The Tropics are Quiet

Bill's Blog

After one of the strongest and longest-lived hurricanes in recent decades, the tropics are generally quiet as I write this. September 10 is the halfway point of the Atlantic hurricane season. Here’s a summary of the Atlantic hurricane season so far this year.

Tropical Storm Tracks of 2019 up to Sept. 11

You can see the path that Hurricane Dorian took as it moved thru the Antilles Islands, mostly missing Puerto Rico, then hitting the northern Bahama Islands as hard as you can be hit. Barry was the other hurricane that came into SE Texas and produced a lot of rain and flooding. Barry was barely a hurricane at 75 mph, but heavy rain and flooding did approximately 600 million dollars in damage mainly to Louisiana and SE Texas. One fatality was attributed to Barry, a swimmer in the Florida Panhandle that got caught in a rip current.

Subtropical Storm Adrian was a bare minimum storm that lasted only a day far away from land. Chantal was also a bare minimum 40 mph tropical storm that formed near Jacksonville FL and harmlessly moved far enough east to miss most of the U.S. Tropical Storm Erin lasted 4 days moving by eastern Florida and then out to see. We were so busy talking about Dorian that we didn’t report on Tropical Storm Fernand. Again winds were weak, but the storm did produce up to 12″ of rain in 48 hours in NE Mexico. One fatality occurred to a man that was trying to clear a drain and got swept away by the water. Tropical Storm Gabrielle formed off the coast of Africa and meandered harmlessly through the eastern Atlantic for a week.

Dorian lasted 15 days, tied for 2nd strongest winds for any Atlantic Hurricane in recent decades, left over 60 dead (with that number expected to climb) and damage estimates are already over 7 billion dollars.

Atlantic Hurricane Map Wed. AM 9/11

Here’s the Atlantic Hurricane Map for early morning Sept. 11. There are no hurricanes, no tropical storms, no named tropical depressions. There are 3 yellow Xs – indicating a wave or disturbance with less than a 40% chance of developing into a tropical storm.

Eastern Pacific Tropical Storm Map for early AM 9/11

Here’s the Eastern Pacific Tropical Storm Map. There is one red X, that will likely become a named storm later today or tomorrow. “Kiko” is the next name on the list. This storm will move northwest and stay well off the Mexican coast. As with most hurricanes in the Eastern Pacific, Kiko will dissippate as it encounters cooler water north of about 25° latitude. So far in the Eastern Pacific, there have been 4 hurricanes and 5 tropical storms with little impact on land. Here’s the tracks of the E. Pacific storms:

Tracks of E. Pacific Hurricanes

Three hurricanes came close enough to cause a bit of concern in Hawaii, but each passed far enough away and impacts were minimal.

Central Pacific Hurricane Map

The Central Pacific looks as empty as Comerica Park is going to be during the MLB playoffs…no hurricanes, no tropical storms. There has been only one tropical storms this year in the Central Pacific. Tropical Storm Akoni reached a peak wind of 45 mph and managed to remain a named storm for the better part of 3 days.

Hurricane (Typhoon) Map thru 9/11 for the Western Pacific

The Western Pacific/Northern Hemisphere has more hurricanes than any other ocean. Here, hurricanes are called “typhoons”. There have been 15 named storms, including 6 typhoons and 2 super-typhoons. Sum total there have been 181 fatalities and damage estimates are over 9 1/2 billion dollars.

Western Pacific satellite map

There are currently no typhoons or tropical storms in the Western Pacific or Indian Oceans. There is one disturbance (35W) which is likely to become a tropical storm. I’m tracking this one because if it does become a tropical storm or hurricane it might be a “recurving” typhoon, curving past Japan and moving northeast toward Alaska. Often, an upper level trough forms in the Eastern U.S. about 7-10 days after a recurving typhoon. That would lend support to my idea that we have about 2 weeks of warm weather here in the Great Lakes before temperature trend colder for the last week of the month.

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