Weatherdem's Weblog

Bridging climate science, citizens, and policy

Tropical Weather Update 8/18/09 #2

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There is a status update on Hurricane Bill.  His vitals as of this afternoon:

Center located at 16.6N, 52.2W; moving WNW @ 16mph; maximum sustained winds of 110mph; minimum central pressure of 962mb.

Those winds mean Hurricane Bill is a borderline Category2/Category3 storm.  At this point, this difference boils down to semantics.  111mph sustained winds are the threshold for a Category 3 storm.  The practical difference between 110mph and 111mph winds?  Negligible at best.

The NHC continues to forecast an upgrade to Category 3 statues by 2AM tomorrow morning EDT.  They should designate it as a Cat-3 this afternoon; tonight at the latest.

The official intensity forecast has been updated as a result.  Hurricane Bill is now forecasted to become a Category-4 storm by this time tomorrow.  That’s an impressive acknowledgment of a favorable storm environment and a robust storm taking advantage of its environment.  All the intensity models forecast a continuation in intensification through the next 36-48 hours, after which a gradual but persistent weakening should occur through the end of the forecast period.

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