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Hurricane Omar

Hurricane Omar Alert - U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism

Published on October 18, 2008 5:43 AM | Comments

DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM

Post Office Box 6400, St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands 00804

Telephone: (340) 774-8784 Facsimile: (340) 774-4390

Updated 10/16/08 at 1:00 p.m. AST

Message from the Commissioner


As Hurricane Omar has now passed over the Territory, we are thankful to report that the impact to our islands has been minimal.

On St. Croix, crews are now working to ensure that power is restored to all areas of the island and remove debris from roads. The island's two major highways are now open and smaller roadways are being cleared. No major damage has been reported by the hotel properties on St. Croix.

No major power outages or damages have been reported on St. John or St. Thomas and minor debris will be cleared from the roads by early afternoon.

The Territory's two major airports are open and fully operational, and we expect commercial traffic to resume this afternoon.

The U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism continues to take all appropriate measures to minimize the storm's impact for our on-island visitors and has put the safety of our guests first.

We look forward to welcoming additional visitors to the Territory as early as this afternoon.

We thank all of our on-island partners, government agencies and our Caribbean neighbors for their prayers and support over the past few days.

Sincerely,

Beverly Nicholson-Doty

Commissioner

United States Virgin Islands Department of Tourism



HURRICANE OMAR DISCUSSION NUMBER 12

Published on October 16, 2008 5:08 AM | Comments

Omar "threads the needle". It looks like most of the Virgin Islands and the northern Leeward Islands got very lucky as Omar went through the Anegada passage without the eye passing over any islands directly. Only the eastern tip of St. Croix received hurricane force winds. This was probably about the best path this storm could take -

HURRICANE OMAR DISCUSSION NUMBER 12 NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL152008 500 AM EDT THU OCT 16 2008

AN AIR FORCE RECONNAISSANCE PLANE HAS BEEN PENETRATING THE EYE OF OMAR AND MEASURED A PRESSURE OF 959 MB AND TWO SPOT WINDS OF 132 AND 124 KT AT FLIGHT LEVEL. THE CREW COULD NOT SAMPLE THE ENTIRE EYEWALL DUE TO EXTREMELY HIGH TURBULENCE. OBJECTIVE T-NUMBERS OSCILLATED BETWEEN 6.5 AND 7.0 ON THE DVORAK SCALE DURING THAT TIME. IT IS ESTIMATED THAT OMAR REACHED A PEAK INTENSITY OF 115 KNOTS EARLIER. HOWEVER...SINCE THEN...THE CLOUD PATTERN HAS DETERIORATED AND HAS BECOME ASYMMETRIC. THE EYE IS NO LONGER DISTINCT ON IR IMAGES AND THE MINIMUM PRESSURE HAS RISEN. THE INITIAL INTENSITY IS SET AT 110 KNOTS. SOME FLUCTUATIONS IN INTENSITY ARE LIKELY DURING THE NEXT 6 TO 12 HOURS OR SO BUT THE GENERAL TREND IS FOR OMAR TO GRADUALLY WEAKEN AS ENCOUNTERS STRONGER SHEAR. THE HURRICANE SHOULD BEGIN TO LOSE TROPICAL CHARACTERISTICS IN 96 HOURS OR SOONER.

DATA FROM THE RECONNAISSANCE PLANE AND RADAR FROM PUERTO RICO INDICATE THAT THE CORE OF OMAR WITH ITS STRONGEST WINDS CROSSED THE AREA OF THE LEEWARD ISLANDS BETWEEN ST. MAARTEN AND THE VIRGIN ISLANDS...OR THE ANEGADA PASSAGE. OMAR HAS INCREASED ITS FORWARD SPEED AND IS MOVING TOWARD THE NORTHEAST OR 040 DEGREES AT 22 KNOTS AND SOON WILL CLEAR THE NORTHERN LEEWARD ISLANDS. THE HURRICANE IS FULLY EMBEDDED WITHIN THE SOUTHWESTERLY FLOW AHEAD OF A LARGE MID-LATITUDE TROUGH AND THIS PATTERN SHOULD FAVOR ACCELERATION AND A CONTINUATION OF THE NORTHEAST MOTION. THE OFFICIAL FORECAST IS IN AGREEMENT WITH TRACK GUIDANCE AND IS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE GUIDANCE ENVELOPE.




