Caribbean disturbance slow to develop; 5 EF-5 tornadoes this year confirmed

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:33 PM GMT on June 03, 2011

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The tropical disturbance (Invest 93L) that crossed over Florida on Wednesday, bringing welcome rains of 1 - 3 inches, is now a naked swirl of low clouds over the central Gulf of Mexico. The disturbance is embedded in a large area of dry air associated with an upper level low pressure system, and this dry air is discouraging development. 93L is also moving into a region of moderate wind shear of 10 - 20 knots, and NHC is giving 93L a 0% chance of developing into a tropical depression before the storm makes landfall in Mexico south of Brownsville on Saturday. There are a few heavy thunderstorms trying to fire up near the center of 93L's fairly well-formed circulation, but I don't think this storm is going to bring more than 1 - 2 inches of rain to the coast on Saturday.


Figure 1. Morning satellite image of the Central Caribbean disturbance.

Central Caribbean disturbance 94L
Disorganized heavy thunderstorm activity continues in the region between Central America and Jamaica. Wind shear has fallen to the moderate range, 10 - 20 knots, and is predicted to continue to fall over the next two days. This should allow the disturbance, dubbed Invest 94L by NHC on Friday afternoon, to increase in organization, though it will take many days for it to approach tropical depression status, since it is so large and poorly organized. The last two runs of the NOGAPS model have developed the disturbance into a tropical depression or storm by early next week, with the system moving northwards into Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, and eastern Cuba. The other major models do not show the disturbance developing during the coming week. NHC is giving the disturbance a 10% of developing into a tropical depression by Sunday. A surge of moisture accompanying a tropical wave may aid development when the wave arrives in the Western Caribbean on Sunday. Water temperatures in the Central Caribbean are about 1°C above average, 29°C, which is plenty warm enough to support development of a tropical storm. Residents of Jamaica, eastern Cuba, the Cayman Islands, Haiti, and the Dominican Republic should anticipate the possibility that heavy rains of 2 - 4 inches may affect them today through Sunday.

Five EF-5 tornadoes confirmed in 2011
The National Weather Service in Oklahoma City announced Wednesday that the violent tornado that hit Binger, El Reno, Peidmont, and Guthrie, Oklahoma on May 24, killing nine people, was an EF-5 with winds greater than 210 mph. The rating was given based on measurements made by a University of Oklahoma portable "Doppler on wheels" radar. The long track, large wedge tornado caused extensive damage, with well built houses cleanly swept from their foundation and trees debarked. This tornado brings the total number of EF-5 tornadoes this year to five, tying 2011 with 1953 for 2nd place for greatest number of these top-end tornadoes in one year. Only 1974 (six) had more. The EF-5 tornadoes of 2011:

1) The April 27, 2011 Neshoba/Kemper/Winston/Noxubee Counties, Mississippi tornado (3 killed, 29 mile path length.)

2) The April 27, 2011 Smithville, Mississippi tornado (22 killed, 15 mile path length.)

3) The April 27, 2011 Hackleburg, Alabama tornado (71 killed, 25 mile path length.)

4) The May 22, 2011 Joplin Missouri tornado (138 killed, 14 mile path length.)

5) The May 24, 2011 Binger-El Reno-Peidmont-Guthrie, Oklahoma tornado. (9 killed, 75 mile path length.)


Figure 2. Aerial view of damage from the May 22, 2011 Joplin, Missouri tornado. Image credit: Wikipedia.

A few other remarkable statistics on the tornado season of 2011, compiled from NOAA's official press release and Wikipedia's excellent tornado pages:

- The April 25 - 28 tornado outbreak, with 330 tornadoes, was the largest tornado outbreak of three days or less duration on record. The previous record was 148 tornadoes, set during the April 3 - 4, 1974 Super Outbreak.

- For April 27, 186 tornadoes have been confirmed. This is the largest 1-day tornado total on record, beating the 148 recorded in 24 hours on April 3 - 4, 1974.

