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!

Friday, May 31, 2019

2019 Hurricane Season Starts... Get a Start on Hurricane Preparation Now!

Now why would I be showing you bubbles.
Bubbles in different colors.
And these were huge bottles of bubbles.
Keep reading.

Welcome to the start of the 2019 Hurricane Season. If you are reading this you most likely have concerns for your own life and property or the lives of friends and relatives who live in Hurricane Country. Your job this weekend is to buy at lest one thing that you would need for Hurricane Season.

Yes, it is that easy. If you are out at Publix buy an extra can of tuna or if the peanut butter is buy one get one free.... buy some peanut butter. Get a box, or a locker and stick it in it. If you have kids hide stuff on top of the box and make sure no one gets into the hurricane supplies before a hurricane comes to your town and the box is bare with notes that read "sorry Mommy I ate all the snacks!!"  Trust me I have raised enough kids to know this could happen and will happen if you are not really sneaky. Be sneaky!

I wrote this a few days back, please read the blog as it's excellent advice. Hurricanes are one of the only "natural disasters" that you can prepare for or have time to evacuate so be prepared and be glad you have that edge for once over Mother Nature.

So take a list, check it twice.
Whether you have been naught or nice...
Hurricanes may try to come and visit.
And like relatives .... they come back often.
Years with an early storm like 1926...
...then another Cat 4 in 1926 a bit further down the beach.
Jeanne and Frances..
Maria and Irma.
The list goes on and on.

Make your list.
Start buying Hurricane Supplies now.
Fix the roof, check the windows.
Now is the time to prepare...
...not when you get to the market too late.
And all that is left is canned oysters.
Well ... unless you really like canned oysters.
But apparently not too many people do.

Note this tweet!

Dollar Stores are the best place to stock up on hurricane supplies.
Honestly, they have paper products, medication and toys.
They have buckets, they have canned food... 
Canned fruit, peanut butter.
Pretty much it's all there.
And affordable.

Every time you go buy one product and put it away.
These are things you can use with or without a storm.
When you go to Walmart to get a screwdriver....
... and you see HUGE bottles of bubbles on sale.
BUY THEM if you have kids.,
Crayons.... that work without batteries.
Coloring books at the Dollar Store.
Nothing occupies kids longer than bubbles.
And you don't need electricity.

Parents have special needs.
Diapers and baby wipes.
Small kids get bored when they can't use their iPad.
You know that's true.
And you may not have electric for a week or two.
I'm talking best case scenario...
The house survived intact but the power is out.
Cable is out.
Trees are down.
You need to keep the kiddies busy... 

So shop accordingly.
Trust me on this... 
I know.

We didn't have power for almost two weeks after Andrew.
Batteries only go so far and need to be saved ... 
Crayons last forever.

I'll do a full update on Sunday.
But for now...
Make a list.
Start shopping.
Because if you get the market late...
...and everyone has shopped.
The diapers are gone and.......
.......all that is left is canned oysters!

Stay safe... I do expect a busy season.

Best to prepare early.
Check your batteries see if they work.
Do you need new medication?
Get an extra batch...
And extra inhaler if you have asthma..
Better to have an extra one that to be down to 5 puffs.
Or whatever.

Here's a link to the reason I believe we will have a busy season.
This year seems analogous to busy years.

Read the previous blog... 
Be Hurricane Strong... 
That's my best advice... 

Sweet Tropical Dreams,
Besos BobbiStorm
@bobbistorm on Twitter and Instagram 
For real time updates.

Ps... Check out these videos by the NHC

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Thursday, May 30, 2019

End of May. Hurricane Season Almost Here! Tornado Chases, Hot Days in Carolinas Maybe Coming to an End?

Tropics today.
A trough like entity in the SW Caribbean.
Really stretches from SW Carib across PR.
Under the High Pressure.
We can call it a CAG but it's more like a trof.
And it's always good to watch trofs....
But look at that double barreled High Pressure.
Anyone play RISK ever?
It's reinforced.

So let's talk tornadoes from yesterday...
..and tomorrow in the tropics.

