No way Jose! Slim odds of the next storm hitting Florida

COLUMBUS (WCMH) – Now that Tropical Storm Irma is inland and moving away from Florida, folks in the Sunshine State are trying to pick up the debris and get back to normal life.

However, many are concerned with the only active Atlantic Basin storm, Hurricane Jose.  There have been reports that it is possible this storm can impact Florida again.

What is the future for Hurricane Jose?

Right now the storm is a fairly strong hurricane still with winds at 100 miles per hour.  This storm has weakened and is under the influence of a high off to its southeast that is going to aid the storm in making a clockwise full circle in the next few days.

Notice this storm goes from a Cat. 2 storm and the forecast weakens it over the next few days.

First off the storm is hitting a fair amount of shear right now, which is making it look like a mess on the satellite image, and not a really well built defined storm.  That doesn’t mean it is not still dangerous.

Most of the models show this storm on this clockwise turn over the next few days over warm waters.  The problem for Jose is the storm will start to encounter cooler waters that have been upwelled, or stirred up by Hurricane Jose earlier.

Yes, the storm is going to cross its same path, which will be cooler now that colder, deeper waters have moved closer to the surface.  Also, the wind shear will be an issue this week, hurricanes hate wind shear.

After about day 4 or 5, there are some models that have this storm pushing closer into the Bahamas as a weaker category 1 storm.

 

Here is a look at the American vs. the European vs. the Canadian forecast models over about the next 10 to 12 days

Notice on the model below, the American (GFS) model has this storm actually making landfall as a weakening tropical system in about ten days on next Wednesday night (9/20).

This model has that large comma-like low over south-central Canada absorbing and driving the remnants of Jose out to the northeast quickly.

Below is the European forecast model and notice this has a landfall with Jose somewhere near Nova Scotia & Newfoundland in Canada.  This would be around the same time late next Wednesday night.

Just like the American model, the Euro has a low then picking up the remnants and lifting the storm out back to sea, but a bit slower.

The Canadian model actually has some additional steering of Jose more to the east as it makes its northerly trek.  It could be closer to Bermuda, and then eventually moving northward, but staying away from land as it moves up into colder waters and loses its tropical characteristics.  This model is a bit quicker and has it in this location by next Tuesday (9-19) night.

 

How rare is it for a Tropical System to make a loop or a big circle in its track?

Actually not as rare as you would think, I could find several examples from 2012, 2004, and even back in 1999 of storms recently that made loops.  Some even did them over land too in the US.

As far as the most similar in track recently, I would say it would be Hurricane Jeanne back in 2004.  This storm did a loop in somewhat of the same area, and eventually made its way into Florida and up the east coast of the United States.

It actually made landfall near where Hurricane Frances did 3 weeks earlier, and where Ivan’s remnants crossed.  It also covered parts of the southeast and east coasts that had been battered by rain from the other two storms.

Graphic loop of Jeanne from the NHC

When you watch that graphic loop, you will notice how the 5 day forecast had a lot of trouble with Jeanne

 

Bottom line, Jose should stay away from Florida….

But remember hurricane forecasts can have several hundred miles of errors by day 5 in the track.  And when a storm meanders its way in warm waters, sometimes the track confidence 4 to 5 days out gets less and less.  When we get to 6-12 days out, the confidence is quite low.

I would say at this point, the models hint at a better chance of Jose making landfall somewhere up the east coast of the US or Canada the middle of next week, but Florida should not completely close its eyes on any slow moving storm nearby.

The peak of the Atlantic Hurricane Season was yesterday, but this is still a very active time for storms.

 

If you have any questions about the tropics, hurricanes or any other weather, email me, dmazza@wcmh.com

-Dave

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