An early start to hurricane season? And, tornado kills 3 in Missouri

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 02:38 PM GMT em 14 de Maio de 2009

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The 2009 Atlantic hurricane season may get off to an early start. For the past two days, most of our reliable hurricane forecast models have been predicting the possibility of a subtropical depression forming near Florida or Western Cuba Monday - Thursday next week. An area of disturbed weather associated with a mid- to upper-level trough of low pressure near eastern Cuba and the southeastern Bahama Islands is predicted to slide west-northwest over the next few days. Wind shear over this low, current a prohibitively high 40 knots, is expected to relax to just 10 knots by Monday in the region surrounding Florida. This may allow a disturbance with a surface warm core to develop, according to phase space analyses from Florida State. However, since the upper atmosphere will still be cold, any development of this system will likely be subtropical in nature. If a subtropical storm does form, it may be fairly dry, like Subtropical Storm Andrea of May 2007. This storm ended up fanning fires in Florida, instead of putting them out. Water vapor loops show plenty of dry, continental air in the region, and it will take many days for the atmosphere to moisten enough to support formation of a subtropical depression.


Figure 1. Water vapor image showing moisture from a weak mid- to upper-level low of low pressure over the southeastern Bahama Islands, surrounded by a large area of dry air, and sandwiched between the polar and subtropical jet stream. Image credit: NOAA/SSD.

The GFS and NOGAPS models predict a subtropical depression could form by Tuesday, while the ECMWF shows development later in the week. The latest UKMET model forecast puts development Wednesday or Thursday near Haiti. The area of predicted development is sandwiched in a relatively narrow band of low wind shear between two branches of the jet stream. This is not a typical set-up for formation of a May tropical cyclone. With so much shear and dry air around, I put the probability of a subtropical depression forming next week at about 10%. Any developing system will also have to contend with the arrival Tuesday of a strong upper-level low pressure system that is expected to drop down over the northern Gulf of Mexico. The eventual track of any depression that forms is highly uncertain, and the models support tracks up the U.S. East Coast towards South Carolina, or up the west coast of Florida in the Gulf of Mexico.

Season's first tropical wave arrives
The season's first tropical wave rolled off the coast of Africa yesterday, and is now located near 10N 20W, a few hundred miles off the coast of Africa, according to total precipitable water loops. Mid-May is a fairly typical time for these waves to begin moving across the Atlantic, though they usually don't start developing into tropical depressions until August. Last year was an exception, when Hurricane Bertha formed from a July tropical wave. Wunderground blogger Weather456 has been tracking the date of the first African wave each year since 2004, and these dates have ranged from May 2 to May 21. With Sea Surface Temperatures near average this year in the tropical Atlantic, an early season major hurricane in the eastern Atlantic like Bertha is unlikely.


Figure 2. The line of severe thunderstorms that spawned the Kirksville, MO tornado.

A wild night in Tornado Alley
Northern Missouri took a hard hit by a powerful tornado last night, when a twister passed through Kirksville, killing three people. The tornado flipped cars and damaged 30 - 40 buildings as it tore through the north end of town. The Storm Prediction Center recorded 23 tornado reports across Missouri, Illinois, Oklahoma, and Kansas yesterday.

The Vortex2 field study, the world's largest-ever tornado research project, caught last night's tornado outbreak with its armada of 40 research vehicles and radars. You can read about yesterday's chase on our new featured Vortex2 blog. Our team of University of Michigan students caught some severe thunderstorms, but were forced by darkness to quit before the storms spawned tornadoes.

Portlight/wunderground shirts for sale
The portlight.org disaster relief charity is selling spiffy new shirts sporting the portlight and wunderground logos, to help raise funds for relief operations during the coming hurricane season. I expect that their services will be needed this year, and I encourage you to shell out the $20 to get this fine piece or wunderwear.

I'll have an update on the tropics Friday.
Jeff Masters

V2 Convoy in Canton 2 (Vortex2)
Most of the V2 convoy waited in Canton, OK for initiation.
V2 Convoy in Canton 2

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504. CaneAddict
01:33 AM GMT em 15 de Maio de 2009
Verizon FIOS doesent yet have coverage of my area..but trust me when it does, I'm jumping on it.
Member Since: Outubro 5, 2007 Posts: 3 Comments: 2151
503. CycloneOz
01:33 AM GMT em 15 de Maio de 2009
Has the blog suddenly turned into a computer support forum? ;)
Member Since: Agosto 26, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 3835
502. CaneAddict
01:32 AM GMT em 15 de Maio de 2009
I'm running a HP Desktop with 8 gigs of RAM installed already without evening upgrading...and a 2 terabite harddrive..(3000 Gigabites)
Member Since: Outubro 5, 2007 Posts: 3 Comments: 2151
501. IKE
01:31 AM GMT em 15 de Maio de 2009
Quoting StormW:


Upload: 1898
download: 12233


You beat me too.
Member Since: Junho 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Quoting Drakoen:


Comcast why?


