Caribbean-On-Line's Caribbean Hurricane Blog



Hurricane Ernesto

Topical Storm Ernesto Update

Published on August 5, 2012 12:24 PM | Comments

Ernesto is poorly organized and moving quickly through the southern Caribbean - it is currently south of Jamaica. There really doesn't seem to be much threat to Caribbean islands, but the storm in some form will have an effect on Central America:

WATCHES AND WARNINGS
--------------------
CHANGES WITH THIS ADVISORY...

THE GOVERNMENT OF THE CAYMAN ISLANDS HAS ISSUED A TROPICAL STORM
WATCH FOR GRAND CAYMAN.

SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT...

A TROPICAL STORM WARNING IS IN EFFECT FOR...
* JAMAICA

A TROPICAL STORM WATCH IS IN EFFECT FOR...
* GRAND CAYMAN
* THE COAST OF HONDURAS FROM THE HONDURAS/NICARAGUA BORDER WESTWARD
TO PUNTA CASTILLA

A TROPICAL STORM WARNING MEANS THAT TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS ARE
EXPECTED SOMEWHERE WITHIN THE WARNING AREA...IN THIS CASE WITHIN 12
HOURS.

A TROPICAL STORM WATCH MEANS THAT TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS ARE
POSSIBLE WITHIN THE WATCH AREA...IN THIS CASE WITHIN 24 TO 48 HOURS.

INTERESTS IN BELIZE AND THE YUCATAN PENINSULA OF MEXICO SHOULD
MONITOR THE PROGRESS OF ERNESTO.

FOR STORM INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO YOUR AREA...PLEASE MONITOR
PRODUCTS ISSUED BY YOUR NATIONAL METEOROLOGICAL SERVICE.


DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK
------------------------------
AT 1100 AM EDT...1500 UTC...THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM ERNESTO WAS
LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 15.0 NORTH...LONGITUDE 77.1 WEST. ERNESTO IS
MOVING TOWARD THE WEST NEAR 23 MPH...37 KM/H...AND THIS MOTION IS
EXPECTED TO CONTINUE TODAY AND TONIGHT WITH A DECREASE IN FORWARD
SPEED. A TURN TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST IS EXPECTED BY LATE MONDAY
OR MONDAY NIGHT. ON THE FORECAST TRACK...THE CENTER OF ERNESTO IS
EXPECTED TO PASS SOUTH OF JAMAICA TODAY AND MOVE NORTH OF THE
NORTHEASTERN COAST OF HONDURAS LATE MONDAY AND MONDAY NIGHT.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS ARE NEAR 50 MPH...85 KM/H...WITH HIGHER
GUSTS. SOME STRENGTHENING IS POSSIBLE AS ERNESTO MOVES OVER THE
WESTERN CARIBBEAN SEA.

TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 125 MILES...205 KM
FROM THE CENTER.

ESTIMATED MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE IS 1006 MB...29.71 INCHES.



TROPICAL STORM ERNESTO DISCUSSION NUMBER 10

Published on August 3, 2012 11:31 PM | Comments

Jamaica needs to be on the look out, but for now this storm seems to be tracking mostly over the open waters of the Caribbean basin:

TROPICAL STORM ERNESTO DISCUSSION NUMBER 10
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL052012
1100 PM AST FRI AUG 03 2012

CONVECTION HAS BECOME MORE CONCENTRATED NEAR THE CENTER OF ERNESTO
DURING THE PAST SEVERAL HOURS. HOWEVER...SATELLITE INTENSITY
ESTIMATES AND AN ABBREVIATED HURRICANE HUNTER MISSION SUGGEST THAT
THIS HAS NOT YET RESULTED IN INTENSIFICATION. THE INITIAL
INTENSITY REMAINS 45 KT...AND THE CENTRAL PRESSURE OF 1003 MB IS
BASED ON EXTRAPOLATION OF THE HURRICANE HUNTER DATA. ANALYSIS FROM
CIMSS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN SUGGEST THAT VERTICAL WIND
SHEAR IS DECREASING OVER ERNESTO...AND THE OUTFLOW HAS IMPROVED IN
THE WESTERN SEMICIRCLE.

THE INITIAL MOTION IS 275/16...A LITTLE SLOWER THAN BEFORE. A
STRONG LOW/MID-LEVEL SUBTROPICAL RIDGE TO THE NORTH OF ERNESTO
SHOULD KEEP THE CYCLONE ON A GENERAL WESTWARD TRACK FOR THE NEXT
36-48 HR...AND THE NEW FORECAST TRACK IS SIMILAR TO THE OLD TRACK
DURING THIS PERIOD. AFTER THAT TIME...THE TRACK FORECAST BECOMES
LOWER CONFIDENCE. THE GLOBAL MODELS FORECAST A DEVELOPING MID/
UPPER-LEVEL TROUGH OVER THE EASTERN UNITED STATES FROM 72-120 HR...
WHICH IS EXPECTED TO CAUSE A WEAKNESS IN THE RIDGE OVER THE THE
NORTHERN GULF OF MEXICO AND THE ADJACENT LAND AREAS. THE GFDL...
UKMET...AND NOGAPS MODELS RESPOND TO THIS BY FORECASTING ERNESTO TO
MOVE NORTHWESTWARD NEAR THE YUCATAN CHANNEL INTO THE SOUTHERN GULF
OF MEXICO. ON THE OTHER HAND...THE ECMWF AND GFS FORECAST ERNESTO
TO BE TOO FAR SOUTH TO RESPOND TO THE WEAKNESS...AND THUS SHOW THE
CYCLONE MOVING INLAND OVER THE SOUTHERN YUCATAN PENINSULA OR
CENTRAL AMERICA. BASED ON THE PREMISE THAT ERNESTO WILL BE FAR
ENOUGH NORTH AND STRONG ENOUGH TO RESPOND TO THE WEAKNESS...THE
LATTER PART OF THE NEW FORECAST TRACK IS NUDGED A LITTLE TO THE
NORTH OF THE PREVIOUS FORECAST.

