First Alert Weather

Talking the Tropics With Mike: Hurricane & Storm Surge WARNING for Texas coast

Jacksonville, Fl. — The “Buresh Bottom Line”: Always be prepared!.....First Alert Hurricane Preparation Guide... City of Jacksonville Preparedness Guide... Georgia Hurricane Guide.

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*** LOCAL (Jacksonville/NE Fl./SE Ga.) IMPACTS FROM THE TROPICS: None

The Atlantic Basin Overview:

(1) A Hurricane WARNING: The Texas coast from Baffin Bay northward to Sargent. A Hurricane WATCH: The Texas coast south of Baffin Bay to the mouth of the Rio Grande River ... The Texas coast north of Sargent to San Luis Pass. A Tropical Storm WARNING The Texas coast south of Baffin Bay to the mouth of the Rio Grande River ... The Texas coast north of Sargent to High Island ... The northeastern coast of mainland Mexico from Barra el Mezquital to the mouth of the Rio Grande River. A Storm Surge WARNING: North Entrance of the Padre Island National Seashore to San Luis Pass, including Corpus Christi Bay and Matagorda Bay to High Island, including Galveston Bay. A Storm Surge WATCH: The Texas coast from the mouth of the Rio Grande River northward to North Entrance of the Padre Island National Seashore.

The strong tropical wave - ‘95-L’ - that moved off the coast of Africa early last week has been rolling west/W/NW & was upgraded to tropical depression #2 Friday afternoon ... tropical storm Beryl Friday evening... & the first hurricane of the Atlantic season Sat. afternoon becoming a ‘major’ Cat. 3 early Sunday then a Cat. 5 late Mon. evening. Beryl’s third landfall (1st in Windward Islands/Cat. 4, 2nd south coast of Jamaica/Cat. 3) was just northeast of Tulum, Mexico on the Yucatan Peninsula about 7am EDT Fri. as a Cat. 2. The transit over land weakened Beryl to a tropical storm Fri. afternoon.

Beryl has been shattering the early season record books:

Beryl underwent an eyewall replacement cycle - typical for strong hurricanes - Sunday night. Once completed, Beryl intensified quickly again. Another eyewall replacement cycle (the main eye gives way to a new outer eye that eventually takes over) took place Tue. afternoon + increasing mid & upper level wind shear to the immediate west has allowed Beryl to come down from its peak. The W/SW shear has opened up the south & southwest portion of the eyewall since Wed. evening. Interaction with Jamaica’s mountainous terrain caused additional weakening. This is only the third Cat. 3 or stronger hurricane to pass within 50 miles of Jamaica during the month of July & the strongest direct hurricane hit on Jamaica since “Dean” in 2007. Beryl has been a resilient tropical cyclone despite fairly strong westerly & now southerly shear regaining Cat. 3 strength Thu. evening before leveling off & weakening some upon the Yucatan landfall.

The track for Beryl becomes more fuzzy now vs. the straight forward track of the past week or so thanks to a rock solid upper level ridge of high pressure that had been sprawled out across the U.S. into the Atlantic finally breaking down & shifting. But models have come around in good agreement for the most part.

No impact to Jacksonville or Florida. Beryl exited the Yucatan Peninsula late Friday - as a tropical storm & is over the Western Gulf of Mexico moving west/northwest & terribly disheveled after the land interaction. Beryl seems to have lost much of its core, so it will take a while before there can be much substantive strengthening - probably not until sometime Sunday. There are signs of the mid level low & surface low slowly aligning late Sat./Sat. night. Let’s face it - Beryl has been an over-achiever so far, so we’ll see how strong Beryl can become once/if full reorganization is achieved. In addition, the shear will be more in line with Beryl’s movement (from the south/SW) which may be less detrimental to its intensity... we may also see the center reform - or jump around - as Beryl tries to reorganize. There have been thunderstorms popping off near the center since it’s re-emerged over warm water.

In any case... the Yucatan is that fork in the road for the longer term track thanks to repositioning of the upper level ridge to the north, so South Texas remains the likely “landing spot”... by Monday. The exact track & intensity is problematic & highly uncertain due to the land interaction & positioning of the upper level ridge. The overall model trends have come into pretty good agreement across the board, but all of the models have bounced around a great deal on long term intensity though virtually all insist on intensification right up to landfall. Overall conditions - less shear, some upper level ventilation it would appear + very warm ocean water = potential for a stronger Beryl yet again by late in the weekend into early next week. In fact, some forecast models show yet another rapid intensification (IR) cycle upon approach to the land.

