Dorian – South of Greenland – Moving ENE

Bill's Blog

3:45 am Mon 9/9. – Dorian is now a “post-tropical storm”. It raced from the Outer Banks for North Carolina to Nova Scotia, Canada and then past Newfoundland and Laborador. Peak winds are still up at 60 mph. A gust to 69 mph was reported at Stephenville, Newfoundland. Movement remains NE at 25 mph. 80% of Nova Scotia lost power – the most ever. The fastest gust recorded in Nova Scotia was 93 mph.

Passing south of Greenland, it will turn more to the east and continues through the North Atlantic. It will bring wind and rain to Ireland and Great Britain. The storm caused significant damage in Nova Scotia, where buildings were damaged, large trees were uprooted and a crane was toppled in Halifax. Early Sunday, 70% of Nova Scotia was still without power. Dorian has been a named storm for 15 days. Here’s a six – day radar loop of Hurricane Dorian.

As of 2:30 pm Sun., there were 7,478 customers without power in North Carolina, 935 in S. Carolina and 868 in Florida. Utility crews have done an excellent job of getting power restored to the vast majority of those who lost power during Dorian’s winds. Here’s some wind gust reports from Thursday:

The highest gust was at a buoy SE of Charleston at 98 mph. There were numerous gusts over 60 mph on the S. Carolina Coast. Here’s peak wind gusts from Florida:

Peak Wind Gusts from Dorian in Florida

Here’s some rainfall totals from Dorian in S. Carolina.:

Maximum rainfall of 10″ in the Carolinas. Here’s rainfall totals from Florida:

Rainfall in Florida from Dorian

While there was some local flooding, it was relatively minor and insignificant compared to the estimated 40″ of rain that occurred in parts of the northern Bahama Islands where there is extensive flooding. The wind and storm surge has reshaped some coastal shorelines of Abaco and Grand Bahama Islands.

There were 14 tornadoes Thursday in eastern S. C.

Two more storms received names. Very brief Tropical Storm Fernand moved into Mexico south of Brownsville, Texas. The storm did cause significant flooding and landslides in the Veracruz state. Fourteen storm-related fatalities were reported. Farther out in the Eastern Atlantic, we have Tropical Storm Gabrielle, which is no threat to land. It may become a weak hurricane as it drifts northwest and then north in the Central Atlantic, no threat to land.

On Monday, Dorian moved exactly 40 miles – a rate of 1.67 mph. When a hurricane sits still in one place, it churns up cooler water from below the surface and that usually causes the storm to weaken a little bit. A buoy near the eye reported a steady wind of 74 mph with a peak gust of 85 mph shortly before 2am Wed. A buoy 20 miles east of Cape Canaveral had a wind of 54 mph with a peak gust of 69 mph shortly before 2 am.

Winds are easing up a little on the devastated islands of Abaco and Grand Bahama. It’s a challenge to bring in relief supplies. The airports are flooded and/or littered with debris and so are the harbors. You can bring a helicopter…easier to find a place to land…but you can’t carry many relief supplies in a chopper.

No major problems in Florida, just mainly some tree and power line damage. At 2 am Thu. less than 1,000 customers were without power in Florida…the real catastrophic damage is on Abaco and Grand Bahama Islands.

Dorian tied for having the second-highest winds of any Atlantic hurricanes on record:

1. 190 mph (Allen 1980)
2. 185 mph (Dorian 2019, Labor Day 1935, Gilbert 1988, Wilma 2005)
3. 180 mph (Mitch 1998, Rita 2005, Irma 2017)
4. 175 mph (11 storms, including Maria 2017, Katrina 2005, Andrew 1992, Camille 1969)

I believe 185 mph is the maximum that Dorian will attain and the storm will very slowly weaken a bit over the next few days.