- The April 14 - 16 tornado outbreak, with 162 confirmed tornadoes, ranks as the fourth largest tornado outbreak of three days or less duration on record.

- The May 21 - 26 tornado outbreak, with 158 confirmed tornadoes, ranks as the 5th largest 6-day or shorter tornado outbreak on record. A May 2003 6-day outbreak had 289 tornadoes, and a May 2004 6-day outbreak had 229 tornadoes. The year 2011 now has three of the top five tornado outbreaks on record.

- April confirmed tornado total was 683, making it the busiest tornado month on record. The previous record was 542 tornadoes, set in May 2003. The previous April record was 267 tornadoes, which occurred in April 1974. The 30-year average for April tornadoes is 135.

- If the three deaths in Massachusetts from Wednesday's tornadoes are confirmed, this year's tornado death toll will be 522, beating 1953 as the deadliest tornado year since modern tornado records began. That year, 519 people died, and three heavily populated cities received direct hits by violent tornadoes. Waco, Texas (114 killed), Flint, Michigan (115 killed), and Worcester, Massachusetts (90 killed) all were hit by violent F-4 or F-5 tornadoes. A similar bad tornado year occurred in 1936, when violent tornadoes hit Tupelo Mississippi (216 killed), and Gainesville, Georgia (203 killed.) During that time period, the tornado death rate per million people was 60 - 70 times as great as in the year 2000 (Figure 4), implying that this year's tornadoes would have killed many thousands of people had we not had our modern tornado modern warning system.

- The May 22, 2011 Joplin, Missouri tornado killed 138 people and injured 1150, making it the deadliest U.S. tornado since 1947, and 8th deadliest in history. The $1 - $3 billion estimate of insured damage makes it the most expensive tornado in history.

- Damage from the April 25 - 28 super tornado outbreak was estimated at $3.5 - $6 billion, making it the most expensive tornado outbreak of all-time.

- The tornado that hit Springfield, Massachusetts on June 1 was at least an EF-3 with 136 - 165 mph winds. It was only the 9th EF-3 or stronger tornado to hit Massachusetts since 1950, and the third deadliest, with three deaths.

- The year 2011 now ranks in 3rd place behind 1974 and 1965 for highest number of strong to violent EF-3, EF-4, and EF-5 tornadoes (Figure 3.)


Figure 3. Number of strong to violent EF-3, EF-4 and EF-5 tornadoes from 1950 to 2011. The year 2011 now ranks in 3rd place behind 1974 and 1965. There is not a decades-long increasing trend in the numbers of these most dangerous of tornadoes. Image credit: NOAA/National Climatic Data Center (updated using stats for 2008 - 2011 from Wikipedia.)


Figure 4. Death rate per million people per year in U.S., 1875-2000. Thin line with dots is raw rate, curved thick line is death rate, filtered by 3-point median and 5-point running mean filter, and straight solid lines are least squares fit to filtered death rate for 1875-1925 and 1925-2000. Dashed lines are estimates of 10th and 90th percentile death rates from 1925-2000. The death rate fell from 8 per million to .12 per million between 1940 and 2000. Image credit: A Brief History of Deaths from Tornadoes in the United States, Harold Brooks and Charles Doswell III.

Joplin tornado the 7th U.S. billion-dollar weather disaster of 2011
The Joplin tornado is the 7th U.S. weather disaster of 2011 costing more than a billion dollars. With a major flooding disaster coming on the Missouri River, and hurricane season still to come, 2011 has an excellent chance of beating 2008's record of nine billion-dollar weather disasters. The billion dollar weather disasters of 2011 so far:

1) 2011 Groundhog Day's blizzard ($1- $4 billion)
2) April 3 -5 Southeast U.S. severe weather outbreak ($2 billion)
3) April 8 - 11 severe weather outbreak ($2.25 billion)
4) April 25 - 28 super tornado outbreak ($3.5 - $6 billion)
5) Mississippi River flood of 2011 ($9 billion)
6) Texas drought ($1.2 billion)
7) Joplin tornado ($1 - $3 billion)


Figure 5. River flood outlook for the U.S. Image credit: NOAA.

