[stormCARIB - Caribbean Hurricane Network'

Caribbean Hurricane Network

- Updates from the Islands -
2005 season

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Archive of weather discussions and eye witness reports from the Caribbean Islands in the 2005 Atlantic Hurricane Season. Postings are in reverse chronological order (so it might be easier to start reading at the bottom of this page and work your way up to follow the timeline). For current events look here.

2005 Season: Arlene | Bret | Cindy | Dennis | Emily | Franklin | Gert | Harvey | Irene | Jose | Katrina | Lee | Maria | Nate | Ophelia | Philippe | Rita | Stan | Tammy | Vince |

- - - Tammy - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop

Wed, 05 Oct 2005 09:31:34 -0400 - TS Tammy

Good morning!
Deciding to skip grade school, TS Tammy decided to go straight to high school instead! So close to the coastline of Florida, she must have decided she needed to make a name for herself quickly before she moves inland and gets depressed. Tammy will definitely end all leftover drought talk in the southeast by the time she makes a beeline for the northeast with heavy rainfall  and that's probably all she will do other than maybe a few sporadic power outages, very light damage, especially to old trees, and localized flooding.
The tail end of the system that spawned Tammy is responsible for a deluge of rain in the British Virgin islands, the US Virgin Islands, Anguilla, Antigua and Puerto Rico (includes Vieques and Culebra) over the last few days with some good thunderstorms and lightning shows. By the way Marko, nice lightning pics! Fortunately, we are starting to dry out this morning but there will still be some leftover moisture around for some more rain. The only people crying today are the water truckers!
Off to the east, there is really nothing to get excited about until you reach the African coast and then there is a large red rubber ball but it looks pretty high up already. Still, something to watch.
With only one slot left namewise in the normal hurricane alphabet, Alpha seems poised to make it's world debut. It's been an unbelievable year already and there's 7 weeks left. What are your thoughts??

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- - - Stan - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
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- - - TD Nineteen - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
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Tuesday, October 4, 9:50PM - Stan
As was feared not the wind but the rains caused severe problems. This especially in El Salvador where about 50 people died from landslides. Stan made landfall south of Veracruz (Mexico), causing some flooding. Read more at eg: SFGate.com and Google.com-News.

Mon, 03 Oct 2005 19:10:03 -0400 - The Tropics and an Apology!

Good evening!
I'll get to the tropics in a moment but first, I need to have a meal of not just one crow, but a whole flock! By that, I mean, I owe a sincere and humble public apology to one of the people who support this website and also is in the middle of producing a documentary titled: "Living in the Path of a Hurricane": E Franklin Tullock III, of Earthbound Studios, here in the US Virgin Islands.
I owe him this apology because I blew him off without notice on the 24th of September when I was supposed to pick him up on St. Thomas and meet with him concerning his documentary and contribute to it, along with several others. Due to a medical problem which left me pretty much incommunicado over that weekend, I did not do anything I said I would. This is not an excuse at all! The worst part; the part for which I really owe this apology for, is that I never contacted him afterwards to explain myself. I basically left this person in a lurch with no really good reason for doing so. And for that, I am truly sorry.
Tropical Storm Stan is keeping up his end of the bargain; that is, keeping the 2005 tropical season busy with his antics over the Yucatan Peninsula and eventually, as a possible category 1 hurricane headed into Old Mexico. Wind should not be the problem; storm surge and the heavy rains causing flooding and landslides will be.
The Far Eastern Atlantic is pretty quiet by this years standards as TD#19 condesended to TD#20 by giving up name honors and then fizzling out. The fact there is not a wave exiting Africa right now almost seems like a mirage: they have been coming off relentlessly since June!
The trough over the Bahama's and stretching into the Caribbean is causing all sorts of heavy showers and thunderstorms with the potential down the road for development over the Bahamas's and moving west across Florida. Another potential Gulf of Mexico threat looming????

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Saturday, October 1, 1:40PM - TD Twenty
Two tropical depressions. Number Nineteen in the eastern Atlantic is still a depression and hasn't become tropical storm Stan yet. The good news is that it is curving towards the north, and isn't expected to reach the islands (it won't even get closer then 1500 miles).
The twentieth depression of the season formed off the Yucatan Peninsula, about 110 miles southeast of Cozumel. So close to Emily earlier in the season. Luckily this is just a depression, but might just reach tropical storm status before making landfall. Windwise it will be nothing compared to Emily, but be prepared for a lot of rain for the Yucatan and Belize.
For forecasted track, closest point of approach, advisories see the links above.

Fri, 30 Sep 2005 17:49:59 -0400 (AST) - TD#19

Good afternoon!

It couldn't have stayed quiet for too long now could it? That would have
been too much to ask for, especially THIS season!

TD#19 has been classified as of the 5 pm advisories SW of the Cape Verde
Islands. While, historically, the Cape Verde season is virtually over,
this is not your typical, historical season. All indications, at this
time, take it towards the northwest but since it's way early yet, just a
cautious, weary yet alert eye will be watching the progress of this storm.
Next on the list is Stan.

The area of more immediate concern in the Central and Western Caribbean is
pretty stretched out across a broad region including Jamaica, the Caymans,
Hispaniola, Cuba, and others. If it gets it's act together, this system
could wreak more havoc in the Gulf of Mexico where conditions for
development are very good. Keep your fingers crossed on this one!


Mon, 26 Sep 2005 18:48:52 -0400 - Baby Stan???

Good evening!
With Rita a fading historical memory, Philippe, a strong north central Atlantic storm (non-tropical now) headed for the Azores, a a finally quiet Gulf of Mexico, you think we could all start to breath a bit easier as we head onto the downhill slide of hurricane season called October right??
Think again!
A large, discombobulated wave is moving through the central Caribbean and, later down the road, could be baby Stan! Or, the other "brother" to the southeast of the Cape Verde Islands already shows signs of some organization although it's best chance for development would have to wait until it reaches the central area around 40W. It appears it will be a race for the next named storm in a very busy tropical season and there's still 6 1/2 weeks left! Now is definitely not the time for those of us in the Caribbean to heave a sigh of relief, eat up those canned goods, drain your generator of that high-priced gas, and drink up those water jugs that have been sitting for a few months in preparation. A couple more months of continued preparation will not hurt the least bit but hopefully will not be needed. May the hurricane "jumbies" stay away and then you could use those supplies for other priorities; like an after hurricane season party!

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- - - Rita - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop
- - - Philippe - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop

Thursday, September 22, 11:30PM - TX/LA
Things have changed since yesterday. Now Rita is expected to pass on the east (right) side of Houston, instead of the west side. That means closer to New Orleans and other little towns in Southern Louisiana. Rita was the third strongest storm ever! It was a Cat-5, now luckily back to Cat-4, but still very dangerous. The latest advisories show as well that after making landfall it will actually stall somewhere in northeastern Texas/western Louisiana, and that means extreme large amounts of rainfall. There might be as much as 25 inch (!) of rain in certain areas... This might be even worse then the wind induced damage at time of landfall. You can track how close the storm might get to you with the 'closest point of approach calculator'.