Hovensa shuts refinery units ahead of Omar

Published on October 15, 2008 5:16 PM | Comments

From Reuters:

NEW YORK, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Hess Corp (HES.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said on Wednesday it was shutting down the processing units at its 500,000 barrel per day joint-venture Hovensa refinery on St. Croix, in the U.S. Virgin Islands, ahead of Hurricane Omar which is expected to pass near or over the island overnight.

"To ensure the safety of our employees and the operation, HOVENSA L.L.C. is in the process of shutting down all processing and auxiliary equipment at its St. Croix refinery, except those necessary to maintain power supply in the complex," said Alex Moorhead, a spokesman for the refinery, which is jointly owned by Hess and Venezuela's state oil company.



Tropical Storm Omar scatters cruise ships in the Caribbean

Published on October 15, 2008 12:08 PM | Comments

Yet another tropical storm is forcing cruise ships in the Caribbean to change itineraries.

Carnival says a strengthening Tropical Storm Omar has forced the Carnival Triumph to switch course this week from the Eastern Caribbean to the Western Caribbean.

From the USAToday Cruise Log



HURRICANE OMAR DISCUSSION NUMBER 9

Published on October 15, 2008 11:17 AM | Comments

HURRICANE OMAR DISCUSSION NUMBER 9 NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL152008 1100 AM EDT WED OCT 15 2008

ON ITS FINAL LEG AROUND 11Z...AN AIR FORCE HURRICANE HUNTER AIRCRAFT REPORTED A PEAK SFMR SURFACE WIND OF 70 KT IN THE NORTHWEST QUADRANT OF OMAR'S EYEWALL. THIS WAS COINCIDENT WITH A NEARBY DROPSONDE SURFACE WIND VALUE OF 68 KT...SO THE INTENSITY AT THE 12Z SYNOPTIC TIME WAS INCREASED TO 70 KT. HOWEVER...SINCE THE LAST RECON FLIGHT...THE EYE HAS BECOME EVIDENT IN VISIBLE SATELLITE IMAGERY...AND ALSO IN THE SAN JUAN DOPPLER WEATHER RADAR DATA AT A RANGE OF MORE THAN 200 NMI. SATELLITE INTENSITY ESTIMATES ARE A CONSENSUS T4.5/77 KT FROM TAFB AND SAB...SO THE ADVISORY INTENSITY HAS BEEN INCREASED TO 75 KT BASED ON THE IMPROVED SATELLITE AND RADAR SIGNATURES.

THE INITIAL MOTION ESTIMATE IS 045/08. THERE IS NO SIGNIFICANT CHANGE TO THE PREVIOUS TRACK FORECAST OR PHILOSOPHY. OMAR IS BASICALLY ON THE PREVIOUS ADVISORY TRACK...AND THE NHC MODEL GUIDANCE REMAINS TIGHTLY CLUSTERED ABOUT A NORTHEASTWARD MOTION THROUGH THE NORTHERN LEEWARD ISLANDS AND THE VIRGIN ISLANDS IN ABOUT 24 HOURS. AFTER THAT...OMAR IS EXPECTED TO ACCELERATE AS IT GETS CAUGHT UP IN THE STRONG SOUTHWESTERLY FLOW ON THE EAST SIDE OF A LARGE DEEPENING MID-TROPOSPHERIC TROUGH LOCATED OVER THE WESTERN ATLANTIC. A PIECE OF THE TROUGH BREAKS OFF AND LIFTS OUT TO THE NORTHEAST IN 72-96 HOURS...WHICH BRIEFLY WEAKENS THE STEERING FLOW. AFTER THAT...HOWEVER...THE MID-LATITUDE WESTERLIES ARE FORECAST TO INCREASE AHEAD OF A STRONGER LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM...WHICH IS EXPECTED TO ACCELERATE OMAR TO THE EAST-NORTHEAST AT 35-40 KT. THE OFFICIAL FORECAST TRACK WAS NUDGED A LITTLE TO THE LEFT OF THE PREVIOUS TRACK AND REMAINS SLOWER THAN THE NHC MODEL CONSENSUS.