The next U.S. billion-dollar weather disaster: a Missouri River flood?
A great 100-year flood has arrived along the Missouri River and its tributaries from Montana to Nebraska. Record spring rains, combined with snow melt from record or near-record winter and spring snows, brought the Missouri River at Williston, North Dakota to 27.9' yesterday, just an inch short of the highest crest on record (28.0' on 4/01/1912.) Tributaries to the Missouri, such as the Souris River in North Dakota and the North Platte River in Nebraska, are already flooding at all-time record heights. With warm summer temperatures and additional rainfall expected over much of the area during the coming week, snow melt and rain runoff will swell area rivers even further, creating a damaging 100-year flood. Wunderground weather historian Christopher C. Burt has the details in his latest post, and I will be writing more on this latest epic flood next week.

I'll have a new post on Monday, or earlier if the Caribbean disturbance shows significant development.

Jeff Masters

Joplin Tornado Damage (thebige)
Joplin Tornado Damage
And Bigger.... (weatherfanatic2010)
Here it is turning into a monster.
And Bigger....

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1024. Grothar
Quoting reedzone:


That last frame is impressive Grothar, notice a thin round band around the low. This is really organizing well tonight. Code red by morning if trends continue with the invest.


Yes, I actually did not expect to see something like that until tomorrow, but there it is. Organizing a little faster than I thought. I made an earlier post that this would happen in about 12 hours and it is only about 8 hours. I have to go back and look. Come on reed, you can tell me, did I nail this one or not? LOL
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
1023. Patrap
94L WV Loop
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Good Evening....Regardless of longer-term development for 94L the ongoing short-term convection, and nearly stationary location, means a very serious, and life threatening, flooding situation for Jamaica and Hispanola.....Last thing anyone needs is a stationary tropical system with copious rains for several days.....I hope it gets moving soon for their sake.
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Quoting beell:

However, I do think we will continue with the Omega pattern with a trough on or just off each coast and a more or less central US ridge for a while longer.



We shall see. Thanks for tonight's discussion, beell. I enjoyed it. This is what we are here for: profound interest in meteorology. Friendly banter is a corollary of that, and knowledge a corollary of banter. ;)
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any help for my pics not showing?
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World's largest drainage pumping station roars to life on West BankLink
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Quoting reedzone:


That last frame is impressive Grothar, notice a thin round band around the low. This is really organizing well tonight. Code red by morning if trends continue with the invest.


I'd be surprised if it got to red tomorrow, that doesn't seem like gradual development. It could easily poof out this time tomorrow. 40% tomorrow at most, though I've been wrong before.
Member Since: July 8, 2005 Posts: 259 Comments: 24549
It went from 10% this morning to 30% by 8 p.m. for development within 48 hours. wow. But evidently still too early to say where it will go.

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just imagen when D-Max kicks in what a beast it will look
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 12710
1015. Ossqss
Quoting lordhuracan01:
rain, rain and more rain from 94L........


:Lets hope




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1014. Grothar
Quoting Chicklit:
oh yay. thanks Reed. wasn't aware of that94LWVLoop


Chicklit, get with the program. They even woke me from my nap to tell me we had 94L.
Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
Quoting Grothar:
CIMSS just finished their product. 94L is progressing exactly as I said it would. Same direction speed and everything. I really nailed this one.



