2010 Hurricane Season

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Paul Tallet
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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Oct 12, 2010 5:47 pm

HURRICANE PAULA

Thanks Gervais ... Hopefully it will stay that way for a while ... the Atlantic has calmed down.

But meanwhile ... over in the west ... the disturbance spawned a very small Hurricane (Paula) who developed very quickly.

Paula is threatening Nicaragua, Honduras, Belize and Mexico ... there is considerable doubt about her track as she is moving very slowly but there is a chance that western Cuba could be threatened at the weekend ... in any case there is a good chance of rain for Cuba.

Due to Paul's small size, hurricane conditions should be very localised but we will have to see how she develops as there is currently a good deal of wind shear limiting her prospects.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Wed Oct 13, 2010 12:48 am

PAULA UPDATE

Now category 2 Hurricane.

Now threatening Mexico and the western part of Cuba in the next 24 - 48 hours.

The movement of this hurricane is very erratic/slow/quick ... very unpredictable and very dangerous ... so expect more surprises ... Paula could strengthen even though the conditions do not seem right.

The only good thing is this is a tiny hurricane and the worst conditions should hopefully affect only small areas.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Oct 18, 2010 2:00 am

SUPER TYPHOON MEGI

An exceptionally strong typhoon is about to affect the northern Phillipines with sustained windspeeds in excess of 170 mph.

A typhoon is basically the same as a hurricane ... they just give them a different description for the Pacific ... this one is a Category 5 and possibly as strong as Hurricane Wilma that formed in the western Caribbean in 2005.

The concern here is that the storm is likely to be Category 5 strength as it makes landfall in the Phillipines ... this is a major weather event unfolding but it seems that the areas concerned are being evacuated thanks to the warnings being issued.

Back in the Caribbean ... the disturbance in the western Caribbean seems unlikely to develop much further although it will bring plenty of rain.

The NHC have started issuing warnings on the monsoonal type trough I reported on in yesterday's Liquid Sunshine update.

ETA about 4-5 days ... I will update as developments occur.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Oct 18, 2010 4:07 pm

MEGI THE MONSTER

My attentions have been diverted to Super Typhoon Megi, a phenomenally powerful storm that is going to turn the northern Phillipines into a disaster zone ... I understand that measures have been taken to evacuate the areas closest to the centre of Megi although there are already reports of fatalities.

The reports coming in are astonishing ... apparently the sustained wind speeds in some parts of Megi (not necessarily near the centre) are as high as 200 mph which is not far off the unimaginable experience of walking through a tornado ... I won't even speculate on the gusts ... and Megi is a huge Storm.

China is already making preparations for Megi ... the storm will weaken a little after crossing the Phillipines but it could restrengthen over warm seas before it's acquaintance with China.

The people of the Phillipines are in my foremost thoughts right now ... it's looking very bad because there is little you can do about these situations ... just hope you find the right shelter, survive and see what's left when you return home ... and see who needs help.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Oct 19, 2010 4:25 pm

There is little information coming out of the Phillipines after Super Typhoon Megi's centre crossed the northern half of the country ... quite understandable as most communications will be down ... we just have to hope it is not as bad as Category 5 power can be.

Megi weakened over the Phillipines but is now strengthening again as it makes progress over a warm China Sea ... Hong Kong is on the radar and Megi is likely to weaken a little before she gets there ... I wonder if I should sell my China stocks? ... Megi has the potential to cause considerable damage to China ... initially wind damage but eventually significant flooding over a wide area.

Meanwhile, in the western Caribbean, the disturbance looks to be getting better organised with plenty of rain lashing the Caymans and Cuba ... very slow moving ... there is a reasonable chance Richard could form but it just depends where this one will go.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Fri Oct 22, 2010 5:06 pm

RICHARD

Tropical Storm Richard has formed and looks set to cause a whole lot of trouble along the northern coast of Honduras and eventually Belize over the course of this weekend and early into next week.

It is very difficult to predict what will happen ... for certain, the heavy rains will bring flooding to Honduras and Belize but the strength of Richard largely depends on how close the centre goes to Honduras ... if it stays out to sea then Richard could become a moderate Hurricane before landfall in Belize.

Meanwhile, Megi is about to land in China. The cyclone took a swerve to the east which means that Hong Kong will avoid the worst and, instead Taiwan and the China Coast across from Taiwan are getting the most rains. Megi is weakening so the winds won't be as bad as they were for the Phillipines but there will be considerable damage mainly from the rains.

Back to the Caribbean ... it has been a very active season with Richard becoming the 17th Storm ... there could be one or 2 more ... but of significance (compared to 2005) there has been less damage and loss of life ... Jamaica seems to have had the worst of it and this country has had quite a bit of rain from Richard too.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Thu Oct 28, 2010 4:09 pm

THREAT TO TOBAGO AND THE REST OF THE SOUTHERN LESSER ANTILLES

There are 3 developments.

2 in the Mid-Atlantic that are not looking very threatening at the moment.

I am focusing on a development to the south east of Tobago, just a few hundred miles away.

