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Hard to believe…this heat wave will leave…but in 3 months I perceive…it’ll be Christmas Eve! (my poetic contribution to ArtPrize).
Look at the boats out at the Muskegon Channel.
The S. Haven beach is busy, too – lots of boats and lots of people on the beach. We’re up to 92 in G.R., setting a record high temp. for the date for the fourth day in a row. It’s 80s to low 90s statewide. The coolest temp. was at Manistique, where the south wind comes down the length of Lake Michigan. At 1 pm, the water temp. at Reeds Lake was 78. Buoy water temps: S. Haven 71.4, Port Sheldon 70.5, Muskegon 70.2 and Ludington 69.4. The mid-Lake Michigan buoy has a water temp. of 70.9. Waves were 0.7 feet at the mid-Lake Michigan buoy, the S. Haven buoy, the Muskegon buoy and the Ludington buoy. The Port Sheldon buoy reports waves at 1.0 feet. After a cool start to the month…Sept. is now averaging 2.7 deg. warmer than normal in G.R. Today is the 17th day in a row without measurable rain in G.R.
Here’s a webcam from just east of Evanston Wy. – they report moderate snow and a temp. of 33 deg. Fort Bridger also has moderate snow and 33 deg. The warmest temp. in the state of WY at 1 pm EDT was 47 at Jackson where the sun was shining and they had a north wind at 17 mph. 4.4% of the contiguous U.S. had snow on the ground this AM.
Storm Team 8 is tracking two hurricanes and one tropical storm.
Hurricane Maria is moving northward at about 9 mph. That movement should continue for a couple days, then the storm will turn northeast and head out toward the middle Atlantic. It’s roughly 465 miles southeast of the Outer Banks of N.C. and may give the Outer Banks a couple days of brisk winds, showers and high surf. Here’s the Public Advisory on Maria. Peak winds early Sunday PM were 105 mph.
Lee has regenerated into a hurricane (see pic. above) with a pretty well-defined eye. The storm is far out in the Atlantic and no threat to land.
Tropical Storm Pilar is a bare minimum tropical storm with winds of 40 mph. It’s providing strong winds, heavy showers and high surf to the Mexican Coast. Here’s the latest Public Advisory on Pilar.
Some interesting notes on our heat wave in the thread below this one…so read on if you have a minute.
Sizzlin’ Succotash!!! This weather station at the Windswept Farms in Charlotte, Michigan and the weather station in Grandville MI recorded the warmest temperature anywhere in the United States this afternoon – maybe even all of North America! This MAWN weather station at Charlotte had a 6 pm temperature of 97.4 degrees. The Selected Cities Summary shows the hottest in the U.S. today was 97 at McAllen and Kingsville TX and at Camden AR. A 97.5 deg. reading would be rounded up to 98…so 97.4 looks pretty impressive. The Grandville weather station was 96 on Friday and 97 on Saturday. Grand Rapids and Ionia (airports) were only one degree behind with highs of 96. So G.R. and Ionia came within one single, lonely degree of being the hottest place in the U.S. on Saturday. The last time G.R. was 96 in Sept. was in 1960!
Other high temps. Saturday: 95 Kalamazoo, Traverse City, Saginaw, Alma, 94 Battle Creek, Flint, Three Rivers, 93 Benton Harbor, Holland (airport), Marshall, Alpena, Lansing and Jackson, 92 Muskegon (airport) and Fremont, 91 Big Rapids, Grayling, Houghton Lake, Pellston, Detroit, Coldwater, Sturgis and Manistee, 90 S Ste. Marie and Hillsdale, 89 Gaylord and Munising, 88 Marquette, 87 Ludington, 86 Copper Harbor, 84 Beaver Island, 82.6 S. Haven Beach, 81 Mackinac Island, 79.2 Muskegon Beach, 73 Manistique
Once again today, most of Michigan has hotter than Death Valley CA, the usual hottest place in the U.S. Death Valley had a high temp. of 89 Sat. PM…Palm Spring CA had a high of 87. Grand Rapids and Ionia were 10 deg. hotter than Phoenix, Yuma and Tucson AZ and 20 deg warmer than Los Vegas NV!
I took this pic. late Sat. PM after kayaking around Stony Lake in Oceana Co. I got a water temp. of 73 at about a 2-foot depth. Some guy caught several nice fish off the pier at the park at the northwest edge of the lake. Reeds Lake water temp. got to 77 by late PM Saturday.
