Jacksonville, FL — Updated everyday during the hurricane season: “Talking the Tropics With Mike”. And the tropics are busy right now & are likely to remain that way for at least another couple weeks. So let’s look at how hurricanes form. In general.... ocean temps. need to be at least 80 degrees F & tropical cyclones typically start as some kind of atmospheric disturbance &/or cluster of thunderstorms - often tropical waves that originate near or over Africa & move westward.... helped by the spin of the earth & if most all other factors are favorable, a tropical depression sometimes can form (winds up to 38 mph).... strengthen into a tropical storm (winds of 39-73 mph) & then into a hurricane (winds 74+ mph).
As we head through the peak of the hurricane season, St. Johns River Management District reminders:
- Report clogged culverts or slow-moving water in ditches to your local government to allow adequate time for maintenance or repairs before a storm.
- Keep grass clippings and other debris out of stormwater drainage systems to prevent clogging and loss of stormwater storage and treatment capacity. Stormwater systems help control flooding by slowing down surges and absorbing rainwater before it reaches water bodies.
- Clean out roof gutters and extend downspouts at least four feet from structures to keep water from ponding at the foundation.
- Build up the ground around the home to promote drainage away from the foundation.
The California wildfire season has gotten off to a rip-roarin’ start with numerous fires set off by recent lightning storms. Unfortunately the dry season usually lasts through at least Oct. From NASA:
Copious clouds of smoke spill off the California coast and travel almost 600 miles in NASA's Terra satellite image from Aug. 19, 2020.
In 2020, California has already seen 5,762 incidents affecting 319 sq. miles).
That is more than quadruple the number of acres burned in 2019 per CAL Fire.
More than 22,000 residents have now been asked to evacuate ahead of the spreading fires near San Mateo and Santa Cruz.
Near Vacaville, 10,000 residents have been asked to evacuate.
Fifty structures have been destroyed and 50 more are in danger just in that area. So many fires have started around Sonoma, Lake, Napa and Solano counties that they have been dubbed the LNU Lightning Complex because they all began from lightning strikes from summer storms. California continues to experience a sweltering late summer heat wave that has broken several record highs in recent days.
NASA’s Terra Satellite:
Smoke has spread far to the east. NOAA-NASA’s Suomi NPP satellite:
‘Tis the season for losing multiple minutes of daylight daily! Sunrise is now after 7am for the first time since mid April & sunset is before 8pm for the first time since late April. But what folks are really looking for is cooler temps., right?! Well... the avg. high temp. finally falls below 90 degrees on August 30th.
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