That last frame is impressive Grothar, notice a thin round band around the low. This is really organizing well tonight. Code red by morning if trends continue with the invest.
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Member Since: September 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5243
1011. Patrap
8:05 Discussion

CARIBBEAN SEA...
A BROAD AREA OF LOW PRESSURE CONTINUES OVER THE WEST-CENTRAL
CARIBBEAN SEA...CENTERED ROUGHLY A HUNDRED MILES SOUTH OF
JAMAICA. SATELLITE PICTURES INDICATE THAT THIS SYSTEM HAS BECOME
A LITTLE BETTER ORGANIZED DURING THE LAST SEVERAL HOURS...WITH
EVIDENCE OF INCREASING CONVECTIVE BANDING FEATURES NEAR AND TO
THE EAST OF THE CIRCULATION CENTER. UPPER-LEVEL SOUTHWESTERLY
FLOW OVER THE SYSTEM HAS RECENTLY BECOME MORE ANTI-CYCLONIC OVER
THE LOW...GENERALLY PROVIDING A MORE FAVORABLE ENVIRONMENT FOR
DEVELOPMENT. HOWEVER...A LARGE AREA OF DRY AIR IS BEING DRAWN
INTO THE WESTERN SIDE OF THE CIRCULATION. HEAVY RAINS ARE THE
MAIN CONCERN AND COULD STILL CAUSE FLASH FLOODING AND MUD SLIDES
OVER PORTIONS OF HAITI...THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC...JAMAICA...AND
EXTREME SOUTHEASTERN CUBA OVER THE NEXT DAY OR TWO AS THE LOW
REMAINS NEARLY STATIONARY OVER THE WEST-CENTRAL CARIBBEAN SEA.
IF THIS SYSTEM CONTINUES TO SHOWS SIGNS OF ORGANIZATION...A
SPECIAL FEATURE WILL BE INTRODUCED ON THE NEXT ISSUANCE OF THE
TWD. SHALLOW MOISTURE EMBEDDED IN A MODERATE TO FRESH NE WIND
FLOW...BETWEEN THE DEVELOPING LOW PRES OVER THE CARIBBEAN SEA
AND HIGH PRES TO THE N...WILL MOVE MAINLY ACROSS THE WESTERN AND
CENTRAL CUBA PRODUCING ISOLATED TO SCATTERED PASSING SHOWERS.
THIS WEATHER PATTERN IS ALSO NOTED ACROSS THE NW CARIBBEAN WHERE
A NLY FLOW PREVAILS. A TROPICAL WAVE WILL MOVE ACROSS THE LESSER
ANTILLES AND THE EASTERN CARIBBEAN THIS SAT. SEE TROPICAL WAVES
SECTION. MULTILAYERED CLOUDS WITH EMBEDDED SHOWERS AND TSTMS ARE
AFFECTING THE NORTHERN HALF OF PUERTO RICO AND THE SURROUNDING
WATERS... INCLUDING THE MONA PASSAGE. THIS ACTIVITY HAS BEEN
ENHANCED BY A DIFFLUENT PATTERN ALOFT ASSOCIATED WITH A BROAD
ANTICYCLONIC FLOW ACROSS THE BASIN.
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Quoting Chicklit:
oh yay. thanks Reed. wasn't aware of that.


No problem, :)

If you look at it, it's organized alot today and may get a code red by the morning. It has that look of a cyclone that is ready to burst. Banding and outflow is impressive.
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Quoting twincomanche:
I flew over the Mississippi North of Memphis yesterday (of course forgot my camera). You have to see this from the air to realize how large the flooding area is. Never seen anything remotely like it. Anybody know when it's going to start receding?


Yes, you have to see it from the air to really grasp the width of the river flooding....our local news here in Ms shows the aerial view regularly...I know at Vicksburg flood stage is 43' ...the river is about 51' now....so its down about 6 ft....but not expected to get to 43' till around mid June.....
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1008. Patrap
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1007. Grothar
CIMSS just finished their product. 94L is progressing exactly as I said it would. Same direction speed and everything. I really nailed this one.

Member Since: July 17, 2009 Posts: 71 Comments: 27103
1006. Patrap
The ShortWave IR Shows the Dry Air in the Left Semi Circle around the CoC,..and that iz the inhibiting factor overall..

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Member Since: September 18, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 5243
Quoting reedzone:
Banding is very impressive with 94L, it just wants to get going.. I think we may see a stronger storm then what models have been indicating over the past few days.