Just wondering...I have Comcast as well. I haven't seen that many people with Fios.
Member Since: Junho 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15921
I guess its about that time.
Member Since: Julho 10, 2005 Posts: 3 Comments: 1281
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
'
What are you running? Fios?


Comcast why?
Member Since: Outubro 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30577
Quoting Weather456:
Sometimes you can see changes in your internet connection by changing the operating system and/or RAM. I know I saw changes in the latter when i upgraded from 256 mb ram to 3 GB ram.


Your internet speed..remained the same...by adding more RAM you reserved more for the video card..In turn this was loading pages faster with the video card being optimized by the additional available ram. When you were running 256 that video card was likely struggling and was not able to offer the optimized visuals that your getting now with more RAM. (Visuals being web text and pictures) So basically it's just your video card being accelarated because of the additional RAM. Not an increase in internet speed.
Member Since: Outubro 5, 2007 Posts: 3 Comments: 2151
A very windy day today, after the cold front passed behind some thunderstorms. A garbage can blew in onto our driveway from four houses down the street, and our garbage can's lid was found five houses up! Now Canada has 436 cases of swine flu, and rising.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting CaneAddict:


Lol..yeah my house is clean..the office is a mess :)


Ah well that explains it. My brother in-law works from home. Lol
Member Since: Junho 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15921
Quoting Weather456:
Sometimes you can see changes in your internet connection by changing the operating system and/or RAM. I know I saw changes in the latter when i upgraded from 256 mb ram to 3 GB ram.


Yeah I had a big time upgrade in RAM.
Member Since: Junho 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15921
One final thing about hunting hurricanes...there is also the bizarre!

I spent nearly an entire morning and early afternoon at the seawall statue on Galveston Island that pays homage to all those who died in the 1900 storm. I feature the statue at the end of my opening for the video on Ike. It was a hotbed of tourista action and I actually saw dozens of families, families with children, mind you...that posed for video pics at that spot. Not once did I hear a mother say to a father..."You know, it's time we leave the island," or "I'm scared, let's leave."

To me, that is so freakin' bizarre! The island was packed with thousands of people who never evacuated to safety. I even asked people what their plans were [on camera...but I won't use the video,] and no one said they intended to evacuate. "We're stayin' put, it's not going to be that bad," was the unanimous consent.

OMG, how bizzare! I was hoping just one family would tell me that they were scared and were leaving right away. That video, I would have used, because I want people to begin respecting these things.

When the NWS drew a death zone around the island later on the evening of the 12th, I knew one of two things were going to be true the following morning...either the residents of Galveston would get lucky and their sea-wall would somehow save them, or I would pass dozens of military trucks loaded down with body bags as I left the area.

Thank God option 1 prevailed that night.

But there were those that did regret their decision to stay as Ike was one of the most terrifying night storms, third only to Katrina and Ivan.

I can still hear that one woman sobbing on her second floor balcony right behind the parking structure of the Hotel Galvez. It's haunting.
Member Since: Agosto 26, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 3835
The Weather Channel just said right now it's a long shot of getting a named storm but they still want to watch it. They mentioned anywhere from Northern Florida coast to South Carolina will see the affects from this-- rain, wind, and thunderstorms. They don't seem to think it will come near SFL or the GOM whatsoever.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:

wunderground SF office
Member Since: Julho 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128874
yes, the tropics are getting hot.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Drakoen:
Download Speed: 13418 kbps (1677.3 KB/sec transfer rate)
Upload Speed: 1973 kbps (246.6 KB/sec transfer rate)

I thought everyone had high speed internet these days. The ol' dial-up isn't gonna cut it.
'
What are you running? Fios?
Member Since: Junho 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15921
Quoting CaneAddict:


T1 is a much more reliable connection...you'll hardly ever lose your connection. So that's probably why it's going to help.


Thanks - they tried to explain that although the max rate is lower, because its dedicated, we always have that available, unlike now, where we basically get the bandwidth that's left after everyone else!
Member Since: Agosto 13, 2007 Posts: 10 Comments: 4158
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


Yeah my brother in-law is also in the puter business. He has PC towers and every other part scattered around his house. Quite a sight....