From there, we went to Claybanks Township Park on Lake Michigan. Met a nice couple from Bridgeman. The park was clean, neat. Several people were camping, but that was it. We had our picnic supper there and walked down to the lake. We saw several black squirrels and a healthy-sized woodpecker while we were eating.
I took this pic. of the beautiful sunset somewhere in southern Oceana Co. We are losing daylight now at the rate of nearly 3 minutes per day/20 minutes per week. In September and March, the sun rises due east and sets due west, which can make it tough to see if you are driving west just before sunset or east just before sunrise.
Here’s the graphic forecast from the NWS in N. Indiana (they cover the Michigan counties that border Indiana. We stay hot thru Tues…then cooler air moves in…another mostly dry week for much of the area.
The top pic. is snow on the ground this AM at Yellowstone N. P. Much of the park is covered with snow this AM.
This map shows where there is snow on the ground this (Sat.) am – that represents 5% of the contiguous U.S. While I can’t confirm this…I’ll assume that’s a record amount of the U.S. with snow on the ground on any 9/23. I can look back to 2003 and most years it’s at 0.0% on 9/23.
A solid snow cover is reported at the Logan Pass Parking Lot in Glacier N.P. Back in 2009, a scientist speculated that because of “global warming” the glaciers in Glacier Nat. Park could be gone by 2020 – he may have to push that date back a few months.
This pic. was June 2, 2017 taken by a crew that was clearing a road of snow. On the far left you can see some pretty big drifts remaining at the Logan Pass Visitor’s Center. Last year was a big year for snow in the park and throughout much of the West. Here’s pics. of very heavy snow near Glacier N.P. last February.
Here’s the Sat. AM Arctic snow cover map – note the amount of snow on the ground already in Siberia. There is a correlation between early snow cover in Siberia and cold/snowy winters in the Great Lakes and Northeast U.S. (I just sent in my $$ for my snowplow service for the winter).
A powerful magnitude 7.1 earthquake struck at 2:15 pm Tuesday PM 76 miles southeast of Mexico City near the town of Raboso, about 75 miles southeast of Mexico City. The quake had a depth of 31.7 miles and occurred on the 32nd anniversary of a deadly earthquake that killed approx. 9,500 in the Mexico City area on 9/19/85. At least 44 major buildings collapsed in Mexico City. As I write this, the death toll is 250 and we have to hope it doesn’t reach the 1000’s like it did in 1985. 25 victims were found at an elementary school that collapsed and 20 were still missing there. There have been 34 earthquakes bigger than magnitude-7 within 300 miles of Tuesday’s quake since 1900. Many buildings that did not collapse are probably unsafe to reenter and will have to be demolished. Look at this building swaying.
Video of building collapse…large split in the earth near epicenter…video of building collapse…watch the trees sway in this video. Video shows dust rising from Mexico City due to buildings collapsing…here’s a building collapse…here’s video of the big factory explosion…roads buckled, bridges collapsed….
Also magnitude 6.1 e-quake south of New Zealand. We also had a 6.1 magnitude e-quake east of Japan Weds. AM. Magnitude 5.7 quake off Indonesia.
1:15 am Fri.. – Maria is now moving to the northwest, away from the Dominican Republic. Peak winds are 125 mph and Maria is now a Category 3 storm. The storm center is ENE of Grand Turk Island and the center will stay over the water as it passes east of the Bahamas. Pretty much the entire island of Puerto Rico is without power. A gust of 113 mph was recorded at the airport in San Juan. Rivers are flooding in Puerto Rico, but the worst is over for that island. The storm will continue to the northwest then north at 10-12 mph over the next 24 hours. The eye of the storm and the fastest winds will pass northeast of the Turks and Caicos and the eastern Bahamas. They’ll get wind and rain, but not a direct hit. Maria is still likely to mostly or completely miss the U.S., with a period of gusty winds and possibly a little rain from the N. Carolina Outer Banks northward along the mid-Atlantic Coast…nothing significant. One river in Puerto Rico is nearly 20 FEET above it’s previous record flood!
