2015 Hurricane Season

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:02 pm

TROPICAL STORM HENRI... AND IDA?

The Tropical Depression 8 that I mentioned yesterday has briefly reached Tropical Storm status. The prediction remains the same for a visit to Europe but there is a small chance it could go north of the UK.

The remnants of Grace have formed a Tropical Wave bringing widespread heavy rain to the Eastern Caribbean and Tobago. This should clear in about 24 hours.

So what next?

Ida is next, but will Ida form from a new disturbance in the Gulf of Mexico or from a new Tropical Wave manifesting itself off Africa that the NHC is already monitoring. It's a matter of time but the loser will be called Joaquin.

I will post an update tomorrow if anything significant happens but, meanwhile, I hope the rains over the Caribbean relieve the drought problems.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Sat Sep 12, 2015 12:08 am

HALF WAY THROUGH THE HURRICANE SEASON

Well, so far, this season's activity has been marginally above average in terms of the number of Storms that have spawned, however, nothing major has materialised.

Erika has made the biggest impact even as a weakening Tropical Storm and Dominica was hardest hit with an estimated 30 fatalities all related to the rainfall and consequent flooding.

It is raining again now in Dominica as the remnants of Tropical Storm Grace bring widespread and heavy rainfall to the Windward Islands of the Caribbean ... we should never tire of the warnings that it does not take a major Hurricane to threaten life ... rain is often the most likely killer.

At this mid-way point of the Hurricane Season the global climate is experiencing a potentially record breaking El Nino developing in the eastern Pacific ... this event has, at the very least, an indirect impact on weather patterns across the whole world as the heat builds up in the Pacific Ocean and along the western coasts of the Americas.

Evidence of El Nino's influence is already apparent in the Caribbean as approaching Storms have been sheared away by the hostile environment and this can even reverse the seasonal trade winds that pick up during the dry season ... this strong El Nino has yet to peak.

With this situation in mind, the risks of a major Storm infiltrating and surviving in the Caribbean is reducing as we reach the second and typically more active half of the Hurricane season. Maybe one or 2 ...maybe none.

As said earlier, El Nino can impact weather patterns around the world and alter the tracks of the jet streams, bringing warmer and wetter weather to environments that would normally experience dryness and cold and vice versa.

As far as Tobago and most of the Caribbean is concerned, El Nino could cause above average rainfall during the dry season, particularly if the trade winds are impacted by the El Nino event.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Sun Sep 13, 2015 10:06 pm

4 DISTURBANCES

1. In the Gulf just off the Mexican Coast. Although there is little confidence of this disturbance becoming a Tropical Storm, it is producing heavy rains and is the biggest current threat to any landmass. Already rain is affecting Mexico and Texas may need to keep an eye on this slow moving disturbance.

2. Remnants of Grace are stubborn to move on into the Caribbean and is still dumping localised areas of rain over the eastern Caribbean.

3. NHC are giving a 70% chance of a Tropical disturbance in the mid Atlantic Tropics becoming a Tropical Depression. It certainly looks like a spinner but it is likely to swing north and miss the Caribbean altogether.

4. Behind No. 3, a new Tropical Wave is showing early signs of development ... too early to say what the future is on this one so I will update later in the week.

The ITCZ is also quite lively with thunderstorms setting off almost all along the ITCZ between Africa and South America. Disturbance No. 3 is loosely embedded in the ITCZ and it remains to be seen if the ITCZ will settle down (if and) when Disturbance No. 3 breaks free and becomes IDA.

No threats to Tobago but there is a high risk of persistent rain at times throughout this very active week.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Sep 14, 2015 9:43 pm

3 DISTURBANCES AND EX-TROPICAL STORM HENRI PAYS A VISIT TO THE UK

From yesterday's post we can discount the Grace remnants ... there is no chance of Grace redeveloping although this system is bringing heavy rain to Jamaica and Cuba.

Tropical Storm Ida looks set to form in the mid-Atlantic any time now ... this one does not pose any threats to land.

Another Tropical Wave that I referred to moving off Africa is steadily developing some spin and could be a feature to watch by Wednesday.

What was Tropical Storm Henri has moved across southern England bringing very heavy rain today and the north east of England can expect some pretty hefty downpours tonight as the system moves slowly into the North Sea.

This system has reportedly spawned a few tornadoes already and will introduce a very disturbed period of weather for the UK for the rest of this week.

