Sunday, June 24, 2012

Tropical Storm Debby: June 24, Update D

Final update of the day! Tropical Storm Debby is still hanging out in the Gulf at 28.3N, 85.9W and she is stationary (for a change). Wind speed is still 60mph although the central pressure has dropped slightly to 991mb (from a plane). There has not been much change in her track which still takes her almost due north into the Panhandle, near Apalachicola, with landfall on Friday. I think she still has a chance to move farther east, with landfall in the Big Bend region or possibly even farther south, however it is difficult to assess her track while she is stuck because the pressure fields around her can change while she stays in her little ‘dip’. The circulation is still very strong in the lower half of the troposphere, with a signal in the upper levels which is something we see with very strong Tropical Storms or weak category 1 hurricanes so I expect we will continue to get windy weather and coastal flooding.

In the latest infrared satellite image we see that the convection has diminished even further:

There is still dry air to her west that is now in the storm. Interestingly, although the center is still on the Gulf side of Florida, parts of the storm are now over the Florida Current/Gulf Stream on the east side of Florida. This is a continuation of the Loop Current and has deep warm water and over this area there is strong convection (the red patch). However, I think the west coast of Florida will have a little easier day tomorrow. Parts of the Bahamas may get some sploshes of rain. Before I forget, I have to say mea culpa!! In my first entry today, I had accidentally switched my  ‘warms’ and ‘colds’ in the science alert when I talked about the troposphere (it actually gets colder with height) and the infrared satellite image (the red areas are the deepest convection and have the coldest cloud tops). I have already corrected this on my website blog, but thought I’d better fess up and hope I didn’t confuse anyone any more than I usually do! Obviously I wasn’t awake and it was pre-ice cream. ;-)

Once again, thank you so much to everyone who sent in comments, photos, videos etc. I tweeted them or shared them on facebook them. One of the photos I wanted to follow up on was from Molly M. in Shore Acres. In my last update she showed a car drive along a flooded road. Here is the same location a couple of hours later:

At least it was still being used as a thoroughfare!

With that I’m going to call it a day. It is still windy here in north St. Petersburg, but not much rain. I hope everyone is ok and safe!
More tomorrow.

p.s. I’d also like to thank my cat for not getting alarmed by the howling wind and for helping to analyze the data today:

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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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