2008 Hurricane Season

Weather reports, questions and comment.
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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Aug 25, 2008 3:05 pm

TROPICAL DEPRESSION 7 ... UPDATE ... 25TH AUGUST 2008 ... 1600 BST

It's not fair ... Invest 94 has just been upgraded to Tropical Depression status and is likely to be named TS Gustav as it spins towards Haiti (AGAIN!) ... then Cuba and, possibly, Florida.

It is developing quite quickly.

Hurricane strength cannot be ruled out but I am concerned for these areas that have already taken alot of punishment and loss of life from TS Fay.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Aug 25, 2008 9:57 pm

TROPICAL STORM GUSTAV ... 25TH AUGUST 2008 ... 2300 BST

As expected.

Gustav is about to hit Haiti and the prediction models are generally suggesting a swing to the west across the length of Cuba.

If Gustav spends time over land this is a Stormy rain event ... if he tracks to the south of Cuba and stays over sea water he could become a major hurricane and of significant concern.

A wide swathe from Florida to the Caymans are at risk. There is considerable uncertainty about the future track.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Aug 26, 2008 6:52 am

TS GUSTAV ... UPDATE 26TH AUGUST 2008 ... 0745 BST

It's looking very ominous for Haiti (2nd time in a week) as Gustav is possibly a Hurricane right now and I expect the NHC to confirm this later today.

Of further concern is the track which is looking increasingly likely to be west north west over the sea between Jamaica and Cuba and then into the Gulf as a powerful hurricane ... I am sure the media will be reporting on this soon.

Elsewhere, a Tropical disturbance (Invest 95) seems to be getting it's act together to the east of the Northern Less Antilles but this does not yet pose a threat to the Caribbean as it is more likely to go north ... Bermuda and the eastern US may want to watch this.

Some chunky looking depressions have formed off the African coast and these need watching up until the end of this week.

The 2008 Hurricane season is hotting up as conditions are now almost perfect across the tropics and the Caribbean Sea for Storm development.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Aug 26, 2008 7:46 pm

HURRICANE GUSTAV ... UPDATE ... 26TH AUGUST 2008 ... 2030 BST

Gustav is getting medievil with the south west peninsula of Haiti as a strong Category 1 or Category 2 Hurricane ... very bad news for Haiti that took alot of rain damage from TS Fay only a week ago ... this country is not able to take heavy rains well, let alone a Hurricane as has been seen in previous years.

There is little point speculating on Gustav's longer term (i.e.; 4 - 5 days) prognosis until the storm has tracked along the south or over Cuba.

The worst scenario is a track through the strait between Jamaica and Cuba which is rare as most Hurricanes have tracked to the south of or over Jamaica. A track through the length of the strait would bring a sea surge (bulge) along the south coast of Cuba and the north coast of Jamaica and, depending on how close Gustav's eye is to either coastline, bring more strengthening ... Gustav, albeit with a small band of Hurricane force winds, could demonstrate that you do not necessarily need to be right at the centre of a hurricane to take serious damage.

The less interaction that Gustav has with land then the more devastating the storm will be in the long run.

If Gustav emerges into the Gulf along this 'worst scenario' track he could reach category 4 or 5 and then it is a matter of where he will go from there ... I haven't a clue yet.

I think the Oil Industry needs to watch this Storm (yep, petrol prices again) and it is a lottery as to where Gustav will finally finish up.

Just think ... this system tracked right across Tobago only a few days ago ... timing, placement and conditions are of the essence and, with all the components coming together, this one could shape up to be a big one.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Thu Aug 28, 2008 2:22 pm

GUSTAV AND THE GANG ... 28TH AUGUST 2008 ... 1500 BST

There are currently 5 Tropical disturbances across the Caribbean and the Atlantic. Of these one is named (Gustav) and a second is about to be named (Hanna). There could be 3 or 4 named Storms by the end of this week.

From West to East ... I will start in the Bay of Campeche ...


Disturbance 1

A small disturbance has developed here just behind the Yucatan Peninsula ... it seems to be mostly over land and looks unlikely to develop although it is producing very heavy rain in this area.


Disturbance 2 (GUSTAV)

Gustav was jinxed by the Haiti landfall and caught everyone by surprise by reforming it's centre well to the south ... in my previous post I was questioning the track and saying how rare it is for a Hurricane to travel through the strait between Jamaica and Cuba ... the sudden relocation of the centre now indicates that Gustav could actually strike Jamaica or swing round to the south of the Island.

