Tag Archives: Weather Wisdom

Tampa Bay Hurricane Storm Surge Scenarios

While no storm scenario is a good one for the Tampa Bay area, the worst case is when the hurricane center is located north of the Tampa Bay entrance such that the maximum winds associated with the eye wall occur at the mouth of the bay with storms making landfall farther north result in lower surges. Continue reading

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What is a Storm Surge?

Storm Surge is the abnormal sea level elevations (or depressions) caused by winds and atmospheric pressure. The components are: 1. Coastal set up (down) by the along shore wind stress.  In deep water, the Earth’s rotation causes a water to … Continue reading

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Tropical Cyclone Wind Speed probability graphic

In addition to the familiar National Hurricane Center’s (NHC) hurricane track forecast with it’s iconic cone, the NHC also produces a wind speed probabilities graphic. Continue reading

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Hurricane Storm Surges in Tampa Bay

The highest storm surges in Tampa Bay are usually associated with hurricanes, with the three highest tides occurring during Cat 3 storms in 1848, 1921 and 1985. Hurricane Elena in late August of 1985 caused the highest storm surge recorded … Continue reading

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Use of the 500 mb Chart at Sea

The 500mb forecast chart is an excellent tool for mariners to estimate where to anticipate the heaviest sea and swell conditions as well as a guide to the expected surface storm tracks and intensities.  The closer the height contours on … Continue reading

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What does a “Gale Warning” mean?

The National Weather Service has developed a multi-tier concept for forecasting hazardous weather which includes outlooks, watches, warnings and advisories.  Below are the visual day flag and nighttime light signals that warn of rough weather.  NOAA discontinued using the flags in … Continue reading

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Predictability of Atlantic hurricanes

By Judith Curry Cayman Financial Review  The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season was remarkable, including five landfalls of Category 5 storms in the Caribbean Basin, and three Category 4 strikes on the U.S. coastline. The 2017 landfalls cost hundreds of lives … Continue reading

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URGENT “Notice to Mariners” – Changes to NOAA marine products effective March 7th, 2018

By Lee Chesneau Lee is a senior marine meteorologist, lecturer, & a graduate from the University of Wisconsin (Madison).   Lee has had a distinguished career with NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), NOAA Satellite Service (NESDIS), U.S. Navy Ship Routing Officer … Continue reading

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High Wind and Wave Events Crossing the Gulf Stream

Crossing the Gulf Stream where ocean currents can exceed 2 knots takes some skill and if you try in under certain weather conditions, could be dangerous for any size vessel.  High wind and wave events can occur under certain conditions … Continue reading

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What’s the weather like cruising the Caribbean during December?

Wind Over the Caribbean during December winds tend to be mostly from the east or northeast averaging forces 4-5 (11-21 knots).  Over the Gulf of Mexico winds tend to be more variable but still averaging mostly forces 4-5 (11-21 knots).  … Continue reading

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