NOW THAT A DISTINCT EYE AND EYEWALL HAVE DEVELOPED...A GOOD CHIMNEY EFFECT CAN BE ESTABLISHED AND OMAR COULD GO THROUGH A BRIEF PERIOD OF RAPID INTENSIFICATION AGAIN. ONLY THE GFDL MODEL IS CALLING FOR OMAR TO STRENGTHEN TO AT LEAST 90 KT. THE REMAINDER OF THE INTENSITY GUIDANCE HOLDS OMAR BELOW 80 KT. BASED ON THE BETTER DEFINED EYE FEATURE...AND THE FACT THAT OMAR IS A RELATIVELY LOW SHEAR ENVIRONMENT AND OVER 29C AND WARMER SSTS...ADDITIONAL INTENSIFICATION SIMILAR TO THE GFDL MODEL SEEMS QUITE REASONABLE. IT ALSO ISN'T OUT OF THE QUESTION THAT OMAR COULD ACHIEVE MAJOR HURRICANE STATUS JUST BEFORE THE CYCLONE REACHES THE NORTHERN LEEWARD ISLANDS. HOWEVER...THE RAPID ENCROACHMENT OF DRY MID-LEVEL AIR FROM THE NORTHWEST AS NOTED IN WATER VAPOR SATELLITE IMAGERY PRECLUDES EXPLICITLY FORECASTING THAT INTENSITY AT THIS TIME SINCE THAT DRY AIR COULD MAKE IT INTO THE INNER CORE REGION IN 12-18 HOURS AND WEAKEN THE HURRICANE.

ALTHOUGH THE OFFICIAL FORECAST KEEPS THE CENTER EAST OF PUERTO RICO...ONLY A SLIGHT DEVIATION TO THE LEFT OF THE CURRENT MOTION COULD REQUIRE CHANGING THE HURRICANE WATCH TO A HURRICANE WARNING FOR THAT ISLAND. ALSO...STRONGER WINDS...POSSIBLY ONE CATEGORY HIGHER...CAN BE EXPECTED OVER HIGHER TERRAIN...ESPECIALLY ABOVE 500 FT ELEVATION.



HURRICANE OMAR DISCUSSION NUMBER 7

Published on October 15, 2008 3:33 AM | Comments

HURRICANE OMAR DISCUSSION NUMBER 7 NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL152008 1100 PM EDT TUE OCT 14 2008

THERE HAVE BEEN NO ADDITIONAL RECONNAISSANCE DATA THIS EVENING... HOWEVER SATELLITE AND RADAR OBSERVATIONS SUGGEST THAT OMAR HAS BECOME A HURRICANE. A NEARLY COMPLETE EYEWALL HAS BEEN SEEN AT TIMES ON THE CURACAO RADAR...AND OMAR HAS BEEN MAINTAINING A LARGE AREA OF VERY COLD CONVECTION OVER THE CENTER ALL DAY. DVORAK CLASSIFICATIONS FROM TAFB AND SAB AT 00Z WERE BOTH T4.0...OR 65 KT. IN ADDITION... THE CIMSS ADT IS RUNNING AROUND T4.5...AND A RECENT AMSU INTENSITY ESTIMATE WAS 66 KT. BASED ON THESE DATA...THE ADVISORY INTENSITY IS SET AT 65 KT. GLOBAL MODEL GUIDANCE SUGGESTS THAT THE SHEAR WILL NOT CHANGE MUCH OVER THE NEXT 36 HOURS OR SO...AND ALL THE OBJECTIVE GUIDANCE FORECASTS OMAR TO STRENGTHEN TO A CATEGORY TWO HURRICANE BEFORE IT EXITS THE CARIBBEAN. IT SHOULD ALSO BE NOTED THAT THE SHIPS RAPID INTENSITY GUIDANCE INDICATES A 60% CHANCE OF 30 KT OR MORE STRENGTHENING OVER THE NEXT 24 HOURS. THE OFFICIAL FORECAST IS NOT QUITE THAT AGGRESSIVE...BUT IS A LITTLE HIGHER THAN THE PREVIOUS FORECAST AND VERY CLOSE TO THE ICON INTENSITY CONSENSUS.