Although the track is still very much in question this sudden change makes me feel more certain Gustav will be a major Category 4 or 5 Hurricane ... and he could spring a few more surprises yet.

Many already dead in Dominican and Haiti.


Disturbance 3 (TD8/Hanna)

This one is just to the north east of the northern Lesser Antilles. I think this is already Tropical Storm Hanna and she looks like threatening the eastern coast of the US and possibly Bermuda as another strong Hurricane.


Disturbance 4

In the mid-Atlantic ... I don't think this one is going anywhere.


Disturbance 5

This is a new development leaving the African Coast and needs watching to see if it will continue on a westerly track which would threaten the southern half of the Caribbean including Trinidad and Tobago ... it's early days.


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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Fri Aug 29, 2008 8:44 am

GUSTAV AND THE GANG ... UPDATE ... 29TH AUGUST 2008 ... 0930 BST


Gustav

Gustav is very near hurricane strength as he pounds the south coast of Jamaica ... the biggest threat is rain.

There is little doubt about how strong Gustav will get as he leaves Jamaica ... I am tipping Category 4 or 5. There is considerable doubt about his future track as he has already sprung so many surprises ... it's wide open.

Gustav is an extremely dangerous Storm. The Caymans (imminent), Mexico and the whole of the Gulf need to be on alert.


Hanna

Developing nicely despite a little wind shear nibbling away at her north west quadrant. The Bahamas are now under an increasing threat ... Hanna is another potential major Hurricane and the prospect of Gustav and Hanna both striking the US from 2 directions (the Atlantic and the Gulf) cannot be ruled out.


Elsewhere

Whilst focus is on Gustav and Hanna ... we should be watching Africa very closely.

There are 5 strong Waves of disturbance crossing Africa of which one has already moved out into the Tropical Atlantic ... the energy is very strong ... over the next 2 weeks I am expecting to see at least one Atlantic Hurricane develop and the threat could widen to the southern and eastern Caribbean.

2008 is turning out to be a very active season as predicted and all the countries of the Caribbean should be prepared for direct or indirect disruption at some point.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Sun Aug 31, 2008 12:08 am

HURRICANE GUSTAV ... UPDATE ... 31ST AUGUST 2008 ... 0100 BST

Many dead (81+) in Dominican, Haiti and Jamaica.

Gustav approaching Category 5 and over the western tip of Cuba. Massive strengthening has occurred almost on the scale of Wilma back in 2005 ... will probably weaken a little before US landfall (Cat 3 or 4).

Still some doubts about US landfall ... is it Louisiana, Texas? ... New Orleans should evacuate anyway, just as a precaution ... they should know after what Katrina did.

Gustav is turning into a medievil beast that will cause widespread destruction and death to those that stand in his way, not to mention the economical factors that will see our petrol prices rise ... all Gulf coastal regions should be on alert for this.

I said days ago that this could be the big one ... the first and unfortunately I don't think he will be the last.

It's not looking good but the bad thing about Gustav is that he can still spring surprises ... lets hope that landfall is not over a populated area.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Sep 01, 2008 8:56 am

HURRICANE GUSTAV UPDATE ... 1ST SEPTEMBER 2008 ... 0945 BST

There is little that I can add to the media reports of Gustav's progress other than that this is now being hyped up a bit in the shadow of the Katrina event 3 years ago.

Gustav came within 5 mph of being a Category 5 Hurricane as he pounded the west coast of Cuba. He lost alot of his strength over Cuba and and has restrengthened to a strong Category 3 Hurricane. He may get stronger to Category 4 before landfall.

Gustav will do some damage but he is nowhere near as large as Katrina (that some commentators believe was alot more powerful than the official statistics say) and therefore wind damage will be restricted to a smaller area and soon die down as Gustav moves over land ... don't forget that Gustav lost power very quickly on his previous 3 landfalls over Haiti, Jamaica and Cuba ... the storm surge is the main worry for now and it is still difficult to know precisely where this will be as Gustav wobbles towards landfall ... after landfall it will be the rain amounts that could cause flooding.

Hanna is now affecting the Bahamas as a Tropical Storm. Again rain is the main concern.

2 more tropical disturbances are out in the Atlantic.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Sep 02, 2008 8:29 am

HURRCANE ACTIVITY UPDATE ... 2ND SEPTEMBER 2008 ... 0930 BST


Well ... I don't know where to start ... as I have been warning for sometime, the energy in the Tropics has been significant and there are now a total of 6 Tropical disturbances of which 2 are Hurricanes and one a Tropical Storm with a new Tropical Depression (10) that has just formed.


