Hurricane Harbor

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!

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Hurricanes Leslie and Michael. Destruction in Portugal and Spain Looks Like It Does in the Carolinas and Virginia.

Long tracking Leslie shown above in her better days.
Her long track West then SW then East...
...then SSE then ENE.
Eventually she did find a place to make landfall.
Spain and Portugal of all places.

Before the Post Tropical Cyclone makes landfall...
People do there what they do here...
They went to the beach.
They watched...they surfed.

Watches and warnings were posted.
But people there have little experience with hurricanes.

Looks like a beautiful place.
Never been there.
After the storm they clean up.
They sift through the debris.

Leslie did to Spain what you would expect from a Hurricane. Cars smashed into trees and trees that toppled smashed into cars. Many trees down and people seemingly shocked to see how strong Leslie could be even in her very old age. Drudge has a story on some 129 year old woman, it's a shame no one could actually interview Leslie as she was the Golden Girl of Tropical Cyclones this Hurricane Season. 69 Advisories written and she just kept traveling around the Atlantic Ocean. But when you get that much energy going to long it doesn't just disappear even if it's downgraded and turning extratropical.

I don't follow European Weather much.
So far they've had a "Medicane" in the Mediterranean 
And Hurricane or X Hurricane Leslie.
Where will Michael go I wonder?
He's Post Tropical but as weather he's still there.

I do believe in Global Warming.
It's just I also believe in patterns.
And when weather patterns repeat......
... the pattern repeats.
We don't know much about hurricanes before the 1800s.
Some data on storms in the 1700s.
Whatever hit the Lost Colony left little written history.
I'm guessing a hurricane was part of it.
A beautiful place to visit.
But a bad place to live before weather forecasting came along.
No cone from the NHC to complain about.
Just high surf, strong winds and storm surge...
Data suggests it wasn't a hurricane...
...who knows time has not told yet.

Watching coverage on TWC.
It all looks the same.
Andrew in a different location.
Some houses survived.
Some houses were lifted away
Weird Science
Wind tunnels through homes.
Destroys the roof.
The pictures don't fall off the wall.

I'll let those who do argue over the exact strength of Michael at landfall and what we learn about rapid intensification and wind speeds on the ground vs measured by recon and why some of us saw this coming and others didn't see it coming until it began to intensify in the Gulf of Mexico and the media jumped onto it a day before landfall. 

My kids follow for a reason and it's not because they surf. My kids watch Mike on Facebook Live and tell me what he said often. Really. They quote him to me but not sure they read my blog, which is okay cause no one needs their children seeing what they say about them on a blog right?

I have friends who slice and dice storms in odd ways.
That looks like art but he's studying the energy in the storm.

Cranky is probably doing Fall this week.
Studying storms and fronts and the weather.
Weeks away he called the set up for Michael.

You either go out of your way to stay informed.
Or you find out when the media hypes it.
Your choice.
I know many who were burned before.......
... watch weeks out and follow those they trust.
I'm one of them.
I try and educate and give early warning.
I've been through it and glued to it now.

Going to the Fair later.
Unless I change my mind.
It's in the low 50s in Raleigh.
But the sun is hot.
What to wear?

I'm going to leave you with some discussion on Michael below.
More on the whole process and my questions.
Why is it so hard to update a good format such as the Cone?
I know I hate pushing that button updating my phone.
Happens so often.... just why?
Facebook updates their platform...
Twitter did and I hate it but some like it.
Updating platforms is a part of life.

I want to give my thoughts on Michael in a way maybe some can understand. You spend weeks and months entertaining and throwing crap down the sink, down the garbage disposal and over time it builds up. One day you hear that horrible sound of gurgling noise and you realize "oh crap the garbage disposal..." and you look down and see dirty water bubbling up in the other sink. It's always at the worst time, like Thanksgiving or Passover when preparing for lots of people for dinner. You run into the other room, grab the plunger from the bathroom that you bought at Ollies or Big Lots or even the Dollar Store and start plunging but it won't budge. This is a mess that built up over time. You think on calling the plumber, you complain to your neighbor and ask who to call. The neighbor comes over, insists they can fix it and not to call the plumber. They bring this huge industrial size plunger and start plunging away and suddenly that noise of water going down happens and voila ... everything has changed. You clean up the mess and your drain works better than it has in months. 

A huge high pressure ridge that sets up for weeks or even most of the summer over the South, budging only a little off and on creates a pattern where high pressure building to the North allows Low Pressure to build to the South. Late August comes and passes, September comes and it's just as hot as most of August was and people jealously eye cold fronts that make it down into Montana and it seems like nothing will fix this pattern and suddenly the plungers from the tropics comes along and as the ridge was strong... the storm is strong and Mother Nature uses the really good plunger that works better than the Dollar Store Plunger known as Alberto and Gordon and voila... cold air is flowing down into the Carolinas and the flip for the Seasons was switched everywhere of course but Florida where it's still hot. And as cold fronts dangle off of the North Florida coast we need to watch to see if anything forms. It could be a tropical storm or subtropical storm or more of a hybrid but these things do happen sometimes in the same way energy comes NE often out of the Caribbean this time of year. It's all part of the process. The pattern changes by location as to what the pattern is that particular year but the changing over process is the same. In 1842 there was obviously a similar process and a hurricane landed on Spain's shore, NC had a bad hurricane and so did the Panhandle of Florida and for the most part the MDR was quiet. Energy happened, it just went elsewhere. 

You can check the last blog post for a more indepth look at the 1842 Atlantic Hurricane Season. I reposted some thoughts from there to here so browse through to see what I am talking about. My bottom line is history repeats that's why we study it as a guide towards the present and what could happen down the road. 

