Weather Nerd

Update on Gustav and its cousins

The Wall Street Journal has some great pictures of Gustav.

Also, at a joint news conference with Governor Jindal and Homeland Security Director Chertoff live right now, there is a report that Lake Pontchartrain water levels are rising due to surge from the back side of the storm. For the first time during Gustav, they’ve had to close one of the gates. But the engineers think they’ll be able to contain things.

Meanwhile, Alan Sullivan writes about Hanna:

Most models still go for a landfall somewhere in the Savannah to Charleston stretch of coast. This would be a near perpendicular onset at some speed, so it could be quite nasty. Some models bring Hanna obliquely ashore in Florida near Cape Canaveral. One model still runs Hanna right over Fort Lauderdale. We shall see. Official movement is now SSW at 4 mph β€” practically a standstill. Every hour that passes without Hanna gaining miles to the west decreases the threat to Florida and increases the threat further north. A landfall in North Carolina could carry the weakening but accelerating storm right up to coast to New York. There is very little chance that Hanna will recurve sharply enough to stay at sea. It will hit something. The question is what?

New York? Hopefully not. That’s another one of those nightmare scenarios. [UPDATE: Or not. Sullivan corrects me in comments.]

Beyond Hanna, we now have Tropical Storm Ike, and Sullivan — blogging from South Florida — writes: “It’s a long way out, but the future Ike has a very simple environment, unlike Fay, Gustav, and Hanna. It should just come straight across. Straight at South Florida.”

Further beyond, it seems quite likely that “Invest 99L” — just off the coast of Africa, labeled #1 on the map below — will soon be Tropical Storm Josephine.

two_atl-5a.gif

It promises to be a busy couple of weeks.