Tornado Time the last few days as tornadoes dance around the huge high across the Southeast where "weather" has taken a vacation and gone on the rampage everywhere else. At some point last night I thought The Weather Channel was going to have to go to Split Screen broadcasts as tornadoes rampaged on two fronts ... the Plains and Pennsylvania. At one point New York City was in the way of severe storms that had produced rotation on Staten Island.

And in New Jersey there was the East Coast version ... milder but still if a tree falls on your house it's not so mild.

There have been small tornadoes and big tornadoes.

A good example of a Rope Tornado is shown below:

Reed Timmer's team launched a rocket into a tornado.
With sensors.... 

And as we move our way through May...
We get day by day closer to Hurricane Season.

So what might be developing?
A ... Watch the Caribbean for an early odd ball
B... Possible ever popular Subtropical in the Atlantic.
C... BOC likes to bubble trouble.

Really there isn't much to see that can be defined as "OH MY GOSH SOMETHING IS FORMING" vs more of the same heat ridge, more of the clash between late season cold weather mixing it up with warm moisture from the Gulf of Mexico traveling around the High Pressure ridge that has taken up residence in the Deep Southeast. It's as if that High wants to find a good Air B and B it can rent by the week. In theory.........models show it moderating and wiggling around a bit back down to where it belongs and cool weather in the mid 80s will seep back into the Carolinas and Georgia. Really it should be one state with some odd name as Georgia is really South Carolina and in truth North Carolina is Tennessee's beach front property. I digress but hey there isn't much to say except the very unpopular plea to beg you to prepare for the heart of the hurricane season.

The tell tale signs of the Hurricane Season are here.
Excellent shows put together to help you...
Survive a Storm.
This one is on in Miami.
There's one on this week in Raleigh.
It's that time of year.

And in Florida there is a Tax Holiday on Hurricane Supplies.
Like those crappy Macy coupons there are lots of exclusions.
So buyer beware before you stock up your cart.
But........lots of ways to save money.
Reminding your personally go to the Dollar Store.
You go there for Dove hand cream... put Party City out of business going there.
Why not go there for Hurricane Supplies?
If on every trip you bought one thing for a $1
By the heart of the season you'd have a treasure chest...
...of Hurricane Supplies.
Just do it.

What do the models say currently?
They show a HUGE HIGH.
That means waves under that high go westbound.
When shear relaxes deeper into the season...
We will get the real thing... Hurricanes.
In the transition time we get subtropicals...

When you look at models in June.
Watch the High.
Stop looking for a Cat 4 Hurricane.
Watch the High.

Doesn't matter which model they all show the high.
Some show a possible subtropical
Sometimes subtropicals go tropical...
Andrea ran out of juice fast.
Maybe Barry?

Again watch the high ignore the oddities.

I don't totally ignore them.
I'm prone to being silly.
Having fun early on when nothing is happening.
I like fun ... fun is good.
Laughter and humor is good.
I'm sorry if it drives one of my kids crazy...
...yes we have fun.
Talking tropics early on you need a sense of humor.

Luckily @dadabuh has a great sense of humor.

Subtropical Fish storms as the High holds it's line.
This is why the rhyme says June too Soon.
Too Soon for real devastating WNW bound West Indies Canes.

Bottom Line.....

All signs point to an active hurricane season with multiple Major Hurricanes and areas along the coast and in the islands are more in the danger zone than other years. The high is a real thing and water is warming up and when shear weakens and slowly it does every year.... the potential is for real tropical trouble. Now is the time to stock up somewhere... use Amazon, Target, Walmart, the Dollar Store...or any store you got that has sales on what you need. And, keep watching as things sometimes pop up around June 1st and like PreSeason Football everyone makes fun of it but everyone watches ;)

Much love.... keep thinking on what YOU need because what YOU need is not necessarily what I need but we all need water... and most of us need caffeine so shop accordingly.

Besos BobbiStorm
@bobbistorm on Twitter and Instagram.
Follow me there for real time info. 

 Ps...cute clip from a concert. Trying to get a good view of Jimmy is like trying to get something tropical past that huge high but hey it happens... shop accordingly if you need beer!