Wednesday, September 21, 12:05PM - Texas...
Luckily Rita didn't cause too much trouble in the Bahamas and the Florida Keys (see some reports by my hurricane correspondents above). Now however Rita is an 'extreme' category 4 hurricane! The warm waters of the Gulf really fuel this system. It might even reach category-5 (the highest) status. It's current path takes it toward Texas where it will make landfall later this week. As it looks right now the center of Rita will stay about 80 miles west of Houston and Galveston, 95 miles east of Corpus Christi (see the tool how close can it get). The 11AM advisory shows that the eye of the storm makes landfall at Matagorda Bay. However, a hurricane is not a point, so we shouldn't focus on where the eye will go too much. Hurricane winds currently expand outward up to 45 miles from the center, and tropical storm winds even 140 miles. And as always, the storm is still 3 days away, these model forecast tracks are not set in stone.
As for Philippe... as it looks right now it will stay safely east of Bermuda.

Monday, September 18, 1:15AM - Rita & Philippe
Two storms... First Philippe. It looks good for the islands, since it appears that Philippe will indeed stay far enough to the east to have any big effect on the Northeastern islands. Hopefully it will stay clear of Bermuda as well (but that is still a long time away).
Tropical Storm Rita is currently north of Mayaguana (Bahamas). A lot of watches and warnings have been posted for the Bahamas/Florida/Keys. See the advisories for more info. It is expected to move over Long Island, Exuma and then (south) Andros Islands (all Bahamas). As it looks right now the center of Rita will pass about 65 miles south of Nassau in 24 hours, a relative safe distance for this tropical storm. If it doesn't blow up all of a sudden (which is not expected) the Bahamas should be doing fine. After the Bahamas it will pass just south of Florida and the Keys. It's closest point of approach with Key West is only 25 miles in 42 hours (from the 11PM advisories). At that time it is expected to be a category-1 hurricane. But since intensities are very hard to predict, the Keys should pay close attention to this potentially dangerous hurricane.

Sat, 17 Sep 2005 10:56:36 -0400 - Too close for comfort!

Good morning!
Well, it's official! TD#17, now east of Barbados, has formed and early predictions are for it to come close to the islands of the Caribbean and spare us any direct harm off to the east and north as it is moving northwest at this time. The hairs go up on the back of my neck as I watch this scenario unfold though as it's eerily similar to 10 years ago when, first Hurricane Luis and following his shirtails, Hurricane Marilyn, made there way up the island chain. And you can see the systems directly behind this TD.
Current run by the Ships computer model puts TD#17 as a strong Cat 2 hurricane in 72 hours. The other models really are not in close agreement yet with the forecast track; a few have it going northwest and sparing the Caribbean while the others have it entering the Caribbean around Dominica and swing up to the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. Another days movement should dictate much more clearly the direction of this storm but I don't like it anyway! More later as I get to a computer that works!!

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Wed, 14 Sep 2005 09:19:18 -0400 - Philippe ?

Good morning!
While it has been quiet for the last few week or so off to our east, another wave, slow mover too, has started to get a bit more of it's act together with showers and thunderstorms starting to sprout up. It has shaken much of it's Saharan Dust cloak and is now in a moist area of the tropics around 39W. Quite broad in nature as well, stretching from 2N to 17N,  it has continued to travel at a relatively low latitude which makes for some anxious moments for us here in the Caribbean. And as long as that unusually strong trough holds it's place in the central Atlantic, this wave should continue low. Right now, none of the forecasters seem to be too worried about it, but, as usual, I am. Maybe there concentrating too much on Ophelia this time.
Speaking of Ophelia, this extremely resilient storm is still battering the coast of North and South Carolina causing immense beach erosion and eventually will cause heavy flooding and should also contribute wind damage. While not the strongest of storms, her "I'm going to take my sweet old time" attitude means a constant pounding of winds over a long period of time. Some trees and buildings aren't going to stand up to that type of continual punishment.

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Fri, 9 Sep 2005 18:05:18 -0400 (AST) - What's next?

Good afternoon!

And happy Friday to everyone! The Northern Leeward Islands are under
another protective(?) coat of Saharan Dust with some Souffriere Hills
volcanic ash thrown in for good measure cutting visibilty here in St.
Thomas down to about 4 miles. I cannot even see Tortola from the East End
of St. Thomas where I live and that's bad!

The good side is the dust continues to help supress tropical development
as it continues it's after season travels. After season meaning after
mid-August as usually, the Saharan dust season is from June till
mid-August. This correspondent isn't complaining about low visibility and
maybe a cough or two as it's way better than experiencing a Katrina-like
hurricane; or any hurricane for that matter.

Off to the east, a few light waves are in action. The one around 26W peaks
some interest even though, for now, it looks as wimpy as the rest of them
at this point.

Nate and Maria are whipping it up in the North Central Atlantic with the
Azores in potential extra tropical trouble. Ophelia has phoenixed back
into a hurricane and could even do the loopty-do and eventually make
landfall in Georgia, South Carolina, or even cross the Florida peninsula.
Keep your fingers crossed with this gypsy-like storm.


- - - Ophelia - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop
- - - Nate - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop
- - - Maria - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop

Wed, 07 Sep 2005 17:40:37 -0400 - Ophelia, You're Breakin' My Heart!

Good afternoon!
This headline could be a possibility if steering winds cause Ophelia to move across Florida and into the Gulf of Mexico as opposed to heading north and northwest. Along with seriously frayed nerves from Killer Katrina would come renewed anxieties; definitely not needed or welcome. Plus, oil and gas production would be halted again raising the evil spectre of higher and higher fuel prices; again, not needed or welcome. Let's all pray Ophelia is just a nuisance rainmaker and moves out to seas eventually as some long term models suggest. Otherwise.......
Hurricane Nate is about to pounce close to Bermuda. Fortunately, Bermudians are well equipped to handle hurricanes, especially the Cat 1-2 variety and so should fare ok. Serious surf and some driving rains should be all they receive unless Nate wants to get up close and personal. Hopefully, he's a "MONK" type of hurricane!
The Caribbean is pretty quiet right now and looking off to the east, only a few waves are evident. Believe it or not, Saharan Dust is still helping to suppress convection and development in the eastern Atlantic as waves continue to try to form south of the Cape Verdes.
September 10th is the climatological height of hurricane season. This season seems to have many heights!

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September 7 5:50PM EDT - National Geographic
I just found a New Orleans hurricane report in National Geographic, written a year ago (!!!): http://www3.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/0410/feature5/?fs=www7.nationalgeographic.com

September 7 2:55PM EDT - Three storms
Sorry, I was out of the country attending a conference in the Netherlands and too busy to update the website. Thanks to Dave to provide weather discussions! Lots has happened... the tragedy with Katrina and now we have three storms to track! The first one, Maria, is no threat to anyone. Nate is close to Bermuda, and as it looks right now will pass about 100 miles south of Bermuda in about 32 hours (from the 11AM advisory). At that time it is forecasted to have winds of about 90 miles (category-1 hurricane), so not too bad, unless Nate changes its mind and will pass closer by Bermuda. The last storm, Ophelia, is east of Florida and should stay off-shore for now.
Regarding Katrina, although this is the 'Caribbean' Hurricane Network I will open up some kind of board on the Pleas for Help section. This will probably be mostly links to other, already more established, website. People are of course still trying to check if there family or friends are ok, and I will search for some links to 'people-lists'.

Tue, 6 Sep 2005 18:38:31 -0400 (AST) - Active!

Good evening!

Two named storms, one a hurricane, one a possible hurricane, and another
trying to make a name for herself!

