2005 Hurricane Season

Weather reports, questions and comment.
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Paul Tallet
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Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Nov 14, 2005 7:05 pm

Erm ... No, Annabelle

There is no sign of a let up but the intensity of the rain is beginning to reduce gradually.

I expect that rain will prevail on and off for another 12 and possibly 24 hours ... but it will gradually become lighter.

This system is now winding itself up into a Tropical Storm ... the centre is situated about a hundred miles west of St Lucia and a tail of heavy precipitation loops round to the east and south down to Tobago and the Orinoco river estuary in Venezuela.

As Tropical Storm development takes place, the system could just swing south a little before it tracks in a westward motion across the southern Caribbean.

The further it stays to the south, away from the westerlies that I have spoken of, the more we could be speculating about hurricane activity towards the Central Americas towards the end of this week.

As far as Tobago, Trinidad, Grenada, Barbados and the Islands as far north as Antigua are concerned, this is a significant rain event and, locally, a serious flooding event with the potential for loss of life.

I have so far seen reports of flooding and high winds from Barbados and the Grenadines.

This has been a very stubborn Storm that has fought well against very inhospitable westerly shear ... we can be thankful that the westerlies were there as otherwise matters could have been much more serious for the whole of the south eastern Caribbean.

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Paul Tallet
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Roger D.
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Post by Roger D. » Mon Nov 14, 2005 9:47 pm

Hi Paul;
WOW, this is really strange weather. Is'nt this kind of late for TS development or can it still be expected this late in the season. How strong are the winds ?
Roger

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Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Nov 14, 2005 9:58 pm

Hi Roger ... glad you enjoyed your hols and thank you for your kind words on your return ... surely I am not worthy of such generous compliment?

This weather is not strange to Tobago for the very same thing happened with tragic consequences exactly one year ago so I guess the 2nd week of November each year is going to be blackened for a while.

As this is a record breakingly active season I have a hunch that it will be a longer season, after all it started with the first 2 Tropical developments in May/June 2005 before the official start of the season in late June.

The winds are currently around 30 to 40 knots near the centre of the Storm way out to sea however there have been reports of localised squalls taking down palm trees in the Grenadines.

This Storm could develop significantly as it makes it's way towards the Central Americas ...

... for now I would be interested to hear that everyone is safe in Tobago ... they have had a lot of rain and there is more to come, albeit not at quite the intensity of the last 10 hours.

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Christian Buur

Post by Christian Buur » Mon Nov 14, 2005 10:39 pm

Hi Paul. My first post. wee.

You made me a little nervous now. I'll arrive in Tobago on thursday with BA around 17:00 local time. Hopefully...

I understand that this is serious business, but cannot figure exactly how serious. Should I be worried that flights are cancelled and things stop working in complete chaos?
Is air traffic working?
Does hotel Staff go to work?
"Life threathening" - is that as in "don't come here - stay home - cancel your flight" or as in "when your plane arrives with no problems and the staff welcomes you as always, you might want to stay in and read a book the first night"?

I'm sorry for this egoistic approach. I of course hope everybody is all right and that materialistic damage is at a minimum.

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Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Nov 14, 2005 11:27 pm

Hi Christian

You will be OK by Thursday ... there may still be a bit of rain around but you will be OK ... and then the sun will shine upon you and all your worries will be forgotten.

When I say life threatening I mean this ... Tobago is a small Island with a dense rainforest and very steep slopes in the more hilly areas. When it rains hard it often causes mudslides and there is a threat to life if you are in the path of a fast moving landslip with a huge tree riding on it ... simple as that ... it can happen in any tropical place with small rivers and big hills.

Though not quite as bad as watching an English village being washed away ... it happens anywhere really !

The other risks during very heavy rain or windy/thundery conditions are as follows ... going out on a sailing or boat trip; trekking in the rainforest; driving, cycling or walking in remote (and especially hilly) areas.

The safest thing to do is to stay at your base or, preferably, a safe establishment that can supply you with vast quantities of Carib/Stag; Rum Punch etc and, as a last resort, a Ludo or Chess Board should you ever run out of things to talk about (which is unlikely :shock: )

Other than that, may I provide you with the kindest of welcomes to this most informative and illustrious forum ... have a go at the Competition and you may win a free trip :D .

