Monday, August 15, 2011

Tropical Storm Gert and a Caribbean Blob: August 15, Update A

Tropical Storm Gert:
Although Tropical Storm Gert has winds of 60mph, making her a mid-intensity tropical storm (TS range: 39-73mph), she’s been pretty well behaved. She stayed well east of Bermuda. From the satellite images it looked like they had some cloudy weather and maybe a spot of rain here or there. As she was zooming by, Steve from Bermuda wrote “slight breeze here. More wind generated by the passing traffic than gust-less Gert in Bermuda.” This surprised me because from the satellite images it doesn’t look like Bermuda is big enough to have more than one car so I can only assume he was talking about golf cart and Segway traffic. ;-)

She is currently at around 33.5N, 62W, heading NNE at 14mph. She has some convection, but not the really deep stuff. Water temperatures are 27-29 deg C, and there is some wind shear. I don’t see her developing into anything more and she’s just heading out into the Atlantic. She’s a cute little storm really. Just like her name.

Oh, speaking of her name… to David from Florida: no, she’s GERT, not GORT. <sci-fi diversion!> In case any of you were wondering, Gort is the name of the alien robot from The Day The Earth Stood Still:

The 2008 remake starred Keanu Reeves. It will come as no big surprise to my friends that a perfectly innocent conversation about an Atlantic Tropical Storm has turned into a conversation about Keanu Reeves. I don’t know how these things happen. ;-) I think if the NHC run out of names, we should begin naming tropical storms after characters from sci-fi (we could expand to other genres if we run out of names). J I mean really, how scary could Tropical Storm Jar Jar Binks possibly get? On the other hand I suppose Tropical Storm Davros might turn into something scary. <end of sci-fi diversion!>

Caribbean Blob:
Just like Keanu Reeves, this Caribbean Blob is one to watch. Yesterday it was over the Atlantic and had a lot of convection, but until this morning the circulation was pretty pathetic. However, today the circulation picked right up. Fortunately for us it was crossing the Windward Islands so it’s convection took a hit (and is now pretty pathetic). It is now in the Caribbean, with good circulation but poor convection. The reason we need to watch this is because the wind shear is low, it is on the western edge of the Saharan Air Layer (dust) (SAL), the sea surface water temperature is 29-30 deg C, with water warmer than 26 deg C in the upper 75-100m. I’m estimating the center is somewhere around 14N, 62W and it appears to be moving westward(ish). We’ll see if this picks up steam again. The next name is Harvey.

Until tomorrow,
Toodle pip!

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DISCLAIMER: These remarks are just what I think/see regarding tropical storms - not the opinion of any organization I represent. If you are making an evacuation decision, please heed your local emergency management and the National Hurricane Center's official forecast and the National Weather Service announcements. This is not an official forecast. If I "run away, run away" (Monty Python), I'll let you know.

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