Caribbean-On-Line's Caribbean Hurricane Blog



Hurricane Irene

Cat Island, Hurricane Irene

Published on August 27, 2011 9:42 AM | Comments

There is a little bit at the end of this video showing Cat Island in the Bahamas:

Irene is making her way up the east coast today. I am searching for more news and video about how the Bahamas and the Turks & Caicos fared.



Dangerous Irene unleashes fury on Bahamas

Published on August 25, 2011 11:27 AM | Comments

From Caribbean360:

"NASSAU, Bahamas, Thursday August 25, 2011 - A large and dangerous Category 3 Hurricane Irene is unleashing its fury over the northwestern Bahamas this morning after causing flooding, damaging and destroying several homes, and disrupting electricity service in the islands in the southeast of the archipelago yesterday.

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has reported that in Acklins, around 90 percent of the settlement of Lovely Bay had been wiped out, and house roofs and several homes were blown away. Power lines and trees were downed and residents have flocked to shelters."



Raw video of Irene from the Turks & Caicos

Published on August 24, 2011 2:33 PM | Comments



Eye of Irene over Crooked Island, The Bahamas

Published on August 24, 2011 2:24 PM | Comments

20110824.1745.goes13.x.vis1km_high.09LIRENE.100kts-957mb-219N-733W.100pc.jpg

GOES17402011236GDDihi.jpg



Irene Visible Satellite

Published on August 23, 2011 2:10 PM | Comments

20110823.1306.f18.x.vis1km_high.09LIRENE.85kts-978mb-206N-706W.100pc.jpg



HURRICANE IRENE DISCUSSION NUMBER 13

Published on August 23, 2011 2:04 PM | Comments

HURRICANE IRENE DISCUSSION NUMBER 13
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL092011
1100 AM EDT TUE AUG 23 2011

THE LAST FEW VISIBLE SATELLITE IMAGES SHOW A HINT OF AN EYE... WHILE
RECENT MICROWAVE DATA SHOW AN EYEWALL THAT IS OPEN TO THE SOUTH.
THE LATEST SATELLITE INTENSITY ESTIMATES FROM SAB AND TAFB WERE 77
AND 90 KT...RESPECTIVELY...AND SUPPORT MAINTAINING AN INITIAL
INTENSITY OF 85 KT. THE RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT SCHEDULED TO
INVESTIGATE IRENE THIS MORNING HAD ISSUES WITH THE ON-BOARD RADAR.
THIS REQUIRED A CHANGE IN AIRCRAFT AND THE NEW PLANE JUST PASSED
THROUGH THE CENTER...REPORTING A MINIMUM PRESSURE OF 980 MB...ABOUT
THE SAME AS DURING THE PREVIOUS MISSION.

A SHEAR ANALYSIS FROM UW-CIMSS SHOWS ABOUT 10-20 KT OF SOUTHWESTERLY
SHEAR OVER IRENE....AND THE SHIPS GUIDANCE DOES NOT WEAKEN THIS
SHEAR DURING THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS. AS A RESULT...THE SHIPS/LGEM
MODELS DO NOT SHOW MUCH STRENGTHENING DURING THAT TIME. ON THE
OTHER HAND...THE GFDL/HWRF MODELS ARE MUCH MORE AGGRESSIVE AND MAKE
IRENE A MAJOR HURRICANE WITHIN 24 HOURS. THE NEW INTENSITY FORECAST
IS HIGHER THAN THE STATISTICAL GUIDANCE...BUT NOT AS AGGRESSIVE AS
THE GFDL/HWRF. THE UPDATED FORECAST IS SLIGHTLY BELOW THE PREVIOUS
ADVISORY.

IRENE HAS BEEN MOVING WEST-NORTHWESTWARD OR 295 DEGREES AT 10 KT. A
MID/UPPER-LEVEL TROUGH MOVING OVER THE NORTHEASTERN UNITED STATES
IS EXPECTED TO WEAKEN THE WESTERN PORTION OF THE SUBTROPICAL RIDGE
DURING THE NEXT DAY OR SO. THIS SHOULD ALLOW IRENE TO TURN
NORTHWESTWARD WITHIN THE NEXT 24-36 HOURS...AND THE TRACK GUIDANCE
IS IN EXCELLENT AGREEMENT DURING THE FIRST 48 HOURS. LATER IN THE
FORECAST PERIOD IRENE IS FORECAST TO TURN NORTHWARD AS IT ROUNDS
THE WESTERN PORTION OF THE RIDGE. THE SPREAD IN THE GUIDANCE
INCREASES BY DAY THREE...RANGING FROM THE COASTAL MID-ATLANTIC
STATES TO WELL OFFSHORE...WITH THE UKMET ALONG THE LEFT SIDE AND
THE GFS/NOGAPS ALONG THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE GUIDANCE ENVELOPE. THE
UPDATED TRACK IS CLOSEST TO THE ECMWF AND IS A LITTLE LEFT OF THE
MULTI-MODEL CONSENSUS. IT IS IMPORTANT TO REMIND USERS NOT TO FOCUS
ON THE EXACT FORECAST TRACK...ESPECIALLY AT DAYS 4 AND 5...SINCE
THE MOST RECENT 5-YEAR AVERAGE ERRORS AT THOSE FORECAST TIMES ARE
200 AND 250 MILES...RESPECTIVELY.