An upper level high remains the main steering current. As this ridge weakens some - or contracts - “Beryl” will gain more latitude which has already been apparent in recent hours. In general, the western edge of the ridge looks to erode enough to allow a more northward move over the weekend. It looks like the upper level high will contract & recenter itself near Jacksonville through the weekend. This carves out a “softness” or alleyway over the Western Gulf also helped out by a trough of low pressure moving across northern latitudes. So the ridge to the east & the trough to the north points to a more northwest or even N/NW movement over the Western Gulf, possibly even more due north late in the “game”. At the very least it looks like heavy rain & flooding for South Texas late in the weekend/early next week as well as the upper Gulf coast of Mexico. Continue to stay up to date on the latest forecasts.

Morphed Integrated Microwave Imagery’s from CIMSS (fascinating!):

From CIRA (CSU):

Mid & upper level wind shear relaxes over the Western Gulf:

More than half a foot of rain for South Texas over the next 5 days:

The European 500mb forecast for Saturday, July 6th. Note the upper high shifting east allowing for an alleyway over the Western Gulf of Mexico:

Through late Friday - one week since the birth of Beryl, the GFS (American) model has been best... the NHC has consistently beaten all the modeling(!):

An aside: “Beryl” was an early season storm back in 2012 coming ashore in Duval Co. & metro Jacksonville, Florida just below hurricane strength during the weekend of Memorial Day.

(2) The next tropical wave - ‘96-L’ - come off the coast of Africa over the past weekend but with a decreasing chance for significant development... for now. This wave is following in the footsteps of Beryl but conditions become less favorable the more west this wave gets, & it’s possible this wave will struggle to develop much or at least to be able to maintain much organization. But there will be some gusty squalls moving west across the Central & Western Caribbean. This wave may still have long term potential once near or over the Western/SW Gulf of Mexico next week though models show little development at the moment.

“Buresh Bottom Line”: * Beryl is over the Western Gulf of Mexico moving northwest before its “final act” (landfall) Sunday night/Monday on the Southern Texas coast.

* ‘96-L’ - remains weak over the Central Caribbean. However, some some development once to the Western Gulf next week (sound familiar??).

Stay up to date on the latest forecasts....

REMEMBER WHEN A TROPICAL STORM OR HURRICANE IS APPROACHING: Taping windows is *not* recommended & will not keep glass from breaking. Instead close curtains & blinds.

Realize the forecast cone (”cone of uncertainty”) is the average forecast error over a given time - out to 5 days - & *does not* indicate the width of the storm &/or where damage might occur.

The upper oceanic heat content (UOHC) [tropical cyclone heat potential/TCHP] across the SW Atlantic, Gulf & Caribbean is unseasonably high for this time of year:

Water vapor loop (dark blue/yellow is dry mid & upper level air):

July tropical cyclone origins (early season breeding grounds are the Gulf &/or Western Caribbean:

Averages below based on climatology for the Atlantic Basin for July (1 hurricane so far, 3 tropical storms):

Wind shear (red - strong shear; green - low shear):

Saharan dust spreads west each year from Africa driven by the prevailing winds (from east to west over the Atlantic). Dry air = yellow/orange/red/pink. Widespread dust is indicative of dry air that *can* interfere with the development of tropical cyclones. However, sometimes “wanna’ be” waves will just wait until they get to the other side of - or away from - the dust plume then try to develop if other conditions are favorable. In my personal opinion, there is way too much “hoopla” about the presence of Saharan dust & how it relates to tropical cyclones. In any case, the peak of Saharan dust typically is in June & July.

2024 names..... “Debby” is the next name on the Atlantic list (names are picked at random by the World Meteorological Organization... repeat every 6 years). Historic storms are retired [Florence & Michael in ’18 (the last time this year’s list was used)... Dorian in ’19 & Laura, Eta & Iota in ‘20, Ida in ‘21 & Fiona & Ian in ‘22]). In fact, this year’s list of names is rather infamous because of the ‘04 season when Charley, Frances, Jeanne & Ivan - all retired names - hit Florida within a matter of about 6 weeks. The WMO decided - beginning in 2021 - that the Greek alphabet will be no longer used & instead there will be a supplemental list of names if the first list is exhausted (has only happened three times - 2005, 2020 & 2021). The naming of tropical cyclones began on a consistent basis in 1953. More on the history of naming tropical cyclones * here *.

East Atlantic:

Mid & upper level wind shear (enemy of tropical cyclones) analysis (CIMMS). The red lines indicate strong shear:

Water vapor imagery (dark blue indicates dry air):

Deep oceanic heat content over the Gulf, Caribbean & deep tropical Atlantic. The colors will brighten greatly as the water warms to greater depths deeper into the season:

Sea surface temp. anomalies:

SE U.S. surface map:

Surface analysis centered on the tropical Atlantic:

Surface analysis of the Gulf:


Atlantic Basin wave period forecast for 24, 48, 72 & 96 hours respectively:

East & Central Pacific:

A tropical storm - Aleta - finally developed over the E. Pacific July 4th - the latest on record (of the satellite era). The storm lasted little more than 24 hours & has dissipated.

West Pacific:

Global tropical activity:

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