I am predicting a very wet weekend for Trinidad, Tobago, the rest of the Islands up to St Lucia and Venezuela.

This system is unlikely to develop significantly because it is too close to the equator but if it shifts a little north it could be a different matter altogether because the seas around Tobago are very warm and there is little in the way of shear.

If development is to occur it could be sudden and significant and this could happen anywhere between it's current location and further on in the Caribbean Sea ... please note that this system is going to be very unpredictable ... hopefully it will stay south and track into the South American mainland (I doubt it).

The best scenario is just rain. The likelier scenario is intense rain, thunderstorms and possible Tropical Storm conditions by Friday night. It could get worse and this system needs monitoring.

I recommend precautions are taken ... don't book any trips from Friday and the weekend, be prepared, get some food in and bring the boats in.

I will be regularly updating here.

I also hope I am wrong!

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Thu Oct 28, 2010 5:45 pm

THREAT UPDATE

I have been looking at the forecasting models which seem split between the system tracking just to the south of Trinidad or just to the north of Tobago.

None are predicting a track directly over Tobago as yet but I would expect these track forecasts to narrow as the system makes progress and particularly if there is any further organisation towards Tropical Storm status.

I have noted a wobble up to the north and this is not necessarily good news.

Regardless ... the weather is expected to start deteriorating from late Friday ... be prepared.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Thu Oct 28, 2010 10:09 pm

THREAT UPDATE

The computer models are starting to come into a majority agreement that the centre of this disturbance will track over southern Trinidad with a few rogue models predicting a course just to the north of Tobago.

The NHC is steadily raising the risks of Tropical Storm development (currently 30%) although I have noticed that the intensity of the main area of the system has reduced a little in the last few hours.

Rainbands at the leading edge of the disturbance are now affecting Trinidad, Tobago and Barbados and these should ease slightly before the main area of disturbed weather moves in tomorrow with the peak of the storm's intensity arriving Friday night and into Saturday.

Please note that this disturbance has the potential to develop very quickly and any development could be explosive over the warm sea in the current conditions.

The areas at risk range from (the south) the northern coast of Venezuela, Trinidad, Tobago, Grenada, Barbados and St Lucia (to the north) and in any case I expect all of these areas to receive a good deal of rainfall over the next 3 - 4 days.

I am concerned that a precautionary Tropical Storm watch has not yet been issued in the areas concerned.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Fri Oct 29, 2010 1:02 am

THREAT UPDATE

The NHC have just increased the risks of this system developing into a Tropical Storm to 50%.

Although earlier I noted some reduction in the intensity of the thunderstorms, new strong bursts of thunderstorm activity are developing around what is becoming more apparent as a circulation a couple of hundred miles off the coast of Guyana.

This is a large area of Tropical Disturbance that is already starting to affect the southern Windward Islands with it's outer rainbands and the real business will start tomorrow and peak over Friday evening/night ... I don't believe that conditions will improve before Sunday.

The track seems set for the centre of any Tropical Storm or Hurricane that develops to cross Trinidad but this is difficult to predict and, unless there are any major wobbles in the system's progress, Trinidad & Tobago seem to be in this system's sights.

The strength is also difficult to predict and there is now a risk of Tropical Storm and Hurricane conditions anywhere between the northern coast of Venezuela and St Lucia in about 24 hours.

Still no watches or warnings have been issued ... a few people are posting messages about this on the Carib Storm site but I am seeing little other evidence of any awareness of what is coming.

I will post again in the morning.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Fri Oct 29, 2010 8:47 am

HURRICANE TOMAS?

Tropical Storm Shary has just formed south of Bermuda and this means that the disturbance to the east south east of Tobago will be named Tomas ... but when?

I have now seen enough to know that this will develop into a Tropical Storm any time between now and 24 hours. The NHC have raised the risk to 60% and they won't name this Storm until it meets all their criteria.

Still no warnings have been issued.

The majority of the computer model predictions are now narrowing their track projections to an area from southern Trinidad to the channel between Trinidad and Tobago and this includes one of the most reliable models in operation this season. A few models are now predicting the centre of this Storm will be to the north of Tobago.

It has been raining over most of the southern Lesser Antilles on and off for the last 12 hours but the real business has yet to come later today. The most recent satellite loops are showing alot of turning in the system and significant bursts of thunderstorm activity particulary around the north and east of the centre and spreading in an arc ... this is a classic sign that the Storm is trying to develop a closed circulation.

Having considered all this I see a high risk of Tropical Storm conditions for Tobago and a possible direct hit. There is a moderate risk of Hurricane conditions ... the risks are increasing as this system approaches.

It's not looking good.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Fri Oct 29, 2010 12:04 pm

UPDATE

The NHC has raised the risk of Tropical Storm development to 80% and are sending an aircraft in to take measurements ... I think they will find Tropical Storm Tomas is there.

The computer model forecasts are increasing and about 60% of them indicate a track to the north of Tobago while 40% seem to agree on a track through the channel between Trinidad & Tobago ... this includes the GFS model that has consistently made accurate predictions all season.