The map above shows the paths of the hurricanes and tropical storms we’ve had this year so far in the Atlantic/Caribbean/Gulf of Mexico. The orange and red colors indicate where hurricanes were the strongest. The map is from Wikipedia and you can go to this link to read about the hurricane season so far. It’s been an active hurricane season in the Atlantic and that trend will continue. For much of the rest of the world 2017 has been a quiet time for tropical storms. As of Weds. evening, Maria is the only hurricane in the world. Jose is a storm transitioning to an extratropical low pressure system and other than that there are only a few small tropical depressions. Here’s a link to the ACE INDEX – a measure of the number and strength of tropical storms. The North Atlantic has been rockin’ this summer/fall – the rest of the world is below average.
Hurricane Maria goes into the record books as one of the top 10 most intense hurricanes ever in the Atlantic. The storm moved over the island of Dominica Monday evening. One radio transmission from the island said “roofs were flying off and people were calling for help”. Dominica is 290 square miles – roughly half the size of Ottawa County. The population is roughly 72,300 – about the same size as Kalamazoo or Wyoming. Dominica had severe flooding from Tropical Storm Erica two years ago, but the last Category 4 storm to hit the island was David back in 1979. Tweet: “Emergency, roof gone, family in danger.” The eye of the storm than passed over the island of St. Croix Tues. night. Only one Category 5 hurricane on record has made landfall on Puerto Rico – The San Felipe hurricane of 1928 (also destroyed South Florida).
Early Weds. AM, there was only one working weather station on St. Croix. It reported 100-104 mph sustained wind gusting to 137 mph.. Many gusts to 130 mph between 1 am and 2 am EDT. Report of roofs flying off. The roof at the University of the Virgin Islands in St Croix was ripped off. Dropsonde in
#Maria‘s eyewall measured surface winds of 168 knots (193 mph). Unprecedented event for St. Croix. Look at the double eyewall of Maria as it passed St. Croix. Historical note: Denmark sold the Virgin Islands to the U.S. for 25 million dollars in gold in 1916. There was a public vote in Denmark and 64.2% voted for the sale.
We still have Tropical Storm Jose (not a hurricane anymore), which has been meandering around in the Atlantic since August. The storm began as a tropical wave off Africa on 8/31. It reached tropical storm status on 9/5 and was named a hurricane on 9/6. The storm threatened the northern Lesser Antilles Islands (Barbuda, Antigua, the Virgin Islands) that were left devastated by Hurricane Irma. However, the storm passed far enough north of the islands to prevent any additional significant wind or flooding. The storm made a complete loop well northeast of the Bahamas and is located off the New England coast. Here’s the Public Advisory and Forecast Discussion on Jose. The storm is giving a rainy, breezy couple of days to Long Island, Nantucket and the Cape Cod Area. It should become an extratropical low pressure system later today (Thu.)
Here’s the expected arrival and probability of Tropical Storm Force Winds in the Caribbean Area from Maria. Check these links to the Public Advisory, the Forecast Discussion and the Atlantic Funktop Satellite Loop. Here’s a radar loop for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. This link has radar, satellite and current conditions for the Antilles Islands. Here’s radar from Martinique.
This is a graph of air pressure at a buoy near St. Croix. It’s in freefall as the eye approaches and would have gone much lower if the graph would allow. Pressure as low as 26.84″ in the eye overnight.
The pic. above is a satellite view showing the eye of Hurricane Maria passing directly over the island of Dominica Monday night. Read the facebook posts of the Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit: “My roof is gone. I am at the complete mercy of the hurricane. House is flooding.” “The winds are merciless! We shall survive by the grace of God!” “We not dare look out. All we are hearing is the sound of galvanize flying. The sound of the fury of the wind. As we pray for its end!”
Other tweets are even more tragic: “The hospital roof is gone and the generator has failed”. “The radio station has lost its roof”. “Roofs being blown off. People calling for help.” “Reports I am hearing from
#Dominica are just terrifying.” “Please tell the world that #Dominica has been devastated. In the morning we’ll know how many dead there are.” “We lost the roof. My total upstairs, the ceiling and everything collapsed. I have two inches of water downstairs.My god, I can only feel the pain of those who don’t have the house that I have. It was terrible and I just hope people didn’t die.” “Prime Minister confirms ‘total devastation’ on the island.” “Eastern Coast is decimated” “My island is being battered… prayers solicited if you are a praying person… ”
Aircraft dropsonde measured 183 mph winds at 1500 feet in the NW eyewall. There are many elevated areas in Dominica over 1500 feet. Message from the Prime Minister of Dominica. Here’s Maria’s fury on the island of St. Kitts.