Monday, May 27, 2019

HEAT RECORDS BROKEN IN SOUTH... cool in the West... Tornadoes Still Happening. EF3 El Reno Killed 2 People. Memorial Day Weekend 2019

Tropics Memorial Day Weekend 2019
Days before the start of the Hurricane Season.

The NHC "nothing happening pale baby blue" is there
There's also a mess of convection in the SW Caribbean.
Central America Gyre aka CAG
Could something develop down there?
Possibly, not probably but a possibility.

I tweeted this last night.
Shear would have to relax.
Shear is forecast to relax.
MJO? Yeah maybe...who knows.
Keep watching.

And we have all been watching tornadoes lately.
First comes tornado season.
Then comes hurricane season.

Just to be clear before going on with some hot weather and tropical weather history the El Reno Tornado was a EF3. This rating was expected from the damage however until it's official we wait and see what the experts find. The experts found a small but devastating path of destruction for a short lived but strong tornado that killed two people and destroyed parts of El Reno; a town very familiar with destructive May tornadoes. In this case the fast developing, fast moving tornado hit an area with a motel that was adjacent to a trailer park and a car dealership which obviously made the situation worse wherever those cars landed. The article below is a good article to read on the tornado especially for anyone who has been obsessed with them since the first time they watched either The Wizard of Oz or Twister.

Another thing I want to point out is how pathetic it is sometimes to have expectations of a season or a day in history to judge that season or outbreak by be it Hurricanes or Tornadoes. Last weekend The Weather Channel was on air nonstop with headlines implying 60 million people were in the path of expected long track, destructive wedge tornadoes across a wide swath of the country. And, that was true for last weekend as much as it was forecast for most of the week after that. We are still "there" so to speak the violent weather on the Plains is not yet in the rear view mirror and more severe weather is still expected. This is the season they did not get last year when tornadoes took a Northern holiday and went elsewhere to places such as Wyoming and Cape Cod.

What we need to stop doing is thinking that a weak hurricane season because of an El Nino may keep us safer as history has not shown that to be the case and even worse the seasons when we begin to leave El Nino in the rear view mirror often tend to be the most memorable ones. Hurricane Andrew that was the first named storm to form in the middle of August is a prime example of why we should not judge a hurricane season by how busy it is and in the same way we should not judge possible tornado outbreaks by the size and duration of a large wedge tornado. Obviously the damage done to Moore Oklahoma by large, long duration wedge tornadoes over history makes us look towards them as the bar to judge a tornado outbreak.... however.... if you live in El Reno or any other town hit this week by tornadoes you don't think this outbreak was a "bust" because the previous Saturday was relatively quiet. The word relative is always important when reviewing weather history and various events. And this storm season out on the Plains is not over so everyone put those relative expectations where they belong and take it hour by hour, day by day.

Note the frequency here of 1926, 1953 and 2012.
1989 shows up too often as well.
But going to ignore that one for now.
I don't like to cry shark in a room full of Carolinians.

Let's move on to what I feel is the most important story possibly of this week and that is the record heat in the Southeast. Again, using that word relative it's worth remembering I live in the Carolinas and it relates to me. If I lived on the West Coast I'd be begging for some warm weather and wondering when this cool, wet weather trend is going to end. It's a regional phenomenon caused by atmospheric features far away that are in a stuck pattern that at some point down the road will become unstuck .... trust me on this.

A list of some of the records yesterday reads as follows.
Atlanta 100 degrees. Record broken was set in 1898, 1953, 1962
Augusta 100 degrees. Record broken was set in 1926.
Charleston, SC hit 100 degrees yesterday. 1953, 1989 were both in play record wise.
Fayettevillle NC hit 100 degrees. Record broken was 1926.
Florence SC hit 102 degrees. Record set was 1926.
Muscle Shoals of Jimmy Buffet fame hit 97 degrees. Record broken was 2012.

Charleston thought they peaked....
...but they were wrong.