Gustav

Rapidly losing hurricane strength following landfall in Louisiana yesterday. Not as much damage as the media predicted but some fatalities. Now a major rain event over the southern US.


Hurricane Hanna

A surprise and potentially more dangerous than Gustav now that she has tracked further south into the Bahamas. She is expected to swing north and threaten Florida and the eastern US.

I am particularly concerned for Haiti again here ... although not taking a direct hit from Hanna, the heaviest rains are falling over Haiti and this is the 3rd major rain event this country has suffered from Hurricanes in 3 weeks ... very unlucky and there are more threats to Haiti to come in the next week.

Haiti could need some serious assistance and aid from other countries if they take anymore of this punishment.


2 Tropical Disturbances

To the east is an area of disturbed weather affecting the Northern Lesser Antilles. This is unlikely to develop but it could bring alot of rain to the northern Caribbean ... Haiti, again, under threat.

Another area is further north and could threaten Bermuda but development is not that likely.


Tropical Storm Ike

Became a named storm yesterday ... expected to increase to Hurricane strength and, again, the Bahamas could take a hit from this next weekend ... not sure if Ike will continue west through the northern Caribbean or curve north towards the eastern US ... too early to say.

Again, Haiti is at risk from more heavy rain from Ike.


Tropical Depression 10

This one could be a named storm (Josephine) within 24 hours and could be the first proper Atlantic Hurricane to form. Currently just south of the Cape Verde Islands ... there is a small risk that this could affect the southern Caribbean but the likelihood would be further north ... this wants watching too.

... it's all happening and there is plenty more energy developing over Africa.

More updates to follow.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Sep 02, 2008 5:13 pm

UPDATE ... 2ND SEPTEMBER 2008 ... 1800 BST


It is utter madness in the Tropical Atlantic and Northern Caribbean ... but again I must stress my concerns for Haiti ... the prospects are not looking good at all for this poor country that has taken punishment from Fay, Gustav and now Hanna, with the possibility of a strike from Ike and Josephine over the next 5 - 10 days.


Gustav

Now history ... rain event across the mid US.


Hanna

Fallen apart a bit with heavy wind shear to her north ... but still producing very heavy rains over Jamaica, Dominican and Haiti ... I have seen a report in the Carib Storm site that the situation in Haiti is now worse than it was when Jeanne deluged the country ... very worrying.

Hanna is likely to recover and follow a particularly damaging track as a hurricane, parallel to the east coast of Florida ... Florida is the area that took 4 landfalls from Fay so this area is also quite saturated ... Fay did not like Florida !!


Tropical Wave

Just behind Hanna, to the east, is a strong Tropical Wave that, until now, was showing some signs of sinister development. This is bringing heavy rains to the eastern Caribbean and some of this rain could develop as far south as Tobago this afternoon and evening and possibly overnight.


Ike

Real worry here ... Ike seems to have the most potential to be a major hurricane but his track makes me think that someone has it in for Haiti ... I am watching this and I hope something is done for Haiti as quickly as possible, even if as a precaution. It could be as soon as Saturday.


Josephine

Not got the potential I thought she would have but still, again, the possible track worries me ... Haiti !! A small risk of further south.


The Next One

Another Wave of energy is expected off the African coast in the next few days ... it won't let up.

I will keep updating.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Wed Sep 03, 2008 6:39 pm

HANNA, IKE AND JOSEPHINE ... UPDATE ... 3RD SEPTEMBER 2008 ... 1930 BST

Sounds like a happy family ... or the adventures of the famous 3 :-s .


Hanna

Hanna looks a complete mess but her centre is now moving north at last and she is expected to re-strengthen and possibly reach hurricane strength again as she approaches the east coast of the US.

She has dropped alot of rain over Haiti, Puerto Rico and the Dominican ... I am particularly concerned for Haiti and I hear reports of devastating flooding in the north of the country ... no doubt this will be reported more widely in due course.

Hanna has, so far been more of a rain event but her winds will be damaging too, if she regains hurricane strength, along the eastern coast of Florida and right up to South Carolina where she is expected to make landfall.


Ike

Borderline Hurricane now.

Ike is now showing his colours and seems to have the greatest potential (of the 3) to be a major Hurricane in the Bahamas from Saturday morning onwards. Again Haiti is at considerable risk from more heavy rain even if not taking a direct hit.

Ike could strike Cuba too but I am not sure ... it is a long way to go yet and this season has brought many meandering and mesmerising Storms that have caught us all out with their surprises.