THE INTENSITY GUIDANCE REMAINS VERY DIVERGENT. THE STATISTICAL-
DYNAMICAL MODELS FORECAST SIGNIFICANT INTENSIFICATION...WITH THE
LGEM CALLING FOR ERNESTO TO BECOME A MAJOR HURRICANE IN 96 HR. THE
DYNAMICAL MODELS OFFER A DISSENTING VIEW...WITH THE GFDL AND
HWRF PREDICTING LITTLE CHANGE IN STRENGTH UNTIL ABOUT 96 HR. IN
ADDITION...THE ECMWF FORECASTS ERNESTO TO REMAIN VERY WEAK. IT IS
UNCLEAR WHAT ARE THE NEGATIVE FACTORS THAT THE DYNAMICAL MODELS ARE
SEEING...SINCE THE SHEAR IS FORECAST TO BE LIGHT AFTER 24 HR AND
THE SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURES ARE VERY WARM. THE NEW INTENSITY
FORECAST SHOWS A LITTLE MORE INTENSIFICATION THAN THE PREVIOUS
FORECAST THROUGH 48 HR. AFTER THAT...IT IS THE SAME AS THE
PREVIOUS FORECAST DUE TO THE DIVERGENT GUIDANCE.

INTERESTS IN JAMAICA SHOULD MONITOR THE PROGRESS OF ERNESTO...AS A
TROPICAL STORM WATCH COULD BE REQUIRED FOR PORTIONS OF THE ISLAND ON
SATURDAY.



Tropical Storm Ernesto

Published on August 3, 2012 12:43 PM | Comments

Oh my - my apologies on being late to Tropical Storm Ernesto. This storm is inside the Caribbean basin and at the moment tracking to the Yucatan peninsula. Of course this could change at any time - so we will be keeping a close on it in the coming days:

trop-storm-ernesto-track-small-8.3.12.gif

TROPICAL STORM ERNESTO DISCUSSION NUMBER 8 NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL052012 1100 AM AST FRI AUG 03 2012


DATA FROM A RECONNAISSANCE PLANE AND RADAR FROM MARTINIQUE SHOWED
THE SMALL BUT WELL-DEFINED CENTER OF ERNESTO MOVED WESTWARD JUST
SOUTH OF OR OVER ST. LUCIA EARLY THIS MORNING. BASED ON THE
AIRCRAFT AND SURFACE OBSERVATIONS...THE INITIAL INTENSITY IS SET AT
45 KNOTS. THESE WINDS ARE CONFINED TO A SMALL AREA NORTH OF THE
CENTER. FAST-MOVING TROPICAL CYCLONES TYPICALLY DO NOT STRENGTHEN
MUCH AND IN FACT...LATEST SATELLITE IMAGES INDICATE LITTLE CHANGE
IN THE STRUCTURE OF THE CYCLONE.

ERNESTO IS MOVING TOWARD THE WEST OR 275 DEGREES AT 18 KNOTS
EMBEDDED WITHIN A FAST EASTERLY FLOW SOUTH OF THE SUBTROPICAL
RIDGE. THIS STEERING PATTERN SHOULD KEEP THE CYCLONE ON A GENERAL
WESTWARD TRACK FOR THE NEXT 2 TO 3 DAYS. BY THE TIME ERNESTO
REACHES THE WESTERN CARIBBEAN...THE STEERING FLOW IS EXPECTED TO
WEAKEN AND ERNESTO IS FORECAST TO SLOW DOWN. THE COMBINATION OF LOW
SHEAR AND HIGH UPPER-OCEAN HEAT CONTENT IN THE WESTERN CARIBBEAN
SEA WOULD FAVOR SOME INTENSIFICATION...AND ERNESTO IS FORECAST TO
BECOME A HURRICANE IN THE NORTHWESTERN CARIBBEAN SEA. THE OFFICIAL
FORECAST FOLLOWS THE INTENSITY CONSENSUS...BUT ONE SHOULD NOTE THAT
BOTH THE SHIPS AND LGEM INTENSITY MODELS ARE FORECASTING A STRONGER
HURRICANE.

MOST OF THE TRACK GUIDANCE IS IN PRETTY GOOD AGREEMENT THAT ERNESTO
WILL BE RACING WESTWARD ACROSS THE EASTERN AND CENTRAL CARIBBEAN
DURING THE NEXT 2 TO 3 DAYS. AFTER THAT...TRACK MODELS DIVERGE
CONSIDERABLY AND SOME MODELS KEEP ERNESTO ON A MORE WESTWARD
TRACK...WHILE ANOTHER GROUP TURN THE CYCLONE MORE TO THE
NORTHWEST...DEPENDING UPON HOW THE MODELS DEPICT THE STRENGTH OF
RIDGE TO THE NORTH. NEVERTHELESS...ALL INDICATIONS ARE THAT ERNESTO
WILL BE MOVING ACROSS THE NORTHWESTERN CARIBBEAN SEA IN 4 TO 5
DAYS.