Tobago is having reasonable weather as most of the Tropical Wave activity affecting the eastern Caribbean is to the north of Tobago ... however the risk of heavy rain for Tobago this week is still high.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Sep 15, 2015 10:03 pm

DOWN TO 2 DISTURBANCES

The Gulf disturbance has petered out and we are left with 2 systems in the mid-Tropical Atlantic.

It looks like both of these potential Storms with go north of the Caribbean and probably track north and eventually north east.

There is a worrying trend here from the perspective of Europe and particularly France and the UK with a jet-stream that can pick up these systems and carry them right up the English Channel ... perhaps Autumn is coming early this year.

Tobago had a good dose of rain today from the stubborn system that has been raining over the Eastern Caribbean for the last few days.

The rest of this week looks unsettled for most of the Caribbean.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Thu Sep 17, 2015 9:45 pm

THIS WEEKEND

This is my last post until Sunday as I am off on a trip this weekend.

As reported in recent posts there are 2 developments in the Atlantic that pose no threats.

The only threat that could arise in my absence is around Florida where a disturbance appears to be developing.

Tobago is still under threat of rain as is most of the Caribbean ... I will post on Liquid Sunshine on Sunday if I survive the weekend.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Sun Sep 27, 2015 9:50 am

IDA and Co

Ida is a downgraded Tropical Storm in the middle of the Atlantic. This system has been hanging around with little movement over the past week. Currently no threat to land and weakening.

If IDA survives the next 48 hours there is a small chance that the system could speed up and take a westerly direction towards the northern Windward Islands ... main threat would be rain.

Elsewhere ... a disturbance around the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico could bring some heavy rain to these areas and to the southern states of the US this week. It does not look like becoming anything significant but the NHC are monitoring this ... the biggest danger from this system looks like rainfall.

Another disturbance east of Florida was showing potential for development but the chances of this are reducing ... NHC is monitoring this system as well.

The weather coming off the west coast of Africa is a little messy and there does not appear to be a sign of a strong Tropical Wave so a low risk of anything new in the Tropical Atlantic for the next few days.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Sep 29, 2015 11:44 pm

TROPICAL STORM JOAQUIN

There is a potential convergence going on north of the Bahamas.

A system is producing heavy rains over Florida; the remnants of Ida are still hanging around in the Atlantic with the NHC giving Ida a 50% chance of regeneration over the next 5 days and right in between we have Joaquin.

These 3 disturbances are getting closer to each other and Weather Gurus are monitoring this with some fasination.

Joaquin is rapidly strengthening and could be a Hurricane already though NHC has not yet made this designation official.

The environment for Joaquin is also improving plus the sea in the area is exceptionally warm.

So, there is a lot of energy kicking off in the area to the north of the Bahamas and the interaction of these systems could prove to be very dangerous for the Bahamas and the eastern US coast.

Joaquin is moving south westwards towards the Bahamas but is expected to turn back north ... the question is how close Joaquin will get to the Bahamas before it turns north ... this is not about the accuracy of forecasting, it is about the inaccuracies and the wide spread of the track projections churned out by the various Weather Models ... I would recommend a Hurricane watch is declared for the Bahamas immediately.

If Joaquin misses that is OK but at least everyone in the Bahamas will have been prepared because, right now, Joaquin could go anywhere and we have the added complication of 2 more disturbances either side.

In such a short space of time since I doubted anything new would occur within a few days we are now looking at the first real threat of a major hurricane this season that could directly affect landmasses in the north Caribbean and the eastern US.

Tobago is safe though.

I will post an update tomorrow.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Wed Sep 30, 2015 11:31 pm

HURRICANE JOAQUIN

This is now looking quite nasty.

We have a strengthening Hurricane approaching the Bahamas. The winds have been picking up over the Islands and these are going to strengthen steadily and those Islands closest to the centre of Joaquin will be in for a battering.

But there's more ... rainfall totals of in excess of 20 inches will be dumped on the Bahamas and this, coupled with a Storm surge, will bring considerable flooding.

Joaquin is slow moving at about 6 mph and this is why I believe the Bahamas will get the worst of this Hurricane. It will move south west deep into the Bahamas and then turn back towards the north and this gives some Islands a double dose or continuous wind and rain for up to 3 days.