The island of Dominica is 28.5 square miles, roughly half the size of Ottawa County. The population is approx. 72,300, roughly the same as Kalamazoo or Wyoming, Michigan. Mountains rise to 4,747 feet above sea level in the center of the island. I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the higher hills caught a gust that approached 200 mph. I expect the same level of damage on the island as Irma produced in Barbuda and the Virgin Islands. Rivers were flooding even before the heaviest rain arrived. “The Roseau River (main river in capital) has flooded the streets of the capital, bursting through residents’ doors.”
Maria remains a category 5 storm Tue. PM and is expected to head over Puerto Rico, where significant to severe damage from wind and flooding is likely, then just to the east of the Turks and Caicos and the Bahama Islands. Maria is expected to miss the contiguous U.S. as it turns more north then northeast and heads for the middle of the Atlantic. Nice map here showing the paths of Irma, Jose and Maria.
This is a pic. from the S. Haven buoy camera around 7 pm. Waves at the time were running 6″ and the water temp. was 67. Other buoy water temps. Sat: 68 Port Sheldon, 67 Muskegon, 66 Ludington. The water temp. of Gun Lake was 74 and Reeds Lake was 73.
The Great Lakes water levels are coming down. That’s especially true of Lake Ontario, where they have worked hard at getting the water level down after an all-time record high level was reached this past spring. Ontario is down 13″ in the last month. The lake is still 15″ higher than it was a year ago and it remains 14″ above the average September level. Lake Michigan/Huron is down 3″ in the last month. The lake is still 6″ higher than one year ago and 17″ above the September average level. Lake Erie is down 6″ in the last month, but still 7″ above the level of Sept. 2016 and 16″ above the average Sept. level. The water level of Lake Superior was unchanged in the last month, up 2″ in the last year and is now 9″ above the Sept. average level. The rivers that connect the Great Lakes all show above average flow and that trend will continue through the early fall.
Some fall colors are showing up in West Michigan – a little earlier than in the last couple years due to the cool start to Sept. and the dry conditions. As I write this around 1 am early Sun., the Grand River in G.R. shows a flow of 1,210 cubic feet per second – that’s 77% of average flow for the date. The Kalamazoo River at New Richmond is at 955 cfs and that’s 70% of average flow. The St. Joseph River at Niles is at 1,380 cfs and that’s 73% of average flow.
Great Lakes News: Lake Erie algae bloom…Preserving Lake Michigan shipwrecks…August shipments surge 13% on the Great Lakes…Two new big freighters coming to the Great Lakes…Lake Erie fish count highest in 4 years…830,000 gallons of raw sewage released into Grand River…High tech. weather buoy placed in Lake Superior…Steel production soars to yearly high…Burying nuclear waste under Lake Huron…
Also: The U.S. Coast Guard says 152 people died in the U.S. while using kayaks or canoes in 2016, up from 139 in 2015. The deaths, mostly drownings, represented 22 percent of all U.S. boating-related deaths in both years. Sales of kayaks are up 55% in the last 8 years. I have two kayaks. First – ALWAYS wear a floatation device (they make kayak-specific life jackets) – second, beware of kayaking in fast water – expert kayakers do this all the time…but lesser-skilled kayakers can get in trouble on fast flowing rivers, especially in spring when the water is cold and there is a greater risk of hypothermia. – third, beware of changing conditions – waves can increase quickly on the Great Lakes. The vast majority of the time, I kayak close to shore of lakes and rivers. I only went out a mile into Lake Michigan once – on a day I knew would be calm…but there’s nothing but water out there…boring. I also wear bright clothing – so I’m easy to see.
