U.S. heat wave blamed for 22 deaths; Bret and Cindy no threat

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:07 PM GMT on July 21, 2011

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The dangerous U.S. heat wave of July 2011 will continue to bring another day of exceptionally humid heat to over 100 million Americans today, with 33 states plus the District of Columbia currently under heat advisories. The heat index--how hot the air feels when factoring in both the temperature and the humidity--exceeded 100° in twenty states in the Central and Eastern U.S. on Wednesday, peaking at 123° in Council Bluffs, Iowa. At least 22 deaths are being blamed on the heat in the Midwest. The extreme humidity that has accompanied this heat has made it a very dangerous one, since the body is much less able to cool itself when the humidity is high. The high humidities are due, in great part, to the record rains and flooding in the Midwest over the past few months that have saturated soils and left farmlands flooded. Accompanying the heat has been high levels of air pollution, which also contributes to mortality. Air pollution is expected exceed federal standards and reach code orange, "Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups", in at least 22 states today, according to the latest forecasts from EPA.

The extreme heat peaked in Chicago yesterday, where the temperature hit 100° at Midway Airport and the Chicago Lakefront station. Rockford, Illinois hit 100°, the first time in 22 years that city had seen 100° temperatures. Detroit is expected to hit 100° for the first time in sixteen years today, and I think I'm going to skip the Ann Arbor Art Fair! New York City and the mid-Atlantic states are expected to be near 100° on Friday. The forecast high of 103° in Washington D.C. for Friday is just 3° below the hottest temperature ever recorded in the city, 106°. The heat will continue in the mid-Atlantic states through Sunday, then ease on Monday when a cold front is expected to pass through. Wunderground's climate change blogger Dr. Ricky Rood has some good insights on the current heat wave in his latest post. A few notable highlights from this week:

Omaha, Nebraska has been above 80° for a four-day period beginning on July 17. This is the 2nd longest such stretch on record, next to the 8-day period that ended July 25, 1934. Multi-day periods when the low temperatures do not cool off below 75° are associated with high heat wave death rates.

Amarillo, Texas recorded its 26th day of 100° temperatures yesterday, tying the city's record for most 100° days in a year, last set in 1953. Record keeping in the city goes back to 1892.

Minneapolis, Minnesota, recorded its highest dew point ever, 82°, on Tuesday. The heat index hit a remarkable 118° in the city, which tied July 11, 1966 for the highest heat index on record in the city. Minnesota's all-time highest dew point temperature of 86° was tied on Sunday, in Madison. The previous record was in St. James and Pipestone in July of 2005.

The latest National Weather Service storm summary has a list of cities where the heat index exceeded 100° yesterday.


Figure 1. On Wednesday, heat advisories for this dangerous heat wave covered portions of 33 states plus the District of Columbia, an area with 141 million people--about half the population of the U.S.

Tropical Storm Bret no threat
Tropical Storm Bret continues to struggle with high wind shear of 20 - 30 knots, and high shear is expected to affect the storm the remainder of the week. The combination of high wind shear and dry air nearby should act to destroy Bret by Sunday, and the storm is not a threat to any land areas.

Tropical Storm Cindy forms
Tropical Storm Cindy formed yesterday 600 miles to the east of Bermuda. Cindy's formation was 24 days ahead of the usual formation date for the third named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season, which is August 13. This year has the most early season activity since 2008, when Hurricane Dolly got named on July 20. Wind shear is a moderate 10 - 20 knots, and is expected to remain moderate for several days. However, Cindy has moved over cool ocean waters of 25°C this morning, and this temperature is 1.5°C below the threshold of 26.5°C that tropical storms typically need in order to maintain their strength. With Cindy predicted to move over waters of just 21°C by Friday morning, the storm doesn't have long to live. Cindy is not a threat to any land areas.

An African wave worth watching
An African wave near 12N 50W, 700 miles east of the Lesser Antilles Islands, is moving west to west-northwest at about 15 mph, and is generating a limited amount of heavy thunderstorms due to the presence of a large amount of dust and dry air from the Sahara. This wave will spread heavy rain showers and strong gusty winds to the northern Lesser Antilles beginning on Saturday. The wave has a modest degree of spin to it, and is under low wind shear, 5 - 10 knots. Once it finds a moister environment near the Bahama Islands early next week, it could develop. Of the latest 00Z and 06Z runs of the four reliable models for predicting formation of a tropical depression, only the NOGAPS model shows development of the wave. The NOGAPS predicts the wave could attain tropical depression status on Wednesday, just off the coast of South Carolina. The other models generally depict too much wind shear over the Bahamas for the wave to develop. The eventual track of the wave once it reaches the Bahamas early next week is uncertain; there will be a trough of low pressure located off the U.S. East Coast that will be capable of turning the wave to the north, along the East Coast. However, it is also quite possible that the wave would be too weak and to far south to feel the influence of this trough, and instead would enter the Gulf of Mexico.


