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Tropical Storm Isaac Moving Toward the the Northern Gulf Coast

Will Isaac impact the southeast states?

I thought I'd start a new post on what is currently Tropical Storm Isaac. The latest 5pm data shows the following:


SUMMARY OF 500 PM AST...2100 UTC...

INFORMATION----------------------------------------------
LOCATION...16.0N 61.2W
ABOUT 25 MI...40 KM SSE OF GUADELOUPE
ABOUT 365 MI...585 KM ESE OF SAN JUAN PUERTO RICO
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...45 MPH...75 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...W OR 280 DEGREES AT 22 MPH...35 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...1004 MB...29.65 INCHES


While there is a large amount of uncertainty in Isaac's path, especially this far out, Isaac is something that everyone in the southeast needs to be watching closely. Right now the computer models show Isaac moving toward the Gulf of Mexico in about 96 hours. Depending on the exact path that Isaac follows, it may already be a hurricane by the time it gets there. People in Florida and all along the Gulf Coast area need to pay special attention as Isaac gets closer.

 
Today Isaac has had a difficult time gaining strength due to dry air being drawn in to the system at mid levels of the atmosphere. Some believe that this advection of dry air will end by morning if it hasn't already. Either way, Isaac is forecast to be a hurricane within 48 hours, taking a path almost directly over Jamaica. If it stays to the south of the big islands, and the mountains on Haiti in particular, Isaac could gain strength over the very warm Caribbean waters, which are 86 to 89 degrees.

 
I have a web page just for Isaac that has everything you might need to know about Isaac with the most up to date information possible. On that page are links to other tropical weather information pages for the entire tropical Atlantic basin. Take a few minutes to explore all of the tropical maps, charts, discussions, and the latest satellite images. 

While Isaac won't affect us (if at all) until Monday, there is a very real possibility that Isaac could follow a path that may potentially bring us the tropical moisture that we need to break the drought. 

I'll be making periodic updates as Isaac progresses, please check back for more information.