BASED ON THE RADAR IMAGERY THE INITIAL MOTION IS 050/5. THERE HAS BEEN NO SIGNIFICANT CHANGE TO THE FORECAST TRACK OR REASONING. WATER VAPOR IMAGERY CONTINUES TO SHOW A LARGE UPPER TROUGH DIGGING SOUTHWARD OVER THE WESTERN ATLANTIC...AND MODEL GUIDANCE IS IN EXCELLENT AGREEMENT THAT THIS TROUGH WILL GRADUALLY ACCELERATE THE TROPICAL CYCLONE NORTHEASTWARD OUT OF THE CARIBBEAN. THE HWRF AND GFDL CONTINUE TO LIE ALONG THE LEFT SIDE OF THE GUIDANCE ENVELOPE...WITH THE ECMWF AND UKMET ON THE RIGHT...BUT THE MODEL SPREAD IS NOT LARGE. THE OFFICIAL FORECAST IS CLOSE TO THE CONSENSUS OF THIS TIGHTLY PACKED MODEL CLUSTER.



Hurricane Omar taking aim at Caribbean islands

Published on October 15, 2008 3:27 AM | Comments

From the AP:

MIAMI (AP) -- Hurricane Omar is slowly moving northeast, a day after drenching islands in the southeastern Caribbean.

Hurricane warnings have been issued for the U.S. Virgin islands, Puerto Rico's Vieques and Culebra islands and other islands in the region.

Officials in Puerto Rico, already soaked from several days of rain, are warning residents to prepare for a lot more.

Omar's maximum sustained winds are near 75 mph (120 kph) early Wednesday. But the National Hurricane Center in Miami says the hurricane is expected to strengthen.



Storm batters Aruba, heads for US islands

Published on October 14, 2008 5:19 PM | Comments

From the AP:

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) -- Tropical Storm Omar drenched islands in the southeastern Caribbean on Tuesday, downing trees and blowing off part of a school's roof as it menaced U.S. islands.

Officials in Puerto Rico warned residents of the U.S. Caribbean territory, already soaked from several days of rain, to prepare for lots more. Medical authorities appealed for blood donations for possible casualties of the storm.

Omar's expected path could take it over Puerto Rico overnight Wednesday, or it could drift further east over the nearby U.S. and British Virgin Islands.



Omar has rapidly intensified

Published on October 14, 2008 5:08 PM | Comments

This is not looking good for the Virgin Islands - the storm is now much more powerful than was forecast just this morning:

TROPICAL STORM OMAR DISCUSSION NUMBER 6 NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL152008 500 PM EDT TUE OCT 14 2008

SATELLITE...RADAR...AND AIR FORCE RECON DATA INDICATE THAT OMAR HAS RAPIDLY INTENSIFIED THIS AFTERNOON. ALTHOUGH MAXIMUM 850 MB FLIGHT-LEVEL WINDS OBSERVED HAVE ONLY BEEN 63 KT...RELIABLE SFMR SURFACE WIND DATA HAVE BEEN AS HIGH 57-60 KT ON THE SOUTH SIDE OF THE CIRCULATION CENTER. THE LOWEST CENTRAL PRESSURE MEASURED BY A DROPSONDE WAS 986 MB...BUT THE SURFACE WIND WAS 46 KT. THEREFORE... THE PRESSURE IS ESTIMATED TO BE 982 MB AND THE INTENSITY HAS BEEN INCREASED TO A CONSERVATIVE 60 KT. OMAR CONTINUES TO GET BETTER ORGANIZED IN BOTH RADAR AND SATELLITE IMAGERY...AND VERY COLD CLOUD TOPS OF -80C TO -87C PERSIST OVER AND NEAR THE CIRCULATION CENTER. ON THE LAST PASS THROUGH THE CENTER OF OMAR...THE FLIGHT CREW REPORTED A 10-15 NMI DIAMETER EYE WAS FORMING. OUTFLOW ALSO CONTINUES TO IMPROVE AND EXPAND IN ALL QUADRANTS...EXCEPT TO THE NORTHWEST WHERE IT IS SLIGHTLY RESTRICTED.



