TROPICAL STORM ELSA FORECAST SYNOPSIS…ISSUED JUL. 05, 2021…8:25 P.M. EDT

TROPICAL STORM ELSA FORECAST SYNOPSIS…ISSUED JUL. 05, 2021…8:25 P.M. EDT


Disclaimer:  This site is not affiliated with the National Hurricane Center, Hurricane Hunters, Storm Prediction Center, or National Weather Service.  ALL forecasts herein are the result of my analysis, and I am solely responsible for the content.  As ALWAYS, follow the National Hurricane Center, National Weather Service, and your local Emergency Management officials for emergency decisions.  In addition, this is strictly a FORECAST OFFICE.  I CANNOT make decisions regarding travel plans, etc.  My purpose, is to provide you the information, based solely on information I analyze, and the accuracy of the information at hand of the time of analysis, so you may make informed decisions.
(T. F. “Storm” Walsh)

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Cayman Islands

central Cuba

 

Greetings to everyone!
Please be aware, even though I do not post every night, rest assured I am continuously monitoring various areas for any significant weather.  I will be taking Sundays off (family time), unless we have active systems that may be posing a threat (i.e. Tropical, Winter Weather, Coastal Storms, etc.).

STORM WALSH PRE-SEASON FORECAST
TOTAL NAMED STORMS: 17 – 20
TOTAL HURRICANES :        7 – 9
MAJOR HURRICANES:       4 – 5

AVERAGE HURRICANE SEASON:
TOTAL NAMED STORMS: 14
TOTAL HURRICANES:         7
MAJOR HURRICANES:       3

2021 SEASON TOTALS:
TOTAL NAMED STORMS: 5
TOTAL HURRICANES: 1
MAJOR HURRICANES: 0

U. S. LANDFALLS: 2

The following is the list of storm names for the 2021 Atlantic Hurricane Season:
Ana Bill Claudette Danny Elsa Fred Grace Henri Ida Julian Kate Larry
Mindy Nicholas Odette Peter Rose Sam Teresa Victor Wanda
As a storm becomes named, I will be marking it in bold red to keep track of the activity for this Atlantic season.

Please note..when we are dealing with multiple systems, they will be listed in order as to the greatest threat to land or the U. S. , to the least threat.

Tropical Storm ELSA made landfall this afternoon around 2:00 p.m. EDT, over west-central Cuba.  As of the 8:00 p.m. EDT intermediate advisory, the following was available on ELSA:
8:00 PM EDT Mon Jul 5
Location: 22.9°N 81.9°W
Moving: NW at 13 mph
Min pressure: 1008 mb / 29.77 in
Max sustained: 50 mph

ELSA continues to move toward the NW, around the periphery of the subtropical ridge.  Based on current steering, it appears ELSA is approaching the weakness in the ridge.  Based on analysis of forecast steering, I expect this motion to pretty much continue until ELSA emerges into the Florida Straits.  However, based on the flow noted in current steering, and close analysis of visible satellite loop imagery, I cannot rule out a slight shift eastward in the track, or track guidance as well.  Satellite loop imagery indicated the center may have nudged just slightly east.  You will note in water vapor loop imagery, that the clouds NW of the storm, over the central Gulf, appear to be pushing toward the storm.  I believe this could nudge ELSA slightly east.  I could be wrong, but these are my thoughts.  If you use the INTERACTIVE MAP link, you can zoom in to see the current wind radii.
ELSA IR SATELLITE ANIMATION
90910945ir
ELSA VISIBLE
90910945
ELSA WATER VAPOR
90910945wv
GOES 16 IR LOOP IMAGERY (CLICK IMAGE FOR ANIMATION CONTROLS)

Continental US - Clean Longwave Window - IR

CURRENT STEERING
wg8dlm1
18Z ATCF GUIDANCE
aal05_2021070518_track_early
NHC SPAGHETTI PLOT
AL05_current
Based on forecast steering however, and current track guidance, I agree pretty much with the NHC forecast track:
NHC FORECAST TRACK MAP
204840_5day_cone_with_line_and_wind
NHC INTERACTIVE MAP LINK:
https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/refresh/graphics_at5+shtml/204840.shtml?gm_track#contents