Jose has already been drifting around the Atlantic for a long time. It was a tropical wave that came off Africa on August 31. On Sept. 5th it was declared a Tropical Storm. The next day it reached hurricane status (winds of 74 mph or more. When Hurricanes Irma, Jose and Katia were all in the Atlantic/Gulf – it was the first time we had 3 hurricane simultaneously in the Atlantic since 2010. On Sept. 9, Jose’s winds peaked at 155 mph – it was the first time (in the satellite and reconnaissance era that we had 3 hurricane with winds of 150 mph at the same time. Jose threatened the northern Lesser Antilles Islands within days of catastrophic damage by Hurricane Irma, especially in Barbuda, which was roughly 90% destroyed by Irma. The government of Antigua and Barbuda began efforts on September 8 to evacuate the entire islands prior to Jose’s anticipated arrival. Nine shelters were opened on Barbuda, which housed 17,000 individuals. However, the inner core remained far offshore the Lesser Antilles, sparing Antigua and Barbuda. The government of The Bahamas shut down the Nassau International Airport and ordered evacuation from vulnerable Bahamian islands, though Jose turned north and there was little impact in the Bahamas.
Jose has managed to miss both the U.S. and Bermuda so far. As I write this, Jose is currently a strong Tropical Storm, but is expected to regain hurricane status later today. However, this is storm is much weaker than Harvey and Irma. While gusty winds and possibly some heavy rain may affect the U.S. East Coast – particularly E. Massachusetts (Nantucket, Martha’s Vineyard, Boston, Cape Cod), impacts should be far weaker than Harvey and Irma. The storm will likely be back to Tropical Storm status as the center passes east of New England, remaining over the water. We’ll continue to track the storm (even on our days off – I’m off Thurs. and Fri. this week…and working Sat. and Sun.).
There are two other tropical systems farther out in the Atlantic. It’s likely both of those will reach tropical storm status. The next 3 names on the list for tropical storms in the Atlantic are “Lee”, “Maria” and “Nate”.
The latest morning run of the NAM model shows highs in the low-mid 80s for Fri., Sat., and Sun. Today and tomorrow will be dry. The model has increased the chance of rain with the next front late Sunday into Sunday night to 52%. We need rain.
This is the outdoor cat that lives by/at the National Hurricane Center. The good news is that the cat survived the hurricane – though it doesn’t look real happy right now (pic. from Eric Blake). Roads in the Keys took a beating from storm surge. FDOT reports repairs completed on two washed out sections of U.S. 1. Roadway in the Keys. Key West and Marathon airports operational for emergency response flights. No commercial service or general aviation. Monroe County to opened entry into Keys Tues. for residents in Key Largo, Tavernier & Islamorada — to MM 73. Rest of Keys remain closed. Communications are completely out across the Keys, and the Keys are currently cut-off from the main Florida peninsula. Before and after pics. show sediment stirred up by Irma. 7:24am EST Monday– There is not a single airplane over the state of Florida.
Irma has been downgraded to a tropical depression with peak winds of 30-35 mph. The center of the circulation is in E. Alabama moving toward W. Tennessee. Here’s current surface observations from Georgia, Alabama, S. Carolina, N. Carolina, Tennessee and Florida. The Atlanta area has picked up over 2″ of rain in 6 hours. Here’s some 24-hour rainfall totals as of 8 pm Monday: 5.92″ Alma GA, 5.35″ Charleston SC, 4.76″ Savannah GA, 3.53″ Augusta GA, 2.92″ Atlanta GA. Here’s a long list of damage reports from GA. Atlanta had a gust to 64 mph and Macon clocked 60 mph. There were two fatalities in GA from falling trees at Buckhead and Coal Mt.
Here’s a satellite pic. showing the large area of clouds in the SE U.S. associated with Irma. Some thin high clouds are already up into Indiana. BTW, you can also see a couple of thunderstorms in the Desert SW and just off the California coast.
Fastest wind gust measured: 435 PM HURRICANE 2 ENE NAPLES 26.15N 81.77W 09/10/2017 COLLIER FL MESONET WIND GUST OF 142MPH AT MESONET SITE NPLMP- NAPLES MUNICIPAL AIRPORT. A 130 mph gust occurred on Marco Is. 122 mph gust was reported at Lely. I don’t know how high these weather stations are above the ground. The Orlando Airport had a gust to 79 mph. A cell tower was toppled by the wind in in Fort Myers. 25 fatalities were reported with Irma – inc. 5 in Florida.
The eye passed just east of Tampa and is headed NNW toward SW Georgia, then Alabama. What’s left of Irma should eventually be just some showers in Indiana.