Irene Video

Published on August 23, 2011 10:03 AM | Comments

Some video news:



HURRICANE IRENE DISCUSSION NUMBER 12

Published on August 23, 2011 10:02 AM | Comments

This was the 5 AM update:


HURRICANE IRENE DISCUSSION NUMBER 12
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL092011
500 AM EDT TUE AUG 23 2011

SMOOTHING THROUGH ALL OF THE AIRCRAFT FIXES SINCE IRENE MOVED OFF
THE COAST OF PUERTO RICO MORE THAN 18 HOURS AGO YIELDS A LONG TERM
MOTION OF 295/10 KT...WHICH IS USED FOR THIS ADVISORY. THERE IS NO
SIGNIFICANT CHANGE TO THE PREVIOUS FORECAST TRACK REASONING. THE
23/00Z G-IV JET AIRCRAFT AND AIR FORCE C-130 DROPSONDE DATA APPEAR
TO HAVE SETTLED DOWN THE MODELS...AND THERE IS CONSIDERABLY LESS
DIFFERENCE AMONG THE VARIOUS MODEL SOLUTIONS NOW. THE OVERWHELMING
CONSENSUS IS THAT IRENE WILL GRADUALLY TURN NORTHWESTWARD OVER THE
NEXT 2-3 DAYS AND THEN MOVE NORTHWARD THROUGH A DEVELOPING BREAK IN
THE SUBTROPICAL RIDGE OVER THE SOUTHEASTERN UNITED STATES. THE
OFFICIAL FORECAST TRACK IS SIMILAR TO THE PREVIOUS ADVISORY AND
LIES VERY CLOSE TO CONSENSUS MODELS TVCN AND TVCA.

AN EARLIER RECON FLIGHT INDICATED THE PRESSURE HAD ONLY FALLEN BY 2
MB DOWN TO 978 MB...AND THE OVERALL APPEARANCE IN SATELLITE IMAGERY
HAS CHANGED LITTLE SINCE THE PREVIOUS ADVISORY. AS A RESULT...THE
INITIAL INTENSITY IS BEING HELD AT 85 KT...WHICH COULD BE GENEROUS.
IRENE IS FORECAST TO REMAIN IN A RELATIVELY LOW VERTICAL WIND SHEAR
ENVIRONMENT AND OVER SSTS NEAR 30C. THAT COMBINATION...ALONG WITH
EXPANDING OUTFLOW IN ALL QUADRANTS...SHOULD ALLOW FOR IRENE TO
BECOME A MAJOR HURRICANE WITHIN THE NEXT 24 HOURS ONCE THE CYCLONE
CLEARS THE EFFECTS OF HISPANIOLA...AND PROBABLY MAINTAIN MAJOR
HURRICANE STATUS THROUGHOUT THE REMAINDER OF THE 5-DAY FORECAST
PERIOD. THE INTENSITY FORECAST IS SIMILAR TO THE PREVIOUS ADVISORY
AND CLOSELY FOLLOWS A BLEND OF THE HWRF AND GFDL MODEL INTENSITY
FORECASTS...AND CONVERSION OF THE SURFACE PRESSURES DEPICTED IN THE
GFS AND ECMWF MODELS.

WIND RADII WERE EXPANDED BASED ON A BLEND OF RECON FLIGHT-LEVEL
WINDS...SFMR WINDS...AND SURFACE OBSERVATIONS.

IRENE IS FORECAST TO BECOME A LARGER THAN AVERAGE HURRICANE. IT IS
IMPORTANT TO REMIND USERS NOT TO FOCUS ON THE EXACT FORECAST
TRACK...ESPECIALLY AT DAYS 4 AND 5...SINCE THE MOST RECENT 5-YEAR
AVERAGE ERRORS AT THOSE FORECAST TIMES ARE 200 AND 250 MILES...
RESPECTIVELY.