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North Georgia Weather August 24, 2012 at 04:54 PM
Note... Isaac has increased in strength from 40 mph early this morning to 60mph now.
North Georgia Weather August 24, 2012 at 08:29 PM
We're waiting on the 5pm update to come in but here's what we know now... The latest location is 15.5N, 70.1W and moving NW at 14mph with maximum sustained winds of 60 mph. It's beginning to look like Isaac is starting to get its act together, the surface circulation has lined up with the 850 hPa circulation based on the dropsonde which has light and variable winds its entire decent. For the last several days, there hasn't been much continuity between the upper levels and the lower levels as the system was not aligned vertically. The upper levels were some distance away from the surface low so it looked like a tilted funnel cloud. It's very possible that Isaac will only graze the coast of Hispaniola and survive intact as it heads toward Cuba. If so, significant strengthening could take place over the warm Caribbean waters later tonight and in the morning. Right now, landfall is still expected to be on the northern Gulf coast. Landfall is expected Tuesday/Wednesday. More after the 5pm update.
David Binder August 24, 2012 at 08:52 PM
Looks like I picked the wrong week for my annual vacation to Siesta key (Sarasota), Fl. Flying into it tomorrow & back into it at home on Wednesday.
North Georgia Weather August 24, 2012 at 09:23 PM
...ISAAC STRENGTHENS A LITTLE MORE...CENTER TO MAKE LANDFALL IN HAITI TONIGHT... SUMMARY OF 500 PM EDT...2100 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...17.2N 71.9W ABOUT 100 MI...160 KM SSE OF PORT AU PRINCE HAITI ABOUT 300 MI...480 KM SE OF GUANTANAMO CUBA MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...65 MPH...100 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 315 DEGREES AT 16 MPH...26 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...994 MB...29.35 INCHES
North Georgia Weather August 24, 2012 at 10:00 PM
I've got something really cool that I'd like to share. You now have a way to track a hurricane hunter plane in almost real-time, complete with all the readings, as well as readings from their dropsondes. First, you'll need Google Earth. (earth.google.com) After installing Google Earth, go to this website: http://www.tropicalatlantic.com/recon/ On the right-hand side, there will be a link that says: "Live Recon Data in Google Earth" and this is the file you want to download from that link. http://www.tropicalatlantic.com/recon/ge/Recon_Data_for_the_Atlantic_Basin.kmz Clicking on that link will either download a .kmz file automatically or it will prompt you to either open or save. If prompted, choose “Open.” Otherwise, find where the file is saved and open it, or click on the file if it appears at the bottom of your browser as shown. Google Earth should automatically open when the .kmz file is opened. Choose the present mission at left by clicking on the radio button. Google Earth will automatically zoom in and track the flight in progress. If you want to examine wind speed or other parameters recorded from the plane along the flight, click on the colorized wind barbs. When dropsondes are released, you’ll see what appears to be a grey or black tube. Click on that for the dropsonde data. Centers of circulation are also noted when pinpointed.
North Georgia Weather August 24, 2012 at 11:51 PM
...ISAAC TEMPORARILY SLOWS DOWN...BUT STILL EXPECTED TO MAKE LANDFALL IN HAITI TONIGHT... SUMMARY OF 800 PM EDT...0000 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...17.3N 72.0W ABOUT 90 MI...145 KM SSE OF PORT AU PRINCE HAITI ABOUT 270 MI...440 KM SE OF GUANTANAMO CUBA MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...65 MPH...100 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 315 DEGREES AT 10 MPH...17 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...992 MB...29.29 INCHES
North Georgia Weather August 25, 2012 at 04:22 AM
...ISAAC GETTING BETTER ORGANIZED AS IT MOVES NORTHWESTWARD TOWARD HAITI... SUMMARY OF 1100 PM EDT...0300 UTC...INFORMATION ----------------------------------------------- LOCATION...17.7N 72.5W ABOUT 65 MI...100 KM SSW OF PORT AU PRINCE HAITI ABOUT 245 MI...395 KM SE OF GUANTANAMO CUBA MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...70 MPH...110 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 310 DEGREES AT 14 MPH...22 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...990 MB...29.23 INCHES ---------------------------------------------- CHANGES WITH THIS ADVISORY... A HURRICANE WATCH AND A TROPICAL STORM WARNING HAVE BEEN ISSUED FOR ALL OF THE FLORIDA KEYS...INCLUDING FLORIDA BAY...AND FOR THE COAST OF THE SOUTHERN FLORIDA PENINSULA FROM OCEAN REEF ON THE EAST COAST WESTWARD TO BONITA BEACH ON THE WEST COAST. A TROPICAL STORM WARNING HAS BEEN ISSUED FOR THE SOUTHEAST FLORIDA COAST FROM NORTH OF OCEAN REEF NORTHWARD TO JUPITER INLET...AND FOR LAKE OKEECHOBEE.
