows vertical winds to form Hurricanes from Tropical Waves or Disturbances more readily.

The only uncertainty is a relatively new phenomenon called ‘El Nino’ which can reduce Hurricane activity as it did in the 1997 and 2002 seasons.

If we have an El Nino then maybe that could be good but this can cause more widespread and unusual weather events outside of the tropics.

The NOAA will issue another report on the El Nino conditions in August.


Tobago

During highly active Hurricane seasons it would be unwise to completely discount the possibility of experiencing a Hurricane in Tobago.

Tobago is one of the least likely islands to be affected but, during active seasons, the potential band of probabilities widens across the Caribbean (i.e.; more Hurricanes can affect more areas as they rarely follow the same track).

Consequently, active seasons can bring surprises, as 2004 did for Tobago.

Lightening does not normally strike twice so, the probabilities would suggest no problems for Tobago in 2005 … but I have a sense that 1 or 2 Hurricanes could produce some surprises this year somewhere.

Don’t forget … Florida was caught no less than 3 times last year.


2005 Names

The NOAA has issued the following 21 names for the 2005 Season.

Arlene … Bret …Cindy …Dennis …Emily … Franklin … Gert … Harvey … Irene … Jose … Katrina … Lee … Maria … Nate … Ophelia … Phillipe … Rita … Stan … Tammy … Vince … Wilma.


Summary

If there is any Hurricane Activity in the Caribbean I will post it here for the record.

I will endeavour to keep you all informed … if the media can fail to keep small places like Tobago and Grenada informed (as in 2004) then the myTobago forum will keep the rest of the world informed.

Watch this space.

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Postby M Smith » Wed May 25, 2005 2:16 pm

Is it correct that hurricanes occur generally sept-october time? I take it that they dont occur in June/July as a rule?
I thought that Tobago was outside of the 'hurricane belt'???.. forgive my ignorance.. am a bit confused!
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Postby Paul Tallet » Wed May 25, 2005 5:00 pm

Hurricanes can occur at any time between May and December although the activity normally peaks between August and November when the Sea Surface Temperatures are higher and the conditions become more cyclonic.

Tobago is in the Hurricane belt but it is fair to say that it is on the lower (southern) fringes of the belt and therefore less likely to experience as much hurricane activity as more northern parts of the Caribbean.

Hope this helps.
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Postby Jill M » Wed May 25, 2005 5:47 pm

Paul,

Is there another hurricane belt in the southern hemisphere or is it just in the north ? Also does the hurricane belt extend to Asia at the same time of year?

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Postby Paul Tallet » Wed May 25, 2005 6:15 pm

Jill

Hurricanes are called Typhoons in the Asian areas.

Hurricanes/Typhoons also occur in the southern hemisphere ... it is just a different season.

Hope this helps
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Postby Jill M » Wed May 25, 2005 8:21 pm

Thanks Paul.

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Postby Paul Tallet » Wed Jun 08, 2005 8:34 pm

The first Tropical Storm activity of the season seems to be developing just south of Cuba and west of Jamaica this evening.

If you want to look at the circulation developing ... the best satloops I have found on this circulation are here ...


http://www.goes.noaa.gov/HURRLOOPS/huirloop.html


Go see ...

I wonder ... amongst the mass of cloud can you see the little circulation forming just off the west of Jamaica? A little 'eye' seems to have formed just close to Jamaica.

I am wondering if the eye will still be there tomorrow morning.

Have fun

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Postby Paul Tallet » Thu Jun 09, 2005 5:06 pm

Tropical Storm 'Arlene'.

Born Cayman Islands, 2005.06.09.

Heading towards Cuba and likely to affect Florida in the next few days.

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some weather links

Postby V Fabry » Thu Jun 09, 2005 7:45 pm

I liked the animation of the tropical storm a lot. Don't you have some nice weather links where you find this kind of stuf? Thanks again
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Postby Paul Tallet » Thu Jun 09, 2005 9:53 pm

Yes V

The most colourful one is here ...

http://stormcarib.com/index.htm#disc

Click on the image and you have many options.

There are lots of others but I guess that will have you happy for now.

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Postby Paul Tallet » Tue Jun 28, 2005 11:34 pm

Look to the west of the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico.

There are signs of a developing Tropical Storm ... the 2nd to develop in the Caribbean this season.

