07.28.13

Flossie Flies Toward Hawaii

Posted in Storm Track, Storm Preparation, Eastern Pacific, Central Pacific, Storm Warning, Storm Safety, Tracking the Tropics at 10:50 am by gmachos

Storm Aims to be First Since 2007 to Affect Island Chain

With the dissipation of Dorian in the Atlantic, the focus has shifted to the Pacific where a storm is still churning.  No longer under the watchful eye of the NHC, Tropical Storm Flossie is being monitored by the Central Pacific Hurricane Center in Honolulu.  The storm is still a strong tropical storm with winds remaining at 65 miles per hour.  Minimum Central Pressure is 996 millibars, or 29.41 inches of Hg.  Flossie is moving at a fairly good pace at 20 miles per hour to the West.

As of the 2:00 AM Hawaii Standard Time advisory, Flossie was located some 600 miles to the east of Hilo on the big island, or 790 miles East of Honolulu.  The storm had been moving a bit more northwesterly on Saturday, but took more of a turn to the west.  Sea surface temperatures in the area of the storm are running a bit cool at about 25 degrees Celsius, or 77 degrees Fahrenheit.  At that water temperature, Flossie should be able to maintain itself for the time being, but not strengthen.  Sea surface temperatures in the immediate area of the islands warms up to 26 degrees Celsius or just below 79 degrees.

Flossie is expected to begin affecting the big island of Hawaii on Monday morning, and progress westward into Maui county later in the day according to the CPHC.  A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for coastal waters east of the Kaiwi Channel.  A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for the Kauai Channel, and the leeward and windward waters of Oahu.  The storm has the potential to bring thunderstorms producing heavy rains and flooding on the islands.  Flossie began as a depression in the Eastern Pacific back on the evening of July 24th.

Over the next two days, Flossie gradually strengthened to become a very strong tropical storm with winds approaching hurricane force at 70 miles per hour early Saturday morning PDT.  Over the past 24 hours though it has weakened a bit, and that trend is expected to continue as it moves through relatively cooler water.  Flossie is the sixth named storm to form in the Eastern Pacific, which began its season back on May 15th.  Of those six named storms, four of them have gone on to become hurricanes.  Flossie is the first storm to threaten Hawaii since 2007 when another Flossie approached the islands. 

07.27.13

Dorian Fades Into Tropical Wave

Posted in Storm Track, Commentary, Storm Preparation, Tracking the Tropics at 6:12 pm by gmachos

Fourth Named Storm of 2013 Atlantic Season Suffers Same Fate As Chantal

Four storms down in the 2013 Atlantic Hurricane Season, and we still wait for the first hurricane of the year.  Like Tropical Storm Chantal before it a few weeks earlier, Tropical Storm Dorian faded to oblivion after a promising start.  The combination of a fast circulation and dry air coupled with strong wind shear proved to be too much for the season’s latest storm to handle.

Marginal sea surface temperatures along with dry air made things difficult for Dorian within 24 hours of formation during the middle of this week.  After emerging, Dorian looked strong with a small, but strong circulation with good outflow coming out of all of its quadrants.  Soon after that though, the storm began to move into an area where sea surface temperatures were just below the 80 degree Fahrenheit threshold that is essential for development.

On top of that, dry, sinking air from a subtropical ridge situated in the Central Atlantic began to attack the storm much like it had done with Chantal earlier this month.  In order for tropical systems to survive and thrive, they need the warmth and moisture of the tropical ocean air to thrive.  If that is hindered by such things as cooler sea surface temps or dry air, then the storm lacks the fuel supply it needs to grow.

Complicating things even more was the fact that the storm’s circulation was moving as fast as 23 miles per hour as of this morning.  When there is such a fast circulation, it often outruns the thunderstorms trying to wrap around and coalesce around it.  Then, winds at different levels start blowing at different speeds and in different directions, which is wind shear.  Tropical storms and hurricanes do not like wind shear.  They need light winds aloft in order to develop. 

The storm had formed in the Eastern Atlantic, one of the earliest storms to form that far east.  Chantal was another storm from this season to share that honor.  However, conditions in the Atlantic are usually not favorable for development in July, and despite these storms defying the odds by forming, they were unable to overcome huge obstacles such as marginal sea surface temperatures in the Atlantic, dry air, and their own fast circulations.