North Georgia Weather August 25, 2012 at 11:21 AM
...ISAAC EMERGING FROM THE COAST OF HAITI...NEW WATCHES AND WARNINGS ISSUED FOR SOUTH FLORIDA AND THE KEYS... SUMMARY OF 500 AM EDT...0900 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...19.0N 73.3W ABOUT 145 MI...235 KM S OF GREAT INAGUA ISLAND ABOUT 150 MI...240 KM SE OF GUANTANAMO CUBA MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...60 MPH...95 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 320 DEGREES AT 14 MPH...22 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...992 MB...29.29 INCHES --------------------------------------------- A HURRICANE WARNING IS IN EFFECT FOR... * THE FLORIDA KEYS INCLUDING THE DRY TORTUGAS * THE WEST COAST OF FLORIDA FROM BONITA BEACH SOUTHWARD * FLORIDA BAY A HURRICANE WATCH IS IN EFFECT FOR... * THE FLORIDA EAST COAST FROM GOLDEN BEACH SOUTHWARD One of the tropical meteorologist that I follow has made his first call for the storm. Here is what he's calling: http://www.daculaweather.com/images/2012_08/phil_first_call.png Since the speed of Isaac has slowed down, impacts for us have been pushed back a day. http://www.daculaweather.com/4_isaac.php
North Georgia Weather August 25, 2012 at 12:42 PM
...CENTER OF ISAAC MOVING INTO THE WINDWARD PASSAGE... SUMMARY OF 800 AM EDT...1200 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...19.7N 73.8W ABOUT 95 MI...150 KM ESE OF GUANTANAMO CUBA ABOUT 105 MI...170 KM SSW OF GREAT INAGUA ISLAND MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...60 MPH...95 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 320 DEGREES AT 14 MPH...22 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...998 MB...29.47 INCHES
North Georgia Weather August 25, 2012 at 03:04 PM
...CENTER OF ISAAC NEAR EASTERN CUBA...NEW WATCHES AND WARNINGS FOR PORTIONS OF FLORIDA... SUMMARY OF 1100 AM EDT...1500 UTC...INFORMATION ----------------------------------------------- LOCATION...20.1N 74.6W ABOUT 40 MI...65 KM E OF GUANTANAMO CUBA ABOUT 385 MI...615 KM SSE OF NASSAU MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...60 MPH...95 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 315 DEGREES AT 17 MPH...28 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...998 MB...29.47 INCHES ------------------------------------------------ CHANGES WITH THIS ADVISORY... * THE TROPICAL STORM WARNING HAS BEEN EXTENDED NORTHWARD ALONG THE FLORIDA EAST COAST TO SEBASTIAN INLET. * A TROPICAL STORM WATCH HAS BEEN ISSUED ALONG THE FLORIDA EAST COAST NORTH OF SEBASTIAN INLET TO FLAGLER BEACH. * A TROPICAL STORM WATCH HAS BEEN ISSUED FOR THE FLORIDA WEST COAST NORTH OF BONITA BEACH TO TARPON SPRINGS. Here is the latest QPF (amount of precipitation) forecast for Tuesday through Thursday from the Hydrometeorological Prediction Center: http://www.daculaweather.com/images/2012_08/qpf.gif The entire precipitation forecast can be found here: http://www.daculaweather.com/4_hpc_qpf_disco.php
North Georgia Weather August 25, 2012 at 03:49 PM
You did see the current rainfall forecast for us didn't you?
Floyd Akridge August 25, 2012 at 10:44 PM
yup...this could be a bad one...kinda like opal
North Georgia Weather August 25, 2012 at 11:30 PM
The thing that's becoming more troubling is the models forecasting Isaac to slow down dramatically as it comes ashore. The official NHC track shows Isaac moving from lower Alabama to north central Alabama over the course of two days. Tremendous amounts of rain are going to fall, especially over Georgia. We will be located in the front front quadrant of the storm which puts Georgia under the prime spot for rainfall. North to central Georgia is still very dry and it can absorb 4-5" before flooding becomes a major issue, but that cushion will get eaten up very quickly if this storm crawls. I'm very worried about storm surge in the northeast corner of the Gulf as well as most of the west coast of the peninsula. I'll have some storm surge charts in a little while, but one estimate shows a surge of more than 25 feet in the right front quadrant of the storm.
North Georgia Weather August 26, 2012 at 12:06 AM
...ISAAC MOVING NORTHWESTWARD JUST OFF THE COAST OF NORTHEASTERN CUBA... SUMMARY OF 800 PM EDT...0000 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...21.7N 76.7W ABOUT 80 MI...130 KM ENE OF CAMAGUEY CUBA ABOUT 375 MI...605 KM ESE OF KEY WEST FLORIDA MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...60 MPH...95 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 310 DEGREES AT 20 MPH...31 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...997 MB...29.44 INCHES
