Paula continuing to weaken

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 7:53 PM GMT on October 14, 2010

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Data from an Air Force Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicates that Tropical Storm Paula continues to weaken. The aircraft's latest center penetration at 3:08pm EDT found top winds at their flight level of 10,000 feet of just 55 mph in the eyewall. The SFMR instrument saw surface winds near 65 mph. The eyewall of Paula has collapsed, and satellite imagery shows the storm has a lopsided appearance due to wind shear. The low-level center is almost exposed to view, the classic satellite signature of a storm under high wind shear. Since the high wind shear affecting Paula is pushing most of the storm's heavy thunderstorms to the north, Cuba is receiving very little rain from the storm. Havana has reported two brief rain squalls from Paula, and top sustained winds of just 20 mph. Sporadic heavy rains are affecting the Florida Keys today, with Key West picking up 1.01" inches of rain thus far. Weather radar out of Key West (Figure 2) noted several regions offshore where Paula has dumped 5+ inches of rain.


Figure 1. Radar image from the Pinar del Rio radar in Cuba at 3:15pm EDT on October 14, 2010, showing that Paula is now very disorganized. Image credit: Cuban Institute of Meteorology.


Figure 2. Radar-estimated precipitation for Paula from the Key West radar.

Forecast for Paula
The models continue to predict that Paula will move along the north coast of Cuba or just inland during the next two days. On this track, Paula will move over Cuba's capital, Havana, tonight and Friday morning. An extended period of time over mountainous Cuba will likely destroy a small storm like Paula by Friday night, particularly since the storm will be under 30+ knots of wind shear. The models are pretty unanimous in showing that wind shear will pull Paula apart over the next day regardless of whether or not the center stays over water. Tropical storm force winds extend out just 45 miles to the north of Paula's center, so it is unlikely that the Florida Keys will experience sustained winds of 39+ mph. The 11am EDT wind probability product from NHC gives Key West a 21% chance of receiving tropical storm force winds; these odds are 70% for Havana. Havana may receive some minor wind damage from Paula, and there may be some minor flooding problems in the mountainous regions of Cuba.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The latest 8am EDT (12Z) NOGAPS and GFS model runs continue to predict the formation of a tropical depression 4 - 5 days from now, in the southern Caribbean off the coast of Nicaragua. The storm is predicted to move northwest or northwards towards the Cayman Islands and Jamaica, once it forms. The GFS model has been pretty reliable in forecasting the genesis of new tropical depressions this year, and the fact that we have two major models predicting the formation of a new Caribbean tropical depression next week is worth paying attention to.

In the Western Pacific, Tropical Storm Megi is nearing typhoon strength, and is predicted to intensify into a major typhoon that will strike the northern Philippine Island of Luzon on Sunday night or Monday morning.

Next update
I'll have an update Friday morning.

Jeff Masters

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99L will likely be initiated Early or late tomorrow
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Quoting cat5hurricane:

It's been quite a pattern that set up this month to keep these storms away from the GOM & SE CONUS


dry as a doorknob

Member Since: July 11, 2006 Posts: 14 Comments: 11423
AL, 18, 2010101500, , BEST, 0, 230N, 820W, 45, 1002, TS
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Quoting centex:
Do you see any pattern change in next couple of weeks?


Possibly. We just had a negative SOI burst in the Pacific which has implications down the road in North America during the 5-15 day period, in other words a disruption of the consistent trough pattern that has dominated the east recently. Typhoon Megi also supports this, as it is likely to track west across the Philippines and continue westward, indicating more ridging in the far east, which tends to teleconnect to ridging over the eastern United States.

A more zonal flow and more ridging over the east could direct Caribbean storms farther north before getting recurved to the northeast. That's why you see some runs of the GFS punching Richard into central America. However, it's dang hard to get a storm in the Caribbean to just move west into central America and die in October. Most of them eventually get brought back out into the Gulf of Mexico. Thus, we should be on the lookout. I still feel October will be a solidly active month from beginning to end, as I said back in September. Can't let our guard down yet.
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Quoting Levi32:
Paula still has a core intact and is on track to clear Cuba by the time she makes it to Miami's longitude, if the current heading holds. This is not getting stuck in the Caribbean.