Figure 2. Morning satellite image of Hurricane Dora.

Hurricane Dora in the Eastern Pacific close to Category 5
Hurricane Dora in the Eastern Pacific put on an impressive burst of intensification over the past 24 hours, and is now a very impressive Category 4 storm with 155 mph winds, just 1 mph short of Category 5 status. Dora is expected to move parallel to the coast of Mexico, and should not cause any major trouble in that country. Dora is the second major hurricane in the East Pacific this year; Hurricane Adrian topped out as a Category 4 storm with 140 mph winds in early June.

Think cold. Way cold!
Those of us sweltering in today's heat would do well to consider that on this date in 1983, Vostok, Antarctica shivered at -128°F--the coldest temperature ever measured on Earth. The low tonight in Vostok is expected to be a relatively balmy -80°F.

Jeff Masters

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"Death Ridge"

You know its hot when the 591 thickness line is in NYC.

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Here's my 11PM advisory predictions for all our storms...

* Bret is downgraded to a remnant low...Last advisory

* Cindy is decreased to 50 mph or less.

* Dora goes down to 135-145 mph.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 109 Comments: 30293
ATCF BTK is out for Bret and Dora. Bret finally weakens to a tropical depression and Dora weakens to a low-end Category 4 hurricane.
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Quoting KEEPEROFTHEGATE:
going on 9 pm still feels like a 110 out maybe midnight before
below 100 mark
last night we had our highest overnight low for july
wonder if tonight is higher


Extreme heat is exceptionally rare for you guys.
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Sorry, but when any model hints at something, I watch it. It's not like I'm saying NOGAPS is amazing (Which it isn't).

Point being, it's worth watching.
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Quoting Neapolitan:
Here are a few selected cities and their highs today (actual temperatures, not heat indices):

Wichita Falls, TX: 105*
Dallas, TX: 102
Amarillo, TX: 101*
Oklahoma City, OK: 100
Tulsa, OK: 104
Wichita, KS: 105
Kansas City, MO: 101
St. Louis, MO: 103
Chicago (Midway): 101
Chicago (O'Hare): 99
Indianapolis, IN: 100
Detroit, MI: 100
Philadelphia, PA: 98
Baltimore, MD: 103
Washington, DC: 99
Richmond, VA: 99

Of course, tomorrow will be hotter still in many areas. And on top of that, after a very brief break, the extreme heat is expected to build back into the middle part of the country again early next week. Many parts of Central Okalahoma, for instance, are forecast to be at or above 100 degrees every day until at least the second week of August.

* - This is the 56th day this year Wichita Falls has been at or above 100 degrees, and the 30th day in a row.

This is also the 27th day Amarillo, TX, has been at or above 100 degrees this year, surpassing the old record. In an average year, Amarillo reaches 100 degrees just six times. This is also the city's 64th day (and 30th straight day) at or above 90; the yearly average of 63 such days was surpassed yesterday.
Unfortunately Texas will be getting hotter because High Pressure is getting stronger, should be quite a few temps in Central and North Texas of 105 to 110 next week.
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going on 9 pm still feels like a 110 out maybe midnight before
below 100 mark
last night we had our highest overnight low for july
wonder if tonight is higher
Member Since: July 15, 2006 Posts: 165 Comments: 52400
Quoting weatherman566:
Let's not forget what the percentages means. 10% chance means a 10% probability that a depression will form in the next 24-48 hours. Do you think a depression will form from that wave in that time? I don't think so.

NAM and NOGAPS have this storm on board, so I have 100% attention on this tropical wave in the central Atlantic.


Yeah, ummm....
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 109 Comments: 30293
Quoting weatherman566:
Let's not forget what the percentages means. 10% chance means a 10% probability that a depression will form in the next 24-48 hours. Do you think a depression will form from that wave in that time? I don't think so.

NAM and NOGAPS have this storm on board, so I have 100% attention on this tropical wave in the central Atlantic.


LOL
You'd be better off using the CFS and JMA.

The NAM isn't programmed correctly to handle the upper-dynamics of a tropical enviorment. That's why it's best with coastal lows and frontal systems.

The NOGAPS is just an all-around poor model.

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I think I found stormkat but then again I already knew.
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Let's not forget what the percentages means. 10% chance means a 10% probability that a depression will form in the next 24-48 hours. Do you think a depression will form from that wave in that time? I don't think so.