Very impressive outflow/ banding

Yep, Like i said 50% chance or 60% Chance at the next TWO for 94L, looking much more impressive, guess it had a sudden change of heart? Maybe....
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Quoting HurricaneDean07:
lordhuracan01, Did you watch the season premeire of whale wars? cause thats what you username image is.
I have not seen yet....
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oh yay. thanks Reed. wasn't aware of that94LWVLoop
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Quoting Chicklit:
tgif!
Probably stating the obvious, but anticyclone still over yet-to-be-designated-94L.


umm Chicklit 94L has already been designated from like 4/5pm
Member Since: June 13, 2009 Posts: 2 Comments: 12710
Quoting Chicklit:
tgif!
Probably stating the obvious, but anticyclone still over yet-to-be-designated-94L.



This is already 94L. It was tagged earlier today.
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Banding is very impressive with 94L, it just wants to get going.. I think we may see a stronger storm then what models have been indicating over the past few days.

Very impressive outflow/ banding

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AL942011 - INVEST
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997. beell
Quoting KoritheMan:

I've actually seen it defined a bit more flexibly on numerous occasions.


fwiw, I have not (at least not that flexibly). But what ever you or I call it we are talking about the same synoptic setup-SW flow!

And no issue here with the placement of the ridge axis. However, I do think we will continue with the Omega pattern with a trough on or just off each coast and a more or less central US ridge for a while longer.

Photobucket

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tgif!
Probably stating the obvious, but anticyclone still over yet-to-be-designated-94L.

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94L Enhanced Infrared (IR) Imagery (4 km Mercator)

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Quoting srada:
there was a run that I posted of 94L where it was hitting the east side of Florida earlier this week by the GFS..hence becoming a east coast storm..its anyone storm right now..if it materializes..
It's materializing.
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Quoting beell:


Zonal flow in the conventional sense is west to east.
I've actually seen it defined a bit more flexibly on numerous occasions.
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992. beell
Quoting KoritheMan:

Okay, I'll admit that perhaps the term "central US" wasn't the most appropriate. ;)

The actual axis appears, at least to me, to be located a little bit farther east, along the southeastern US, rather than the central.

And I disagree about the trough/zonal flow. The imagery clearly indicates strong southwesterly mid to upper flow across the central US from around the Kansas/Nebraska border northward.


Zonal flow in the conventional sense is west to east. Flat. SW flow would not be zonal using that definition.
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lordhuracan01, Did you watch the season premeire of whale wars? cause thats what you username image is.
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XX/INV/94L
MARK
16.34N/77.45W

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Quoting twincomanche:
I flew over the Mississippi North of Memphis yesterday (of course forgot my camera). You have to see this from the air to realize how large the flooding area is. Never seen anything remotely like it. Anybody know when it's going to start receding?

I flew over the southern part, Louisiana, this past weekend. WOW! That's a lot of water.
Member Since: August 22, 2008 Posts: 12 Comments: 6010

Quoting beell:


Hard to have them both in the same place at the same time.
:-)

I respectfully disagree. There is no upper level trough over the central plains. Nuttin' but ridge. And that pattern is likely to hold for a week or more. Any zonal type flow will probably be confined to the northern tier states over the top of (north of) central US ridging.
Okay, I'll admit that perhaps the term "central US" wasn't the most appropriate. ;)

The actual axis appears, at least to me, to be located a little bit farther east, along the southeastern US, rather than the central.

And I disagree about the trough/zonal flow. The imagery clearly indicates strong southwesterly mid to upper flow across the central US from around the Kansas/Nebraska border northward.
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Fleet Weather Center Norfolk Tropical Feed
No Active Tropical Warnings in the Atlantic, Caribbean, or Gulf of Mexico
By Maritime.CDO@navy.mil (FWC-N CDO) from Fleet Weather Center Norfolk Virginia. Published on Fri, Jun 03, 2011.