Looks like She's holding up well so far.
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Quoting KerryInNOLA:
Yes, we have been fortunate this year. All of the activity has been aimed at third world countries. We have dodged the bullet.


I just love how you manage to say that like it was nothing. Not.
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Quoting KerryInNOLA:
Yes, we have been fortunate this year. All of the activity has been aimed at third world countries. We have dodged the bullet.


Please! Don't jinx us!!!! Third world countries?

Guess they dont count, huh?
Member Since: August 11, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 895
Quoting Levi32:


You can't say we're safe until the season is over. It is true the forecasts for U.S. impact have been overdone by all, and we're all thankful for that. However, it's not over until it's over. We're about to have yet another storm develop and you can still punch things into the SE US in October. Wilma occurred in late October. It can still happen, so be ready.
Do you see any pattern change in next couple of weeks?
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Quoting centex:
The only surprise for October is not the number of storms but how Eastern US has been protected. We may get an extra tropical nor'easter but that is only threat. We have 100mph shear already in GOM. This is why blog has been so quiet and October doomers moving on. The Carib is still going to create them but unless you live in Central America or western Carib island, we are safe.


You can't say we're safe until the season is over. It is true the forecasts for U.S. impact have been overdone by all, and we're all thankful for that. However, it's not over until it's over. We're about to have yet another storm develop and you can still punch things into the SE US in October. Wilma occurred in late October. It can still happen, so be ready.
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Quoting IKE:
WATCHES AND WARNINGS
--------------------
CHANGES WITH THIS ADVISORY...

THE TROPICAL STORM WATCH FOR THE FLORIDA KEYS AND THE DRY TORTUGAS
HAS BEEN DISCONTINUED.


You guys are so lucky up in the CONUS, while I got hit by a hurricane, a handful of Invests, and truckloads of T-Waves with heavy rains.
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Quoting centex:
It's forcasted to clear Cuba to N than head ESE.


After they realized that the previous forecasts of it dying over Cuba or getting stuck in the Caribbean were off. The current NHC forecast track is becoming more accurate now that we are getting right down to it.
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10% in the Caribbean. It begins..
AN AREA OF THUNDERSTORMS HAS DEVELOPED OVER THE EXTREME SOUTHWESTERN
CARIBBEAN SEA. ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS ARE ONLY MARGINALLY
FAVORABLE FOR DEVELOPMENT DURING THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS...BUT
CONDITIONS MAY BECOME MORE CONDUCIVE AFTERWARDS. THERE IS A LOW
CHANCE...10 PERCENT...OF THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE
DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS AS THE DISTURBANCE MOVES LITTLE.
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168. IKE
WATCHES AND WARNINGS
--------------------
CHANGES WITH THIS ADVISORY...

THE TROPICAL STORM WATCH FOR THE FLORIDA KEYS AND THE DRY TORTUGAS
HAS BEEN DISCONTINUED.

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Quoting Levi32:
Paula still has a core intact and is on track to clear Cuba by the time she makes it to Miami's longitude, if the current heading holds. This is not getting stuck in the Caribbean.

It's forcasted to clear Cuba to N than head ESE.
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I guess they still use 55mph.

...PAULA MOVING ACROSS THE NORTHWEST COAST OF CUBA...WIND GUST
TO 54 MPH REPORTED IN HAVANA...


SUMMARY OF 800 PM EDT...0000 UTC...INFORMATION
----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...23.0N 82.0W
ABOUT 25 MI...40 KM E OF HAVANA CUBA
ABOUT 45 MI...75 KM W OF VERADERO CUBA
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...55 MPH...90 KM/HR
PRESENT MOVEMENT...E OR 90 DEGREES AT 14 MPH...22 KM/HR
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...1002 MB...29.59 INCHES
Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Paula still has a core intact and is on track to clear Cuba by the time she makes it to Miami's longitude, if the current heading holds. This is not getting stuck in the Caribbean.

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The Southwest Caribbean convection is having MAJOR interaction with land - plus the low is very close to the equator, so getting spin is a real initial problem.
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Complete Update



AOI
AOI AOI AOI

AOI AOI AOI






Member Since: October 1, 2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26516
Quoting HurrMichaelOrl:
Winds in Havana at 6:55 pm were 41 gusting to 54 mph.
Can't be a good time to be vacationing in the keys.
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Winds in Havana at 6:55 pm were 41 gusting to 54 mph.
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Sun beginning to rise over the western Pacific. Visible satellite imagery now starting to show Megi.

Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Quoting WeatherNerdPR:

I think differently, but I thought the CONUS would be hit by now. However, I think the threat of a season isn't over until the season itself ends.
True and if pattern changes all bets are off. I'm looking for pattern changes and may only take a slight shift and FL gets nailed. Just saying that can't happen this week and October running out of time.
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Quoting centex:
The only surprise for October is not the number of storms but how Eastern US has been protected. We may get an extra tropical nor'easter but that is only threat. We have 100mph shear already in GOM. This is why blog has been so quiet and October doomers moving on. The Carib is still going to create them but unless you live in Central America or western Carib island, we are safe.

I think differently, but I thought the CONUS would be hit by now. However, I think the threat of a season isn't over until the season itself ends.
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Quoting LightningCharmer:
Sorry if I gave you the idea, I was making an accusation with regard to your comment. That was not my intention. I just didn't want to invite all the, "What are they smoking at the NHC!?" type of comments that I see on here sometimes.

Yes they do make mistakes, and that's why I read this blog and others as well as view many websites during the tropical cyclone season; don't want to put all my eggs in one basket with information.

I understood clearly, you thought by commenting on my comment you would unintentionally stir the pot so to speak, I understood exactly what you meant , but wanted clear the air for anyone who might have took your comment the wrong way, sorry if I came off the wrong way, you made an excellent comment/point BTW.
Member Since: April 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 8134
The only surprise for October is not the number of storms but how Eastern US has been protected. We may get an extra tropical nor'easter but that is only threat. We have 100mph shear already in GOM. This is why blog has been so quiet and October doomers moving on. The Carib is still going to create them but unless you live in Central America or western Carib island, we are safe.
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Quoting cat5hurricane:
Looks like the 18Z GFS (500mb) completely bailed on Richard. 252 hours out doesn't show a thing near FL.

18Z GFS

Anything beyond 120hrs is much less reliable to me.
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Reality, they have moved up dissipation to Saturday and very early.
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Quoting ackee:
anyone think the NHC will colour the DISturbance in SW carrbean yellow at 8pm


Either that or the wave in the midAtlantique.
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150. ackee
anyone think the NHC will colour the DISturbance in SW carrbean yellow at 8pm
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Quoting stormpetrol:

I have no problem with the NHC changing the track at all, I only say what " I think I see" I could be completely wrong anway and they are the experts, But bear in mind also that the experts can be caught off guard or be wrong every so often, we're only human no matter how smart or educated we are in any particular field!
Sorry if I gave you the idea, I was making an accusation with regard to your comment. That was not my intention. I just didn't want to invite all the, "What are they smoking at the NHC!?" type of comments that I see on here sometimes.

Yes they do make mistakes, and that's why I read this blog and others as well as view many websites during the tropical cyclone season; don't want to put all my eggs in one basket with information.
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Yea... that Nor'Easter is going to go bonkers soon.
Bombogenesis,
and starting the Fall NorEaster Season off with a swing.
Yee Hawww...
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2010/287 - 10/14 at 16:05 UTC -- Tropical Storm Paula (18L) over Cuba.

Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
Cuba urges water conservation amid drought that leaves its reservoirs at 40 pct capacity

Cuba's sugar planting behind schedule due to drought

Hopefully, Paula does not cause any human suffering or loss of life, and limited property damage. Paula may be just what Cuba needs.
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143. DDR
Good evening all
Levi how's the precip maps for the caribbean looking,can you post a few?
Its very dry right now in most of the islands.
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Quoting cat5hurricane:

I guess the anticipated low-level northwesterly flow behind the front in the GOM hasn't kicked in entirely yet to allow the LLC to decouple and head SE.


It has, but some of the models and the NHC thought Paula would be weak enough to surrender to that flow. Instead, she is deep enough to still be carried ENE by the deep-layer flow, at least thus far.
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Quoting LightningCharmer:
Maybe it's just me but it only seems to be accurate up to 1 hour out after that it's all over the place...LOL

It's one that's changed quite a bit. The K storm changed quite a bit back in 2005 as well. Of course this discussion will invite those who will start attacking the NHC for changing track. Their job is not to forecast a track and stick to it for arguments sake; their job is to save lives and protect property through information.