Josephine

Losing her potential rapidly. Some of the consensus is that she will never make landfall and curve out to the mid-Atlantic. I think there is still a risk she could stay on a westward track and get sucked into the wake behind Ike ... again early days. It is possible, but unlikely, that she will reach Hurricane strength.


Summary

Ike is the one to watch, he could be a very dangerous Hurricane.

Other than that ... there are 2 more waves, at least, developing over Africa and we should see these move into the Tropical Atlantic over the next few days.

For now, Tobago is safe.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Thu Sep 04, 2008 7:33 am

HURRICANE IKE ... UPDATE ... 4TH SEPTEMBER 2008 ... 0830 BST

Ike has strengthened rapidaly into a major category 4 Hurricane.

The areas at risk are across a swathe from Puerto Rico, Dominican, Haiti, Cuba and through the Bahamas and into Florida ... severe damage and disruption could occur in any of these areas from Saturday onwards.

Anyone flying to or via these destinations should keep an eye on this and keep tabs with their travel operator.

Ike is quite small and the devastating wind damage should not cover a very wide area but heavy rains could affect many areas.

I note that Haiti is declaring a catastrophe and is seeking Rescue services and Food Aid.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Fri Sep 05, 2008 6:19 pm

HANNA, IKE AND JOSEPHINE ... UPDATE ... 5TH SEPTEMBER 2008 ... 1900 BST

The UK is coming in for a bashing this weekend ... I woke up this morning about 6 and the rain started and 14 hours later it has not finished ... widespread flooding and more tomorrow ... is this relevant? ... well, it could be ... read on ...


Hanna

Marginal strong Tropical Storm/Hurricane skirting the east coast of the US ... left much death and flooding behind in Haiti and Dominican ... media reports from Haiti are quite shocking ... OK the flooding has only been flooding but the famine and disease that can follow will multiply the death toll if no Aid gets there soon ... that's assuming Aid can get to the flooded areas.

So it is rather cheap of me to complain that Hanna is going on to disrupt the tennis at the US Open tomorrow ... I was looking forward to the semi-final between Nadal and Andy Murray that should be on from 1600 UK time tomorrow ... I know it may seem selfish of me to say that but this simply demonstrates how wide the impact of Hanna has been and will be.

As if Hanna has not caused enough trouble, strife, homelessness and fatalities, her track takes her back off the east coast of the US and Canada to become an extra-tropical storm in the North Atlantic ... as I said earlier the UK is taking a hammering right now but the next big autumn storm will be Hanna around next Thursday ... watch this space.


Ike

... is weakening due to shear from the north but he will re-strengthen again soon as the shear dies down.

Ike worries me ... he could re-curve away in Hanna's footsteps ... he could so further south or carry on straight west ... no one knows and the track will determine his strength.

The NHC currently see Ike spinning through the strait between Florida and Cuba with Ike's centre not making any major landfall ... if this proves to be correct we have the ingredients for a major hurricane striking the east side of Florida or any part of the Gulf ... in the meantime, more rain would be dropped over Haiti ... the omens with Ike are not really very good at all, wherever he goes ... Ike has the potential to create disasters on a massive scale in many different places and he needs watching carefully.


Josephine

... is weakening all the time ... I am focusing on Ike and Hanna.


Update tomorrow.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Sat Sep 06, 2008 2:11 pm

HANNA AND IKE ... UPDATE ... 6TH SEPTEMBER 2008 ... 1500 BST


Hanna

Hanna has become a gregarious pest and I would not be surprised if her name is retired from the records for the rain damage she has caused to Haiti ... the death toll is now over 500 and it is difficult to get Aid in because the whole of this unfortunate country is completely waterlogged.

It just goes to show that it does not always take a major Hurricane to cause so much strife ... it's about the timing, speed and the place.

Hanna is now speeding up as she moves up the eastern coast of the US and then she will shoot across the Atlantic bringing unsettled conditions to the northern UK and northern Europe from Thursday onwards.


Ike

The only good thing about Hurricane Ike is his speed ... he is moving fairly fast and therefore the rains and winds will come and go for those in his path relatively quickly.

But Ike is a major Hurricane, albeit with a relatively small Hurricane Windspan of about 45 miles, but Tropical Storm force winds go out as far as 130 miles from Ike's eye.

The track is coming together and, again, it is bad news ... the Dominican and Haiti will get more heavy rains but the southern Bahamas and then Cuba seem most likely to take the full brunt of the storm ... then it is the Gulf ... the US will be hoping that Cuba will take some of the strength of Ike away otherwise he has the potential to cause considerable damage.

