Sunday, October 13, 2013

Atlantic Blob and Cyclone Phailin: October 12, Update A

Gosh, it looks like there are storms and blobs all over the place today! Let's see... in the eastern Pacific we have a blob and a Tropical Depression (number 15). In the western Pacific we have cat 2 Typhoon Wipha, which is whipping-upa winds of 105mph (cat 2 range: 96 -110mph) and is currently forecast to get to cat 5 status on Monday and then back to cat 1 before clipping Japan on Tuesday. Also in the western Pacific, crossing the South China Sea is Typhoon Nari with winds of 100mph (cat 2), due to make landfall in Vietnam on Tuesday. And then there are the Atlantic and Indian Oceans...

Luckily for us, it looks like dry air and wind shear did take their toll on the Atlantic Blob. You can see the clouds streaming off to the northeast in this infrared satellite image:

Circulation is still good in the lowest levels of the troposphere but the wind shear is super-duper strong and there is a big bunch of dry air to the north and west which looks like it's not subsiding in the immediate future. For now, no Tropical Storm Lorenzo.

In the Indian Ocean, Cyclone Phailin made landfall on Saturday evening in India (shown in this cool satellite image with it's neighbour, Typhoon Nari):

About 500,000 (!!!) people were evacuated, which is great because the last time a storm of this magnitude hit this area of India (in 1999), about 10,000 (!!!) people lost their lives! It is too soon to say how much damage has been caused (a handful of casualties reported so far), but the lowest central pressure recorded (that I know of) was 938mb, and the highest winds measured were 125mph (the sensor may have been damaged as winds got stronger).  It did weaken as it got closer to land of course, but not by a lot. It's now on land as a cat 3, with winds of 115mph (cat 3 range: 111-129mph).

I'll be watching the news tomorrow for updates but I won't be here unless Lorenzo shows up (I'll continue to tweet about the other storms as usual of course).

Ciao for now!

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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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