Friday, June 7, 2013

Tropical Storm Andrea made landfall around 5:40 pm EDT in the Big Bend region of Florida as a tropical storm with 65 mph winds. Andrea had a busy day Thursday in Florida, dumping heavy rains, spawning ten tornadoes, and bringing a storm surge of up to 4.5' to the coast. While the Hurricane Hunters did measure sustained winds of 65 mph over the ocean shortly before landfall, very few land stations recorded sustained winds in excess of tropical storm force, 39 mph.
Two sets of tornadic rain bands moved through West Florida on Thursday, one between 2 am and 5 am, and the other between 10 am and 3 pm, spawning a total of five suspected tornadoes. The first band produced two EF-0 tornadoes: one with 75 mph winds that hit Myakka City, damaging 3 homes and 10 other buildings, and one with 80 mph winds that cut throughout the heart of Sun City, causing minor damage. NWS damage surveys will be occurring Friday in Fort Myers, Venice, Clearwater, and Gulfport to check out the damage swaths of the other three suspected tornadoes.
The Florida East Coast was hit by five suspected tornadoes. Only one caused an injury, a tornado that hit The Acreage in Palm Beach County at 6:45 am EDT. Two other tornadoes were reported in Broward and Palm Beach Counties, and two more were reported in coastal areas near the Georgia border. The cyclone will be near the coast of North Carolina today.
The Atlantic hurricane season is getting longer - Andrea's formation in June continues a pattern of an UNUSUALLY LARGE NUMBER OF EARLY-SEASON ATLANTIC NAMED STORMS we've seen in recent years. Climatologically, June is the second quietest month of the Atlantic hurricane season, behind November. During the period 1870 - 2012, we averaged one named storm every two years in June, and 0.7 named storms per year during May and June.
In the nineteen years since the current active hurricane period began in 1995, there have been fifteen June named storms (if we include 2013's Tropical Storm Andrea.) June activity has nearly doubled since 1995, and May activity has more than doubled (there were seventeen May storms in the 75-year period 1870 - 1994, compared to 6 in the 19-year period 1995 - 2013.)
Some of this difference can be attributed to observation gaps, due to the lack of satellite data before 1966. However, even during the satellite era, we have seen an increase in both early season (May - June) and late season (November - December) Atlantic tropical storms. There is an "apparent tendency toward more common early- and late-season storms that correlates with warming Sea Surface Temperature but the uncertainty in these relationships is high." The hurricane season for both the period 1950-2007 and 1980-2007 got longer by 5 to 10 days per decade.

92L in the Central Atlantic headed towards the Lesser Antilles - Satellite images show that a large and UNUSUALLY WELL-ORGANIZED TROPICAL WAVE FOR SO EARLY IN THE SEASON has developed in the Central Atlantic, midway between Africa and the Lesser Antilles Islands. The wave has a modest degree of spin and heavy thunderstorms. NHC designated this system 92L Thursday afternoon. High wind shear of 20 - 25 knots is ripping up the thunderstorms in 92L as they form, though, and wind shear is predicted to increase to 30 - 40 knots Thursday night through Monday, making development unlikely. The wave will likely bring heavy rain showers and gusty winds to the northern Lesser Antilles Islands beginning on Sunday night. (satellite image & photos)

**Why didn’t Noah just swat those two mosquitoes?**


Live Seismograms - Worldwide (update every 30 minutes)

This morning -
None 5.0 or higher.

Yesterday -
6/6/13 -

Volcano Webcams

Alaska volcano discoveries signal Canada's need for closer monitoring - Scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Forest Service have discovered a dozen new volcanoes in Alaska, and what they've found in the magma flows from these volcanoes point straight at Mount Edziza, in northern British Columbia.
We don't often think of volcanoes when we're listing off Canada's natural wonders, but the country is home to several of them; of course, many of them are long dormant or extinct. The most volcanically-active region in the country stretches from central B.C. through the Yukon and edges into Alaska. It's part of Canada's contribution to the infamous Pacific Ring of Fire.
Over the past four years, a group of geologists have been hiking and diving their way through southeastern Alaska and its coastal waters, trying to get a better understanding the local volcanism. In that time, they've located no fewer than 12 previously unknown volcanoes in the region, and they believe there are even more still to be found. Some are small cones of solidified lava now hidden from sight by thick boreal forests or beneath dark waters, while others are maars — craters formed on the floor of the ocean when hot lava flows up from under the ground, contacts the cold water and explodes like a bomb.
Taking samples from 25 different magma flows from these volcanoes, the geologists found that the timing of these flows matched the last eruption of Mount Edgecumbe, located on Kruzof Island, just off the coast of the Alaskan panhandle, but that was the only part of them that matched. Delving into the chemistry and minerals of the flows though, the geologists found an unexpected match in a volcano a little further away to the east — Mount Edziza, the highest confirmed volcano in Canada — which last erupted around 10,000 years ago, about the same time as Mount Edgecumbe.
There's plenty of evidence that the last glacial melt in that region touched off volcanic eruptions, as the Earth rebounded from the loss of having ice several kilometres thick pressing down on it. So, with glaciers melting now due to climate change, this rebound will likely happen again, and we could be looking at more volcanic eruptions in northwestern Canada sometime in the near or at least not-too-distant future.
Unlike other countries, Canada does not monitor its volcanoes closely, and even with the existing monitors in place to detect earthquakes, it's unlikely that they'd know that a volcano was erupting until well after it happened. Even with their remote locations, there are still communities that could be impacted by such an eruption, and as we've seen with volcanoes in Iceland and more recently in Alaska, ash from volcanic eruptions can cause serious disruptions in air traffic, grounding flights and putting people already in the air at risk. (map)