However, the development of these two storms in the Atlantic this early in the season, coupled with the two storms in June have given the 2013 Atlantic season a fast start, and serves as a bad omen for things to come.  Several waves have pushed off West Africa into the Atlantic behind Dorian.  So, the conveyor belt of tropical disturbances is already in place.  Eventually, the Tropical Atlantic will heat up and provide optimal conditions for development, and a much more formidable storm will develop, overcome these obstacles, and become a threat to the Caribbean, Central America, and perhaps the United States.

07.26.13

GWC Time Lapse–July 26, 2013–Cirrocumulus Clouds Overhead

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Web Cam, GWC Time Lapse at 9:07 pm by gmachos

Here is a time lapse video of weather conditions in South Plainfield, New Jersey during the afternoon of July 26, 2013. On this day, sunshine returned, but some cirrocumulus clouds developed in the wake of a departing coastal low that brought heavy rains to Long Island and Connecticut.

GWC Time Lapse–July 25, 2013–Grey Skies at Laurence Harbor

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Web Cam, GWC Time Lapse at 10:59 am by gmachos

Here is a time lapse video of weather conditions at Laurence Harbor in Old Bridge on Thursday evening, July 25, 2013. On this day, grey, overcast skies covered the region thanks to a coastal low that developed from an MCS system that first emerged in Arkansas. The grey skies and northeasterly fetch kept temperatures down. Highs didn’t get out of the 60s all day in the coldest day of the summer by far.

GWC Time Lapse–July 25, 2013–Overcast Skies at Keyport

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Web Cam, GWC Time Lapse at 10:57 am by gmachos

Here is a time lapse video of weather conditions at Keyport’s Waterfront Park on Thursday afternoon, July 25, 2013. On this day, there were plenty of grey skies and a chilly northeast wind to drive in the water and keep temperatures down. High temperatures didn’t even get out of the 60s for highs on Thursday. By far the coldest day of the summer and a welcome break from the recent heat and humidity.

07.23.13

GWC Storm Footage–July 20, 2013–Thunderstorms Break Heat Wave

Posted in GWC News, Storm Footage, YouTube Videos, GWC Web Cam at 7:07 am by gmachos

Here is storm footage of the thunderstorms that came through New Jersey and New York City from Waterfront Park in South Amboy on Saturday night, July 20, 2013. On this day, severe weather broke out throughout parts of the Ohio Valley, Mid-Atlantic, and New England to help break what had been a seven day heat wave.

07.22.13

GWC Time Lapse–July 21, 2013–Sunset at Keyport

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Web Cam, GWC Time Lapse at 7:21 am by gmachos

Here is a time lapse video of weather conditions at Keyport’s Waterfront Park on the evening of Sunday, July 21, 2013. On this day, the seven day heat wave finally broke with only a high temperature of 87 degrees in South Plainfield. Combined with a dew point that still lingered around 70 degrees, the heat index was still 93.

07.21.13

GWC Time Lapse–July 20, 2013–Thunderstorm Breaks Heat Wave

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Web Cam, GWC Time Lapse at 6:55 am by gmachos

Here is a time lapse video of weather conditions at South Amboy’s Waterfront Park on Saturday evening, July 20, 2013. On this night, a thunderstorm developed over the park. It was one of many thunderstorms that developed across the Garden State, and broke a heat wave that had lasted seven days.

07.20.13

GWC Time Lapse–July 19, 2013–Clouds and Haze

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Web Cam, GWC Time Lapse at 6:56 am by gmachos

Here is a time lapse video of weather conditions at Columbus Park in Piscataway on the sixth day of the major heat wave in mid-July 2013. On this day, the temperature rose to 97 degrees. Coupled with a peak dew point of 81 degrees, the heat index climbed to 117. There was a lot more haze in the atmosphere on this day than any of the previous days in this heat wave. Fortunately for me, I was in a spot with a good deal of shade and a nice breeze when I was doing this time lapse video.

07.19.13

GWC Time Lapse–July 18, 2013–Afternoon Convection

Posted in GWC News, YouTube Videos, GWC Web Cam, GWC Time Lapse at 9:38 am by gmachos

Here is a time lapse video of weather conditions at Roosevelt Park in mid-July 2013. It was the fifth day of the third heat wave of the season in Central Jersey. In response to the heat and humidity, there were some cumulus clouds that built up over the area in the afternoon. An isolated thunderstorm later developed over Burlington and Ocean county toward nightfall. You could see the cloud tops from it all the way over here in Northwestern Middlesex County.

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