Here are some peak wind gusts today….and more: gusts in mph: 112 Quail Creek Estate, 109 N. Perry Airport, 100 Lely, 99 St. Lucie Nuclear Power Plant, 98 Carol City, 94 Cape Canaveral and Smith Shoal, 93 Playalinda Beach, Alligator Reef, Matacumbe Key and Carysfort, 92 Molassas Reef, Ochopee and Belle Meade, 91 Cache, 90 Fowey Rocks, 89 Clearwater Beach, 88 Islamorda, 87 Moore Haven and Port Everglades, 86 Sebring and Deerfield Beach, 85, Key Largo and Opa-Lopcka, 83 Cocoa Beach and Cutler Bay, 82 Bartow and Pinecrest, 81 Sarasota (20 ft.), Fort Myers, Longboat Key, Haulover Canal, 80 Shark Key, 79 Orlando, Arcadia, Venice, 78 Fort Lauderdale, Sanibel Is., Florida City, Daytona Beach, 77 Palm Beach, 76 Tampa Bay buoy, Punta Gorda, 75 Oakland Park, Flagler Beach, St. Petersburg, Alligator Reef, Deerfield Beach and Davie, 74 Fort Pierce, 72 Sanford and Brunell, 71 St. Augustine and Pompano Beach, 70 Hobe Sound and Smyrna Beach. 69 Melbourne, 67 Winter Haven, Fort Lauderdale, Kissimmee, and Okeechobee, 66 Jensen Beach and Barefoot Bay, 65 Cape Coral, 63 DeLand.
16.01″ of rain fell at Fort Pierce on the East Coast with 14.5″ at Melbourne. Merritt Is. had 7.5″ of rain in 4 hours. St. Cloud had 6.75″ in 11 hours. I-4 was flooded. Other rainfall totals from Florida: St. Lucie 15.84″, Lake Mary 12.46″, Cape Canaveral 12.08″, Sanford 11.66″, The Villages 11.09″, Jacksonville 10.01″ – record flooding in downtown Jacksonville from a Here’s current weather observations from S. Florida. A number of stations are not reporting due to power outages, etc. Here’s weather observations from Cuba. Here’s a link to radar images from Cuba. Here’s Key West NWS facebook, Tampa NWS facebook and Miami NWS facebook. Crane spinning in the wind in Miami. Strong onshore wind causes sea level to rise (storm surge)…strong offshore wind causes sea level to fall. Six-day satellite loop of hurricanes in the Atlantic.
A number of tornadoes have been reported with Irma. There is a Tornado Watch out for southern SC this Monday evening Tornadoes from Irma: – near Miami, at Fort Lauderdale Beach, near the Fort Lauderdale Airport, near Homestead Park, Wilton Manors, Wauchula, Indiatlantic and at Oakland Park. A tornado damaged a tavern at Eustis FL and a waterspout was sighted at Jekyll Is. GA.
There were 3 active hurricanes at one time on Friday. The last time this happened was 2010. The graphic at the top is the estimated starting time of tropical storm force winds (40 mph). The National Hurricane Center has established back-up personnel at the Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland, in case of major telecommunication failures in FL by Irma. Disneyworld remains closed until Tuesday. The City of Marco Island issued a mandatory evacuation order. This is the first time that 3 consecutive storms in the Atlantic have reached Category 4. Where do birds go when a hurricane approaches? Early Monday AM, we have 3.4 million customers are without power, including most of Key West. Power crews waiting in AL to restore power after the storm. S. Florida airports closed Sat. evening. Cuba weather observations. This is the 11th day that Irma has been a hurricane. She’s technically a “grandma”.
This is the forecast track for Irma – Irma had winds of 180 mph for 36 hrs (click on the picture to enlarge) – No other Tropical cyclone around the globe has been this strong for so long in satellite era (since 1966). Peak winds with Irma are 120 mph as I write this…but Irma did weaken a bit as it hit the Cuban coast. States of Emergency have been declared in FL, GA, SC and NC. An evacuation order has been in effect for Miami Beach, Savannah and for the Florida Keys. A Hurricane Warning is now in effect for most of. Florida. Here’s radar from eastern Cuba and radar for Florida. Gov. Scott has ordered all Florida public schools to close Monday.
Often when a hurricane is moving up the East Coast, it’s partly to mostly sunny in Lower Michigan and that has been the case. However, it’s possible that the cloud shield could come back as far north as West Michigan and it’s not totally impossible that a period of light rain or sprinkles could occur back this far to the west either late Tues. night or on Weds. with the best chance of a light shower along the Indiana border.