As of Sat, 04 Jun 2011 01:45:02 GMT

2011 Storms
All Active Year


Atlantic
94L.INVEST
93L.INVEST (deactivated)

East Pacific

Central Pacific

West Pacific
92W.INVEST

Indian Ocean
98A.INVEST

Southern Hemisphere
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rain, rain and more rain from 94L........
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Quoting CAbear:
Out of Lurk mode.

In the previous blog someone asked if anyone had had normal weather this spring. Our answer in California is NO. More than ten tornados above Sacramento in two weeks, 3 plus inches of rain last month with snow in the mountains near L.A. on Memorial Day weekend and now a cold storm from Russia via the Gulf of Alaska!

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION

FXUS66 KMTR 040057
AFDMTR

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA
555 PM PDT FRI JUN 3 2011

...COOL AND WET WEEKEND IN STORE FOR THE SAN FRANCISCO AND MONTEREY
BAY AREAS...

.DISCUSSION...AS OF 2:30 PM PDT FRIDAY...CLOUDS CONTINUE TO STREAM
IN OVER THE DISTRICT THIS AFTERNOON...BUT NO RAIN HAS BEEN DETECTED
BY ANY AUTOMATED GAUGES AS OF YET. MEANWHILE...THE UPPER LOW
CURRENTLY LOCATED NEAR 40N/130W...IS DROPPING SOUTHWARD OVER THE
COASTAL WATERS...AND IS DUE TO REMAIN OFF THE COAST UNTIL LATE
SUNDAY/MONDAY WHEN IT IS PROGGED TO FINALLY SWING EASTWARD OVER
CENTRAL CALIFORNIA. PLENTY OF MOISTURE HAS BEEN ENTRAINED INTO THIS
SYSTEM...AND THE WAY THE SYSTEM WILL INTERACT WITH THE COAST IN TERMS
OF OROGRAPHIC ENHANCEMENTS...THIS LOOKS LIKE A POTENTIALLY RECORD-
BREAKING EVENT FOR OUR AREA FOR EARLY JUNE.

LATEST AMSU PRECIPITABLE WATER ESTIMATES GIVE WELL OVER AN INCH OF
RAIN WRAPPED UP IN THIS SYSTEM. MODELS CONTINUE PREVIOUS TRENDS OF
BRINGING LIGHT RAIN TO THE NORTH BAY LATER TODAY...AND SPREADING
SOUTH THROUGH THE GREATER SF BAY BY EVENING...THEN REACHING THE
MONTEREY BAY AREA BEFORE MIDNIGHT. HEAVIEST RAIN IS EXPECTED
OVERNIGHT TONIGHT INTO SATURDAY MORNING. BUT AS THE UPPER LOW IS
FORECAST TO REMAIN WOBBLING OFF THE COAST THROUGH SUNDAY...SHOWER
CHANCES WILL PERSIST THROUGH THE WEEKEND. MODELS INDICATE A BREAK IN
THE RAINFALL AFTER NOON TOMORROW...WITH RENEWED SHOWER CHANCES
OVERNIGHT INTO SUNDAY.

STORM TOTAL QPF EXPECTED WITH THIS SYSTEM GIVES 2-5 INCHES ACROSS THE
WETTEST AREAS
INCLUDING NORTH BAY HILLS...SANTA CRUZ MOUNTAINS...AND
THE SANTA LUCIAS. INLAND LOWER AREAS COULD GET UPWARDS OF 1-2 INCHES
TOTAL. ALTHOUGH THE BASINS CAN HANDLE THIS AMOUNT OF RAINFALL SPREAD
OUT OVER TWO DAYS...THESE ARE STILL BIG NUMBERS GIVEN WHERE WE ARE IN
THE CALENDAR. THUS...SOME RECORD RAINFALL AMOUNTS ARE EXPECTED
FOR THE MONTH.

GIVEN THE PROXIMITY OF THE COLD UPPER LOW...THUNDERSTORMS ARE ALSO
A POSSIBILITY...AND HAVE ADDED A SLIGHT CHANCE FOR SATURDAY
THROUGH SUNDAY NIGHT.