What is unnerving to me and a few others is the constant references to certain year's records that were broken over the last several days and that is because those years were years when there was a huge High in the Atlantic and are infamous for hurricane landfalls along the East Coast and the Gulf of Mexico. Again for newbies hurricanes often trace the high in the Atlantic and they ride in under the high and then try and turn North wherever the High ends... add to that if or when there are any fronts on the map that may try and pull them North faster at the end of the High that is .... where landfall happens.

Again everything is relative so when I see the years 1926 and 1953 I think of Florida and East Coast hurricanes. I'm sure when I say 1989 my friend in Mt. Pleasant immediate thinks "oh crap... and remembers Hugo" so this is all relative and yes Sandy hit the New York area in 2012. Some records had previously been from 1979 and any South Floridian will scream DAVID while those along coast of the Gulf of Mexico will scream FREDERIC!

Monday records broken went back to 1916.
That year has shown up frequently this May.
Must have been a hot May.
And I'm guessing a very strong High pressure system.

1916 was a busy season with 5 major hurricanes.
The year 1916 sporadically comes up in broken heat records.
I felt it was a good year to review.
As it's not usually mentioned.
And that was BEFORE satellite imagery.

A close up look at the Gulf Coast Storm

Animation-of-Meteorological-Conditions-July-7-to-11-1916.gif (1054×1089)

That's a July Hurricane by the way.
Sadly too often heat waves are broken by tropical events.

Then in August there was the Texas Hurricane.
It formed as a wave traveling beneath a huge High.
Into the Caribbean ... Gulf of Mexico and hit Texas.

Hope you are seeing the pattern here ....
...reading the hot tea leaves.

The year 1916 comes up frequently but most people do not remember it because well to be honest other than settlements in Tampa, a very young Miami and Key West not many in Southern Florida lived there or wrote much about that year and it landed in Texas relatively lucky for Floridians. But it was one of those years where a hurricane rode into the Gulf of Mexico around a huge High and made landfall far in Texas to be remembered as one of the Great Hurricanes of that region. Obviously in a time before satellite imagery it's hard to say where that wave first formed but it either developed out of some sort of Central America Gyre or a westbound tropical wave from Africa or a wave collided with the CAG. Camille formed in this region in 1969 but we know it was an Africa wave that didn't develop until it hit those friendly, welcoming waters. Often a high to the North and low shear there will get a storm going fast over very warm Caribbean waters. The 1916 Hurricane has it's own link....

The year 1953 comes up in the Carolinas nonstop this week.
The first thing you see above is the HIGH.... 
The dark blue where NO storms formed.
Note many have predicted these totals for 2019.
14 storms, 7 hurricanes and 3 majors.
It would and could be an analog year.
It was also a horrible year for tornadoes.

Sometimes the High held strong...
..sometimes it did not.
Fish storms formed early... out to sea.
Others did not go out to sea.
Several barreled into the Caribbean.
Another similar season number wise.

Oh yes 1926... 
A hurricane year to remember in the Bahamas, Cuba and Florida.

You can track the storms around the early High Pressure.
Later in the season they came from the SW...
Every which way but whatever that song was..

In October an infamous hurricane happened in Cuba.
Obviously caught an early front and traced the high that a way.

1926 was seriously one of the worst, early heat waves in the SE.
Rather early storms formed and kept forming all season.
Each season is different, but seeing 1926 show up often is not good.
1926 as a whole below.

Rob from and I were talking last night.
Historical weather patterns that repeat.
That year was dangerous in the areas he highlighted for this year.

Note here 1953 as an analog fits in well here.

Rob is very good at nailing a seasonal pattern early.
His 2018 regions shown below.

That would be Florence and Michael.
He nailed them both.

2017 he was worried on the Caribbean Islands.
Sadly he nailed that too....
Though Irma kept going towards Florida.

Again patterns repeat....
...each storm and each year is unique.
But the pattern repeats.

I might add for his sake the year 1938 recently came up as well.
New England people remember that one....
...the way Floridians remember Andrew and Irma.