When Joaquin turns to the north then the focus changes to 'where next' and, of course, before the Bahamas are even hit there is speculation of what could happen if a landfall took place on the east coast of the US. For starters, Joaquin should be moving more quickly by then and is likely to weaken and dissipate quite quickly as soon as it moves over land.

But there is a little twist because the remnants of Tropical Storm Ida are getting their act together. Moisture from this, Joaquin and the recent disturbance from Mexico is expected to converge as Joaquin moves north ... so the greatest threat to the eastern US, even if Joaquin stays out to sea, is very heavy rain and lots of it.

For now, our thoughts should be focused on the Bahamas where conditions are going to be extremely dangerous for the next 48 to 72 hours.

In Tobago it is raining as low pressure builds from the South American mainland.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Thu Oct 01, 2015 7:56 pm

CATEGORY 4 HURRICANE JOAQUIN

The situation over the Bahamas is looking rather grave tonight as Joaquin increases in strength and could increase further in strength as the Hurricane stalls and slowly turns back towards the north by Friday night.

We are talking about sustained wind speeds of 125 to 140 mph that will batter areas close to the centre of the Hurricane.

The direct impacts of Joaquin will spread throughout it's windfield and rain canopy as far as Cuba and Haiti.

This is a Hurricane of historic proportions that has defied the theory of the El Nino's ability to snuff out prospects of major Storm development ... this Storm has simply found the best place to spawn.

Unfortunately, no matter what precautions have taken place in the Bahamas, the consequences of this Storm look very grave and this is mainly due to the length of time Joaquin will batter these Islands with wind, rain and tidal surges until Friday night.

Beyond that, the outlook for the eastern coast of the US is also grim, even if Joaquin does not make landfall.

3 areas of high moisture (including Joaquin) are expected to converge, bringing very severe pressure gradients and extreme rainfall conditions to a large area of the east coast of the US ... this will go on all weekend.

Wish there could be something positive to say.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Hugh S » Fri Oct 02, 2015 1:25 am

Thanks for the updates, Paul.
Wish us luck - flying POS to MIA leaving 7 am Saturday.

Can they just go around the windy places? :?

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Fri Oct 02, 2015 10:36 pm

HURRICANE JOAQUIN AND A WET CARIBBEAN

Best of luck on your flight Hugh. It looks like you are leaving the rain in Trinidad for some more rain in Miami.

Today has been a very wet day across the whole Caribbean with very few areas having any sunshine at all. Ironically, parts of Cuba not far away from Hurricane Joaquin seemed to have had a nice day or perhaps I should describe it as an extremely very very really good day in comparison to the sustained and undeserved punishment being unleashed on the Bahamas.

Joaquin is now well set in a turn back to the North. Hurricane conditions are still affecting most of the Bahamas and will continue to do so for several hours yet. Tomorrow morning will bring relief and the Islands can begin the damage assessments.

Hurricane Joaquin, being a major hurricane, is wobbling a little in strength due to an eye-wall recycle. When this is complete there is a chance of further strengthening but this will be short-lived and weakening is likely as Joaquin's speed increases to the north over steadily reducing sea temperatures.

The Weather Models now all seem to agree that Joaquin will not make landfall anywhere on the east coast of the US but will still be an indirect influence as heavy swells from the Hurricane batter the coastline. In addition, the extreme rain conditions in the eastern US that I mentioned yesterday will be boosted by the proximity of Joaquin. These areas are in for a very wet weekend after already having heavy rainfall over the last 2 days.

Early next week Joaquin will be swallowed up and carried east by the northern jetstream and there is a good possibility that the ex-hurricane will add some energy to a large depression forming over the North Atlantic ... autumn will then announce it's arrival over the UK and Northern Europe during the latter half of next week.

Elsewhere, the gregarious Ida seems to be shaping up again although any redevelopment will be short-lived ... again, ex-Ida could add energy to the Northern Atlantic weather systems.

A new strong Tropical Wave has emerged off the coast of Africa. The NHC are monitoring it but it is early days. None of the Cape Verde Waves have reached the Caribbean as Hurricanes this year.

Expect the widespread unsettled weather to continue across all areas of the Caribbean this weekend.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Sat Oct 03, 2015 9:33 am

JOAQUIN MOVING NORTH

Conditions are improving over the Bahamas as Hurricane Joaquin gets into a northerly stride.