The sat loops show the system tightening up and wrapping the strong bursts of thunderstorm activity into more of a ball on the western side ... but the rain is widespread so this system is going to affect a wide area regardless of where the centre of the storm tracks.

Rainfall has reduced around Trinidad and Tobago ... this is the calm before the storm.

I am now very confident that Tropical Storm conditions will affect Trinidad, Tobago and possibly Barbados within 12 hours and then Grenada and the Grenadines next. The system is moving quite quickly and the faster it moves then the chances of hurricane conditions are reduced but this prospect cannot be ruled out altogether.

I still see no warnings issued so I hope everyone in Trinidad & Tobago have made preparations for this ... expect a 24 hour period of intense rainfall, strong winds.

There could be some damage and there is a strong likelihood of significant flooding.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Tony J » Fri Oct 29, 2010 1:52 pm

Thank you Paul for your updates, have notified our local friends to watch the weather over the next couple of days

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Andy K » Fri Oct 29, 2010 5:42 pm

The weather in Tobago is exceptionally normal so far, slightly overcast and sunny moments in between.

Paul,
the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Management (ODPM) has issued several bulletins and advisories,
which so far do not reach to a fully grown tropical storm watch or similar.

Check

http://www.odpm.gov.tt/events/article.aspx?id=8543

I believe this advisory reflects pretty much what you mentioned in terms of the expected effects of
the weather system, may it be a tropical storm or "only" a tropical wave, when it passes Trinidad and Tobago.

Greetings from Scarborough

Andy

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Fri Oct 29, 2010 7:11 pm

TROPICAL STORM TOMAS

Thanks Tony and Andy

The NHC are about to issue advisories on this system after a flight detected a closed circulation with Tropical Storm force winds.

Hopefully the local advisories will update their warnings speedily to ensure that everyone is aware of the dangerous conditions approaching the Islands which I have been banging on about for the last 28 hours !

The outer bands of Tomas are about to move over Tobago ... Sat Loops are indicating that Tomas has tracked a little further north and this has helped the Storm's development ... there is a possibility that the track could be just to the north of Tobago but this is a big Storm that will affect many Islands and I don't think there is much point speculating on the track too much at this stage.

Trinidad, Tobago, Grenada, the Grenadines, Barbados and up to St Lucia should all be on Storm Watch and all inhabitants should be prepared for Tropical Storm conditions tonight and tomorrow.

The heavy rainbands appear to have eased somewhat but I expect to see fresh bursts of convection pretty soon ... these young storms can develop quite explosively.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Andy K » Fri Oct 29, 2010 8:09 pm

Trinidad and Tobago as well as Grenada are under Tropical Storm Watch now.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Fri Oct 29, 2010 8:38 pm

TOMAS UPDATE

New bursts of convection mainly around the north side of the centre.

It does now start looking as if the centre could pass just to the north of Tobago.

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Fri Oct 29, 2010 10:58 pm

TOMAS UPDATE

My last post tonight ...

The centre of Tomas is about 200 miles east of Tobago. The outer rainbands are now moving over Trinidad, Tobago and Barbados.

With the Storm moving west at about 20mph ... I guess that's about 10 hours ETA and then similar again as the Storm moves onwards to the west ... so, potentially 20 hours of heavy rain on top of the rain that has already fallen.

One positive for Tobago ... I do think the centre of Tomas will track just to the north of Tobago (putting Grenada and the Grenadines at the most risk from damaging winds) and with the heaviest rains to the north of the centre, then Trinidad & Tobago should not get the worst of the rains either ... but don't count on it because I am speculating on it in the most positive way possible !!

Barbados and a line from Barbados westwards should get the worst of the rains and hopefully Tomas will not reach hurricane status before he spins out into the Caribbean Sea ... but the risk of Tomas exploding to Hurricane status very quickly must not be ruled out, although such an occurance is not likely to affect a wide area in the early stages of development.

Finally ... Tomas is quite a large Storm and I haven't got a proper handle on how far out the Tropical Storm force winds extend from the centre ... so even if you are (say) between 50 and 100 miles from the centre there is still a risk of damaging winds or, at the very least, squally conditions ... the winds tend to be stronger on the south and eastern side of the Storm so watch out for 'the sting in the tail'.

So ... I hope everyone is ready and you are all safe ... I will post an update in the morning (UK time).

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Roger D. » Sat Oct 30, 2010 6:13 am

Paul - thanks very much for the updates, you're always spot on! One thing though, this strom formed in unusual location and a bit late in the season. Any reason why?

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Re: 2010 Hurricane Season

Post by Paul Tallet » Sat Oct 30, 2010 7:06 am

TOMAS UPDATE

That was close ... Tomas has edged further north and is on the verge of Hurricane status as the centre passes close to Barbados.

Tobago appears to received steady (but not extremely heavy) rain while Trinidad looks relatively untouched.

So today is not a good day for Barbados and St Lucia.

Roger, yes it is unusual for such a large disturbance to develop at such low latitude but this season has many new records of Hurricanes forming prematurely in strange places, particularly over near the Cape Verde islands. The high sea temperatures could be to blame.

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