In the Atlantic -
Tropical Storm Andrea was located approximately 65 mi (100 km) SSW of Savannah, Georgia. The center of Andrea will continue to move over southeast Georgia this morning and then move near the East Coast of the United States through Saturday. Tropical storm conditions will gradually spread northeastward in the warning area along the U.S. East Coast during the next 24 hours.

Tropical storm Andrea's rains pummeled western Cuba - Andrea's heavy rains pounded western Cuba on Wednesday, at the start of a hurricane season expected to be particularly active and only seven months after Hurricane Sandy devastated the eastern end of the island.

Philippines - Flash flood, landslide warnings up in Mindanao as potential cyclone nears. A potential cyclone is now inside the Philippine area of responsibility and may head towards Mindanao, state weather forecasters said Thursday.
Potential cyclone may avoid Philippines and head for Japan - The low pressure area (LPA) that is expected to intensify into a cyclone may avoid the Philippine landmass and move towards Japan and South Korea, the state weather bureau said.


Dresden centre spared as floods ravage Germany - The River Elbe has crested in the German city of Dresden, flooding wide areas but sparing the historic centre. People had worked frantically to shore up defences as the river peaked nearly 7m (22 feet) above its normal level.
It is one of many German cities battling severe floods, which have killed at least 15 people across central Europe. Tens of thousands have been evacuated and areas further downstream are bracing for the arrival of high waters. Dresden in the state of Saxony was badly hit by floods in 2002 but this time defences appear to have saved historic buildings including the cathedral and opera house. Thousands of emergency personnel and residents worked through the night to fill sand bags and build up flood barriers.
The same scene was repeated along the Elbe, where huge areas have been inundated. Latest fears are focused on the cities of Bitterfeld and Halle. The situation also remains serious in Deggendorf on the River Danube in Bavaria, where levees burst on Wednesday. The Danube peaked on Thursday in the Slovak capital Bratislava, where the main flood defences held firm. High water in the Hungarian capital Budapest is expected on Monday. Upstream along the Elbe in the Czech Republic, huge areas remain under water and emergency workers are using boats to get supplies to people cut off. As a result of the flooding, three people have died in Germany, eight in the Czech Republic and four in Austria.

Record-breaking Oklahoma tornado had RARE BACKWARDS COMPANION - Already breaking records as the widest tornado ever seen, the twister that passed near El Reno, Oklahoma last Friday is making an even bigger name for itself, thanks to a rare companion that was SPINNING IN THE 'WRONG' DIRECTION.
Tornadoes in the United States usually spin around in a counter-clockwise direction, or 'cyclonically'. The large-scale weather system — with its warm and cold fronts, that can stretch from Ontario to Texas — spins in that direction (due to the rotation of the Earth), and that spin direction carries down to the individual thunderstorms the weather system produces, and thus the tornadoes that are spawned from the thunderstorms.
However, in some cases, when a really powerful tornado spins up, like the nearly 5-km-wide behemoth that swept past El Reno, it can set up powerful 'whirls' or 'eddies' in the nearby flow of the wind and storms around it, that spin clockwise (or 'anti-cyclonically') instead. If these eddies are strong enough, they can develop into tornadoes of their own, which is what happened on Friday.
Apparently no video footage of the tornado was captured, but this isn't the first time that the El Reno area has seen an anticyclonic tornado, as one hit the local airport back in April of 2006.


Italians test negative for MERS-CoV - 20 people who had contact with MERS-CoV (Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus) patients in Italy have tested negative for the virus, while a US company announced it has made a potential vaccine for the novel pathogen.