NHC PAULA Graphics Archive

I have no problem with the NHC changing the track at all, I only say what " I think I see" I could be completely wrong anway and they are the experts, But bear in mind also that the experts can be caught off guard or be wrong every so often, we're only human no matter how smart or educated we are in any particular field!
Member Since: April 29, 2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 8134
Actually viewing a sunset here in Key Biscayne. Drizzle stopped about 3 hrs. ago. Have a great night!
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:

What's that over India?!
From the 18z JTWC ABIO10 text:

ABIO10 PGTW 141800
MSGID/GENADMIN/NAVMARFCSTCEN PEARL HARBOR HI/JTWC//
SUBJ/SIGNIFICANT TROPICAL WEATHER ADVISORY FOR THE INDIAN OCEAN
/141800Z-151800ZOCT2010//
RMKS/
1. NORTH INDIAN OCEAN AREA (MALAY PENINSULA WEST TO COAST OF AFRICA):
A. TROPICAL CYCLONE SUMMARY: NONE.
B. TROPICAL DISTURBANCE SUMMARY:
(1) THE AREA OF CONVECTION PREVIOUSLY LOCATED NEAR 20.6N
90.1E, IS NOW LOCATED NEAR 16.7N 88.4E, APPROXIMATELY 290 NM EAST OF
VISAKHPATNAM, INDIA, AND HAS MOVED ON A WEST-NORTHWEST TRAJECTORY
OVER THE PAST 12 HOURS. ANIMATED WATER VAPOR SHOWS DEEP CONVECTION
ASSOCIATED WITH THE SYSTEM HAS NOT CHANGED SIGNIFICANTLY OVER THE
PAST 24 HOURS. CONVECTIVE BANDING REMAINS DISORGANIZED AND CONFINED
MOSTLY TO THE NORTH AND AWAY FROM THE BROAD LOW LEVEL CIRCULATION
CENTER (LLCC). THIS IS EVIDENT FROM A 141458Z METOP-A MICROWAVE
IMAGERY. THE STRONGEST SURFACE WINDS, DERIVED FROM SHIP AND BUOY
REPORTS, ARE ALONG THE PERIMETER OF THE LLCC - CHARACTERISTIC OF A
CLASSIC MONSOON DEPRESSION. UPPER LEVEL ANALYSIS INDICATES THE
TROPICAL DISTURBANCE IS TO THE SOUTH OF A RIDGE AXIS NORTH OF THE
HIMALAYAS IN A ZONE OF MODERATE TO HIGH EASTERLY VERTICAL WIND SHEAR
(30-35 KNOTS). THIS HAS BEEN THE MAIN FACTOR INHIBITNG FURTHER
DEVELOPMENT OF THE CYCLONE. MAXIMUM SUSTAINED SURFACE WINDS ARE
ESTIMATED AT 25 TO 30 KNOTS. MINIMUM SEA LEVEL PRESSURE IS ESTIMATED
TO BE NEAR 1004 MB. THE POTENTIAL FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF A
SIGNIFICANT TROPICAL CYCLONE WITHIN THE NEXT 24 HOURS REMAINS FAIR.
(2) NO OTHER SUSPECT AREAS.
2. SOUTH INDIAN OCEAN AREA (135E WEST TO COAST OF AFRICA):
A. TROPICAL CYCLONE SUMMARY: NONE.
B. TROPICAL DISTURBANCE SUMMARY: NONE.//
NNNN

Member Since: September 2, 2009 Posts: 130 Comments: 21194
137. JLPR2
Not that new but interesting...
Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 7 Comments: 8747
Quoting HurricaneDean07:
Hey Levi, Great Update This morning. Do you think Paula will exit Cuba soon? Or will it stay over Cuba and die out.


I still don't think it will just die. While there's still a chance the low-level center decouples away and dissipates while the rest of the system heads out to the ENE, it is showing no signs of doing that yet. I still think the whole thing is most likely to exit through the Florida Straights as I was saying yesterday, though it may not emerge over water until it has already reached Miami's longitude.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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