TROPICAL STORM OMAR DISCUSSION NUMBER 5

Published on October 14, 2008 11:51 AM | Comments

Omar getting better organized:

SATELLITE AND RADAR DATA INDICATE THE DEPRESSION HAS CONTINUED TO BECOME BETTER ORGANIZED AND CLOUD TOPS HAVE COOLED SIGNIFICANTLY WITH SOME TOPS TO -86C NEAR THE CENTER. OUTFLOW HAS ALSO IMPROVED IN ALL QUADRANTS AND IS LESS RESTRICTED TO THE NORTHWEST NOW. THE INITIAL ADVISORY OF 35 KT IS BASED ON A CONSENSUS T2.5/35 KT SATELLITE ESTIMATE FROM TAFB AND SAB FOR THE PAST 12 HOURS...PLUS SEVERAL BELIEVABLE 30-34 KT QUIKSCAT WIND VECTORS NOTED IN THE NORTHWEST QUADRANT AROUND 1036Z THIS MORNING. THUS...TROPICAL DEPRESSION FIFTEEN HAS BEEN UPGRADED TO TROPICAL STORM OMAR.


Hurricane Omar Open Thread

Published on October 14, 2008 11:31 AM | Comments

Use this post to ask questions and discuss Hurricane Omar.



Tropical Storm Omar 5 Day Cone

Published on October 14, 2008 9:26 AM | Comments



TROPICAL DEPRESSION FIFTEEN LOCAL STATEMENT

Published on October 14, 2008 9:17 AM | Comments

URGENT - IMMEDIATE BROADCAST REQUESTED TROPICAL DEPRESSION FIFTEEN LOCAL STATEMENT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN JUAN PR 542 AM AST TUE OCT 14 2008

...A TROPICAL STORM WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR PUERTO RICO...INCLUDING CULEBRA AND VIEQUES...AND FOR ALL OF THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS...

URGENT - IMMEDIATE BROADCAST REQUESTED TROPICAL DEPRESSION FIFTEEN LOCAL STATEMENT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN JUAN PR 542 AM AST TUE OCT 14 2008

...A TROPICAL STORM WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR PUERTO RICO...INCLUDING CULEBRA AND VIEQUES...AND FOR ALL OF THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS...

.AT 500 AM AST...0900Z...THE CENTER OF TROPICAL DEPRESSION FIFTEEN WAS LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 14.3 NORTH...LONGITUDE 69.2 WEST...OR ABOUT 350 MILES SOUTHWEST OF SAN JUAN PUERTO RICO...OR ABOUT 270 MILES SOUTHWEST OF PONCE...OR ABOUT 325 MILES SOUTHWEST OF ST CROIX...OR ABOUT 350 MILES SOUTHWEST OF ST THOMAS.

THE DEPRESSION WAS DRIFTING TOWARD THE SOUTHEAST NEAR 2 MPH. A TURN TO THE EAST AND THEN NORTHEAST IS EXPECTED TODAY...WITH A GRADUAL INCREASE IN FORWARD SPEED ON WEDNESDAY.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS ARE NEAR 35 MPH...WITH HIGHER GUSTS. GRADUAL STRENGTHENING IS FORECAST OVER THE NEXT 48 HOURS...AND THE SYSTEM IS EXPECTED TO BECOME A TROPICAL STORM TODAY.

ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 1001 MB...29.56 INCHES.

PRZ001>013-VIZ001-002-150945- /O.CON.TJSJ.TR.A.0001.000000T0000Z-000000T0000Z/ SAN JUAN AND VICINITY-NORTHEAST-SOUTHEAST-EASTERN INTERIOR- NORTH CENTRAL-CENTRAL INTERIOR-PONCE AND VICINITY-NORTHWEST- WESTERN INTERIOR-MAYAGUEZ AND VICINITY-SOUTHWEST-CULEBRA-VIEQUES- ST. THOMAS/ST. JOHN/ADJACENT ISLANDS-ST CROIX- 542 AM AST TUE OCT 14 2008

...TROPICAL STORM WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT... ...SMALL CRAFT SHOULD NOT VENTURE FAR FROM PORT...

...NEW INFORMATION...

DEPRESSION LOCATION. FORECAST TRACK.

...AREAS AFFECTED...