North Georgia Weather August 26, 2012 at 12:10 AM
You'll be able to watch Isaac as it passes over the Florida Keys from the Key West Dual Pol radar here: http://www.daculaweather.com/grlevel4/4_byx_br248.php
North Georgia Weather August 26, 2012 at 06:06 PM
...ISAAC HAS NOT STRENGTHENED... SUMMARY OF 200 PM EDT...1800 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...23.9N 81.5W ABOUT 50 MI...85 KM SSE OF KEY WEST FLORIDA ABOUT 75 MI...120 KM NE OF HAVANA CUBA MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...60 MPH...95 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...WNW OR 300 DEGREES AT 18 MPH...30 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...994 MB...29.35 INCHES ------------------------------ Isaac is tearing up the Keys right now, you can watch on the Key West Dual Pol radar loop(s) I have going right now. http://www.daculaweather.com/grlevel4/4_byx_br248.php Isaac is forecast to make a landfall in Mississippi, further west than in the previous forecast. Here's the new QPF forecast that is now showing 8-11" over northern/central Georgia. http://www.daculaweather.com/images/2012_08/qpf_26.gif
North Georgia Weather August 26, 2012 at 09:04 PM
...CENTER OF ISAAC PASSING JUST SOUTH OF KEY WEST... SUMMARY OF 500 PM EDT...2100 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...24.2N 82.3W ABOUT 40 MI...65 KM SW OF KEY WEST FLORIDA MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...60 MPH...95 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...WNW OR 295 DEGREES AT 16 MPH...26 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...992 MB...29.29 INCHES --------------------------------------------- CHANGES WITH THIS ADVISORY... THE HURRICANE WATCH IS CHANGED TO A HURRICANE WARNING FOR THE NORTHERN GULF OF MEXICO COAST FROM EAST OF MORGAN CITY LOUSIANA TO DESTIN FLORIDA...INCLUDING METROPOLITAN NEW ORLEANS...LAKE PONTCHARTRAIN...AND LAKE MAUREPAS.
North Georgia Weather August 27, 2012 at 01:45 AM
...CENTER OF ISAAC MOVING INTO THE SOUTHEASTERN GULF OF MEXICO... SUMMARY OF 800 PM EDT...0000 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...24.1N 82.6W ABOUT 60 MI...100 KM SW OF KEY WEST FLORIDA ABOUT 530 MI...850 KM SE OF THE MOUTH OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...65 MPH...100 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...WNW OR 290 DEGREES AT 15 MPH...24 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...991 MB...29.26 INCHES --------------------------------------------- No real changes right now. Isaac is doing it's best to form a core and I expect by morning, it will probably be successful. Once it does, it should begin to steadily strengthen.
North Georgia Weather August 27, 2012 at 10:27 AM
...ISAAC CONTINUES WEST-NORTHWESTWARD...EXPECTED TO STRENGTHEN...NEW WATCHES AND WARNINGS ISSUED FOR THE COAST OF LOUISIANA... SUMMARY OF 500 AM EDT...0900 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...25.2N 84.2W ABOUT 180 MI...290 KM SW OF FT. MYERS FLORIDA ABOUT 405 MI...650 KM SE OF THE MOUTH OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...65 MPH...100 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...WNW OR 300 DEGREES AT 14 MPH...22 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...990 MB...29.23 INCHES ----------------------------------------------- Our chance for really heavy rain continues to diminish as Isaac moves further west.
North Georgia Weather August 27, 2012 at 02:00 PM
From the Atlanta NWS office: ----------------------------------- ..DIRECT IMPACT FROM ISAAC SHOULD REMAIN SOUTH AND WEST OF THE ATLANTA FORECAST AREA... ..1 TO 3 INCHES OF RAIN STILL POSSIBLE TUESDAY THROUGH THURSDAY...
North Georgia Weather August 27, 2012 at 03:36 PM
From Atlanta NWS: http://www.daculaweather.com/4_afd_ffc.php BASED ON THE LATEST FORECAST TRACK FROM NHC...OVERALL QPF IS EXPECTED TO REMAIN GENERALLY IN THE 2-4 INCH RANGE THROUGH FRIDAY. LOCALLY HIGHER AMOUNTS TO 4.5 INCHES OR HIGHER ARE POSSIBLE. WINDS ARE NOT EXPECTED TO BE A MAJOR CONCERN...THOUGH AN ISOLATED TORNADO THREAT...ESPECIALLY TUESDAY INTO WEDNESDAY...IS STILL POSSIBLE EVEN WITH A MORE WESTWARD TRACK OF ISSAC. BEST 0-1KM SHEAR SPREADS NORTHWARD INTO GEORGIA THROUGH THE DAY TUESDAY...AND GREATEST ISOLATED TORNADO RISK WILL GENERALLY BE SOUTH OF I-20.
North Georgia Weather August 27, 2012 at 06:18 PM