Lol..yeah my house is clean..the office is a mess :)
Member Since: Outubro 5, 2007 Posts: 3 Comments: 2151
Quoting CaneAddict:


The only other thing I can think of that would affect your speed is the type of enthernet card or WIFI card your using. Trust me the OS of a computer has nothing..I mean nothing to do with it..This is what I do for a living..I build computers from scratch, troubleshoot and repair them...Maybe the laptop had a lower quality card...I've tested Vista and the Release Candidate of Windows 7 on the same computer and the internet download/upload speed was no different with either operating system then when I was running XP.


Yeah my brother in-law is also in the puter business. He has PC towers and every other part scattered around his house. Quite a sight....
Member Since: Junho 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15921
Quoting zoomiami:
So - could one of you techies explain to me how the T1 will help?


T1 is a much more reliable connection...you'll hardly ever lose your connection. So that's probably why it's going to help.
Member Since: Outubro 5, 2007 Posts: 3 Comments: 2151
Download Speed: 13418 kbps (1677.3 KB/sec transfer rate)
Upload Speed: 1973 kbps (246.6 KB/sec transfer rate)

I thought everyone had high speed internet these days. The ol' dial-up isn't gonna cut it.


My speed varies depending on what i'm downloading.
Member Since: Outubro 28, 2006 Posts: 57 Comments: 30577
Sometimes you can see changes in your internet connection by changing the operating system and/or RAM. I know I saw changes in the latter when i upgraded from 256 mb ram to 3 GB ram.
Member Since: Julho 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
Quoting IKE:


Mine is through brighthouse..."roadrunner". They sent me an email a few months ago to upgrade to an even faster speed for $10 a mth. more.

I'm satisfied with what I've got.


Same here..I am waiting for Verizon FIOS to be released in my area.
Member Since: Outubro 5, 2007 Posts: 3 Comments: 2151
So - could one of you techies explain to me how the T1 will help?
Member Since: Agosto 13, 2007 Posts: 10 Comments: 4158
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


Well that doesnt seem to be right. I had a laptop (running XP) that was on the same ISP as im using now and that thing couldn't get above 2500kbps.


The only other thing I can think of that would affect your speed is the type of enthernet card or WIFI card your using. Trust me the OS of a computer has nothing..I mean nothing to do with it..This is what I do for a living..I build computers from scratch, troubleshoot and repair them...Maybe the laptop had a lower quality card...I've tested Vista and the Release Candidate of Windows 7 on the same computer and the internet download/upload speed was no different with either operating system then when I was running XP.
Member Since: Outubro 5, 2007 Posts: 3 Comments: 2151
Quoting Weather456:


Same here. High speed internet is really a necessity for me when it comes to tracking the tropics. Also RAM.


Agreed - if we don't have decent access you would think someone cut off an arm.

Member Since: Agosto 13, 2007 Posts: 10 Comments: 4158
Never heard of roadrunner, Comcast dominates here

Comcast is a total rip off!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
476. IKE
Quoting Weather456:


Same here. High speed internet is really a necessity for me when it comes to tracking the tropics. Also RAM.


And I use it for my job a lot. High speed IS great for the tropics.
Member Since: Junho 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
We are at the end of the connection - its always been an issue. We even split the house into two separate DSL's, still didn't do much.

Member Since: Agosto 13, 2007 Posts: 10 Comments: 4158
This helped me allot when I was using my old laptop. Speed it up!. Just check it out. I did see my laptop speed up by at least 200%
Member Since: Junho 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15921
Quoting IKE:


Mine is through brighthouse..."roadrunner". They sent me an email a few months ago to upgrade to an even faster speed for $10 a mth. more.

I'm satisfied with what I've got.


Same here. High speed internet is really a necessity for me when it comes to tracking the tropics. Also RAM.
Member Since: Julho 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
471. IKE
Quoting futuremet:


How much do you pay a month for your current ISP?


It's about $40 a month.
Member Since: Junho 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
470. IKE
Quoting zoomiami:
Thanks for the link for the speed. We have been having serious issues with our internet, we have the most expensive att dsl, and lose our signal continously. My husband and sons are online gamers, and I work from home on many nights. We are in the process of installing a t1. I'm not sure how a slower speed is suppose to make us more efficient.


I've had brighthouse for years and it's only caused a problem maybe twice in all the years I've had it and the problem was quickly fixed.