THIS STATEMENT RECOMMENDS ACTIONS TO BE TAKEN BY PERSONS IN... PUERTO RICO AND VIRGIN ISLANDS.

...WATCHES/WARNINGS...

A FLASH FLOOD WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR ALL OF PUERTO RICO AND THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS THROUGH WEDNESDAY EVENING.

ABUNDANT TROPICAL MOISTURE...ASSOCIATED WITH TROPICAL DEPRESSION FIFTEEN...WILL LIFT NORTHWARDS AND BRING OCCASIONAL BANDS OF SHOWERS AND STRONG THUNDERSTORMS WITH GUSTY WINDS ACROSS THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS AND ALL OF PUERTO RICO...THROUGH AT LEAST THURSDAY EVENING. RESIDENTS...VISITORS AND MOTORISTS SHOULD THEREFORE EXPECT AREAS OF MODERATE TO HEAVY RAINFALL...WITH THE POTENTIAL FOR ISOLATED RAINFALL TOTALS RANGING BETWEEN 15 AND 30 INCHES THROUGH THE END OF THE WEEK. THIS DEPRESSION IS FORECAST TO EVENTUALLY TURN TOWARDS THE EAST AND THEN NORTHEAST...AND MOVE ACROSS PUERTO RICO AND THE REST OF THE LOCAL ISLANDS AS A TROPICAL STORM EARLY THURSDAY. DUE TO ALREADY SATURATED SOILS ACROSS MUCH OF THE WATCH AREA...ANY ADDITIONAL HEAVY RAINFALL WILL LIKELY RESULT IN RAPID RIVER RISES AND FLASH FLOODING...ALONG WITH MUDSLIDES AND DEBRIS FLOW.

PLEASE LISTEN TO NOAA WEATHER RADIO OR GO TO WEATHER.GOV ON THE INTERNET FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THESE ADDITIONAL HAZARDS.

...PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A TROPICAL STORM WATCH MEANS THAT TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS ARE POSSIBLE WITHIN THE WATCH AREA OVER THE NEXT 36 HOURS. IT IS RECOMMENDED YOU PREPARE YOUR HOME OR BUSINESS AND REVIEW YOUR TROPICAL STORM PLAN.

...STORM SURGE AND STORM TIDE...

ITS TOO EARLY TO DETERMINE THE EXACT LOCATIONS OF ANY SPECIFIC STORM TIDES TO BE CAUSED BY THIS TROPICAL DEPRESSION AS IT MOVES ACROSS PUERTO RICO AND THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS. HOWEVER...STORM TIDES OF 2 TO 4 FEET ABOVE SEA LEVEL MAY OCCUR MAINLY WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY...PRIMARILY ALONG THE SOUTH AND SOUTHEAST COASTS OF PUERTO RICO...AND ALONG THE SOUTH AND WEST COASTS OF CULEBRA...VIEQUES AND THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS.

THE FOLLOWING ARE THE EXPECTED TIMES OF ASTRONOMICAL HIGH TIDES THROUGHOUT THE LOCAL AREA...

IN PLAYA DE PONCE... 1.0 FEET AT 9:47 AM AST WEDNESDAY 1.1 FEET AT 10:48 AM AST THURSDAY

IN LIME TREE BAY SAINT CROIX... 1.0 FEET AT 10:13 AM AST WEDNESDAY 1.0 FEET AT 11:18 AM AST THURSDAY

IN CHARLOTTE AMALIE SAINT THOMAS... 1.1 FEET AT 9:35 AM AST WEDNESDAY 1.2 FEET AT 10:32 AM AST THURSDAY

...WINDS...

TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS WILL BEGIN TO SPREAD ACROSS THE SOUTH AND WEST SECTIONS OF PUERTO RICO BY WEDNESDAY...AND WILL THEN CONTINUE SPREADING NORTHEASTWARD ACROSS ALL OF PUERTO RICO MIDDAY WEDNESDAY...REACHING THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON. SUSTAINED WINDS OF 40 TO 60 MPH WITH GUSTS TO 70 MPH CAN BE EXPECTED ACROSS ALL OF THE LOCAL ISLANDS...ESPECIALLY OVER THE HIGHER TERRAIN AND EXPOSED AREAS.