I hope everyone is ready for Ike.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Sun Sep 07, 2008 8:20 am

HURRICANE IKE ... UPDATE ... 7TH SEPTEMBER 2008 ... 0930 BST

Ike has intensified to a powerful and dangerous Cat 4 Storm over the Turks and Caicos.

His track seems to be taking a more southerly direction which makes matters worse for Haiti.

Cuba will take the full brunt of Ike before he moves into the Gulf ... there is considerable trouble and strife on the way.

Meanwhile I am a little concerned about a large area of Thunderstorms developing to the east of Tobago ... there is an increasing risk of a longer period of rain for Tobago today and tomorrow.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:49 am

HURRICANE IKE UPDATE ... 8TH SEPTEMBER 2008 ... 0945 BST

Ike is following a particularly damaging track right along the length of Cuba ... this will weaken Ike before he reaches the Gulf but the conditions in Cuba will still be extremely dangerous.

In his wake, there are sporadic reports of the damage in the Turks and Caicos but concern is growing for Haiti where many more are reported to have perished in the 4th Storm to affect this country in 4 weeks.

It is still too early to tell where Ike will go after Cuba but restrengthening is very likely over the warm Gulf Sea.

Meanwhile ... I was predicting some thunderstorms over Tobago yesterday and I have seen a report of the 'most violent thunderstorm in years', flooding and high winds in Trinidad ... any feedback on this would be appreciated.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Lisa Keith » Mon Sep 08, 2008 12:58 pm

Oh boy... did it EVER!!!

With the noise of the rain on the roof and the fairly constant (for about 5 hours!) thunder and lightning, it was impossible to hold a conversation with someone sitting two feet away - literally! I think that yesterday, we had an entire rainy season in one day. It certainly tried! This morning, several parts of the roads that didn't have pot-holes (rare, but true!) now do, and those that did already, are now even worse. I understand that the roads to the North of the island are still very bad today, and there's mud everywhere. From what I've seen in the south, some drains are blocked with debris and although MOST of the surface water has drained away from the roads, I've no doubt that the backroads still have water on them, and the ground itself is waterlogged.

Fortunately, today has started brighter and if it keeps up, I'd expect that by the end of the day, things should be pretty much back to normal. I hope.... ;) How many days until the next lot??!

Lisa.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Sep 08, 2008 2:35 pm

Thanks Lisa

The storms did look quite violent in the way they flared up very quickly on the sat loops ... I think Barbados got the worst.

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Tony J » Tue Sep 09, 2008 5:48 am

I had an email from some friends in Tobago yesterday who agreed that they had not seen rain or storms like these for a long time. They reported that the island suffered mud slides, properties had a lot of water damage, rivers flooded, roads and land were flooded. Apparantly a woman and child were swept away by a flooded river, they managed to save the woman but no-one has heard about the child as yet.

Paul, you may not get a lot of feedback from your reports, I like to keep an eye on the weather myself and if I ever see something approaching the islands, I always check here to see if you see the same thing. This time around, I managed to warn my friends in Tobago about the approaching rain and storms so they were prepared and rearranged their plans for the day. Thank you

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Re: 2008 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Sep 09, 2008 7:46 am

IKE UPDATE ... 9TH SEPTEMBER 2008 ... 0830 BST


Thank you Tony for the feedback ... the area of thunderstorms started out as a minor distraction from tracking Hurricane Ike, but they flared up really quickly and I could see no warnings posted anywhere about them ... this goes to show that you cannot be too careful, even if it is just a Tropical Wave ... these Waves can have localised damaging winds and other local factors can set off severe weather as the Waves pass through different environments.

At the same time, such events can dissipate just as quickly ... there were 3 strong storm cells that lasted between 6 and 10 hours each and as one died then another would appear quite randomly ... so it was very hit and miss and highly unpredictable ... it certainly was a Tropical disturbance and, fortunately, they don't happen like this very often.

I hope the child is found safe ... that's worrying news.

Meanwhile, Ike's eye is just to the south of Cuba over warm seas and this could give him an opportunity to strengthen a little before the next landfall in western Cuba with the capital, Havana, at risk.

Had Ike stayed over Cuba then he would have weakened considerably so now the prospects of seeing yet another major Hurricane in the Gulf are increasing. The subsequent landfall is a lottery and too difficult to predict ... the whole of the Gulf should be prepared.

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