Here’s Southeast Regional Radar. The first bands of showers and storms have been coming into S. Florida.
Also: CNN reporting from Cuba in the hurricane. The Florida Marlins did have some damage to their roof.
Hurricane Katia made landfall in eastern Mexico. It brought heavy rain and flooding.
The island of Barbuda took a direct hit from Category 5 Irma overnight.
A weather station on the island recorded a wind gust to 155 mph before it failed. Irma is the strongest hurricane (that we know of) that has ever hit Barbuda and in fact hit anywhere in the Antilles Islands. After that ferocious wind gust, the wind went calm as the eye of Irma passed directly overhead. The temperature rose 5.4 deg. in the middle of the night as the eye of the storm passed overhead, the rain briefly stopped and the sky went partly cloudy for a few minutes.
The island reported a storm surge of 8.53 feet. The highest elevation on the island is only 124 feet above sea level – that’s all, so there would be considerable flooding and shoreline erosion. By contrast, Riverhouse Condominiums in Grand Rapids is 406 feet tall. There are approximately 1,800 people on the island, including tourists, so (relative to other Caribbean Islands) it’s sparsely populated. The main town is Codrington. There is a large variety of wildlife, including thousands of frigate birds.
Years ago, we didn’t have satellites, radar and weather instruments to see a storm like this was on the way. Even Tuesday morning, there would be little indication on the island that this terrible tempest was going to shatter what would otherwise be a romantic, Caribbean night with a full moon. The astute would have noticed the windshift to the north…if a barometer was available it would be noted that the pressure was falling (then falling fast). The sky would darken to the east as the morning became afternoon.
While Houston needs out help…Antigua, Barbuda, St. Martin, St. Barthelemy…Puerto Rico..the Dominican Republic, the Bahamas, Florida and more will need help to recover from Irma…and the hurricane season isn’t halfway done until Sept. 10. This will be the worst year for Atlantic/Caribbean/Gulf hurricanes since the Katrina/Rita/Wilma year of 2005. Winter can’t come too early for hurricane-prone areas of the South and Southeast.
With the computer models consistent on bringing a significant hurricane to South Florida, preparations and voluntary evacuations are starting in South Florida and that includes pets. This from the Florida Keys SPCA: “The Florida Keys SPCA is evacuating the animals to foster homes from the Key West and Marathon locations. If you are able to take one animal and keep it safe until Irma passes, please contact the Key West shelter at 305-294-4857 or Marathon at 305-743-4800. The FKSPCA will provide all the supplies. All you need to provide is love and safety until after the storm. Also, please make sure your own pets are safe! If you evacuate take them with you. Cats, birds, rabbits, reptiles, dogs, small animals….make sure to include them in your supply needs and make sure they have identification on them.”
You should always have a natural disaster plan and include your pets. Have plenty of food and water for you and your animals. If medications are running low, now is the time to refill prescriptions. Have all medical records and vaccine history prepared to take with you in case you need to evacuate. Monroe County animal shelters are pet friendly and open during a Category 1 or 2.hurricane, but will evacuate in the event a Category 3 or higher storm is anticipated. You need to pre register your pets. You can register online here: http://www.monroecountyem.com/FormCenter/Emergency-Management-2/Pet-Owner-Shelter-Application-37 or stop by the Monroe County Emergency Management Center, or our Marathon or Key West Campus’s for a Hurricane Pet Friendly guide.
“Monroe County could issue a mandatory tourist evacuation for Wednesday morning and a (mandatory) resident evacuation for Thursday morning.”
This from Monroe County (Florida Keys) Emergency Operations: “People with special needs may bring their pets when they evacuate. Pets must be registered. If it is necessary to evacuate to the out-of-county special needs shelter at Florida International University in Miami, pets will be taken to a separate shelter with 24/7 care.” If your pet can be microchipped, but has not at this point, we urge you to do that today.
