A writer and a tropical muse. A funky Lubavitcher who enjoys watching the weather, hurricanes, listening to music while enjoying life with a sense of humor and trying to make sense of it all!
Monday, June 27, 2016
Tropics Monday .. Quiet For Now. Red Cross Needs Your Help with Floods and Fires. Be a Friend and Give Please!
Starting off briefly today with some tropical discussion.
Then moving on to the big weather story.
So bear with me please.
Not much going on right now in the tropics.
This is the time that sets up the tropics for trouble down the road.
A cold front dangles across the United States.
Actually two cold fronts...
Moving towards the SE and yet fading away.
The dangling front brings two problems.
1... More rain for the Appalachian areas that had flooding.
2... Stalled out fronts can bring tropical trouble eventually.
Sunday's image shows the cold fronts evaporated.
They turned into stationary fronts.
More rain in some areas.
Note again at the end of the 7 day period the High backs off.
Not going to talk on the models today.
Talking on what is here and there today and tomorrow..
And what the set up that may be opening the door on tropical trouble soon.
Note old tropical waves firing up as they approach the islands.
Lows along the SE coast from old stalled frontal boundaries.
Note new wave off Africa is much higher than the last.
Close up look on that wave.
Rolling eyes on the Google ad but sharing my annoyance.
I'll get sick of whatever gown I buy before I ever wear it.
BUT.....NOTE how high the new wave over Africa is...
Not worrying on ending a sentence with a preposition...
..as much as I am worrying a bit on what this season may bring.
It's a matter of time.
It's not time yet.
But those waves are getting near 10 degrees North.
July may bring us some very mature viable waves.
And yet Saharan Dust is there as always but some will survive.
We aren't there yet but a process is going on that gets us there.
That covers the tropical part of this post.
If you do not want to continue reading I ask you to do one thing.
Donate to the Red Cross.
The rest of the post explains why I ask you that.
Oddly last year we were covering floods in Charleston ...South Carolina at the end of the Hurricane Season when the classic "fire hose" set up besieged South Carolina with historic floods. This year we are covering Flash Floods that set up near Charleston in West Virginia where training rainstorms over twelve hours of time set up flash floods in mountainous areas that are now seen as historic floods. Some strange irony to me that the world is learning today sadly about the other Charleston and about Appalachian Flooding.
It has been referred to as a thousand year flood. Perhaps for that particular town but not the area in general as the lay of the land and the climate history of the region makes it prone for random horrible flash floods.
Check this link out that shows a history of flooding in the area. Note one of the first floods mentioned is the Elk River Flood. Note I'm shopping for gowns for my son's wedding so today it showed me the Belk Museum Link before the ones it showed yesterday. Don't you just love Google's ability to stalk your feed for the most relevant links...
It's a good link.
http://www.wvencyclopedia.org/articles/2185 teaches us that the Elk River is prone to flooding and it was an ongoing problem for early settlers of the region. Over time we have tried to control this sort of flooding. We win most, we lose some sadly. It's like a hurricane it only takes one loss to create a massive tragedy. You'll note the last few days they have been releasing water across the flood control regions.
For those who are too lazy to surf, click and read.
It's a beautiful place to be and see...
...except in a Flash Flood.
I want to say this concerning Flash Floods and it's gut honest. They are not easy to cover for the media and the media highlights other weather risks that make for better broadcast television when the mechanism is there in the atmosphere for flash floods to occur. They cover the funnel clouds descending down dramatically across a metropolitan area in live time. They show breathtaking wall clouds that cover the prairie while they are out doing Chase Week and link back and forth in real time to radar and satellite imagery in the studio. The system moves rapidly across the Ohio Valley and they try to explain why it is not a derecho or why it might be a derecho. Yes it makes for good television on TWC or on weather segments on CNN however the reality is that Flash Floods are always covered after the fact. The warning is implicit along with heavy rain from the NWS much in the same way some Tropical Storm heads towards Mexico or Haiti and we remind people there can be flash floods. However, until some man is caught in the LA River trying to climb out of his rapidly disappearing vehicle cleaning to a random tree branch the channels do not go live to the problem. TWC covered floods a while back in Arizona with breath taking live feeds and excellent commentary by Dave Schwartz reminding people of the immediacy of the tragedy. The Flood in West Virginia that replays many chapters in Appalachian History was covered slowly bit by bit until it suddenly became the BIG story in the news. There was a lag time not online but on air and that shows the fading role of the news in today's world. It's easier to go on air to a local channel, read the Twitter Feed or even YouTube videos being uploaded in real time than it is to get good quick coverage of such events on television. The older generation clings to TWC, FOX and CNN and the younger generation immediately Googles it or turns to social media.
Long paragraph but it's a lot to think on and yes many younger kids also turn on TWC or MSNBC to see what's on air as well as their social media feed but in a world where candidates tweet in live time and video is passed around Whatsapp and Snapchat faster than Superman can chase a speeding bullet it raises many issues of where we are going when it comes to receiving our news in real time.
Appalachian towns are remote and during a flood it is hard to get camera people on the ground and onto the scene. It is easier to show a tornado moving through a metropolitan area and put webcams on air live it takes a while to get a team into place to cover the flood. That said they are doing an excellent job getting the word out on the devastation in the area and the on air stories will be archived by many into the oral history of the area for future generations. The truth is the region is beautiful to visit and yet hard to live in on many levels. Hard as in the Appalachian Poor are a demographic group that rarely makes the news for whatever reason.. one being they are remote and often overlooked. Recently the group came up with regard to the political campaign for the Presidency. The primaries in those regions brought up subjects that have been ongoing and yet often over looked. A coal mine disaster or a flash flood highlights the area an then it fades away into the background again. Being that the region has a problem when you add in a natural disaster it is like salt in the wound and people do not know where to begin to start over again. in fact when they got to the people in the stranded strip mall many did not want to leave just yet. They were told their homes were gone along with everything they ever possessed and there was no electricity or running water. Many remained at the mall where they were BBQ style cooking food and helping one another out until shelters could be set up in the area.
So know it's a big problem but one not as dramatic or sexy to cover as a tornado dancing across the skyline of a large famous city or showing storm chasers lined up along a famous beach waiting for a landfalling hurricane on a beach with coconut palm trees swaying in the wind. That said please donate either through an organization you know well or through the RedCross that is on the scene and trying to help in whatever way they can and do. www.redcross.org
I'm not even talking on the fires out West....
I lived in Southern California I've seen wild fires. Hard to forget.
So whether we are talking fire or rain, floods or tornadoes...
The Red Cross is always there.
Please do what you can.
@bobbistorm on Twitter
Ps 500 homes at least are totally gone.
At least 25 people have died, some are still missing.
Location: Miami, Raleigh, Crown Heights, Florida, United States
Weather Historian. Studied meteorology and geography at FIU. Been quoted in Wall Street Journal, Washington Post & everywhere else... Lecturer, stormchaser, writer, dancer. If it's tropical it's topical ... covering the weather & musing on life. Follow me on Twitter @ https://twitter.com/#!/BobbiStorm