What a week it has started out to be and again, we are not even at the
climatological height of hurricane season, which is September 10th!
Hurricane Maria is moving fortunately away from land and only a threat to
shipping interests; Tropical Storm Nate, possibly Hurricane Nate by
tomorrow morning, could pose a serious threat to Bermuda later this week,
and TD#16, already dumping heavy rains on the Bahama's and Florida, should
be Tropical Storm Ophelia by tthe time it plows into southern Georgia and
northern Florida; none of these areas in need of any more rain.

Off to the east, a few more hurricane foot soldiers leave the African
coast. So far, we have been protected by Saharan dust early in the season
and now, strong shearing winds. Is it possible the Caribbean could come
through the rest of this season unscathed? I highly doubt it but Mother
Nature does provide miracles in small doses. Be prepared, no matter what!!

American citizens, not refugees, are having a rough go of it on the
mainland. Many did not have the means to evacuate and I'm still perplexed
as to why the "powers that be" did not go in with buses, boats, humvees,
anything to move the folks out of harms way who had no means or way of
getting out under a mandatory evacuation order. I understand the foolish
few who wanted to stay no matter what and that is there right. But when
the time came for rescue, those who didn't want to stay but were forced to
by circumstances, should have been the first to be saved. I guess I'm
advocating a tougher type of "tough love".

Anyway, another thing to keep in the back of your Caribbean minds and
another very good reason to prepare if you haven't already....

Considerable resources of FEMA have been allocated, and quite righteously,
to the "Killer Katrina" victims, their families, businesses, and other
interests. Nations around the world have offerred assistance although it
doesn't seem we are accepting many of those offers.  If a Cat 3-5 were to
hit the Caribbean, particularly in the poorer countries of the region,
assistance would probably be less forthcoming as those resources have been
already committed. After all, Hurricane Ivan as it pertains to Grenada is
an afterthought now in the minds of most which is tragic still with many
without means of a livelihood, a roof on there house, enough food and
water, or other basic supplies. As one of my fellow hurricane
correspondents said, "If it was reported that Osama Bin Laden had
devastated New Orleans, the reaction would have been swift with the full
might of the United States". It's highly unlikely the next Cat 3-5
hurricane will have the name "Osama Bin Laden".


Thu, 01 Sep 2005 17:45:19 -0400 - Waiting in the wings?

Good afternoon!
I would like to take amoment to thank all of you who supported my column on August 30th concerning evacuations and concern for others. I usually write light hearted with a serious undertone but this particular aspect really touched my "upset bone" and, even today, as I continuously see the deterioration of what was once the proud city of New Orleans and other low-lying coastal areas, I am still stupefyed. What were some of these residents thinking?
Anyway, enough of that. If you have the means to send any kind of help, in any way, shape or form, send it to the Red Cross. That way you know it will get in the right hands.
Meanwhile, off to our east, TD#14 has formed and could be TS Maria very soon. TD Lee is still swirling farther north but neither of these systems will affect the islands and should only be a threat to shipping interest's.
What I see is the next Caribbean threat is the steadily organizing wave around 30W and 10N. This looks like Nate with an attitude. Let's all keep a wary eye on this one!

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- - - Lee - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop
- - - Katrina - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop

Link to Updates from the Bahamas and other islands can be found above

Tue, 30 Aug 2005 17:52:48 -0400 - Killer katrina

Good evening.
A sad day it is for the residents and states of Louisianna, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, and Florida as Hurricane Katrina, now rumbling through the Tennessee Valley area, has dealt a devastating and deadly blow to the entire region. Even though this is the Caribbean Hurricane Network, it would be a "faux paux" to not give credence to the power of Hurricane Katrina and the havoc she wrought. There are hard lessons to be learned!
Other than preparation, which is the first and foremost activity you should do "before a storm approaches" is to listen to authorities and when they tell you to evacuate, EVACUATE! I can't tell you how upset I am at the fact that many lives were needlessly lost due to some people thinking they are "bullet-proof"; others thinking their property was worth more than their lives, and more thinking "Oh, it won't be that bad; we've been through hurricanes before".
Now, unfortunately, there are many homeless and way less fortunate folks who do not or did not have the resources at the time to evacuate and therefore were stuck riding out the storm; some with deadly consequences. In many instances, this was not their fault and they fell through the cracks or were too proud to ask for much needed help. I sympathize with those people. However, I do not sympathize with those who had a choice and learned the ultimate lesson. For example, the dozens who stayed at their apartment complex, on low ground, in Biloxi, Ms. They had no business being there during the storm and the apartment building collapsed under Katrina's onslaught which resulted in a large unnecessary loss of life! Obviously, some were caught at the wrong place and wrong time and nothing could have saved them but many, at least, had a choice. The selfish also put the lives of their resuers in jeopardy possibly leading to more loss  
of life.
This is a lesson for the Carribbean as well! Evacuate if told to. It could save your life, your families, your potential rescuers, and some stranger who could have used your rescuers skills as well.

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Mon, 29 Aug 2005 18:34:07 -0400 (AST) - Katrina and others

Good evening!

Hurricane Katrina is still plowing through Mississippi at this time; still
a category 1 hurricane! While not a physical factor here in the Caribbean,
she is still an economic one as she has disrupted shipping, cargo
movements, and will eventually affect gas prices with the shutdown of oil
rigs and the suspension of oil refinery operations. The weather does
impact alot more than just what you see and experience first hand!

The tropical depression formerly known as TD#13 was a twizzler that
fizzled. Howeever, it still doesn't look to bad and could regenerate but
should only be a threat to shipping lanes if it does.

Off to the Far East, a 1008 mb low is around 9n embedded inside a tropical
wave south of the Cape Verde Islands which will need careful monitoring as
well as the next large "land-wave" at the moment poised to exit the
African coast sometime tomorrow. We are reaching the heart of Hurricane
season with another 1/2 a season to go so no one is out of the woods by
any means.

Our hearts and prayers go out to those affected by Katrina from the


August 27 1:20PM EDT - Gulf Coast
For people living on the Gulf Coast who want to find out how close the storm can pass by them check out the following tools: How close can it get? and How close is it?. I have listed some latitude/longitude coordinates of a number of cities on the Gulf Coast. Also, on the 5 day forecast advisory by the Hurricane Center I have included a MPH conversion and a storm classification.
As it looks right now Katrina is heading for New Orleans. At that time it might be a Category-3 hurricane...

Wed, 24 Aug 2005 13:02:54 -0400 (AST) - Katrina

Good afternoon!

The former remnants of TD#10 rose like the proverbial phoenix from the
ashes today and became Tropical Storm Katrina. As her forecast path takes
a turn later for the southern part of Florida, everyone in that neck of
the woods who lived there in 1992 remembers today is the anniversary of
Hurricane Andrew, the costliest natural disaster on record. Forecast to
slow down as well, she is expected to dump enormous amounts or rain on
otherwise already ahead of last years rainfall areas. Now all Caribbean
Islands could use as much water as they can get but not that much in so
short of time.

Speaking of rainfall, it is a torrential downpour here in St. Thomas today
on and off since 6am. Radar looks to be clearing a bit but more is
expected as this wave passes through. Fortunately, upper level winds are
not conducive for it to develop over our heads.

Looking east, it's pretty quiet with two waves making some noise and not
much else but who knows down the road!


- - - Jose - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop

Mon, 22 Aug 2005 18:10:57 -0400 (AST) - Ominous

Good afternoon!

TD#11 is swirling around the Bay of Capeche but is too close to land to
become anything more significant than a major rainfall event for Old

Old TD#10 is trying to grow up again and needs to be closely watched
around the southeastern US and Bahama's. The TCI, I understand, are green
which is something the residents are very happy about but they don't need
the drenching a TD could drop.

