Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Tropical Depression Debby: June 26, Update B

I think most of you must know by now, Debby made landfall this afternoon about 35 miles north of Cedar Key, near Steinhatchee, as a very weak Tropical Storm. Down here in St. Petersburg we felt the disturbance in the Force as the bay suddenly calmed down. Here's a visible satellite image that shows her elongated eye just as it touched land:

Tropical Depression Debby now officially has winds of 35mph with a central pressure of 997mb. She’s at around 29.5N, 83.1W, moving ENE at 6mph. There is still a bit of convection in this little storm, as you can see in the latest IR satellite image:

However it is all to the northeast, towards Jacksonville, which shows that there is a lot of wind shear.  There isn’t too much circulation left in Debby. What there is seems to be part of a low pressure front instead of a tropical system.

The NHC forecast thinking is that she will cross Florida tomorrow as a Tropical Depression, and emerge into the Atlantic tomorrow afternoon. She will then reform into a Tropical Storm by Thursday afternoon and head out to sea. This is certainly possible because she will be crossing the Gulf Stream off the east coast of Florida, in the Atlantic. This is an area of warm deep water so it will definitely help her to intensify. However, she is moving quite quickly, there is considerable wind shear, her circulation is not really tropical anymore but rather part of a low pressure front, and there is still dry air to her west so it is a little difficult to tell how strong she will get. I think the general track is reasonable too, although there is a chance she will head more northeastward than the current center of cone is showing.

Storm surge on the west coast of Florida has decreased, with water levels now a mere (ha!) 2 ft above normal in St. Pete and less than that at Cedar Key. However, on the northeast coast of Florida the water levels are on the rise because the winds are pushing water on-shore. Both Mayport and Fernandina Beach at around 2ft above normal and increasing.

That’s it on Debby for today. No howling! Wow… ahh, so that’s what it used to sound like. ;-) More tomorrow when we should see Debby exit (Florida), stage right.

Jeff D. in St. Petersburg kindly sent me the scoop on getting on my Soapbox - The term originates from the days when speakers would elevate themselves by standing on a wooden crate originally used for shipment of soap or other dry goods from a manufacturer to a retail store. Between this and soap operas, the soap industry certainly cleaned up the marketing opportunities back then! (pun intended) ;-). (Thanks Jeff).

I saw about 20 Georgia Power trucks in St. Petersburg today, which reminds me… thanks to all the power peoples (local and from other states), the emergency peoples (of all flavours), and all other helpful peoples who go around getting things back to normal after these storms! Good job. I shall have a glass of something or the other in your honour (it’s the polite thing to do). And don’t worry about the leaves, I can get some of those. ;-)

When I tweet that I’ve posted this entry, it will be my 1001st tweet (I also passed my 500th blog post sometime during this storm)! I’m sure Shakespeare is looking on with great envy. ;-)

Stay safe out there & toodle pip!

Blogs archived at http://jyotikastorms.blogspot.com/
Twitter @JyovianStorm

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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