NAM and NOGAPS have this storm on board, so I have 100% attention on this tropical wave in the central Atlantic.
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Caribbean Update July 21st 2011
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Link
Member Since: July 21, 2010 Posts: 60 Comments: 1011
Quoting HurricaneDean07:
It appears Bret and Cindy are dying out from Carbon Bonoxide(Misspelt, i think, :oP ) poisoning. Bret will be a 35 mph TD, and that will either be his last advisory or the 5 AM will... Cindy is turning extratropical very quickly and likely get knocked down to 45 mph or so, by the next update...


Monoxide.
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Quoting Levi32:


Except that most of the systems that develop start at 10% or 20%....lol.
lol true, people relax when they hear 10 - 20% development and something like Dora happens RI takes place....... but neither the less these waves pack a serious punch of rain and wind even if no development happens!
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Quoting Chicklit:
10% a bit discouraging since NHC is usually right.

For encouragment.....
keep in mind that 10% is only for the next 48 hours. If all there models were in total agreement that a Cat5 was going to there in 120 hours...the probability color system would still call for 10% at this time, because it's the odds of formation in the next 48 hours...not 120 hours.
Member Since: August 3, 2005 Posts: 10 Comments: 5462
It appears Bret and Cindy are dying out from Carbon Bonoxide(Misspelt, i think, :oP ) poisoning. Bret will be a 35 mph TD, and that will either be his last advisory or the 5 AM will... Cindy is turning extratropical very quickly and likely get knocked down to 45 mph or so, by the next update...
Member Since: October 3, 2010 Posts: 40 Comments: 4129
Here are a few selected cities and their highs today (actual temperatures, not heat indices):

Wichita Falls, TX: 105*
Dallas, TX: 102
Amarillo, TX: 101*
Oklahoma City, OK: 100
Tulsa, OK: 104
Wichita, KS: 105
Kansas City, MO: 101
St. Louis, MO: 103
Chicago (Midway): 101
Chicago (O'Hare): 99
Indianapolis, IN: 100
Detroit, MI: 100
Philadelphia, PA: 98
Baltimore, MD: 103
Washington, DC: 99
Richmond, VA: 99

Of course, tomorrow will be hotter still in many areas. And on top of that, after a very brief break, the extreme heat is expected to build back into the middle part of the country again early next week. Many parts of Central Okalahoma, for instance, are forecast to be at or above 100 degrees every day until at least the second week of August.

* - This is the 56th day this year Wichita Falls has been at or above 100 degrees, and the 30th day in a row.

This is also the 27th day Amarillo, TX, has been at or above 100 degrees this year, surpassing the old record. In an average year, Amarillo reaches 100 degrees just six times. This is also the city's 64th day (and 30th straight day) at or above 90; the yearly average of 63 such days was surpassed yesterday.
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Quoting Hurricanes101:


looking at Sat pics I think Dora looks more annular than Adrian did


Perhaps a bit more, but not quite there. The ring of central convection was not isolated. It got close though.
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Quoting TxHurricanedude11:
actually it just updated notice the time 00:00 z...40 min ago



may be they got in better at updateing that map if i re call it olny update 1 too 2hr evere update
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Quoting Chicklit:
10% a bit discouraging since NHC is usually right.



A TROPICAL WAVE LOCATED ABOUT 650 MILES EAST OF THE WINDWARD ISLANDS IS PRODUCING LIMITED AND DISORGANIZED SHOWER AND THUNDERSTORM ACTIVITY. SOME SLOW DEVELOPMENT OF THIS SYSTEM IS POSSIBLE DURING THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS AS IT MOVES TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST AT 15 TO 20 MPH. THIS SYSTEM HAS A LOW CHANCE...10 PERCENT...OF BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS. SHOWERS ASSOCIATED WITH THIS WAVE COULD BEGIN SPREADING ACROSS PORTIONS OF THE LESSER ANTILLES ON FRIDAY.

ELSEWHERE...TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION IS NOT EXPECTED DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.


Except that most of the systems that develop start at 10% or 20%....lol.
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Quoting Levi32:


Wiki is the most unofficial source as it gets besides news agencies. I know a lot of random people who write articles there. Dora was not annular. She had some annular characteristics, but that doesn't mean she actually was annular, in the same way that a subtropical cyclone exhibits tropical characteristics, but isn't tropical.


looking at Sat pics I think Dora looks more annular than Adrian did
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Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:


It's not even an hour old...That is no where close to being 'way old'.



oh oops lol ok
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Quoting HurricaneDean07:
Chicklit, Here's the evidence(for the CATL Tropical Wave)
Lower convergence:(Decreased, though DMIN upon it)


Shear Tendency:(Same i guess)


Upper Divergence:(has Increased)


850 MB Vorticity:(has increased)


So from this, IMO, I give it a 30 to 40% chance that it could form...





i feel better now
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Quoting Chicklit:
Looks like we'll have to wait a little bit longer for something to develop in the At;antic.