SHOWERS ARE EXPECTED TO END ON MONDAY AS THE UPPER LOW FINALLY EJECTS
TO THE EAST. THE REST OF THE FORECAST PERIOD IS EXPECTED TO CONTINUE
COOL AS A LONG-WAVE UPPER TROUGH REMAINS OVER THE WEST COAST.


&&

.MTR WATCHES/WARNINGS...
.TNGT...SCA...PT ARENA TO PT PIEDRAS BLANCAS 10-60 NM
SCA...PT PINOS TO PT PIEDRAS BLANCAS 0-60 NM.


&&

$$

PUBLIC FORECAST: SIMS


Up to 5 inches from a winter like storm in our normal dry period April to October is not normal and here it comes now.

Back to Lurk...


Yeah, you guys have been getting crazy weather. Stay safe.
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981. beell
Quoting KoritheMan:
Water vapor imagery indicates that the central United States ridge is holding rather strong, and may even be migrating southward a tad as the upper-level trough currently over the central plains pivots slowly east-northeast around the western flank of the high.

While it may still ultimately recurve, the synoptic scale pattern over the United States appears to me to be a little more progressive and more zonal than what the models have been indicating the last few days.


Hard to have them both in the same place at the same time.
:-)

I respectfully disagree. There is no upper level trough over the central plains. Nuttin' but ridge. And that pattern is likely to hold for a week or more. Any zonal type flow will probably be confined to the northern tier states over the top of (north of) central US ridging.
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Quoting sammywammybamy:


Can you explain what effect the High holding strong will have on 94L?
It could allow for a more westward track than what the GFS and NOGAPS have been indicating since this system was first introduced within the global model forecast fields. It is certainly not impossible that this system could eventually find US soil, though there is still a large amount of uncertainty in the ultimate evolution of the synoptic scale pattern over the United States. Should it continue to look like this (a more progressive and zonal pattern), with several shortwave impulses riding the westerlies up and around the ridge, it could more or less maintain or strengthen the central United States high pressure ridge.

On the other hand, there is still ample possibility of the central plains trough amplifying enough, especially if another shortwave impulse slides through the base of the longwave trough over the northern US/southern Canada, as some models have been showing, that recurvature is a definite.

I've been saying in my blog for the last several days that areas along the Gulf Coast from Louisiana to south Florida need to monitor this carefully, just in case. Climatology certainly favors a Gulf strike.
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Out of Lurk mode.

In the previous blog someone asked if anyone had had normal weather this spring. Our answer in California is NO. More than ten tornados above Sacramento in two weeks, 3 plus inches of rain last month with snow in the mountains near L.A. on Memorial Day weekend and now a cold storm from Russia via the Gulf of Alaska!

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION

FXUS66 KMTR 040057
AFDMTR

AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA
555 PM PDT FRI JUN 3 2011

...COOL AND WET WEEKEND IN STORE FOR THE SAN FRANCISCO AND MONTEREY
BAY AREAS...

.DISCUSSION...AS OF 2:30 PM PDT FRIDAY...CLOUDS CONTINUE TO STREAM
IN OVER THE DISTRICT THIS AFTERNOON...BUT NO RAIN HAS BEEN DETECTED
BY ANY AUTOMATED GAUGES AS OF YET. MEANWHILE...THE UPPER LOW
CURRENTLY LOCATED NEAR 40N/130W...IS DROPPING SOUTHWARD OVER THE
COASTAL WATERS...AND IS DUE TO REMAIN OFF THE COAST UNTIL LATE
SUNDAY/MONDAY WHEN IT IS PROGGED TO FINALLY SWING EASTWARD OVER
CENTRAL CALIFORNIA. PLENTY OF MOISTURE HAS BEEN ENTRAINED INTO THIS
SYSTEM...AND THE WAY THE SYSTEM WILL INTERACT WITH THE COAST IN TERMS
OF OROGRAPHIC ENHANCEMENTS...THIS LOOKS LIKE A POTENTIALLY RECORD-
BREAKING EVENT FOR OUR AREA FOR EARLY JUNE.

