Thursday, August 21, 2008

TS Fay: August 21 Update A

Tenacious Fay (not to be confused with Tenacious D, the satirical
heavy/hard/comedy rock band who should now be thanking me for this
unusual PR) is still plodding along just off the NE FL coastline. She
didn't move too much last night which is the bad news. But the good news
is that she didn't intensify either.

Track: The 11am advisory has her centered at 29.3N, 80.8W, 15 miles ENE
of Daytona Beach. From the satellite imagery it looks like she's
centered at about 29.5N, 80.6W - so a smidgen farther north and east,
and therefore farther offshore. But it's such a small difference and her
center is not very well defined anyway, so we could both be correct.The
NHC are still forecasting a WNW movement to begin soon and her re-entry
to Florida... but this is what they have been saying for over 12 hours
now and instead she's slowly drifting N or NNW and staying over water.
The official center of cone track still brings her across Florida,
exiting just south of the Big Bend area (and north of Cedar Key), and
then re-entering Florida along the panhandle coast. I'm now even less
certain of this than I was in my last update. I've just had a look at
the latest pressure maps and it looks like the weakness in the high is
in the Jacksonville area, so I think she'll continue to drift in that
general direction for a while longer. Beyond that it's high pressure
everywhere, so it's difficult to see where she will go. But all is not
lost. Yesterday I mentioned a low pressure system moving across the US
from the west. This is really her best bet for escaping from this high.
It is also moving slowly, and at the moment I think as we saw in an
earlier storm (or maybe earlier in Fay's life), the models are putting
too much emphasis on the location of this low, which is why they are
tracking west across Florida. I think she will continue NNW-ish along
the coast for a bit, then turn properly onto land somewhere in the St.
Augustine/Jax/Georgia border area, and then track NW across GA.

Intensity: Her winds are at 60mph still, and central pressure is holding
steady at 994 mb. The good news is that it looks like she's centered
over the only patch of cooler water along that coast, just west of the
Gulf Stream. Temperatures are 25-27 deg C. That and her proximity to
land is keeping her steady. Let's hope that continues. Regardless, the
NE FL beaches are probably getting a sustained pounding.

And from the central-east coast yesterday: Satellite Beach, near Patrick
AFB, was at about 22 inches of rain & the Indian River was up about 1
1/2 feet.

That's all for now folks,

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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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