So I'm leaving you with this thought.
Prepare for a possibly very busy hurricane season.
And I'm talking major hurricanes.
And I'm talking hurricanes that ride a huge high.
Hurricanes that can happen in the following places:
Gulf of Mexico
Along the East Coast.
Florida is in the way there..

And I'm a bit worried on Texas at some point.
With such a strong high....
....IF the shear relaxes.
The water is hot and they could be in the mix.

So take a list, check it twice.
Whether you have been naught or nice...
Hurricanes may try to come and visit.
And like relatives .... they come back often.
Years with an early storm like 1926...
...then another Cat 4 in 1926 a bit further down the beach.
Jeanne and Frances..
Maria and Irma.
The list goes on and on.

Make your list.
Start buying Hurricane Supplies now.
Fix the roof, check the windows.
Now is the time to prepare...
...not when you get to the market too late.
And all that is left is canned oysters.
Well ... unless you really like canned oysters.
But apparently not too many people do.

Besos BobbiStorm
@bobbistorm on Twitter and Instagram 
Follow me there for live updates.
Remember when the heat is on early.........
... it often portends a busy hurricane season.

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Sunday, May 26, 2019

El Reno Tornado. A Deadly Night of Sudden Terror on the Plains. Hurricane Season Coming Soon. Now is the Time to Prepare.

2 Dead, at least 29 Injured.
Listen to the link below for on the scene reports.

So far 2 deaths have been attributed to this tornado.
They are still searching through debris.
There was a motel... seen above.
There was a trailer park.
There was a car dealership.
Some of the cars landed in the trailer park it seems.

As I type this morning I'm listening live to the Mayor of El Reno speaking on the aftermath of last night's Killer Tornado hearing explain what they have found so far while searching and still hoping to rescue people trapped in the debris. I listened to him just before I fell asleep late last night giving an interview working his way through the immediate after effects of the late night tornado that swept through his town. I'm pretty sure he hasn't slept. Many of us were up chatting last night and tonight the same area is under the gun from nighttime tornadoes. Nighttime tornadoes really are the worst as you can't see them coming, you most likely fell asleep thinking you'd be okay and some other town would get slammed in the middle of the night and yet if you don't have a relative who stayed up or a loud alarm you ware woken up in the middle of your world being torn apart.

Hurricanes are different in that they don't form suddenly and take immediate turns in movement, they are slow to form often, slow to pull together, slow to build and often can be tracked tediously over time and forecasts given to as to time of arrival, time of the strongest winds and you can be shown charts as to where storm surge will be the worst and where inland flooding most likely will occur. Similar cyclonic beast, especially those Major Hurricanes, but totally different in that you can prepare, hunker down or get the hell out of town.

This leaves with you reading this with one question here on Memorial Day Weekend when many of us have a 3 day weekend with competing sales selling things for Memorial Day Weekend that can be stored away for hurricane season.... have you started shopping for hurricane supplies and if not why not as now is a good time to do so. Grills are on sale, sodas, juices, snacks, peanut butter, baby wipes ... the list goes on and on and on and yet have your made your list? Every one has their own unique list depending on your own unique concerns.

Back in 1992 when we got to our local Publix before Andrew for the spending spree that happened the Saturday night before he made landfall Publix was out of diapers. We had a lot of kids in diapers back then and it was obviously a high priority. We remembered the Walgreens that was usually used for tourists and yes we grabbed the last of the diapers there as we had easily three in diapers still. They had set up a television near the counter where we could all watch the moment by moment pre storm coverage of Andrew which really basically was "yes, it is coming, no nothing will make it go elsewhere" while everyone in line kept thinking "oh my God it's the end of the world" but just in case it was not the "end of the world" we had diapers or baby wipes, first aid supplies, medication and whatever had not been bought by the first people who ran out shopping earlier in the day.  Disclaimer here we did not buy water. I had 70 some odd gallons of water stored away in Publix soda bottles that we had washed out and filled with water for weeks because my best friend kept insisting we were getting a hurricane so yes I had water. My friend was right, she's often right, she's worried there will be a hurricane in the South Florida area this year...    Buy water!

What do you need?
What is your specific concern? 
Baby food? Diapers? Baby Wipes?