Having made landfall over Cuba, ELSA has weakened.  Based on the landfall position, and current forecast track, it appears ELSA may miss directly hitting any mountainous areas over Cuba.  This may allow for the LLC to remain more intact.
CUBA TOPOGRAPHY
Cuba_Topography
Once the center emerges back over water, then into the GOMEX, some restrengthening is expected.  How quickly and how strong it intensifies will depend on the structure of the LLC (as to whether it is fairly intact, or raged), and any wind shear.  Analysis of other parameters such as Relative Humidity and precipitable water indciate enough moisture in the forecast, with the 500 mb level becoming drier, prior to landfall on the Florida Peninsula.  The NHC indicates vertical shear to affect ELSA as she traverses the GOMEX, which would limit intensification.  However, based on my analysis of the shear forecast from the GFS (which in the past has handled shear a little better than other global models), it does show some shear, however I believe it may be storm induced, as the lighter shear area remains over the center of the storm, and a weak anti-cyclonic pattern.  In addition, the 18Z SHIPS diagnostic report shows shear remaining below 20 knots during the next 72 hours.  Radial upper level outflow was noted in the 20Z CIMSS analysis, however the GFS indicates this collapses as ELSA gets closer to the SW Florida.  Based on this, I cannot totally rule out, that ELSA COULD become slightly stronger than forecast, IF the forecast parameters remain more favorable than the NHC forecast.  For the time being, I concur with the NHC intensity froecast:
NHC INTENSITY FORECAST
INIT 05/2100Z 22.7N 81.9W 45 KT 50 MPH
12H 06/0600Z 24.1N 82.7W 50 KT 60 MPH
24H 06/1800Z 26.1N 83.4W 55 KT 65 MPH
36H 07/0600Z 28.2N 83.6W 55 KT 65 MPH
48H 07/1800Z 30.6N 83.0W 35 KT 40 MPH…INLAND
60H 08/0600Z 32.8N 81.4W 30 KT 35 MPH…INLAND
72H 08/1800Z 35.5N 78.5W 30 KT 35 MPH…INLAND
96H 09/1800Z 41.5N 69.5W 40 KT 45 MPH…POST-TROP/EXTRATROP
120H 10/1800Z 49.0N 56.0W 40 KT 45 MPH…POST-TROP/EXTRATROP

The following is from the 8:00 p.m EDT intermediate advisory.  I will also be posting the local NWS product link. Please use this, and heed the information contained in it.

SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for...
* West coast of Florida from Bonita Beach to the Aucilla River
including Tampa Bay

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for...
* The Cuban provinces of Cienfuegos, Matanzas, Villa Clara,
Mayabeque, Havana, and Artemisa
* The Florida Keys from Craig Key westward to the Dry Tortugas
* West coast of Florida from Flamingo northward to Ochlockonee River

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for...
* West of the Aucilla River to the Ochlockonee River

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for...
* West of the Ochlockonee River to Indian Pass, Florida

A Storm Surge Warning means there is a danger of life-threatening 
inundation, from rising water moving inland from the coastline, 
during the next 36 hours in the indicated locations. For a depiction 
of areas at risk, please see the National Weather Service Storm 
Surge Watch/Warning Graphic, available at hurricanes.gov. This is a 
life-threatening situation. Persons located within these areas 
should take all necessary actions to protect life and property from 
rising water and the potential for other dangerous conditions. 
Promptly follow evacuation and other instructions from local 
officials.

A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are
expected somewhere within the warning area.

A Storm Surge Watch means there is a possibility of life-
threatening inundation, from rising water moving inland from the
coastline, in the indicated locations during the next 48 hours.
For a depiction of areas at risk, please see the National Weather
Service Storm Surge Watch/Warning Graphic, available at
hurricanes.gov.

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are
possible within the watch area.

Interests in coastal Georgia and the Carolinas should monitor the
progress of Elsa.

For storm information specific to your area in the United States, 
including possible inland watches and warnings, please monitor 
products issued by your local National Weather Service forecast 
office. For storm information specific to your area outside of the 
United States, please monitor products issued by your national 
meteorological service.
DISCUSSION AND OUTLOOK

At 800 PM EDT (0000 UTC), the center of Tropical Storm Elsa was 
located by radars from Key West, Florida, and Havana, Cuba, near 
latitude 22.9 North, longitude 81.9 West. Elsa is moving toward the 
northwest near 13 mph (20 km/h), and this general motion is expected 
to continue tonight, followed by a turn toward the north-northwest 
on Tuesday, and a turn toward the north on Tuesday night. A 
north-northeastward motion is expected on Wednesday. On the 
forecast track, Elsa should emerge off the coast western Cuba during 
the next hour or so, move into the Florida Straits this evening, and 
pass near the Florida Keys early Tuesday. Elsa is then forecast to 
move near or over portions of the west coast of Florida by late 
Tuesday and continuing into Wednesday.

Data from the NOAA Doppler weather radar in Key West indicate that 
maximum sustained winds are near 50 mph (85 km/h) with higher gusts 
over water. Some restrengthening is forecast after Elsa moves over 
the Straits of Florida tonight and over the Gulf of Mexico on 
Tuesday. An Air Force Reserve reconnaissance aircraft is en route 
to investigate Elsa once the storm moves back over water.

Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 70 miles (110 km), 
mainly north through northeast of the center.

The estimated minimum central pressure is 1008 mb (29.77 inches).


HAZARDS AFFECTING LAND

Key messages for Elsa can be found in the Tropical Cyclone
Discussion under AWIPS header MIATCDAT5, WMO header WTNT45 KNHC and
on the web at
www.hurricanes.gov/graphics_at5.shtml?key_messages.

WIND: Tropical storm conditions should continue over portions of
central and western Cuba for the next several hours. Tropical
storm conditions are expected in the warning area in the Florida
Keys beginning tonight and along the Florida west coast beginning
Tuesday. Tropical storm conditions are expected to spread
northward into the Florida Big Bend region within the Tropical
Storm Warning area Tuesday night and early Wednesday. Tropical
storm conditions are possible in the watch area beginning
late Tuesday night.

STORM SURGE: A storm surge will raise water levels above normal
tide levels by as much as the following amounts in areas of onshore
winds within the Tropical Storm Warning areas...

Southern coast of Cuba...2 to 4 ft

The combination of a storm surge and the tide will cause normally
dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving
inland from the shoreline. The water could reach the following
heights above ground somewhere in the indicated areas if the peak
surge occurs at the time of high tide...

Englewood, FL to Aucilla River including Tampa Bay...3 to 5 ft
Bonita Beach, FL to Englewood, FL including Charlotte Harbor...2 to
4 ft
Aucilla River to Ochlockonee River...2 to 4 ft
Flamingo, FL to Bonita Beach, FL...1 to 3 ft
Craig Key, FL to Dry Tortugas...1 to 2 ft
Ochlockonee River to Indian Pass...1 to 2 ft

Surge-related flooding depends on the relative timing of the surge
and the tidal cycle, and can vary greatly over short distances. For
information specific to your area, please see products issued by
your local National Weather Service forecast office.

RAINFALL: Across portions of Cuba tonight, rainfall of 5 to 10
inches with isolated maximum amounts of 15 inches is expected.
This will result in significant flash flooding and mudslides.
Across the Cayman Islands tonight, rainfall of 3 to 5 inches is
expected. This rain may lead to scattered flash flooding.

Elsa is expected to produce the following rainfall amounts and
impacts this week:

Across the Keys into southwest and western portions of the Florida
Peninsula...3 to 5 inches with localized maximum totals up to 8
inches through Wednesday, which may result in considerable flash 
and urban flooding, along with minor to isolated moderate river
flooding.

Across the rest of Florida into southeast Georgia and the Low
Country of South Carolina...2 to 4 inches with localized maximum
totals up to 6 inches through Wednesday night, which may result in
isolated flash, urban, and minor river flooding.

Across coastal portions of North Carolina into southeastern
Virginia...1 to 3 inches with isolated totals up to 5 inches
Wednesday night through Thursday night, which could lead to isolated
flash and urban flooding.

TORNADOES: A few tornadoes are possible across south Florida tonight
and across the Florida Peninsula on Tuesday.

SURF: Swells generated by Elsa will spread westward along the
southern coast of Cuba tonight. Swells will increase near the
Florida Keys and south Florida tonight and spread northward
along the west coast of Florida tonight through Tuesday night.
Please consult products from your local weather office for more
details.

ELSA NWS LOCAL PRODUCTS LINK:
https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/index_hls5+shtml/052135.shtml?

NHC ELSA GRAPHICS
204840_key_messages_sm
204840_spanish_key_messages_sm
204840_peak_surge
204840
WPC 7 DAY QUANTITATIVE PRECIPITATION FORECAST
p168i
FEMA FLOOD ZONE INFORMATION
https://www.wikihow.com/Read-a-FEMA-Flood-Map (HOW TO READ A FEMA FLOOD ZONE MAP)
https://msc.fema.gov/portal/home (FIND YOUR FLOOD ZONE)

The following map will allow to to get information from your NWS office.
NWS WATCH / WARNING DISPLAY (LINKED…CLICK MAP, THEN YOUR AREA)
United States

WSI DOPPLER RADAR LOOP (LINKED, CLICK RADAR MAP)
Virginia

RAP RADAR (CLICK IMAGE THEN RADAR SITE)West Coast
I will continue to monitor ELSA for any significant changes in the forecast, and intend to have another update late tomorrow evening.

You may direct any questions by contacting me personally, ANYTIME, at: [email protected]

Have a blessed day!

T. F. “STORM” WALSH III
GMCS, USCG (ret)
METEOROLOGIST / HURRICANE SPECIALIST /SEVERE WEATHER SPECIALIST
MEMBER WEST CENTRAL FLORIDA AMS

 

 



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