Elsewhere, there's ominous rumblings around the Cape Verde Islands at this
time with two tropical waves with the imminent potential for devlopment
although the first one has died down dramatically from several days ago.
It seems like most of the one's before have done that too and it would be
wishful thinking that all of them do that.

Have to go back to the studio so more tomorrow morning but please, it's
getting to the core of hurricane season and if you think your out of the
woods, think again!


August 22 1:35PM EDT - Number 11
Another depression. Now in the Bay of Campeche, it might become a tropical storm before it makes landfall. Only the rains might pose a problem.

- - - Tropical Depression Ten - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop

Tue, 16 Aug 2005 18:22:22 -0400 - biding time

Good evening!
Long-lived Irene is now a threat only to shipping interests, having circled the wagon we all know as Bermuda. Otherwise, down in history as part of a very active and record setting early 2005 season.
Aws we turn our attention to the rising sun in the east, we see several systems of various note. One is former Private Depression #10 while Field Marshal von Wave impressively enters the scene off the coast of Africa. First, #10.
This system also thinks it a storm of considerable fortitude as forecasters are now saying regeneration is possible over the next 24-36 hours and I have no reason to doubt them. I just wish it would move a little farther north. We have reluctantly enjoyed serious downpours this afternoon with thunder and considerable lightning; not to mention another power outage for the last 4 hours so you can see why I don't want anything to do with rain for at least a week!
Field Marshal von Wave is another in a long list of characters which has stepped onto the hurricane stage and might possible fall on his face as many have done already; falling victim to that dreaded dry air and imbedded Saharan dust. There is a large area of dust in front of this wave but the 2005 Era of the Dust" is almost over and von Wave has a good chance of survival. Wouldn't it be nice if this hurricane season was all bark and no bite? Then it wouldn't matter how many formed! Unfortunately, I don't think we'll be that lucky!

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August 14 12:25PM EDT - Number 10
The tenth tropical depression formed in the Atlantic and is almost gone already... No worries.

- - - Irene - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
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Mon, 08 Aug 2005 11:46:45 -0400 - It's quiet again!

Good morning!
Other than Harvey who seems to be trying for some sort of "longevity record" and Irene who didn't quite grow out of puberty, there's not much happening in the tropics. Actually, the little system just to the south of St. Croix seems to have more "punch" than Irene and actually has an opportunity to grow bigger as it moves west, so Western Caribbean, wake-up from your siesta and take a look!
The waves are lined up across Africa like good little foot soldiers with a few helpful doses of Saharan dust in between but the "dust season" should start to abate as we head into the middle of August and then our one protector from the evil hurricane empire will be gone and probably, so will the quiet.

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August 4 10:05PM EDT - Number Nine
While Harvey didn't do too much in Bermuda (see local reports) a new one is on the horizon. I shouldn't repeat myself again... number nine... and it's only the first week of August, well before the 'real peak' of the season... This is more or less one of the first 'Cape Verde' storms (see this graph of past storms at unisys), those with a potential to become very strong. Luckily it looks like it will go nicely north of the islands. Lets hope the models are doing a fine job this time :-).

- - - Harvey - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop

August 3 11:55AM EDT - Harvey
The eighth named storm of the season! Luckily no hurricane. It is heading for Bermuda, but not too much problems are expected. Above you can find the reports from the special correspondents on Bermuda as they come in.
There is also something brewing in the Atlantic... it is nothing yet, but we have to keep an eye on those things.

Tue, 2 Aug 2005 18:04:31 -0400 (AST) - TD#8

Good evening!

While I was waiting to go on set with tonight's weather, I thought I would
send a quick missive as I cannot send one from home at the moment due to a
tremendous thunder and lightning show we had late Friday night. Yes, even
I fell victim to the last two bolts of lightning which struck the pole up
on top of the hill I live on; they took out my modem and my digital
receiver for cable. Stupid me left the phone line plugged into the back of
my computer and not the UPS! Fortunately, everything else is on UPS or
surge protector. The power was out in my area for 3 hours and cable itself
all day. Then power went out again Sunday morning from 7:30 am-9:30 am and
again for another hour before noon. I'm really sympathizing with Ms.
Mermaid on Tortola right now!!

TD#8 has been declared this afternoon and tropical storm warnings are up
for Bermuda with 3-5 estimated inches of rain possible. Should it be named
Harvey, it will be the earliest 8th named storm on record. And it's only
August 2nd!

The rest of the Atlantic is looking fairly quiet. Several weak waves are
out there but nothing of any significance, at this time. Saharan dust is
still all along the Atlantic hurricane basis and is helping to suppress
potential convection. Don't count on this happening all the time though.

If NOAA's just released forecast holds up, we are in for an unimaginable
year, especially if they are land-falling. Named storm # 22 would be


Fri, 29 Jul 2005 11:46:00 -0400 (AST) - UH OH!

Good morning!

Well, at least the morning was good but it looks like it will take
a turn for the worse this afternoon and tonight. The first attack came
this morning with St. Croix taking a quick, early morning beating with one
peak wind gust at 51 mph! They have since been on the receiving end of
several more downpours. The East end of St. Croix is pretty dry so I'm
sure the rain was welcome there but heavy rains and flooding are
synonymous with some areas of the island and have been for many years due
to government inaction and some peoples stubborness in building in flood
prone areas and then, not buying flood insurance.

St. Thomas and St. John, along with the BVI's are starting to get heavier
rains as well and there is a flash flood watch out until 10:30 pm tonight
but I believe that will have to be extended uless this system pulls more
to the north. Under flood watch are the US Virgin Islands, Culebra,
Vieques, and most of East and Central Puerto Rico. I'm sure the BVI's have
one as well.

A tropical depression is likely but there are some shearing winds aloft so
it shouldn't develop very quickly so islands down the road westward should
take heed. If it pulls more to the west northwest, the shearing is greater
which would be good news!

The rest of the Atlantic, with the exception of grandfather Franklin still
swilling Atlantic waters and taking a lunch bite out of Nova Scotia, is
pretty quiet with those other two waves taking a break for now.


Thu, 28 Jul 2005 13:58:07 -0400 (AST) - that wasn't long

Good afternoon!

So much for a lull in the action! I was looking (hoping) for a few weeks
respite but alas, it's not to be. Yes, we could use the rain but nothing

The large wave to the east of the northern Lesser Antilles has blossomed
today with a good potential to become TD#7 by tonight with hurricane
hunters tentatively scheduled for a flight into the system tomorrow.

The good news is that it is moving west-northwest pretty rapidly and that
should keep the heaviest rains to the north of the islands but still close
enough for some tropical downpours here in the Virgin Islands (both US and
BVI) and Puerto Rico, Culebra and Vieques. Fortunately, a high pressure
system which was sitting around the Bahama's has moved farther east into
more of the Central Atlantic so the steering wind flow from "Hurricane
Alley" starts to steer these waves more to the west-northwest as opposed
to just west like they have been doing which is good news for now.

Now, while most eye's are on this system, we should really watch the one
behind it closely as well. I believe this one is going to try to sneak up
on us!