Are specific drinks important in your life?

Budweiser and CaprSun.
I gotta tell you I always knew Bud would survive forever.
But CapriSun who knew that would still be here today.


Think Hurricane Season Supplies.

Lot's of things besides hot dogs and mustard are on sale.
Cereal... snacks!
Lock em up somewhere.... 

And always buy peanut butter as it's the first thing to go...

Trust me on this or you will get to Publix and ....
...all your find left is canned oysters.

My daughter in law lived in the area that Andrew made landfall and she spent the night as a little girl in the babtub with her mother, brother and a mattress over their heads as their father did his best to protect them. The first thing she did when Irma was due to hit Miami (before it swerved down to the Keys for a direct hit) was book a ticket to New York and get out of town with her baby daughter. My son drove north with baby daughter's older brother and several of his siblings a few of which were pregnant to Raleigh to safety. Irma was a family reunion in Raleigh of sorts.... others stayed, hunkered down and got very lucky they only got a bad hurricane not the eye of the bad hurricane known as Irma. 

You can decide now where you will go if you evacuate, where you will hunker down in a safe place if you stay and what food you will have for the next week or two or three because trust me after Hurricane Andrew it took a while for the grocery stores in Miami to reload supplies, get the power back on and reopen as it took MONTHS for life to be normal again. 

One of the silver linings of Hurricanes other than them often swerving away on random occasion is that you can prepare so please do so.

El Nino is moderating and I do not believe it will be a big player in protecting the Atlantic Basin from huge hurricane formation as we move deeper into the Hurricane Season. Water temperatures out in the infamous MDR are warmer now than they were last year. Saharan Dust aka SAL is out there as it usually is but it is not the monster outbreak we have had in the past being a moderating factor. Because of very early hot temperatures water close in along Florida and the Carolinas is already way hot enough to sustain some tropical activity and shear is forecast to weaken soon in regions where tropical storms and hurricanes are prone to form in June and July. The ever unpopular CAG (Central America Gyre) is anchored early down near Central America with part of it in the Pacific and the other part in the Caribbean.

First note the convection in the Caribbean.
Yes it's in the EPAC but rarely is the Caribbean so lit up in late May.

There is an area in the EPAC trying to form...
It's having problems.

It's already down from 30% yesterday.
If shear weakens as forecast.....
...and a tropical wave makes it into the Caribbean.
We could have the ingredients for a storm of some kind.

Across a wide region again thing CAG....

Shear is forecast to weaken.
Models go back and forth on possible development.
The longer it congregates the more the chances go up...
...down the road.
Does it move North?
Does it go wide left towards BOC?
Florida and Eastern GOM?
(that disgusting horrible high would need to move)
Whatever forms will trace the edge of the High.
When and if that is........

Okay I'll be honest I hate that HIGH.
It's hot today and it gets hotter later in the week.
It was 99 degrees down near Fayetteville NC Friday.
It is expected to be 97 in Raleigh later in the week.
That probably means 98 but they don't want to go there yet!
It's heating up the water and making life intolerable.
I may spend Thursday in the bathtub.
Yes I have a good AC but ....... good can it be with it's 93?
I swear you can feel the heat in your body.
Your head gets funny.
You end up eating ice cream... slowly.

Anyway I digress.
Buy Hurricane Supplies NOW
Use your time and your money wisely!

It's easier to prepare for Hurricane Season....
... it's easy to be a hurricane tracker.
it's even easier to be a storm chaser.
Knowledge is power.
Last Sunday everyone thought the Twister season was a bust.
This Sunday they are cleaning up debris and looking for bodies.

If you live in Hurricane Country....
Start making lists.
Start shopping.
If you see Memorial Day stuff on sale that can be used.
Buy it and lock it up somewhere.

This Hurricane Season is expected to be bad.
Dangerous especially along the US coast.
And possibly in the Islands.
Much depends as always on the High.
The high is not forecast to stay there forever.
Fronts will be watched... as always.

We watch... you shop!
Besos BobbiStorm
@bobbistorm on Twitter and Instagram.
Follow me there for real time info.