Night all.
Still have jet lag.


There are two already and possibly a third. no wait at all
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Quoting Tazmanian:



that map dos not update that map is way old


It's not even an hour old...That is no where close to being 'way old'.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 109 Comments: 30293
Quoting Chicklit:

Hi Taz.
I will have to check back in the morning about that as I am fading fast.
guten nacht!



hi ok
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Chicklit, Here's the evidence(for the CATL Tropical Wave)
Lower convergence:(Decreased, though DMIN upon it)


Shear Tendency:(Same i guess)


Upper Divergence:(has Increased)


850 MB Vorticity:(has increased)


So from this, IMO, I give it a 30 to 40% chance that it could form...

Member Since: October 3, 2010 Posts: 40 Comments: 4129
you no i think if you post the two more the 2 too 3 times in a row sould be call spam but if you post it this one time then your fine
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Quoting Tazmanian:



that map dos not update that map is way old

Hi Taz.
I will have to check back in the morning about that as I am fading fast.
guten nacht!
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Quoting Chicklit:
Looks like we'll have to wait a little bit longer for something to develop in the At;antic.



Night all.
Still have jet lag.



that map dos not update that map is way old
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Looks like we'll have to wait a little bit longer for something to develop in the At;antic.



Night all.
Still have jet lag.
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Quoting CaicosRetiredSailor:
...please not
FredEX
Hehe. Yup.
Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 12461
Quoting P451:


Yup. There was a very strong system last year that was gone in 18 hours but that got ripped apart by a massive wall of shear (I wish I saved that animation it really was amazing).



Hurricane Paula?
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Blog's Spedometer is broken, (suppose to be going 50) the blog is actually going 4.... Blog like a grandma in a Jalopy on the freeway at night and traffic is bad...
Member Since: October 3, 2010 Posts: 40 Comments: 4129
10% a bit discouraging since NHC is usually right.



A TROPICAL WAVE LOCATED ABOUT 650 MILES EAST OF THE WINDWARD ISLANDS IS PRODUCING LIMITED AND DISORGANIZED SHOWER AND THUNDERSTORM ACTIVITY. SOME SLOW DEVELOPMENT OF THIS SYSTEM IS POSSIBLE DURING THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS AS IT MOVES TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST AT 15 TO 20 MPH. THIS SYSTEM HAS A LOW CHANCE...10 PERCENT...OF BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS. SHOWERS ASSOCIATED WITH THIS WAVE COULD BEGIN SPREADING ACROSS PORTIONS OF THE LESSER ANTILLES ON FRIDAY.

ELSEWHERE...TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION IS NOT EXPECTED DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.
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Quoting Levi32:


Wiki is the most unofficial source that it gets besides news agencies. I know a lot of random people who write articles there. Dora was not annular.



not this years or the one in 1999
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Quoting TaylorSelseth:


Is this the first time there has been 2 annular storms in the same year in the same part of the tropics?


Wiki is the most unofficial source as it gets besides news agencies. I know a lot of random people who write articles there. Dora was not annular. She had some annular characteristics, but that doesn't mean she actually was annular, in the same way that a subtropical cyclone exhibits tropical characteristics, but isn't tropical.
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Quoting TaylorSelseth:


Is this the first time there has been 2 annular storms in the same year in the same part of the tropics?



think you guys may want too look at the year 1999's Hurricane Dora,
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733. JLPR2
Also really nice anticyclone that has established itself over the CATl wave.

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Upper, mid and low wind favorable for the moment

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Quoting Vincent4989:
DORA is annular! PROOF:
Other Pacific storms that showed annular features include 1998's Hurricane Darby, 1998's Hurricane Howard, 1999's Hurricane Beatriz, and 1999's Hurricane Dora.[1] 2011's Hurricane Adrian and 2011's Hurricane Dora, which is currently ongoing, have developed annular features during their lifetime as well.
Source: Wikipedia


Is this the first time there has been 2 annular storms in the same year in the same part of the tropics?
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730. JLPR2
Impressive, I said I thought that the CATl wasn't going to do anything because it wasn't managing to fire any convection, had no convergence and divergence and the 850mb vort was weakening but it made a comeback. ¬¬

Mother nature just loves proving me wrong.
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Quoting alfabob:

Couldn't help it; time to get some actual work done, be back when things get interesting.



i no
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un less wind shear drops overe night wish it may
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it wont be in a low shear environment for long
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Apparantly (pre)90L appears to have some decent low level convergence, though divergence is on the low side...
Member Since: October 3, 2010 Posts: 40 Comments: 4129

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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.