No worries for Tobago ... likely to cause havoc over western areas of the Caribbean.

Keeping you posted.

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Postby Paul Tallet » Wed Jun 29, 2005 8:44 am

Tropical Storm 'Bret'.

Born 2005.06.28, off Mexico.

No major development expected.

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Looking ahead

Postby Bob White » Thu Jun 30, 2005 10:01 pm

Thanks for all this fantastic weather info. Paul.

We are spending the last week of July and the whole of August on the island. The weather at this time last year was some of the best we had experienced in the Caribbean during the so called wetter season. Do you have any idea of the prospects for this year?

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Postby Paul Tallet » Fri Jul 01, 2005 7:37 am

Thanks Bob.

I cannot really see further than next Monday (4th July) at the moment.

It is impossible to predict weather based on trends at a certain time of year ... it is never the same but it will be more humid in August generally.

For now, it is a nice weekend but a very strong Tropical Wave is approaching for Sunday/Monday.

Cheers
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Weather patterns

Postby Bob White » Fri Jul 01, 2005 4:57 pm

Thanks for info. Paul. Our daughter is staying at our house at the moment so looks like she will enjoy a good weekend on the island before she flies home on Sunday. She says that it has been a sunshine and showers week.

Will take a regular peek at your updates until we fly out later this month.

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Postby Paul Tallet » Mon Jul 04, 2005 12:03 am

A Tropical Wave that affected Tobago last week and dumped huge volumes of rainfall over Jamaica towards the end of the week has now wound itself up into a potent looking Depression just off the coast of Belize.

This looks like it will track north west across the Yucatan Pensinsula of Mexico and in to the Gulf.

Landfall often weakens these developing Storms but the conditions are so good for Tropical Storm development in the Caribbean that I sense that the warm waters of the Gulf will revitalise this system and Tropical Storm 'Cindy' could be born in the Gulf over the next few days.

No worries for Tobago, but ... as I write, Tobago has enough to deal with from another Tropical Wave.

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Postby Paul Tallet » Mon Jul 04, 2005 8:35 pm

Hi everyone

I have copied an update in Liquid Sunshine to this string due to the the weather activity over Tobago right now coupled with a summary of the Wet Season for 2005 so far.

As I always delete the posts on Liquid Sunshine each week I felt that I should copy it to this string for future reference ... should it be needed.



WEATHER UPDATE 4th JULY 2005. 2030 BST.

TROPICAL STORM DEVELOPMENT OVER TOBAGO?



I have been watching the effects of the Tropical Wave unfold today as the Wave is now starting to show the features of a developing Tropical Depression and likely to reach Tropical Storm status shortly … provided it stays over the Caribbean Sea.

The system is divided into two parts … an area to the west of Tobago and an area over Tobago and extending back to the east.

The eastern half of the system is showing the best signs of development and catching up and ‘enveloping’ with the more immobile western half … the eastern part is over Tobago right now.

There is now very little distance between the two parts and the satellite loops clearly show signs of anti-cyclonic circulation and I suspect we will see the two halves begin to merge and wrap around each other before the system moves on … probably north west … to cause problems elsewhere as a more powerful Storm.

So if you are in Tobago right now, you are experiencing the foetal stages in the development of a potential Tropical Storm.

There was very intense rainfall in Tobago overnight and then bands of lighter rain during the morning through to earlier this afternoon and now the real business from the eastern half of the system is now making it’s presence known … so there is still a high risk of very intense rainfall and stormy conditions throughout the rest of today and overnight.

I have seen a report from Grenada on the Carib Storm Site describing spectacular displays of lightening overnight, heavy rain and flooding although it goes on to say there did not seem to be much coming from the east during today !!

This corresponds with the quieter period during today over Tobago but I can assure Grenada that they have some more rainfall to come … this also applies to Barbados, the Dutch Antilles and many of the Windward Islands as far north as Puerto Rico.

The official forecast is for 2 more days of rain but I sense that there should be a gradual improvement for Tobago through late Tuesday.


Keep watching this space … and take care if you are travelling.



Elsewhere

The Tropical Depression off the Mexican Coast now appears to have tracked more to the north and is edging the eastern side of the Yucatan Pensinsula.