Wed, 27 Jul 2005 09:26:16 -0400 - short lull

Good morning!
While all is quiet on the Western front, the Eastern front appears to be regrouping for another round of "Name That Storm!" With strong ridging in the Atlantic, all systems will generally be funneled towards the west a/k/a the Caribbean.
Leading the African Wave Train is contestant number 1, located around 46W. A large, extended wave, it's immediate attempts to organize have been hindered by the dry air mass ahead of it and the remnants of that giant Saharan dust cloud. However, over time, development is possible. Right now it is forecast to give us some showers and thunderstorms, mainly Friday and Saturday. 
Contestant number 2 appears to be the beneficiary, at least for now, of contestant number 1's problems of leading the way and clearing out the opposition. Very warm Sea Surface Tempertaures, easterly winds with little, if any shear, and lower than normal pressures make for an interesting scenario with contestant number 2 next week.
Contestant number 3, while in the infancy stage, was born healthy overnight off the West African coast and is only a pretender at this time.
Folks, lets face it; the Cape Verde season has begun. Every wave coming off that coast has the opportunity to "make a name for his or her self" so, if you haven't made any preparations by now, it is time. (Unless you are one of those rare individuals with that time-honored piece of equipment known as a crystal ball that's foretelling there's no chance you will be affected).

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Mon, 25 Jul 2005 09:40:11 -0400 (AST) - Dust

Good morning to all!

First, I'd like to take a moment to thank everyone for your generous
compliments regarding my writing contributions to this website. They
really are very much appreciated!

While TS Franklin is slowly falling apart to the west of Bermuda (not far
enough though as a good rain event is expected), and TD Gert is still
chasing Hurricane Emily's skirt through Mexico, the big story at the
moment is Saharan Dust!

I've lived here on St. Thomas for almost 16 years and I have never seen it
this thick before. It's definitely raised the Allergy Index around the
Caribbean and even Florida is expected to feel some effects. Granted, the
brilliant sunrises and sunsets are something to behold but this stuff has
to go! In addition, the dust does not do anything good for our beautiful
coral reefs. The good news is the dust helps to suppress tropical storm
formation and that is where the real benefit comes in. Right now there are
several tropical waves with good potential for development if the dust
wasn't drying them out. However, as we wind down a record first two months
already, nothing can be taken for granted. As the dust pulls away, those
tropical disturbances may want to play!

Currently, the US Virgin Islands is experiencing a slight break in the
dust action (yes I can see some blue sky!) with a temp. of 87 degrees, a
heat index of 95 degrees and humidity of 65%. Scattered showers will be
expected tonight into Tuesday but nothing big.


- - - Gert - - -
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July 25 5:45PM EDT - Nothing personal I hope...
From the latests advisories :-)


July 24 3:55PM EDT - Gert (the other one)
And here we have the seventh named storm... and it's only July! Hopefully this means that the rest of the season will be very quiet! Tropical Storm Gert is in the Bay of Campeche almost making landfall in Mexico. It is a bit disorganized at the moment without a clear center. The main threat of this storm will be the rainfall and possible flooding/mudslides, especially since Gert will pass over some of the same area where Emily did her thing last week! I am glad though that especially this storm is not the season's 'big one'! :-)

- - - Franklin - - -
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July 25 2:10PM EDT - Weak Franklin
Franklin is just a weak tropical storm. It should pass a safe distance to the west of Bermuda in 2 days or so. Shouldn't be a problem!
I found this very cool picture of Hurricane Emily taken from the International Space Station on NASA's Earth Observatory Website.

Fri, 22 Jul 2005 21:25:22 -0400 (AST) - Getting UnQuiet!

Good evening to all and hope everyone has a great weekend!

Tropical Storm Franklin is hopefully continuing his getaway towards the
north and eventually northeast with the most danger only affecting
shipping interests although, Bermuda could see a little action. For a
change this season, an introverted storm.

The Yuacatan Peninsula and Belize are the unwanting hosts of another
invasive tropical wave which is a persistent rainmaker over an area which
just kicked Hurricane Emily out as "persona non-grata". Unfortunately, it
looks like this system will develop over the Bay of Campeche. Time will

Time will also tell on several waves marching across the Atlantic Basin.
The most interesting could arrive here in the territory and the Caribbean
in general, depending on speed, by Saturday as something more impressive.
A wave just starting to exit the African coast also looks impressive at
this time. (And once again, IT'S ONLY JULY!!!)

Another characteristic of tropical waves is the usual trailing companion
of Saharan dust which is showing up on satellite images in dense amounts.
This airborne feature is very bad for the coral reefs here in the
Caribbean but surprisingly, good for the rain forest, El Yuque, in eastern
Puerto Rico. Every ying has it's yang!


Fri, 22 Jul 2005 08:06:58 -0400 (AST) - Next!!

Good morning!

With Emily having "left the building", another pretender to the throne has
arisen although Franklin appears to be a "weakling prince"! Hopefully, it
will do what forecasters believe and that will be to recurve towards the
northeast and speed out to sea. The possibility does exist for it to turn
west and plod into the Florida Space Coast or further north but it should
get picked up by a passing trough.

Another pretender in the wings is a disturbance that is set to cross the
Yucatan Peninsula and bring gusty winds and showers to Cuba, The Caymans
and a rain soaked Yucatan. Looked impressive, even better than Franklin
last night but has since tapered off some. Still, once it crosses land and
enters the southern Gulf of Mexico, anything's possible. Emily didn't
steal all of the very warm sea surface water which is a necesary component
for development.

Off to the East, a couple areas of interest but right now things are
pretty quiet. Too bad we can't send that Saharan dust back to Africa as
this stuff is brutal for visibility conditions and those with allergies.
And there is alot of it still headed towards the Caribbean. Yuk!

Looking like a nice day today with a weak wave passing mainly south but we
should still see a couple showers late.


- - - Emily - - -
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Tue, 19 Jul 2005 15:32:44 -0400 (AST) - Quiet!

Good afternoon!

While Emily makes her final landmass plunge into the Southern Texas, Old
Mexico border, the weather has finally quieted down in the Atlantic Basin,
other than a few weak waves with not much development potential (at this

The Yucatan took it's blows from Emily and fared better than most had
pondered. I do believe the Mexican Government, unlike some other's, has
learned from past storms and taken precautions and safety to a higher

The US Virgin Islands are currently feeling the effects of one of those
weak waves with periodic showers. A thunderstorm with an attitude lasting
about 30 minutes this morning took out power for almost an hour on St.
Thomas and St. John with serious cloud to ground lighting. Interesting how
power can stay up during a Cat 3 hurricane in some arena's yet a simple
thunderstorm can take down several islands. I'm no electrical engineer by
any means but I definitely sympathize with my fellow correspondent in
Tortola, Miss Mermaid, on the power issue. By the way, the BVI Electrical
Company just received numerous new electrical poles so maybe that problem
wil be abated soon!

Time to go put a suit on and go give the weather. Take care and be safe!


Mon, 18 Jul 2005 13:29:45 -0400 (AST) - Yucatan Emily

Good afternoon!

If the only fortunate thing which could be said about the strongest
hurricane ever in the month of July, Hurricane Emily, other than she has
spent alot of time over open water which has been very fortuitous to the
islands of the Caribbean, is that she is still in "speeding-ticket mode"!
This hurricane is still motivating along at 17 mph even after encountering
landfall. Too bad the Yucatan doesn't have any high mountains like Cuba
and the Dominican Republic. This "fast forward" moving hurricane could
have caused serious damage and injury to the islands of Jamaica and the
Caymans if it hadn't been traveling so fast. By being slower by 3-8 mph,
it could have curved a bit more northward hitting both places alot closer
to the core-wind wise, not to mention the devastating rains which would
have lingered longer causing catastrophic flooding.

