Hurricane Matthew In The Caribbean

October 3rd, 2016, 6 am Tropical Weather Update

Waves Coming Into Gulf?


The Air Force Reserve reconnaissance mission that ended shortly before 0600 UTC did not find flight-level or surface winds as high as reported during the previous flight yesterday afternoon. It is not clear from microwave imagery if the reduction in winds is the result of an eyeball replacement. There was no evidence of a double wind maximum in the aircraft data, but the crew reported that the eyewall was open to the southwest. Using a blend of the aircraft data and recent satellite intensity estimates, the initial intensity has been reduced to 115 kt for this advisory. The center of Matthew has recently passed over NOAA buoy 42058 in the central Caribbean Sea, which reported a minimum pressure of 943 mb and light winds around 0650 UTC.

Satellite and aircraft fixes show that Matthew is moving northward or 360/5 kt. The hurricane is expected to move generally northward around the western periphery of a subtropical ridge over the west-central Atlantic during the next couple of days, and little change was needed to the NHC forecast through 48 hours. Once Matthew moves near the southeastern Bahamas on Wednesday, it is forecast to turn northwestward or north-northwestward in southeasterly flow between the ridge and a mid- to upper-level low/trough over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico and northwestern Caribbean Sea. The model guidance is in relatively good agreement through 72 hours, but begin to diverge by days 4 and 5. The UKMET which was previously the western outlier, has shifted eastward this cycle, and is now close to the GFS. The 0000 UTC ECMWF trended westward and that model is now along the western edge of the guidance envelope. The NHC track has been nudged westward at days 4 and 5, and lies close to the GFS and UKMET solutions. This is a bit west of the model consensus since the higher quality models are on that side of the guidance envelope.

Matthew is forecast to remain in low shear and over warm water while it moves northward toward the Greater Antilles. Some restrengthening is possible, but fluctuations in intensity are likely due to eyewall cycles that are difficult to predict. Some weakening is forecast when the hurricane interacts with land in a couple of days, however Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane throughout much of the forecast period.

Although the official forecast continues to show a track east of Florida, it is still too soon to rule out possible hurricane impacts there. It is also too soon to know whether, or how, Matthew might affect the remainder of the United States east coast.

INIT 03/0900Z 15.2N 74.9W 115 KT 130 MPH
12H 03/1800Z 16.2N 74.9W 115 KT 130 MPH
24H 04/0600Z 17.9N 74.7W 115 KT 130 MPH
36H 04/1800Z 19.7N 74.6W 115 KT 130 MPH
48H 05/0600Z 21.4N 74.8W 105 KT 120 MPH
72H 06/0600Z 24.6N 75.9W 105 KT 120 MPH
96H 07/0600Z 27.6N 76.9W 95 KT 110 MPH
120H 08/0600Z 30.8N 77.0W 90 KT 105 MPH

Tropical Winds

Gulf of Mexico Infrared Satellite View

Gulf of Mexico Tropical Weather Infrared Satellite View

Atlantic Infrared Satellite View

Atlantic Tropical Weather Infrared Satellite View

“It’s the Gulf… and it can change in the blink of an eye” …  YSIII

It only takes one tropical storm or hurricane to make a season very bad for any one person. Please prepare the same way for every season, no matter what.

2015 Atlantic Hurricane Season

Season Recap:

The 2015 Atlantic hurricane season was a slightly below average season featuring eleven named storms, in which four reached hurricane status. It officially began on June 1 and ended on November 30. These dates historically describe the period each year when most tropical cyclones form in the Atlantic basin. However the first named storm, Ana, developed nearly a month before the official start of the season, the first since 2012’s Beryl and the earliest since 2003’s Ana. The season ended with the dissipation of Kate 18 days before the official end.

According to ACE Indices, with a low number of a three-year period of 2013-15, it signaled the possible end to the active phase of Atlantic hurricane activity which began in 1995. Due to a strong El Niño over in the Pacific, most agencies predicted only 6-10 cyclones will develop, however, the number of cyclones developing this season exceeded the limit.

Most storms remained weak, in which they affected few land masses. Tropical Storm Bill affected Texas during mid-June and remained over land for a few days which caused extreme flooding. In August, despite a strong El Niño becoming evident, eight systems continuously developed, most of which formed near and affected the Cape Verde Islands. Erika affected the Lesser Antilles and was known for the worst natural disaster in Dominica since Hurricane David in 1979 with 36 total fatalities and damages more than $500 million, while Fred become the first hurricane to strike the Cape Verde Islands in over a century. A month later, in late-September, Joaquin developed and strengthened into a Category 4 major hurricane and affected the Bahamas and Bermuda with damages around $60 million and a similar number of attributable deaths as Erika. Henri and Kate’s remnants affected Europe in September and November, respectively.