You will not fail to have a very very enjoyable holiday.

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Paul Tallet
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Christian Buur

Post by Christian Buur » Tue Nov 15, 2005 12:01 am

Paul Tallet wrote:You will be OK by Thursday ... there may still be a bit of rain around but you will be OK ... and then the sun will shine upon you and all your worries will be forgotten.
(...)
You will not fail to have a very very enjoyable holiday.
Phew...
Thanks a lot for reassuring me there. I had already painted a pretty terrible worst case scenario inside my head. It's safely gone again and replaced by the much less disturbing scenario of playing ludo -> if everything goes wrong.

To be honest, I think it's the true meaning of "Thunder Storm" that caused this - English is not my mother tongue and the sound of it is pretty bad, as in 'plane cancelled and you must go to Gatwick and play Ludo for 2 weeks'-Storm :-)

Back on weather topic. Thanks again! Also for the warm welcome.

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Post by Roger D. » Tue Nov 15, 2005 12:46 am

Hi Paul;
Yes, you most certainly are worthy of such compliments :D and much more.

I got off the phone with my cousins about two hours ago, they live in the north-western part of Trinidad, they told me that the weather looks quite menacing outside, a bit windy but no rain. They had really heavy rain on Saturday, but so far and thank God there are no reports of any damage in Trinidad or Tobago.
Cheers
Roger

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Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Nov 15, 2005 12:56 am

Hi Roger

Thank you for the feedback.

It is clear over Trinidad right now and Tobago's rain is getting gradually lighter.

The main area of deep thundery activity is slipping south again and just touching Grenada ... it would be crazy if it came near Tobago again but this is a developing Storm with some real perseverance as it has fought gamely against the strong westerly shear.

Hopefully this is the beginning of the end but plenty of moisture abounds, coupled with another Wave in mid-Atlantic ... a bit of a wet week for Tobago but improving.

The Storm system has chances of reaching hurricane status in the next 2 or 3 days as the shear reduces and it approaches the Central Americas.

Give me a few more days and I may have something nice to say :roll:

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Paul Tallet
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Annabelle Oconnell

Post by Annabelle Oconnell » Tue Nov 15, 2005 12:50 pm

As always, the info on this site is amazing. Paul you really are brilliant :D

I'll be hearing from Trini tomorrow hopefully - I'll let you know what the news is.

PS: keep entering the competition when you can, people!

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Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Nov 15, 2005 4:31 pm

Thank you Annabelle

Yes ... I second that ... people ... get in the competition, support this site ... if not, just do it for me ... where else can I find my release for all the pent up weather forecasts inside of me ... 8-[ ??

Anyway ... onto the more serious matters ... :-k

There has been alot more rain today ... I have received reports of some flooding around Scarborough yesterday so I sense that matters will not have improved ... in fact I am very concerned.

At 0400 GMT this morning (about midnight Tobago time) another heavy burst of convection shot out of the main area of rainfall, southwards over Tobago.

This gave a very wet night and the rain has continued for all of today with a slight weakening in intensity.

The rainfall is still quite heavy but is now becoming more fragmented and should clear away in the next 12 hours.

There is still plenty of moisture around in the air so further outbreaks of rain are likely for the rest of this week.

I am sure there will be some sunny interludes along the way ...

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Post by Paul Tallet » Thu Nov 17, 2005 1:00 am

Well ... it is not perfect ... but it is alot better than it was earlier this week.

Regrettably there are reports of 2 deaths from landslides in St Vincent & The Grenadines ... no reports of any fatalities in Tobago so hope all is OK there.

Tropical Depression 27 was a strong depression that defied the very strong westerly shear for some time before it eventually gave up and is now being swallowed up by the nasty looking depression forming to the east of Nicaragua ... this has been an unsettled area all week.

The air is still very moist around Tobago although drier conditions are set to move in for the weekend ... there is still some rainfall to go before then although it should be generally light.

I am now reverting back to Liquid Sunshine for weather updates.