I started out w/dialup...LMAO....AWFUL!
Member Since: Junho 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Member Since: Julho 3, 2005 Posts: 426 Comments: 128874
Quoting IKE:


Mine is through brighthouse..."roadrunner". They sent me an email a few months ago to upgrade to an even faster speed for $10 a mth. more.

I'm satisfied with what I've got.


How much do you pay a month for your current ISP?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting CaneAddict:


You speaking of your internet connection speed correct? Well the operating system of your computer whether it's XP, Vista or Windows 7 has no affect on your internet speed..it has to do with your ISP.


Well that doesnt seem to be right. I had a laptop (running XP) that was on the same ISP as im using now and that thing couldn't get above 2500kbps.
Member Since: Junho 9, 2007 Posts: 4 Comments: 15921
Thanks for the link for the speed. We have been having serious issues with our internet, we have the most expensive att dsl, and lose our signal continously. My husband and sons are online gamers, and I work from home on many nights. We are in the process of installing a t1. I'm not sure how a slower speed is suppose to make us more efficient.
Member Since: Agosto 13, 2007 Posts: 10 Comments: 4158
465. IKE
Quoting CaneAddict:


You speaking of your internet connection speed correct? Well the operating system of your computer whether it's XP, Vista or Windows 7 has no affect on your internet speed..it has to do with your ISP.


Mine is through brighthouse..."roadrunner". They sent me an email a few months ago to upgrade to an even faster speed for $10 a mth. more.

I'm satisfied with what I've got.
Member Since: Junho 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Quoting WeatherStudent:
what's up bloggers!


Can you just please admit that you are JFV...We ALL know you are. It's very obvious..if you'd just admit it I and everyone else would likely have alot more respect for your standing up and admitting it.

Thanks.
Member Since: Outubro 5, 2007 Posts: 3 Comments: 2151
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


Souped up version of Vista. Pretty impressive setup with 2 monitors.


You speaking of your internet connection speed correct? Well the operating system of your computer whether it's XP, Vista or Windows 7 has no affect on your internet speed..it has to do with your ISP.
Member Since: Outubro 5, 2007 Posts: 3 Comments: 2151
460. IKE
Quoting CaneAddict:
Futuremet - I could have called him worse..I think he's ridiculous because it's so darn obvious he is JFV and he continues to deny it.


He more or less admitted to Drak that he was JFV.

It's him.
Member Since: Junho 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
Quoting StSimonsIslandGAGuy:
OK the tropical watching checklist
Inside hurricane Hurricane Season--No
Active Hurricane--No
Active Tropical Storm--No
Active Tropical Depression--No
Red High Threat Development Area on NHC Site--No
Orange Medium Threat Development Area--No
Yellow Moderate Threat Area--No


Um what are we talking about again?


Model support--Yes
Wind Shear dropping--Yes
SSTs supporting a System--Yes
Upper air supporting a purely tropical system--No.
Mention by local NWS--Yes
Mention by TWC--Yes
Joe Bastardi calls '09 season a dud already, thats an indication right there that it will be an active one and might as well think a TS by Wensday lol.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
interesting to hear the TWC mentioning a possible Sub TS when its not out there yet, but when theirs a blob in the caribbean thats well organized 'take that cruise'

I guess it has a good chance, how many models are on to it?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
OZ totally awsome. Thanks for the message.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Stormchaser2007:
Second time was even better.



damn
Member Since: Julho 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
454. IKE
8-14 DAY OUTLOOK FOR MAY 22 - 28 2009

FOR WEEK 2, THE MEAN UPPER AIR CIRCULATION PATTERN DIFFERS LITTLE FROM THE 6-10
PERIOD, FEATURING A TROUGH NEAR THE PACIFIC COAST, WEAK RIDGING NEAR THE CENTER
OF THE CONUS, AND A TROUGH NEAR THE EASTERN GULF OF MEXICO. MODELS DIFFER
CONSIDERABLY ON THE LOCATION AND TRACK OF ANY TROPICAL LOW PRESSURE CENTER THAT
MAY AFFECT FLORIDA OR THE SOUTHEAST, BUT THERE IS A CONSENSUS THAT MOIST FLOW
WILL DOMINATE THE REGION DURING THIS PERIOD. THE MODEL RUNS AVAILABLE TODAY
TEND TO FAVOR EXPANSION OF THE AREA OF ENHANCED ABOVE-MEDIAN RAINFALL WESTWARD
TOWARD THE MISSISSIPPI VALLEY.
Member Since: Junho 9, 2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858

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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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