If this system stays over the sea it is going to develop into another Tropical Storm. The waters are very warm over the Gulf and I would wager a very small bet that this could develop into a weak hurricane before landfall in the southern US.

Over on the west coast of Mexico another Tropical Storm is brewing in the Pacific and so Mexico is getting attacked from both sides.


Summary

Reflecting on the 2005 wet season so far …

I recall a sensational newspaper report in the Tobago News last May that suggested we may have 12 (from recollection) Tropical Waves in the 2005 season … implying that this was a lot !!

In actual fact, there are normally more than that every year and we have exceeded that figure already for 2005.

There were 2 Tropical Waves in May before the season even started.

Throughout June to date there have been 2 or 3 Tropical Waves per week and, of these, 2 have formed into short lived Tropical Storms (3 if you count one that formed on the Pacific side of Mexico). 1 of these came close to Hurricane status.

Not all of these Tropical Waves affected Tobago … but this is a lot for the Caribbean as a whole.

In the first week of July we have 4 Tropical Waves, 2 of which are developing into Tropical Storms (3 if we count the second one to attack Mexico from the Pacific side).

This is turning out to be a very active season (so far) … so how could it change? … how can it stop? …what do we need? …

El Nino … that would reduce this activity but that will not be apparent until August/September.

If El Nino comes later this year … good for the Tropics … bad for the rest of the world.

You can’t win !!!

Erm … by the way … another Tropical Wave is on the way … ETA – Thursday.


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Postby Paul Tallet » Tue Jul 05, 2005 12:03 pm

Hi everyone.

Another update posted on Liquid Sunshine on Tropical Depression 4, now intensifying to Tropical Storm status near Tobago ... for the record.

This will be deleted from Liquid Sunshine later this week.



[b]WEATHER UPDATE 5th JULY 2005. 1200 BST.

TROPICAL STORM DEVELOPMENT OVER TOBAGO
[/b]

As predicted, the system over Tobago has developed and is now Tropical Depression 4 and expected to develop further into a Tropical Storm.

Tobago is under the outer eastern convective bands of the Storm and is still being affected by some intense bursts of rain, some of which have been quite prolonged.

These bursts of rain are now coming from the south west as the storm system has developed quite a strong circulation.

This system is now going to move on through the middle of the Caribbean and affect areas such as Cuba, Jamaica and Puerto Rico and is likely to develop further into a small hurricane in the Gulf if it can carry it’s power over these larger Islands.

As for Tobago … conditions are improving although another Tropical Wave is expected to arrive Wednesday night into Thursday … this is not expected to be anywhere near to the potency of the recent Wave but may bring some heavy rain at some point.

I will keep you posted.

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Postby Paul Tallet » Tue Jul 05, 2005 2:26 pm

Unfortunately, the weather is now deteriorating from the back end of this developing storm ... the latest Liquid Sunshine update is posted here for the record.

WEATHER UPDATE 5th JULY 2005. 1430 BST.

SEVERE WEATHER - VERY INTENSE RAIN


Follow up to my earlier post today.

Tobago is getting the ‘sting in the tail’ from this developing storm.

Intense rainfall has been affecting Tobago from a convective band at the back end of the Storm and this has been going on for the last 4 or 5 hours.

Another strong convective burst has just formed around the south of Tobago and this very, very intense rainfall will continue for another few hours.

This is likely to cause some major mudslides in hilly areas.

Conditions are increasingly dangerous due to the volumes of rain that have already fallen … please take care and do not travel anywhere unless it is absolutely necessary.

Defer any plans until tomorrow (Wednesday) … it’s looking better for then.


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Postby Paul Tallet » Tue Jul 05, 2005 4:54 pm

Tropical Storm 'Dennis' has been born.

Just to the west of Tobago ... 2005.07.05.

I think I will call him 'Dirty Den' in recognition of the sleepless nights he has given me as I have tracked him over the last 8 days since Wave formation off the west Coast of Africa and the havoc he has caused over Tobago, Barbados, Grenada and the Dutch Antilles in the last few days ...

... not to mention the havoc he could cause around Jamaica and Cuba towards the weekend.

Dirty Den needs watching ... this could be the first significant hurricane of the season.

Also note that this is the earliest point in any season in recorded history when as many as 4 Tropical Waves have been active in and around the Caribbean at the same time ... :shock:

Let us hope that this trend does not continue.

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