Thanks to all the contributors who have emailed me to keep me informed of the events on the ground and thanks to all those who have emailed their kind words ... I really am not worthy ... just wait until I get it completely wrong :roll: !!

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Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Nov 28, 2005 8:53 am

Tropical Storm Delta

As I hinted in last Saturday's weekly weather update, a stubborn Tropical Storm is making it's way towards the Canary Islands.

This should produce some very heavy rain and strong winds (currently sustained around 50 mph) in the next 24 to 48 hours and then plenty of rain is forecast for Morrocco thereafter.

This is the 25th Tropical Storm of the current season which officially ends in 2 days time and this is an unusual place to find a Tropical development, although not as bizarre as the Tropical Storm that affected Portugal in this very same season.

I wonder if any holiday makers decided to go to the Canary Islands as an alternative to the Storm ravaged Caribbean?

It is absolutely sublime in Tobago and most of the eastern Caribbean right now.

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Roger D.
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Post by Roger D. » Mon Nov 28, 2005 3:15 pm

Hi Paul;
This is certainly strange - A T.S. over Morrocco :shock:
I've been reading that the U.K./Europe is having a bit of a cold snap along with some snow.
Here in N.J. it was a bit cold last week 19 0F at night, but as of now it's 55 and expected to hit 65 by Wednesday - nice "spring" like weather we're having.
Take care, crank the furnace up. Hope you don't have to put those "wellies"
on soon.

Roger. :wink: [-o<

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Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Nov 28, 2005 6:29 pm

Hi Roger

Yes it is a bit nippy here in the UK ... a dusting of snow today but we always play up and never cope with these things ... brings life to a grinding halt ... it has been much worse in parts of France, Belgium, Holland and Germany and they seem to cope very well.

As for 'Delta' ... Gale to Storm force winds across the Canaries and Madeira are imminent ... that is winds of 50 to 65 mph with higher gusts to 80 - 90 mph ... so the advice is to stay off those Volcano trips where the winds will be at their worst.

Morocco next ... and then lets hope this is the last for the current season.

Tobago is still in the business of providing vast quantities of sunshine, warmth and generally idyllic conditions ... wish I was there !!

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Paul Tallet
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Annabelle Oconnell

Post by Annabelle Oconnell » Tue Nov 29, 2005 1:17 pm

You speak for us all probably Paul... No wonder people end up with credit card debt - one big knock of the winter blues in the UK combined with dreams of wonderful weather in a place you love... off with the application form :?

Luckily I have a degree of self-restraint :roll: but my word I'd rather be out there right now 8)

Must.... think... about... something...else

(yes I must be going mad)

Have a good day!

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Post by Paul Tallet » Wed Nov 30, 2005 10:50 am

For the record ... posted on Liquid Sunshine ...


WEATHER UPDATE – 30th NOVEMBER 2005 … 1100 GMT.

Today is the last day of the official Hurricane Season.

What happens?

Tropical Storm Epsilon forms to the east of Bermuda … this is the 26th Storm of the season and looks set to move north east and get swallowed up by a larger depression.

That aside … how is it going to affect Tobago’s very clement weather?

Epsilon is associated with a frontal trough that is running south towards the Amazon Basin and this is dragging moist air northwards off the mainland of South America and out into the Atlantic.

The western edge of this surge of moisture is just to the east of Tobago.

There is a small risk that Tobago could catch a few showers over the next day or two and anyone there may notice a rise in the humidity.


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Post by Paul Tallet » Sun Dec 04, 2005 7:04 pm

Hurricane Epsilon

This one is baffling the NOAA.

Epsilon has reached Hurricane status for the second time in 3 days over sub-tropical waters with SST of about 23 to 23 degrees centigrade over the mid northern Atlantic.

Although only Category 1, this is one of the strongest Hurricanes on record for December and could yet be the longest surviving Hurricane at this time of year.

According to all the weather models, Epsilon is forecast to swing around to the east, then south and then south west towards the Northern Windward Islands ... or is she/he?

I am now monitoring for further surprises but it seems very unlikely that Epsilon will cause any problems for any land masses at this time.