Hurricane Irma remains a category 5 – with peak winds of 185 mph! That ties for 2nd highest winds of any Atlantic/Caribbean/Gulf of Mexico hurricane and #1 for just the open Atlantic. (NOTE: We first had worldwide satellite data in the late 1970s and aircraft reconnaissance, which started in 1943, is limited and irregular – plus we’re making an educated guess – there are often no weather stations over the ocean to measure winds) The central pressure of the storm is down to 27.11″. Hurricane force winds are occurring in a 100-mile wide band. The storm is likely to produce 4-8″ of rain with an isolated 12″ total possible (the storm is moving, not stalled like Harvey, so they will not see the extreme 30-50″ rains that S. Texas saw. Storm surge could reach 7-11 feet. This is an extremely dangerous storm. Movement continues west-northwest at about 16 mph. The storm at Noon is approximately 50 miles ESE of St. Thomas, Virgin Islands and 125 miles east of San Juan, Puerto Rico. A State of Emergency has just been declared in S. Carolina – and was also declared in all 67 Florida counties and in Puerto Rico. Hurricane Warnings are up for the north coast of the Dominican Republic and Haiti, for all of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and the SE and Central Bahama Islands. A Hurricane Warning has expired for * Antigua, Barbuda, Anguilla, Montserrat, St. Kitts, and Nevis* Saba, St. Eustatius, and Saint Maarten* and Saint Barthelemy. A Hurricane Watch is up for the NW Bahama Islands and Central Cuba. A Tropical Storm warning is in effect for eastern Cuba. The storm is currently aiming at the Florida Keys, but everyone in the state of Florida should be making hurricane preparations. Shelters will likely be too dangerous to open in the Florida Keys. Evacuations to mainland Florida will likely be the only option. Here’s the Public Advisory and the Forecast Discussion on the storm. Here’s a close-up funktop satellite loop of Irma and a wider loop of the Atlantic. People in the Caribbean, Florida and the SE U.S. should pay close attention as Irma as the storm approaches over the weekend into next week. Here’s a satellite forecast of the storm hugging the East Coast of the U.S. from SE Florida to the Carolinas. Here’s Puerto Rico radar and Lesser Antilles Islands radar. Here’s another Antilles radar. Satellite loop of the eye of the storm. Between 7 pm and 8 pm Weds., Ceiba P.R. had a peak gust of 58 mph. MANDATORY EVACUATION FOR KEY BISCAYNE, FLORIDA. Aerial views of the damage on Barbuda. Before and after pics. from the British Virgin Islands.
ALSO – MAJOR X-CLASS SOLAR FLARE: today 8:02 am EDT – a major X9.3-class solar flare-strongest flare in more than a decade! http://www.spaceweather.com At 9 pm – kp-index at a 4 – we’d like to see that number go higher to get a decent view of the aurora in MI.
Here’s current weather observations from Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. At Noon, Charlotte, Amalie in the Virgin Islands reported a northwest wind at 59 mph with a peak gust of 87 mph. Here’s Puerto Rico/V.I. radar. Look at the damage at the airport on the island of St. Martin – hard to bring relief supplies when the airport looks like this and we still have huge waves preventing ships from moving thru the area.
At Noon Weds., the latest guidance has the eye of Irma close to Miami at 8 am Sunday and then racing north along the East Coast of Florida. The storm may be a Category 4 near Miami. The storm may come onshore in the Carolinas. There will be less damage if the eye stays offshore.
The island of Barbuda took a direct hit from Irma last night. Barbuda is 62 square miles (Grand Rapids MI is a little over 45 sq. miles). It’s a relatively flat island. The highest elevation on the island is 124 feet above sea level – that’s all. By contrast, Riverhouse Condominiums in Grand Rapids is 406 feet tall. There are approximately 1,800 people on the island (so relative to other Caribbean Islands) it’s sparsely populated. The main town is Codrington. There is a large variety of wildlife, including thousands of frigate birds.
Lydia has now fallen apart west of Mexico and the SW U.S.. The storm caused 7 fatalities and significant flooding in the southern Baja Peninsula of Mexico. It has pumped a little moisture into S. California to produce a few light showers and a couple rare thunderstorms along with slightly cooler temperatures. Lake Arrowhead CA had the most rain with 0.36″. Imperial (in the desert) had 0.03″ and a high temp. of just 90. San Diego had 0.02″. A rare severe thunderstorm produced an 80 mph wind gust at the marina at Santa Barbara Here’s the last Public Advisory on that storm.
The peak of the Atlantic Hurricane Season is Sept. 10.