Dorian is tied for strongest landfalling Atlantic hurricane on record:

1. 185 mph: Dorian 2019 (Bahamas), Labor Day 1935 (Florida Keys)
2. 180 mph: Irma 2017 (Barbuda, St. Martin, British Virgin Islands)
3. 175 mph: Camille 1969 (Mississippi), Janet 1955 (Mexico), Dean 2007 (Mexico), David 1979 (Dominican Republic), Anita 1977 (Mexico)

Satellite pic. of Hurricane Dorian Monday AM – with a large eye over Grand Bahama Is.

This is a satellite pic. of Dorian Monday AM – The large eye is right over Grand Bahama Island.

The Bahamas is comprised of approximately 700 islands and cays. The population of the entire country is less than 400,000 (about twice the population of the city of Grand Rapids). The eye of Dorian crossed Abaco Island, home to approximately 17,500 people – population wise, it’s smaller than Grandville. There were at least five fatalities on Abaco Is. Grand Bahama Island – largest city is Freeport – has a population of approximately 51,000 – slightly more than Kentwood. The GDP per capita for the Bahamas is roughly $25,200 – more than double that of Cuba and ranked 16th out of 37 countries in N. America. A significant portion of some of the islands isn’t more than a few feet above sea level. Look at how much of the island of Andros is subject to flooding even with a category 1 hurricane. Up to half of the economy is related to tourism.

From the National Hurricane Center Sunday AM: “Air Force and NOAA reconnaissance planes penetrated the distinct eye of Dorian, and found that the hurricane has become extremely intense with a stadium effect in the eye. The NOAA plane reported a peak flight-level wind of 159 kt, while the SFMR from both planes have measured winds between 155 and 170 kt. A dropsonde from the NOAA plane measured a wind gust of 176 kt at the surface (202 mph!). A blend of these measurements yield to an initial intensity of 155 kt, making Dorian the strongest hurricane on record in the northwestern Bahamas. Here’s the website of the Bahamas Dept. of Meteorology. The path map of Dorian below should update automatically.

cone graphic

Here’s the latest Public Advisory, Forecast Discussion, Forecast Advisory, a national lightning map and a satellite loop of Dorian. Here’s Bahamas radar. NASA Dorian blog. Here’s a surface weather map of Florida (shows winds). Florida surface weather observations.

Here’s the Wind Probability Map:

Wind Forecast from Hurricane Dorian

Here’s a satellite loop, visible satellite loop of the Atlantic (daylight only), Here’s a link to current weather observations in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. :

Here’s the Rainfall Estimate Map from the Hurricane Center:

Southeast U.S. radar:

Southeast sector

Here’s Miami FL radar:

Click for latest Composite Reflectivity radar image from the Miami, FL radar and current weather warnings

The storm hit the Island of St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands with wind gusts of up to 111 mph. The strongest wind and heaviest rain passed north of Puerto Rico though an enhanced band of thunderstorms did produce flooding and up to 4″ of rain on the island and that caused some significant flooding, but damage on the island was minimal.

Storm report from St. Thomas/Buck Island 8 28 19

We did have Tropical Depression Erin off the coast of the Carolinas. It was a very minimal Tropical Storm for one day. Three of the five named tropical storms were minimal tropical storms (40 mph) for a day or less:

Here’s the Southern U.S. radar:

Southern Mississippi Valley sector loop

Here’s a satellite loop of the entire U.S.:

We also had Tropical Storm “Ivo”, off the West Coast of Mexico, which weakened to a depression and faded away:

cone graphic

The five named tropical storms this year is average-to-date for Aug. 31 However, two have been very brief and minimal tropical storms and one a minimal hurricane…Dorian is the first major hurricane of the season in the Atlantic.

The Western Hemisphere (Atlantic & NE Pacific) had 0 hurricanes from Aug. 2-24. Only 1 other time in satellite era (since 1966) has the W. Hemisphere had 0 hurricanes between Aug. 2-24. This occurred in 2001.

The ACE index is used as a measure of combined tropical cyclone number and strength. The ACE index thru Aug. 24 was a paltry 4.1 for the Atlantic, which may be the lowest ever to date. Average ACE to Aug. 24 was about 20. Dorian will really kick that number up to above average ACE – to -date.

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