Cancun, Cozumel, and the rest of the Yucatan, at this moment, doesn't seem
to have encountered serious damage although reports are still coming in.
One item to keep in mind: It struck as a Category 4 hurricane which is
capable of extreme damage. Just because Emily appears to have not done
that doesn't mean the next Cat 4 storm will take it so easy. The fact that
Emily was moving in "hyper-space" for a hurricane and the residents and
Government of Mexico took the storm seriously were definitely the saving

Next up, Old Mexico and quite possibly the southern Texas city of
Brownsville which is currently under a hurricane watch. It's been a while
since a hurricane hit this area. Hopefully, Emily will not have the time
to rev back up again to Cat 3 status although that is what she is
forecasted to do with light wind shear ahead of her, very warm Gulf
waters, and nothing to steer her away.

Other than Emily, the Atlantic is quiet with a non-organized tropical wave
approaching the Windward Islands and not much else behind all the way to
Africa except that African Dust and some Soufrierre Hills volcanic ash
live from Montserrat!


July 17, 2005 20:50EDT - Yucatan...
Just a short update from me... I actually made it to Grand Cayman today. Don't ask how :-). All is fine on Cayman. Driving from the Airport to East End I couldn't really notice anything Emily related. Cayman and Jamaica were very lucky!
Unfortunately this is different for Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. The center of Emily is more or less going over Cozumel. Emily is an 'extreme' Category 4 Hurricane, packing 135 mph winds... Luckily for Cancun the center will stay about 65 miles away. But it will still have a big impact on Cancun, although not as devastating as on Cozumel. Above some updates from my local hurricane correspondents can be found. Also, I just set up a dedicated Pleas for Help board for Mexico (help.stormcarib.com).

Sun, 17 Jul 2005 14:46:10 -0400 (AST) - Close Call!

Good afternoon!

The sigh of relief from Jamaica and the Cayman's could be heard all the
way here to St. Thomas as Hurricane Emily relentlessly plows through the
western Caribbean. Unfortunately, somewhere on the eastern side of the
Yucatan Peninsula, people, homes, and lives will not be so lucky.

It is better to be safe than sorry as I was always told growing up
although, if you don't take a few risks, you will never know what you
could have had or experienced. Let me tell you, you do not want to
experience a direct hit from a hurricane. I hope and pray those who live
in the paths of Emily take the appropriate precautions and the one's who
were going to be visitors had the common sense to stay away out of
potential harms way.

While Emily did not make a direct hit on Jamaica or the Cayman's, some
areas of those islands suffered tremendously. Emily's persistence in
forward speed (I think she listened to that old hit, "Hot Rod Lincoln",
was a blessing as she didn't linger over anybody with pounding winds and
torrential downpours. Still......

The Yucatan, from Cancun down should really be ready for this storm. Emily
may drop down to a strong Cat 3 before landfall as she will probably
undergo some eyewall re-organization but that should not be interpreted as
as less dangerous. There is nothing to indicate wind shear, the very warm
sea surface temperatures are definitely fuel for the engine, and there is
nothing to steer Emily away.

After crossing the Yucatan, she will be weak but should regenerate back
into a strong Cat 2 or minimal Cat 3 hurricane before striking the Mexican
coast. Southern Texas, at this time, while not expecting a direct hit,
should still prepare, especially for heavy rains and flash flooding.

Those correspondents in Jamaica and the Caymans, please send in your
reports when you are able to as the world is watching and waiting!

Meanwhile, the rest of the Atlantic Basin is finally quiet for a change
this season and, it's only mid-July! The calm before the storm??

Sat, 16 Jul 2005 18:12:03 -0400 (AST) - WOW!

Good Evening!

Hurricane Emily is now a borderline Category 5 Hurricane based on the
Safford-Simpson scale and what an impressive satellite image she presents!

The present forecast path shows Emily just south of Grand Cayman Island,
where our "Fearless Leader Gert" and his classy wife Annemariek (sp?)was
supposed to be this weekend. Being a small and tightly-wound hurricane,
the most severe winds should not affect Grand Cayman but there is still
time for Emily to wobble north which would be a devastating development
for them. As it is, Tropical storm force winds stretch out almost 150
miles so severe winds wil be inevitable unless a miracle intervenes.

Some computer models develop some shear which should weaken Emily during
the next 24-36 hours but that has not developed as of yet. The very warm
waters of the Western Caribbean, the absence of significant landmasses,
and a lack (currently) of wind shear do not bode well for Grand Cayman,
the Isle of Youth (West and south of Cuba)and the Yucatan peninsula in
Long-term computer model tracks, which were in very good agreement for the
last week or so are starting to vary, impact-wise on the Yucatan as to the
tip of the peninsula down almost to the base. Once again, time will tell!

Hopefully, if you are in the potential path of this storm, you have made
the appropriate preparations as this is a very dangerous storm. Do not let
the small venture of hurricane force winds (currently 60 miles) fool you!
For those of you who experienced any severe hurricane's impact and the
terrible aftermath, you will have a definite understanding of what I am
saying. I personally went through 3 months without power, a year without a
telephone, and two years without TV after Hurricane Marilyn here in the
Virgin Islands in Sept, 1995. You learn the value of a hot shower, an ice
cube, a fan, and a cold beer! (Not necessarily in that order!)


Fri, 15 Jul 2005 11:09:21 -0400 (AST) - Emily's path

Good morning!

I was working in Tortola yesterday so could not post.

Hurricane Warning in effect for Jamaica.
Hurricane Watch in effect for the Cayman Islands.

For those of you who have e-mailed me or intend to about going to Jamaica
or the Cayman Islands, my advice "Don't even think about it!" until next
week to see what damage has been done by a slightly weaker but still
dangerous Category 3 Emily. Her current track as of the 11:00 am advisory
shows Emily just south of both islands over the next few days. However,
the northern windfield of tropical storm force winds stretches up to 140
miles and both islands will see at minimum, strong tropical force winds
with hurricane force gusts, but I believe they will get more than that as
Emily really doesn't have anything to steer her much farther south.
Current hurricane force winds are a relatively small 40 miles out.

The other major problem you would encounter would be torrential rains with
Jamaica forecast to get 5-10 inches with higher amounts in the mountains
resulting in flash flooding. Not good! And if Emily was to slow down from
her current forward speed of 20 mph, then there would be even more rain,
flooding, and damage. Once again, not good!

For damage reports on other islands in the Caribbean, check out my fellow
hurricane correspondents reports. Some islands fared well and a few did

Looking ahead, Brownsville, Texas looks to be a "homing beacon" of sorts.
The Yucatan peninsula and the poor Isle of Youth (they always seem to get
hit)are targets as well. I guess the fortunate part is most people
remember Ivan and Mitch so there were and will be better preparations this
time. If you don't learn from one, you never will as these storms tend to
leave an indelible imprint on your mind. You don't forget!


Wed, 13 Jul 2005 11:47:12 -0400 (AST) - SPLIT EMILY

Good morning!

Well, TS Emily doesn't LOOK THAT impressive on the latest short loop
satellite as she seems to have a split personality. Part of her wants to
stay far, far south and the other wants to wander. Even so, conditions
will be at least soaking and breezy to terrible at worst depending on
which island you are on (by terrible I mean Grenada who has been having a
long hard road to haul trying to recover from Hurricane Ivan last year).
About the only good news for Grenada is Emily is significantly weaker
(Tropical storm as opposed to a Category 4)and she is moving rapidly (19
mph) so she shouldn't dally over the island long.