...HEAVY RAINS AND FLOODING AFFECTING THE FLORIDA EAST COAST... SIGNIFICANT STORM SURGE THREAT EXPECTED FOR THE NORTHERN GULF COAST... SUMMARY OF 100 PM CDT...1800 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...26.1N 85.9W ABOUT 255 MI...410 KM SSW OF APALACHICOLA FLORIDA ABOUT 280 MI...450 KM SE OF THE MOUTH OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...65 MPH...100 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 305 DEGREES AT 14 MPH...22 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...984 MB...29.06 INCHES
North Georgia Weather August 27, 2012 at 06:33 PM
It appears that landfall will occur right around Gulfport/Biloxi MS.
North Georgia Weather August 27, 2012 at 09:14 PM
...RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT INDICATES ISAAC GETTING STRONGER... SIGNIFICANT STORM SURGE THREAT EXPECTED FOR THE NORTHERN GULF COAST... SUMMARY OF 400 PM CDT...2100 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...26.4N 86.2W ABOUT 320 MI...515 KM SSE OF MOBILE ALABAMA ABOUT 255 MI...415 KM SE OF THE MOUTH OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...70 MPH...110 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 305 DEGREES AT 12 MPH...19 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...981 MB...28.97 INCHES ------------------------------------------------- Strengthening has begun. Isaac has dropped 7mb since the previous 2pm advisory. Isaac is still contending with some dry air but once that mixes in, expect a more rapid intensification. I expect Isaac to become a hurricane late tonight or early in the morning hours. Landfall is expected near the MS coast with winds of 100 - 110mph. Very nice satellite presentation this afternoon. You can see the dry air on the east side of the system but it should start filling in nicely in a few hours. http://www.daculaweather.com/4_sat_se_us.php I use this map a lot when we get weather coming our way. http://www.daculaweather.com/4_spc_meso_analysis.php
Kristi Reed (Editor) August 27, 2012 at 09:29 PM
Are they still predicting up to 3" of rain for our area?
North Georgia Weather August 27, 2012 at 10:34 PM
The leading edge of the first tropical clouds is just now entering the metro area. There are showers passing Macon and moving northwest. Take a look at this beautiful image: http://www.daculaweather.com/4_sat_se_us_gulf_z.php
North Georgia Weather August 28, 2012 at 10:08 AM
...ISAAC ON THE VERGE OF BECOMING A HURRICANE...SIGNIFICANT STORM SURGE AND FRESHWATER FLOOD THREAT TO THE NORTHERN GULF COAST... SUMMARY OF 400 AM CDT...0900 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...27.5N 88.1W ABOUT 125 MI...205 KM SSE OF THE MOUTH OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER ABOUT 205 MI...330 KM SSE OF BILOXI MISSISSIPPI MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...70 MPH...110 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 305 DEGREES AT 12 MPH...19 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...977 MB...28.85 INCHES
North Georgia Weather August 28, 2012 at 11:28 AM
The next NHC update on Isaac will be at 8am. It appears that Isaac is finally forming an eyewall this morning ( http://www.daculaweather.com/4_gmex_ft_loop.php ) and beginning to gain a little strength. I believe that the next advisory will be an upgrade to Hurricane Isaac. Isaac will be a minimal hurricane when it reaches shore later today with winds of 80 mph or so. The main threat will be storm surge and extremely heavy rains. More in just a little while... New image uploaded also.
North Georgia Weather August 28, 2012 at 12:14 PM
700 AM CDT TUE AUG 28 2012 - INTERMEDIATE UPDATE ...RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT FIND ISAAC NEARLY A HURRICANE... SIGNIFICANT STORM SURGE AND FRESHWATER FLOOD THREAT TO THE NORTHERN GULF COAST... SUMMARY OF 700 AM CDT...1200 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...27.8N 88.2W ABOUT 105 MI...170 KM SSE OF THE MOUTH OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER ABOUT 185 MI...295 KM SSE OF BILOXI MISSISSIPPI MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...70 MPH...110 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 305 DEGREES AT 7 MPH...11 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...976 MB...28.82 INCHES -------------------------------------------------- Isaac should become a hurricane before the 10am update. As soon as it does, I will create a new blog post and update you. Isaac has slowed down from 12 mph to 7mph. This decrease in forward speed could be devastating for the Louisiana coast and for inland flooding. More updates in a while.
North Georgia Weather August 28, 2012 at 12:18 PM
Multiple clean 60-63 kt SFMR datapoints with a Flight Level wind of 80 kt and peak 10s Flight Level wind of 86 knots. I think we can safely call Isaac a hurricane.

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