HURRICANE IRENE DISCUSSION NUMBER 9

Published on August 22, 2011 5:58 PM | Comments

This is turning into a beast:

HURRICANE IRENE DISCUSSION NUMBER 9
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL092011
500 PM AST MON AUG 22 2011

DATA FROM THE LAST AIR FORCE HURRICANE HUNTER AIRCRAFT AROUND 1700
UTC INDICATE THAT THE CENTRAL PRESSURE WAS STEADY AND THE WINDS
HAVE NOT CHANGED DURING THE DAY. SINCE THEN...HIGH RESOLUTION
SATELLITE IMAGES REVEAL SOME CONVECTIVE BANDS WRAPPING AROUND A
CLUSTER OF DEEP CONVECTION NEAR THE CENTER...SUGGESTING THAT IRENE
COULD BE SLOWLY INTENSIFYING. HOWEVER...DVORAK T-NUMBERS ARE 4.0
AND 4.5 WHICH SUPPORTS KEEPING THE INITIAL INTENSITY AT 70 KNOTS.
ANOTHER PLANE WILL CHECK THE HURRICANE AROUND 0000 UTC TONIGHT.
WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE DISRUPTION OF THE OUTER CIRCULATION BY
THE HIGH TERRAIN OF HISPANIOLA...WHICH PROBABLY WILL SLOW DOWN THE
INTENSIFICATION PROCESS DURING THE NEXT 12 TO 24 HOURS...ALL OF THE
INGREDIENTS ARE CONDUCIVE FOR IRENE TO INTENSIFY OVER THE NEXT FEW
DAYS. THE OFFICIAL FORECAST CALLS FOR IRENE TO BECOME A STRONG
CATEGORY 2 OR CATEGORY 3 HURRICANE ON THE SAFFIR-SIMPSON HURRICANE
WIND SCALE AS IRENE MOVES ACROSS THE CENTRAL AND NORTHWESTERN
BAHAMAS. IN FACT...BOTH THE GFS AND THE ECMWF GLOBAL MODELS INSIST
ON MAKING IRENE A LARGE AND STRONG HURRICANE WITH MINIMUM PRESSURES
AROUND 945 MB AND 952 MB...RESPECTIVELY.

IRENE IS MOVING TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST OR 295 DEGREES AT 11
KNOTS. CURRENTLY...THE MOTION OF THE HURRICANE IS BEING CONTROLLED
BY A NARROW SUBTROPICAL RIDGE TO ITS NORTH. HOWEVER...THE FUTURE
TRACK WILL DEPEND ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF A LARGE MID- TO UPPER-LEVEL
TROUGH ALONG THE EAST COAST OF THE UNITED STATES. THIS PATTERN WILL
INDUCE A GRADUAL NORTHWESTWARD AND THEN NORTHWARD TRACK THROUGH THE
FORECAST PERIOD WITH A SLIGHT DECREASE IN FORWARD SPEED. THERE IS
MORE CONFIDENCE IN THE FORECAST SINCE MOST OF THE TRACK MODELS...
WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE GFDL...HAVE NOW FOLLOWED THE LEAD OF THE
ECMWF MODEL. THE GUIDANCE IS NOW IN BETTER AGREEMENT IN TURNING
IRENE NORTHWARD ALONG 78 OR 79 DEGREES LONGITUDE. ALTHOUGH IT IS
STILL TOO EARLY TO BE CERTAIN...THE GUIDANCE TREND CONTINUES TO
LESSENS THE THREAT TO SOUTH FLORIDA BUT INCREASES THE THREAT TO THE
CAROLINAS.

DO NOT TO FOCUS ON THE EXACT FORECAST TRACK...ESPECIALLY AT DAYS 4
TO 5...SINCE THE MOST RECENT 5-YEAR AVERAGE ERRORS AT THOSE FORECAST
TIMES ARE 200 AND 250 MILES...RESPECTIVELY.



Hurricane Irene headed towards The Bahamas

Published on August 22, 2011 5:40 PM | Comments

The Turks and Caicos and The Bahamas are low lying islands, basically sand bars and coral reefs. Category 3, 4, or 5 hurricanes can cause serious damage to these islands. This storm is looking potentially disastrous for these islands, and possibly for somewhere on the east coast of the U.S. if and when it makes landfall there (the models have brought it further and further east as the days have passed but they seem to be in agreement now).

Puerto Rico was was much harder hit than the Virgin Islands, which are not far away at all:

Hopefully those in the path are ready.