At this time, Emily is still forecast to become a Category 3 by the end of
72 hours and be in the Central Caribbean. However, it is possible she
could be much weaker at that time (thinking positive here!)because she
persists in staying very low where there is drier air which would inhibit
significant strengthening. As always, time will tell.

Here in the territory, the US Coast Guard out of the San Juan, Puerto Rico
district has issued a special "Weather Watch X" for our ports. One cruise
ship, the Mariner of the Seas, has cancelled her visit tomorrow although
the ships due in today did come in. Current weather shows mostly sunny
skies with a few light showers around and a temp of 88 degrees.


Tue, 12 Jul 2005 11:25:08 -0400 (AST) - Emily

Good morning!

Another ominous sign has developed for the southern islands of the
Windwards below Guadaloupe: Emily has decided a more southern approach
would be her best entry into the Caribbean. Not only are these islands in
more of a situation but further down the road, The Caymans, Jamaica, Cuba,
the D.R., and Haiti all have to monitor this storm closely. Computer
models are in very good agreement as to the forecast track which is good
in some ways and not so good others.

TS Emily is forecast to be a major hurricane (Cat 3) in 72 hours. On this
track, the Northeastern Caribbean islands would appear to get some heavy
wind gusts and some showers and thunderstorms. But, do not let your guards
down yet. Emily is still aways from land and we all know how fickle they
can be. A couple of northern wobbles would be all it takes.

Take precautions now if you haven't started. This storm is moving fast and
going to grow fast. You do not want to get caught with your pants down!!


Mon, 11 Jul 2005 10:36:39 -0400 (AST) - TD#5

Good morning to all!

It's good to be back although I really didn't expect it to be so soon in
the season but it was forecasted to be quite active and what activity we
have had already. Fortunately for the Gulf Coast Dennis weakened
significantly before slamming ashore but still, a Category 4 in July??

Our prayers go out to Cuba, Jamaica, the Keys (which were really lucky
this time, and the gulf coasts residents; some who haven't even recovered
from Hurricane Ivan 10 months ago.

Now comes TD#5, soon to become Hurricane Emily. Latest tracks take her
south of Guadeloupe and, 96 hrs from 5 am this morning, just south of the
Esatern end of Puerto Rico as a minimal hurricane.

Here in St. Thomas, where there's never a dull moment(sometimes we call it
St. Trauma), a small mention was made in the local newspaper this morning,
but there wasn't much information at presstime. My long term outlook is
that Emily will curl slightly more to the north, even with high pressure
in the Atlantic and dry air in front which would put her more on a
collision course with the Northern Antilles Islands. The earths rotation
must be accounted for, even in a slight way.

Time will tell and hopefully Emily will bring needed rains but no
destruction, especially to those already weary this season. More later.

Dave McDermott

- - - Dennis - - -
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July 7 5:30PM EDT - Cat. 3...
Indeed, the eye of Dennis is not going to touch Jamaica but past over 50 miles to the north. The closest point of approach (CPA) for Monego Bay on the western side of the island is 81.3 miles, which will be reached in about 3 hours. For the eastern side things should start to improve soon. Although it is upgraded to a category 3 (or extreme) hurricane, this has turned out to be no Ivan at all for Jamaica. We still have to see how the rain is going to affect Jamaica, but windwise they are fine.
For Cayman Brac it looks better now as well. The CPA is up to 92 miles (in about 14 hours). For Cuba things look worse unfortunately. I am trying to get some reports from my local hurricane correspondents there.

July 7 12:30PM EDT - Jamaica
Dennis is now a Category 2 hurricane. The outskirts of the storm have reached Jamaica, a little later then expected since the storm has slowed down a bit. The good news for Jamaica is that the center will stay a little more to the north, and shouldn't make landfall on the island. On the other hand, the slower forward motion will give more time for dumping rain on the island, causing dangerous flash floods and mud-slides. Also, there will be significant storm surge flooding.
The more northernly path of Dennis is also good news for the Caymans. The closest point of approach (CPA) for Cayman Brac is now 78 miles (in about 20 hours), yesterday it looked like the center of the storm would pass within 40 miles. The same counts for Cayman Brac (CPA: 96 miles) and Grand Cayman (CPA: 171 miles). So they all should be fine. However, the storm path is always a bit unpredictable. It could very well wobble a little more to the west. Also, tropical storm force winds at that time extend outward of the center up to about 140 miles, so don't focus on the center alone.
The more northernly path is of course bad news for Cuba. It will cross the island in a little over 24 hours and will pass quite close to the east of Havana (CPA: 21 miles in 38 hours). Hopefully the mountains of Cuba will cause some weakening of the storm.
On another note, there has been some disruption in the satellite image feed to NASA's Global Hydrology and Climate Center, from which I get the images used above and the My Satellite builder. It seems to be ok now, but be aware that you might not be seeing the most recent image. Also, there seems to be some delays in te dessimation of the hurricane advisories by one of my sources. So, also check the dates at the top of the advisories. My backup source seems to be ok though. Great timing! :-(

July 7 1:35AM EDT - Hurricane Dennis
Dennis has been upgraded to a hurricane. Looking at the latest satellite imagery an eye might have developed. This usually means that further strenthening is expected. Not much has changed since the last forecast. The center of Dennis is still expected to pass over the northeastern side of the island of Jamaica. It's closest point of approach with Kingston is only 33 miles (in 17.5 hours from the 11PM advisories). Tropical storm winds could be felt within 8 hours (Thu 7AM EDT). At that time Dennis could have strengthened to a Category 2 hurricane. Not too bad, but not too pleasant either.
After Jamaica it will pass just north of the Cayman Islands. The CPA for Cayman Brac is about 40 miles (in 32 hours), and Little Cayman 56 miles (33 hours). Grand Cayman Island is further to the south so should be fine (if Dennis follows the forecast). Hurricane winds do extend at that time to about 25 nm (29 miles) from the center, so just without reach of the Caymans. Hurricanes are unpredictable so we still need to keep close attenction.
See above for reports by my special hurricane correspondents on the islands, and use the tools listed above to calculate your own distance to the storm...

July 6 12:20PM EDT - Jamaica
Dennis is taking a more southernly path then earlier forecast. This is good for Hispaniola, but not so good for Jamaica. As it looks right now the center of Dennis passes over the eastern side of Jamaica in about 24 hours. By that time it might have reached hurricane strength. However, wind will not be the major problem. The torrential rains associated with tropical systems can cause dangerous flash floods and mud slides. The good thing is that Dennis is moving forward at a nice speed of 15mph, leaving less time to dump lots of rain.
After Jamaica it will pass north of the Cayman's (closest point of approach for Grand Cayman: 122 miles, 45 hours; Cayman Brac: only 38 miles, 40 hours; and Little Cayman: 53 miles, 41 hours). With the general tendency of the computer forecasts to be more 'left', it might get even closer. Also, by that time Dennis might be a Category 3 hurricane.
After that, Dennis is expected to pass over the western side of Cuba (again!)... Stay tuned... Reports from the hurricane correspondents on the islands can be found above, you can use the tools to calculate how close the storm will pass by you.