...PROBABILITY OF HURRICANE/TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS...

THERE IS A 50 TO 60 PERCENT CHANCE THAT PUERTO RICO AND VIRGIN ISLANDS WILL EXPERIENCE TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS, WINDS OF 39 TO 73 MPH.

...INLAND FLOODING...

BANDS OF SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS ASSOCIATED WITH THE OUTER FRINGES OF TROPICAL DEPRESSION FIFTEEN...WILL CONTINUE TO MOVE NORTH ACROSS THE LOCAL ISLANDS LATER TODAY THROUGH EARLY WEDNESDAY...WITH MORE FREQUENT BANDS THEN SPREADING OVER THE AREA WEDNESDAY NIGHT THROUGH THURSDAY. PERIODS OF VERY HEAVY RAINFALL AND LOCALIZED FLOODING WILL ACCOMPANY THESE SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS.

...NEXT UPDATE...

THIS STATEMENT WILL BE UPDATED BY 930 AM AST THIS TUESDAY MORNING.



TROPICAL DEPRESSION FIFTEEN DISCUSSION NUMBER 4

Published on October 14, 2008 5:13 AM | Comments

So TD 15 is sitting in the middle of the Caribbean basin and forecast to take an unusual track and head over PR as a tropical storm (and very close to the Virgin Islands) in the next couple of days. We will be keeping a close eye on this one - slow moving storms of this size, while not packing hurricane force winds, can be very devastating to the area with the amount of rain they are capable of dropping.

TROPICAL DEPRESSION FIFTEEN DISCUSSION NUMBER 4 NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL152008 500 AM EDT TUE OCT 14 2008

ALTHOUGH DVORAK INTENSITY ESTIMATES HAVE BEEN SUGGESTING THAT THE SYSTEM IS NEAR TROPICAL STORM STRENGTH...SATELLITE IMAGES INDICATE THAT THE CYCLONE HAS NOT BECOME SIGNIFICANTLY BETTER ORGANIZED SINCE THE RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT DEPARTED THE AREA. THEREFORE THE CURRENT INTENSITY IS HELD AT 30 KT FOR THIS PACKAGE. THE CIRCULATION CENTER APPEARS TO BE NEAR THE NORTHWEST SIDE OF THE DEEP CONVECTION...INDICATIVE OF NORTHWESTERLY SHEAR ON THE SYSTEM. GLOBAL MODELS INDICATE MODERATELY STRONG VERTICAL SHEAR WILL CONTINUE TO IMPACT THE CYCLONE OVER THE NEXT SEVERAL DAYS. NONETHELESS THE CONSENSUS OF DYNAMICAL AND STATISTICAL/DYNAMICAL GUIDANCE INDICATES THAT THE SHEAR WILL NOT BE STRONG ENOUGH TO PREVENT SOME INTENSIFICATION. THE OFFICIAL WIND SPEED FORECAST IS VERY CLOSE TO THIS CONSENSUS.

THE DEPRESSION HAS BEEN DRIFTING SOUTHEASTWARD...OR 130/2. OBVIOUSLY THE STEERING WINDS OVER THE EASTERN CARIBBEAN ARE VERY WEAK AT THIS TIME. OVER THE NEXT FEW DAYS...THE GLOBAL MODELS SHOW A MID-TROPOSPHERIC TROUGH DEEPENING TO THE NORTH OF THE TROPICAL CYCLONE AND A RIDGE BUILDING TO ITS EAST. THESE DEVELOPMENTS SHOULD CAUSE THE CYCLONE TO TURN EASTWARD AND NORTHEASTWARD WITH A GRADUAL INCREASE IN FORWARD SPEED. THE OFFICIAL TRACK FORECAST IS VERY SIMILAR TO THE PREVIOUS ONE...AND IS ALSO QUITE CLOSE TO THE DYNAMICAL MODEL CONSENSUS.

RADAR IMAGES FROM CURACAO SHOW RAIN BANDS ASSOCIATED WITH THE DEPRESSION PASSING OVER THE NETHERLANDS ANTILLES AND LOCALLY HEAVY RAINS ARE LIKELY TO CONTINUE OVER PORTIONS OF THESE ISLANDS TODAY.