Although the winds will have decreased, the Bahamas will receive plenty more rain today. I have not yet seen any reliable reports of damage or fatalities but I am sure these will become apparent as power and communication networks are restored to the Bahamas.

Joaquin is not expected to make landfall in the US although Bermuda needs to keep an eye out. This does not necessarily improve matters for the US because of the strong outflow streaming away from the north west quadrant of Joaquin and over the east coast of the US. This will merge with the already rainfall laden system over the US and has the potential to dump record breaking volumes of rain over this area.

Another strong south easterly outflow from Joaquin was responsible for most of the rain that affected the Caribbean yesterday and this was combined over the south eastern Caribbean with low pressure pluming up from South America.

I can safely say that Joaquin has had a widespread impact on the general weather across most of the Caribbean.

Joaquin's strength is rather academic due to the role this Storm will play with other weather systems in the western Atlantic ... I feel sure Joaquin's name will be retired when the powers-that-be carry out their review of the 2015 Hurricane Season.

I am watching a new Tropical Wave that is about a third of the way across the Atlantic. Low risks for now but will keep watching.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Sun Oct 04, 2015 9:50 am

JOAQUIN PASSING BERMUDA TODAY

About 5 days ago, Hurricane Joaquin was going to ram into the US east coast. After days of adjustments, Joaquin is going to affect Bermuda ... it pays to keep updated on the forecasts !!

Joaquin is weakening so Bermuda should be able to handle Joaquin. This Island is always well prepared for Hurricanes.

News is being issued about the Bahamas ...it doesn't look good at all because most of the communications are still down.

The strong outflow from Joaquin is still affecting eastern parts of the Caribbean.

After Bermuda, Joaquin will race across the northern Atlantic, still as a powerful Storm but without it's tropical characteristics. Initially it looks set to power into the UK but it looks like high pressure will build over the UK and northern Europe which may block Joaquin's path.

It's too early to tell.

More rain can be expected from another Tropical Wave that I have referred to in recent days. This one is about halfway across the Atlantic and should arrive in the eastern Caribbean during the middle of this week. It has a little potential for development but I think this is unlikely but it could pose a big rain event later this week for Tobago.

Keeping an eye on it.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Oct 05, 2015 10:25 pm

JOAQUIN OFF TO EUROPE

Relief efforts are underway in the Bahamas, still too early to tell on the damage.

Hurricane Joaquin has sped off across the Atlantic, giving Bermuda a bloody nose on the way.

What happens when Joaquin gets across the Atlantic is not certain. An autumnal storm could be whistling over the UK by Sunday but High Pressure may prevent this and push Joaquin further south.

If Joaquin is kept out at sea the conditions look perfect for a bit of surfing at Praia Nazare in Portugal ... famous for it's 100+ feet waves.

Meanwhile, the little rain disturbance I have been watching over the last few days in the mid-Atlantic should bring some rain to the Caribbean by Thursday.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Hugh S » Sat Oct 10, 2015 1:09 pm

On our October 3rd flight to Miami I took many photos of the turquoise waters below and didn't realize at the time that I was getting the southern edge of Hurricane Joaquin too:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/lifelover4/21968529042/
Exhale_1488-Sm.jpg

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Steve Wooler » Mon Oct 12, 2015 9:18 am

Hi Hugh

Nice one! Was that taken from the small window on a regular commercial flight?
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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Hugh S » Mon Oct 12, 2015 12:24 pm

Thanks Steve!

Yes, taken from 34,000'. I have gotten pretty good at removing the plane window haze in Photoshop.

Hugh 8)
Last edited by Hugh S on Mon Oct 12, 2015 1:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Steve Wooler » Mon Oct 12, 2015 12:41 pm

Wow - I'm truly impressed. I've never tried it but always figured that it wouldn't be worth trying to photograph anything from a plane window, given the state of most planes that I've tried. The one exception was Concorde where I got some amazing shots of a sunset some 30 years ago. In fairness, that was probably the last time I had a window seat. She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed always grabs the window seat and the only view I get is the back of her head.
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Re: 2015 Hurricane Season

Post by Hugh S » Mon Oct 12, 2015 1:17 pm

Steve,

I shoot RAW with my little Canon S100 - much easier to keep at the ready in the seat pocket. Lightrooom now has a Dehaze filter that helps.

Luckily, my SWMBO prefers the aisle.

Hugh 8)

PS. https://www.flickr.com/photos/lifelover4/21406390790/

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