Irene now a Hurricane

Published on August 22, 2011 9:10 AM | Comments

Irene is a hurricane and forecast to become a strong and dangerous one before she leaves the region. Puerto Rico is in the path at the moment, but then Hispaniola, the Turks and Caicos, and Bahamas are in line. Anyone on or traveling to those islands needs to be prepared immediately.



TROPICAL STORM IRENE SPECIAL DISCUSSION NUMBER 1

Published on August 20, 2011 10:38 PM | Comments

TROPICAL STORM IRENE SPECIAL DISCUSSION NUMBER 1
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL092011
700 PM AST SAT AUG 20 2011

AN AIR FORCE RESERVE HURRICANE HUNTER AIRCRAFT INVESTIGATING THE
TROPICAL WAVE EAST OF THE LESSER ANTILLES FOUND A SMALL LOW-LEVEL
CIRCULATION CENTER JUST SOUTHWEST OF A LARGE CONVECTIVE BURST AND A
MINIMUM PRESSURE OF ABOUT 1006 MB. THE PLANE ALSO MEASURED A
MAXIMUM WIND OF 53 KT AT 1400 FT AND BELIEVABLE WINDS OF ABOUT
45 KT FROM THE SFMR. THUS ADVISORIES ARE BEING INITIATED ON
TROPICAL STORM IRENE WITH AN INITIAL INTENSITY OF 45 KT.

A ROUGH ESTIMATE OF INITIAL MOTION IS ABOUT 280/19. A LARGE
MID-LEVEL RIDGE OVER THE CENTRAL AND WESTERN TROPICAL ATLANTIC IS
EXPECTED TO STEER IRENE TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST OVER THE NEXT TWO
OR THREE DAYS. THIS RIDGE SHOULD WEAKEN DURING THAT TIME AND CAUSE
IRENE TO GRADUALLY DECELERATE. THE GUIDANCE IS IN GOOD AGREEMENT
ON A TRACK GENERALLY IN THE DIRECTION OF HISPANIOLA TO THE SOUTH OF
PUERTO RICO. THEREAFTER...A MID-LATITUDE TROUGH MOVING OFFSHORE OF
THE EASTERN UNITED STATES IS EXPECTED TO CAUSE A WEAKNESS IN THE
RIDGE. THIS COULD ALLOW IRENE TO GAIN SOME LATITUDE...ALTHOUGH THE
MODELS BEGIN TO SPREAD OUT LATE IN THE PERIOD. THE GFS AND ECMWF
SHOW ENOUGH OF A WEAKNESS TO BRING THE STORM NORTH OF CUBA...WHILE
THE UKMET AND THE CANADIAN HAVE ENOUGH RIDGING IN PLACE TO KEEP THE
STORM IN THE CARIBBEAN SEA. THE NHC FORECAST WILL SPLIT THOSE TWO
IDEAS AND LIES JUST TO THE WEST OF THE MODEL CONSENSUS.

THE INITIAL VORTEX IS STILL IN ITS FORMATIVE STAGES AND IT WILL
PROBABLY TAKE SOME TIME TO STRENGTHEN. HOWEVER...IRENE IS MOVING
OVER RATHER WARM WATERS WITH LIGHT SHEAR EXPECTED. MOST OF THE
RELIABLE GUIDANCE BRINGS THE STORM TO A HURRICANE BEFORE REACHING
HISPANIOLA...AND THE OFFICIAL FORECAST IS IN AGREEMENT WITH THIS
SCENARIO. THE INTENSITY FORECAST IN AT DAY 3 AND BEYOND IS RATHER
CHALLENGING DUE TO THE POTENTIAL FOR LAND INTERACTION. ALTHOUGH
THE NHC FORECAST WILL SHOW ONLY A SMALL AMOUNT OF
RE-INTENSIFICATION...ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS COULD BE QUITE
FAVORABLE FOR STRENGTHENING IF IRENE AVOIDS SIGNIFICANT LAND
INTERACTION.

BASED ON THE OFFICIAL FORECAST...TROPICAL STORM WARNINGS HAVE BEEN
ISSUED FOR MANY OF THE LEEWARD ISLANDS...THE VIRGIN ISLANDS AND
PUERTO RICO.

NOTE...THIS SPECIAL ADVISORY TAKES THE PLACE OF THE STANDARD 800 PM
AST/0000 UTC INTERMEDIATE PUBLIC ADVISORY. THE NEXT ADVISORY WILL
BE THE FULL ADVISORY PACKAGE ISSUED AT 1100 PM AST/0300 UTC.



Tropical Storm Irene Open Thread

Published on August 20, 2011 10:33 PM | Comments

Use this post to leave comments and questions about Irene.



Tropical Storm Irene 5 day track

Published on August 20, 2011 10:25 PM | Comments