July 5, 11:55AM EDT - Dennis
Wow, another one, Dennis. According to the National Hurricane Center this is the earliest date ever to have already four named storms! Dennis is located in the Caribbean Sea, about 350 miles south of Puerto Rico. It is expected to move just south of Hispaniola in 24-36 hours (closest point of approach (cpa) for Port au Prince, Haiti is 130 miles in about 32 hours). Then it is expected to go just north of Jamaica (cpa for Kingston, Jamaica: 63 miles, 46 hours and for Montego Bay: 69 miles, 52 hours). By that time Dennis might be a hurricane. Tropical storm watches have been issued for parts of the Dominican Republic and Haiti. This storm is covering a pretty large area (see satellite images), so many islands will be affected. Hopefully this storm will move forward at a nice forward speed, so that it won't dump large quantities of rain at localized areas.... Stay tuned...

- - - Cindy - - -
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July 7 1:50AM EDT - Gulf Coast
Cindy made landfall in Louisiana and brought some incoveniences to the Gulf Coast. USAToday.com reported the following:
Heavy rain and storm surge flooded low-lying streets along the Gulf Coast on Wednesday as a rapidly weakening Tropical Storm Cindy pushed inland after leaving more than 300,000 homes and businesses without electricity. [more]

July 5, 11:50AM EDT - Cindy
The tropical depression has been upgraded to tropical storm Cindy. It is expected to make landfall within 20 hours. As it looks right now the center will pass just 20 miles to the east of New Orleans in 20 hours (see the "how close can it get tool", latitude/longitude for New Orleans: 30.07N, 89.93W. Other Gulf cities listed as well.). Luckily this isn't a big storm, but still storm surge flooking is possible, as well as locally heavy rainfall and isolated tornadoes.

July 5, 1:25AM EDT - Number Three
The third tropical depression formed in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico. It shouldn't be threathening any of the Caribbean Islands. As it looks right now it might become tropical storm Cindy just before it is expected to make landfall in Louisiana in about 26-48 hours.

- - - Bret - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop

June 30, 11:55PM EDT - Gone
Bret made landfall in Mexico, and was quickly downgraded to a tropical depression while dumping a lot of rain. This little article out of the Houston Chronical nicely sums it up:
VERACRUZ - Former Tropical Storm Bret caused flooding that resulted in the deaths of two people in the Gulf coast state of Veracruz Wednesday, and damaged the homes of an estimated 3,000 residents. An elderly man died of a heart attack in the town of Naranjos, where two people were also missing. Another person died in a nearby town after slipping and striking his head on the flooded patio of his home. Bret was downgraded to a tropical depression after moving inland about 360 miles south of the Texas border. Winds declined to 30 mph.

June 28, 11:50PM EDT - Bret
A little out of the blue, but here we have the second storm of the season. A very small one though. Unfortunately they can be quite unpredictable as well. However, this one is already quite close to land (central Mexico) so not too much strengthening is expected. As it looks right now this will not become a hurricane. Locally heavy rainfall and strong gusty winds will be affecting portions of the coast of Mexico from Tamico to Veracruz ovoer the next day or so.

- - - Arlene - - -
For the latest hurricane statements and satellite images see our Quick Hurricane Web Resource Navigator
TOOLS: how close is it? - how close can it get? - my satellite - advisories - storm-centered image and loop

June 10, 4:50PM EDT - Cuba
Arlene passed over the western tip of Cuba. According to Prensa Latina there were no human casualties. Wind gusts of about 55 mph were measured. Although rainfall amounts were locally over 170 millimeters (~7inch) no flooding of coastal villages was reported. The rain was actually a blessing, since Cuba is (now was?) in its worst draught of the last century. In any case, Cuba seem to have been well preparedsince over 8,000 people had been evacuated as a precaution. Arlene is continuing nortward and will make landfall tomorrow in the Northern Gulf Coast. By that time it might be a (weak) hurricane.

June 9, 11:55AM EDT - Arlene
This morning the depression was upgraded to the first named storm of the season, Arlene. Since Arlene doesn't seem to be well organized at this time it is still not expected to become a hurricane. At about this time Arlene has its closest point of approach with Cayman, which is a safe distance of about 180 miles. Arlene should also stay at a safe distance from the Mexican Yucatan Peninsula (CPA for Cancun: 150 miles, in 14 hours). However, it might cross just over the far western tip of Cuba in about 12 hours. At that time maximum sustained winds are forecasted to be 45mph, still not too bad.

June 8, 2005 - Number One
The first tropical depression of the season has formed about 300 miles south of the western tip of Cuba or about 240 miles southwest of Grand Cayman. It is expected to bypass Cayman at a safe distance, but it is forecasted to pass between the Yucatan Peninsula (Cancun) and Cuba. As it looks right now it will pass very close to the western tip of Cuba in about 36 hours. At that time we might have Tropical Storm Arlene. Nothing too serious yet. Use the tools above to find out how close it might pass by your location and/or how long it will take.

- - - 2005 Season - - -

June 1, 2005 - Official start of the season
I saw two interesting articles regarding hurricanes:
- Hurricane season could renew global warming debate (5/30/2005)
- Gray's 2005 Hurricane Forecast

And from the first Tropical Weather Outlook. I added correct (Dutch) pronunciation of my name: the 'g' in Gert is pronounced as a hard 'ch', as in 'loch', and the 'e' as 'è' (= 'e' as in 'get'):



     ARLENE                            MARIA          MA REE AH
     BRET                              NATE
     CINDY                             OPHELIA        O FEEL YA
     DENNIS                            PHILIPPE       FEE LEEP
     EMILY                             RITA
     FRANKLIN                          STAN
     GERT            CHÈRT             TAMMY
     HARVEY                            VINCE
     IRENE                             WILMA
     JOSE            HO ZAY
     KATRINA         KA TREE NA

May 22, 2005 - Adrian fizzles out
After making landfall in El Salvador Adrian quickly weakened and fell apart. Although there was flooding in El Salvador it wasn't as bad as feared, probably because of it was moving so fast and because the El Salvadorians prepared very well by evacuating thousands of people. Honduras came out even better, so luckily no other Mitch! For more detail this story in the Houston Chronicle nicely sums it up.

May 19, 2005 - Adrian?
We have a hurricane; Adrian... in May! But lucky for us it's in the Pacific. However, it looks like it will cross over Central America and enter the Western Caribbean. Usually tropical systems lose much of there strenght when they go over land, esp. the moutainous terrain ahaed. But if it doesn't totally fall apart and has at least some kind of closed circulation to be classified as a tropical cyclone, then the first storm of the season won't be Arlene, but Adrian!

Currently Adrian is expected to make landfall soon in El Salvador, then move over Honduras and enter the Caribbean Friday evening, and go over Cayman Saturday night. By that time it is expected to be just a tropical depression, so windwise it won't be a big deal. However, depending on how fast it will move forward, it will be a big rain maker, especially in the mountains of Central America. We have seen when Mitch hit Honduras back in 1998 that mudslides caused by rain can be catastrophic... So in conclusion... the Caribbean Islands should be fine, but people living in flood prone areas in Central America should really heed local warnings.

- - - Local hurricane correspondents wanted! - - -

Do you live on one of the islands? We need your help! We are looking for more people who are interested in sending us a few paragraphs about the situation on your island before, during and after a storm hits. You don't need to be a weatherman or expert on the subject, just share with us what you know, feel and see on your island. Your help will be really appreciated by Caribbean people living abroad with family living on the islands, future visitors who have their Caribbean dream-vacation booked, etc.etc. Reliable, not-sensationalized information is just so hard to get in crisis situations. Help keep the rest of the world up-to-date with what is really happening! We really need you, Georges (and many others since then...) is proof! If interested, contact gert@gobeach.com.

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