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So, here is Fay. My guess is that the reason that they didn’t make this a depression or anything was because
they needed a proper closed circulation. They had the wind already but needed the hurricane hunters to find the circulation. Well, they found it and “boom” straightF
up to Tropical Storm Fay we go. But, by the time they got the circulation that they were looking for, it was partially over land and that land in the Dominican Republic has some pretty good sized mountains. It is moving west and will intereact with Cuba. The official forecast is more or less taking it in the middle of the tracks..imagine that. There are some variables at play here. Previously, the idea was for the trofiness over the eastern US would be sufficient to turn it up along the coast. Ridging though seems to be building in and now the question will be how great that build up is…if it’s a little more than the forecast track indicates, then we get a storm that is over
land as it moves toward the mid Gulf Coast and its structure will probably hold together, meaning a decent hurricane in the US. If the ridge behaves as forecast, then you get a storm that had potential but never got much of a chance as it spent
so much time interacting the Cuba and later Florida. If the ridging is even bigger, then you get the storm moving west longer, keeping it farther off the Cuban coast and the guy becomes more formidable faster and this scenario would open a whole other can of worms. Of course, the ridge weakening and having the storm move up the east side of Florida or offshore seems pretty unlikely at this point, given its consistent movement west. We’d probably need a turn pretty soon for that scenario. If you look at the Spaghetti Tracks associated with this post, then you will find each of the scenarios that I described on the map. The Spaghetti Intensity chart also shows agreement that it wiill remain at least a tropical storm but there are large variances of the intensity, based mainly on the position. I really think that this guy is really trying to get a good structure, though the inner circulation is pretty lame and I suspect that if it can spend any time over water, it will get going fairly quickly. That’s probably the biggest reason to keep an eye on Fay. Here’s the initial discussion from the NHC.
TCDAT1 TROPICAL STORM FAY DISCUSSION NUMBER 1…CORRECTED NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL062008 500 PM EDT FRI AUG 15 2008 …CORRECTION OF THE 72H POSITION TEXT REPORTS FROM NOAA AND AIR FORCE RESERVE HURRICANE HUNTER AIRCRAFT INDICATE THAT THE CIRCULATION ASSOCIATED WITH THE LOW PRESSURE AREA IN THE MONA PASSAGE BECAME BETTER DEFINED…WITH 1500 FT FLIGHT-LEVEL WINDS OF 49 KT TO THE NORTHEAST OF THE CENTER. THE AIRCRAFT ALSO FOUND ENOUGH WESTERLY WINDS SOUTH OF THE CENTER TO JUSTIFY CALLING THE SYSTEM A TROPICAL CYCLONE…ALTHOUGH THESE WESTERLIES ONLY EXTEND ABOUT 45 N MI SOUTH OF THE CENTER. BASED ON THIS…THE LOW WAS UPGRADED TO TROPICAL STORM FAY…THE SIXTH OF THE ATLANTIC SEASON. THE INITIAL MOTION IS 275/12. FAY IS ON THE SOUTH SIDE OF A LOW/MID-LEVEL RIDGE…WITH THE LARGE-SCALE MODELS FORECASTING A WEAKNESS TO DEVELOP IN THE RIDGE OVER THE EASTERN GULF OF MEXICO OR FLORIDA DURING THE NEXT 48-96 HR. WHILE ALL THE TRACK GUIDANCE AGREES THAT THIS WEAKNESS WILL CAUSE FAY TO TURN NORTH- NORTHWESTWARD TO NORTHWARD BY THE END OF THE FORECAST PERIOD…THIS IS A CONSIDERABLE SPREAD IN THE GUIDANCE ON JUST WHERE FAY WILL TRACK. THE NAM CALLS FOR FAY TO PASS EAST OF THE FLORIDA PENINSULA…WHILE THE HWRF CALLS FOR LANDFALL IN SOUTHEASTERN FLORIDA. THE GFDL AND NOGAPS FORECAST A MORE WESTWARD TRACK TOWARD THE NORTHERN GULF COAST…WHILE THE GFS…ECMWF…AND THE MODEL CONSENSUS FORECASTS FAY TO TRACK NEAR OR OVER THE WEST COAST OF FLORIDA. COMPLICATING MATTERS IS THE POSSIBILITY OF LAND INTERACTION CAUSING ERRATIC MOTION AND REFORMATION OF THE CENTER. THE FORECAST TRACK WILL FOLLOW THE MODEL CONSENSUS AND CALL FOR FAY TO CROSS HISPANIOLA AND THE EASTERN PORTION OF CUBA…THEN PASS NEAR OR OVER THE FLORIDA KEYS AND THE WEST COAST OF FLORIDA. THE LARGE-SCALE MODELS FORECAST FAY TO BE IN A LIGHT VERTICAL WIND SHEAR ENVIRONMENT FOR THE NEXT 72-96 HR. THUS…THE INTENSITY WILL BE CONTROLLED BY LAND INTERACTION AND INTERNAL STRUCTURE. THE FORECAST TRACK CALLS FOR FAY TO CROSS LARGE PORTIONS OF HISPANIOLA AND CUBA…WHICH SHOULD LIMIT INTENSIFICATION. SIGNIFICANT STRENGTHENING IS EXPECTED WHEN THE CENTER EMERGES FROM THE NORTH COAST OF CUBA…ALTHOUGH IT IS UNCERTAIN HOW WELL ORGANIZED THE STORM WILL BE AT THAT TIME. THE INTENSITY FORECAST WILL CALL FOR A PEAK INTENSITY OF 60 KT…AND THERE IS ABOUT A 30 PERCENT CHANCE THAT FAY COULD BECOME A HURRICANE AT THAT TIME. IT SHOULD BE NOTED THAT ANY DEVIATIONS FROM THE FORECAST TRACK THAT ALLOW FAY MORE TIME OVER WATER WOULD RESULT IN A STORM STRONGER THAN CURRENTLY FORECAST. FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS INITIAL 15/2100Z 18.5N 69.4W 35 KT…INLAND 12HR VT 16/0600Z 18.9N 71.3W 35 KT…INLAND 24HR VT 16/1800Z 19.4N 74.1W 35 KT…OVER WATER 36HR VT 17/0600Z 19.9N 76.5W 40 KT 48HR VT 17/1800Z 20.7N 78.2W 40 KT 72HR VT 18/1800Z 23.5N 81.0W 40 KT…NORTH COAST OF CUBA 96HR VT 19/1800Z 26.5N 82.0W 60 KT…INLAND OVER FLORIDA 120HR VT 20/1800Z 30.0N 83.0W 40 KT…INLAND $$ FORECASTER BEVEN