As for my thoughts on Michael there is just so much I cannot wrap my head around and I'll discuss it another day. But for tonight this is all I want to say. Some thoughts below on Michael and NC and VA where more people died adding to a sadly, climbing death toll as more bodies are picked from the rubble across several states and now in Europe they are doing the same with Leslie, going through the rubble. 

We really need to understand Rapid Intensification better.
We are getting better.
We need get "more better" as we say Down South.
Going to the Fair.
Have a great day.
Give thanks.
Give charity to those who need.
And be happy.
Show love.

Look at that picture.
The link to the article is below.

The death toll climbs state by state in unique but predictable ways. A tree fell on a truck or a truck slammed into a fallen tree. Storm surge deaths come to light as teams get into the areas and go through debris and find bodies. The back side of Michael that intensified from North Carolina into Virginia as it became one with the front took many I am sure by surprise as so much emphasis in the media is on "landfall" and "storm surge" and "highest winds at landfall" and very little is talked about by the media on anything beyond landfall. The NHC mentions things and reminds people to check their local NWS office and as I've said sadly the local NWS offices get very little press as the media touts the cone showing where the storm will make landfall. Anyone reading blogs or following on social media knew that this storm was moving fast and within one day it would be make it from Florida to the Carolinas and into Virginia. But the average person watching the nightly news still or checking headlines will only see the CONE a day before they are blasted by 50 to 80 winds in North Carolina and Virginia.

What I wrote on Monday about Michael.
I said it on Sunday too.
Models showed an extremely fast moving storm.

My blog from Monday before Michael made landfall.
When it was trying to pull together.
Pleading people to remember how fast it would move.
And that people in the Carolinas and Virginia...
...would get impacts and they would happen sooner rather than later.
Dangerous impacts from a Tropical Storm.

The local weather people here talked on it's dangerous impacts but the general feeling was that they were keeping us in a Tropical Storm Watch out of an abundance of caution and that the Tropical Storm Warning was put up for the same reason. Few inland took it seriously and the only concern on the local news was to assure people Down East still cleaning up from Florence wouldn't have to worry on more flooding. Flooding in NC and Virginia was NEVER a concern with Michael, but high winds as the storm and the front blasted through after a solid day of rain with wet soil meant trees would topple and weather would become dangerous. If it wasn't for the NC State Fair canceling the Opening Day and postponing it off til Friday I don't think the locals here would have thought much on Michael. Everyone was in shock and it showed the possibility that high winds were there as they had to watch the rides and secure what wasn't taken down. If the Fair is worried, there must be something to worry on someone told me in their own words. Smart thing too that the Fair did that as two trees went down on the property or part of the trees and one severely injured one of the people who works the fair. Luckily no one else was walking through that area near that gate when that tree came down. His trailer was parked near the spot as he works the fair, otherwise there would have been hundreds, thousand of people in the general vicinity. The Fair Grounds are beautiful when the Fair is not in town as it's the site of the NC State Flea Market and it's a fun place to walk around on a Sunday under huge Oak trees providing shade on a hot summer day.

Cranky sent me the wind speeds as I had asked him on Friday. Impressive what the wind and gusts were that brought down huge trees and added in the death toll from Michael. I believe five people in Virginia died which is just so sad as they should have seen this coming as we talked about it online for days, however did the message get out to the media I wonder? If you like longreads and you obviously do as you are reading this.. check out his blog. Spoiler Alert it's longer than mine. He has much good information to share.

Those are strong winds.
They caused death and destruction.
But the talk was mostly about where landfall would be...
... but people died far away from Mexico City.
Far from the Florida Panhandle.

So there are just some things I don't understand.

They didn't evacuate a Florida State Hospital which is used for mental health patients who mostly have been committed put there against their will and I'm sure there was some logic and they "thought they'd be okay" but they weren't and so they were dropping food and water by helicopter down to them for days. Seems odd. Strange story. Didn't they  know that it could easily be cut off and with the watches and warnings up for this storm when it was a Potential Storm why did they not evacuate them before or have more supplies?

Much I don't understand about how things work with regard to warning people of inland dangers from landfalling hurricanes and the NHC's refusal to update their cone to show inland dangers or flooding potential is just lame. They do a great job in general under difficult circumstances but when you ask them to modify the Scale they use and the cone they refuse saying it was "confuse people" even though these same people are on Facebook and Twitter that updates their format every month and people get used to it. They truly act like that old guy driving along in an 1970 Datsun because they refuse to sell it going 45 mph on the highway because the speed limit is 55 MPH listening to Iron Butterfly on a cassette player that they had to install when the 8 Track died on them sadly.

I get it. I hate when my phone says it wants to do an update. But it's part of life and it's time for the Cone to be updated. Again possibly put the cone over the satellite image and put an old fashioned symbol for flooding over the area that may lose all their crops, homes, farms, businesses and where many may lose their lives because they thought they would be fine because they were not "in the cone." Life will go on really and it will be a better product.

I'll write a full post tomorrow on the tropics and an update on Michael as in what was done right and what was done wrong that hopefully we can learn from and update the way we do things and do it better the next time around. They learned after Sandy they needed to put in good graphics showing where flooding would occur and they have put out some great products, but they are not on center stage and the only thing that gets shown in the media is the cone so it's time to update the cone. I'm pretty sure no one at the NHC is still using an old flip phone or refusing to update their iPhone so why not update the Cone?

Besos BobbiStorm
@bobbistorm on Twitter


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