Caribbean-On-Line's Caribbean Hurricane Blog



TROPICAL STORM BERTHA DISCUSSION NUMBER 12

Published on July 5, 2008 11:08 PM | Comments

Sorry for our lack of updates so far on Bertha - we had to help a friend out over the holiday weekend and we also lost our Internet connection for a while. Bertha is now forecast on a much more southerly track, between Bermuda and the Bahamas, and also to become a hurricane. It is still early days for this storm and the NHC is being cautious, but this may become an issue for the Caribbean. We will be watching closely this coming week and trying to post as much news and information as we can for this storm.

TROPICAL STORM BERTHA DISCUSSION NUMBER 12 NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL022008 1100 PM EDT SAT JUL 05 2008

LATEST SATELLITE IMAGERY INDICATES THAT BERTHA CONTINUES TO EXHIBIT A CONVECTIVE BURSTING PATTERN WITH THE CENTER CURRENTLY LOCATED NEAR THE SOUTH SIDE OF THE COLDEST CLOUD TOPS. DVORAK INTENSITY ESTIMATES ARE UNCHANGED AND SO IS THE INITIAL INTENSITY...45 KT. BERTHA IS BEGINNING TO ENCOUNTER WARMER WATERS AND THE CYCLONE IS EXPECTED TO REACH THE 27 DEGREE CELSIUS ISOTHERM IN 36-48 HOURS. SINCE THE SHEAR IS EXPECTED TO BE LIGHT DURING THIS PERIOD...SLOW STRENGTHENING IS EXPECTED. THE FORECAST BECOMES MORE UNCERTAIN BEYOND 48 HOURS DUE TO SPREAD IN THE TRACK MODELS AND THE RESULTING DIFFERENCES IN THE ATMOSPHERIC CONDITIONS BERTHA MIGHT EXPERIENCE. A TRACK MORE TOWARDS THE NORTH WOULD ALLOW MORE STRENGTHENING WHILE A TRACK MORE TOWARDS THE WEST WOULD RESULT IN INCREASING VERTICAL SHEAR. SINCE THE OFFICIAL TRACK FORECAST TAKES BERTHA INTO AN AREA WITH MODERATE VERTICAL SHEAR...ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT IS FORECAST BEYOND 72 HOURS. THIS NEW OFFICIAL FORECAST IS CONSISTENT WITH THE PREVIOUS FORECAST BUT SLIGHTLY LOWER THAN THE CONSENSUS OF THE AVAILABLE INTENSITY MODELS.

BERTHA CONTINUES TO MOVE RAPIDLY WESTWARD WITH AN INITIAL MOTION OF 280/18. THIS GENERAL MOTION IS EXPECTED TO CONTINUE FOR THE NEXT 36-48 HOURS COURTESY OF A STRONG RIDGE TO THE NORTH. THEREAFTER... THE CYCLONE BEGINS TO ENCOUNTER A WEAKNESS IN THE SUBTROPICAL RIDGE AND TRACK MODELS DIVERGE SIGNIFICANTLY. IN FACT...THE SPREAD IN THE TRACK MODELS SPAN NEARLY 1300 MILES AT DAY 5 WITH THE UKMET MODEL KEEPING BERTHA HEADED WESTWARD AND THE HWRF TURNING THE CYCLONE NORTHWARD. GIVEN THE UNCERTAINTY...THE OFFICIAL FORECAST IS SIMILAR TO THE PREVIOUS FORECAST AND LIES IN THE MIDDLE OF THE TRACK MODEL ENVELOPE.

IT SHOULD BE NOTED THAT THERE IS LARGER THAN NORMAL UNCERTAINTY IN BOTH THE TRACK AND INTENSITY FORECASTS OF BERTHA. ACCORDINGLY...IT IS MUCH TOO EARLY TO DETERMINE IF BERTHA WILL OR WILL NOT POSE A THREAT TO ANY LAND AREAS.




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