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Post by Paul Tallet » Sat Dec 31, 2005 12:24 am

Tropical Storm Zeta

A month has passed since the official end of the 2005 Hurricane Season.

Just as I thought it safe to put together my review for the season ... Zeta forms in the eastern Atlantic ... no threat to anywhere but quite remarkable considering the SST's are very low and ... it is a bit late for this kind of thing eh?

Anyway, one thing is for sure ... this is officially the last storm of the 2005 season ... if we get any more Storms forming after the 1st January then we will start at the beginning of the alphabet again ...

... bring on 2006 and give me a break until June please Mother !

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Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Jan 02, 2006 9:05 pm

TS Zeta

TS Zeta still baffles the experts ... there is no better way to interpret their frustration than to simply quote their words as follows:-

CLEARLY WE NEED AN INCREASED UNDERSTANDING OF
INTENSITY CHANGE FOR SYSTEMS IN THE SUBTROPICS SUCH AS
ZETA...EPSILON...VINCE...ETC. NOTWITHSTANDING... GLOBAL MODEL
FORECASTS INDICATE EVEN STRONGER UPPER-LEVEL FLOW OVER THE STORM
WITHIN 1-2 DAYS AND IT IS HARD TO CONCEIVE THAT A TROPICAL CYCLONE
WILL BE ABLE TO SURVIVE FOR VERY LONG IN SUCH A HOSTILE DYNAMICAL
ENVIRONMENT. THEREFORE I HAVE NOT BACKED OFF ON THE FORECAST OF
WEAKENING. OF COURSE...ZETA MAY HAVE OTHER IDEAS.

Zeta is now moving west towards the northern Caribbean ... records are already broken for a Storm like this to last so long at this time of year ... let a lone exist.

It is doubtful if any country is threatened at this stage ... but I guess this just goes to show that we all have alot to learn about the strange behaviour of the recent weather patterns ... even if the signs have been there for the last few years.

Regards (... philosophically)
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Post by Paul Tallet » Wed Jan 04, 2006 9:14 pm

Because this includes 'never before Tropical Storm experience in January' here is a copy of an update on Liquid Sunshine.

Hmmm ... should I start the Hurricane 2006 reports now ???




MID WEEK WEATHER UPDATE – 4th JANUARY 2006 … 2100 GMT.

Due to the influence of Tropical Storm Zeta and the consequent retraction of the Atlantic High and all the unseasonal aspects that arise from these events … here is a bonus weather update.

Firstly … Zeta … this came within a few knots of being the only hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic in January within the last 48 hours and continues to baffle the forecasters at the NOAA.

Zeta has sustained it’s identity despite an unfavourable upper air environment, not to mention rather low sea surface temperatures.

So on she jolly well goes, although the forecast is for dissipation within 120 hours, no one seems prepared to write Zeta off … not far off the eastern fringes of the Caribbean … Zeta is giving us a new experience … she has been around long enough to earn respect and should now be monitored very closely, even if it is for anoraks like me to learn something new … don’t forget, the 2005 Hurricane has me on over time !!


Secondly … The Atlantic High has receded. High pressure is instead building over a very moist South American mainland (I think I mentioned a High forming over Venezuela in my last update).

The moisture is no longer associated with the ITCZ … this is just rainforest moisture (i.e.; convective moisture) … and the High is sending a very strong jetstream of upper air westerlies swinging round towards the east in the southern half of the Caribbean … this is carrying the moisture away from the mainland and over the southern Caribbean.

Underneath all this are the easterly trades and to the north is a wide swathe of dry air pushing down through the centre of the Caribbean that, by the end of the week, will eventually push all this moisture away.


So, how is Tobago coping?

Very well actually … not much rain today but it has not been very far away … the risk of prolonged rain is close and, being convective, loses it’s potency as it is blown over the Caribbean Sea.

I guess those in Tobago will be wondering what any of this fuss is about.

Don’t ask me about Zeta … totally new experience … and having quite an effect on the weather patterns, albeit indirectly …

… I will copy this post to the Hurricane 2005 string for the record.



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Paul Tallet
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