LATEST AMSU PRECIPITABLE WATER ESTIMATES GIVE WELL OVER AN INCH OF
RAIN WRAPPED UP IN THIS SYSTEM. MODELS CONTINUE PREVIOUS TRENDS OF
BRINGING LIGHT RAIN TO THE NORTH BAY LATER TODAY...AND SPREADING
SOUTH THROUGH THE GREATER SF BAY BY EVENING...THEN REACHING THE
MONTEREY BAY AREA BEFORE MIDNIGHT. HEAVIEST RAIN IS EXPECTED
OVERNIGHT TONIGHT INTO SATURDAY MORNING. BUT AS THE UPPER LOW IS
FORECAST TO REMAIN WOBBLING OFF THE COAST THROUGH SUNDAY...SHOWER
CHANCES WILL PERSIST THROUGH THE WEEKEND. MODELS INDICATE A BREAK IN
THE RAINFALL AFTER NOON TOMORROW...WITH RENEWED SHOWER CHANCES
OVERNIGHT INTO SUNDAY.

STORM TOTAL QPF EXPECTED WITH THIS SYSTEM GIVES 2-5 INCHES ACROSS THE
WETTEST AREAS
INCLUDING NORTH BAY HILLS...SANTA CRUZ MOUNTAINS...AND
THE SANTA LUCIAS. INLAND LOWER AREAS COULD GET UPWARDS OF 1-2 INCHES
TOTAL. ALTHOUGH THE BASINS CAN HANDLE THIS AMOUNT OF RAINFALL SPREAD
OUT OVER TWO DAYS...THESE ARE STILL BIG NUMBERS GIVEN WHERE WE ARE IN
THE CALENDAR. THUS...SOME RECORD RAINFALL AMOUNTS ARE EXPECTED
FOR THE MONTH.

GIVEN THE PROXIMITY OF THE COLD UPPER LOW...THUNDERSTORMS ARE ALSO
A POSSIBILITY...AND HAVE ADDED A SLIGHT CHANCE FOR SATURDAY
THROUGH SUNDAY NIGHT.

SHOWERS ARE EXPECTED TO END ON MONDAY AS THE UPPER LOW FINALLY EJECTS
TO THE EAST. THE REST OF THE FORECAST PERIOD IS EXPECTED TO CONTINUE
COOL AS A LONG-WAVE UPPER TROUGH REMAINS OVER THE WEST COAST.


&&

.MTR WATCHES/WARNINGS...
.TNGT...SCA...PT ARENA TO PT PIEDRAS BLANCAS 10-60 NM
SCA...PT PINOS TO PT PIEDRAS BLANCAS 0-60 NM.


&&

$$

PUBLIC FORECAST: SIMS


Up to 5 inches from a winter like storm in our normal dry period April to October is not normal and here it comes now.

Back to Lurk...
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Pretty significant pressure falls noted on drifting buoy 42057. I assume the center to be slightly east of this location, at roughly 17N 78W. The prolonged duration of northerly winds across this buoy suggest that the overall circulation is becoming better defined, especially in comparison to the last several days, where there were competing vorticity maximums within a broad cyclonic gyre.
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As posted on Christopher C. Burts blog...

"There is an area near St. Louis called Chesterfield that flooded back in '93. Since then the area was supposed to have not been redeveloped since it lies on the Missouri flood plain. I'm not sure if they have reinforced the levee system there, but the area is heavily developed now with a large Walmart and many million dollar buildings, its kind of a ritzy area now. I'm thinking that they figured a '93 flood only happens every 500 years or so along the Missouri. They may have gotten it wrong."

2007 NY Times Article

Quote: “It’s not going to flood here for another 100 years,” Mr. Snider said, “and I won’t be around by then.”
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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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