Massive duststorm chokes eastern Australia; Atlanta floods ease

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 23. syyskuuta 2009 klo 14:22 (GMT)

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A massive dust storm swept through eastern Australia today, turning the skies in Sydney a eerie shade of red-orange. The dust storm was reportedly the worst since the 1940s, and Sydney recorded its highest levels of particulate air pollution ever. The dust storm resulted from strong winds associated with a powerful low pressure system that swept through eastern Australia this morning. Winds today at the Sydney airport were sustained at 36 mph, gusting to 51 mph. Wind gusts as high as 64 mph were recorded in the Sydney area as the storm's strong cold front passed through. Particulate pollution levels are still in the hazardous range this evening in Sydney, but are expected to improve to the "good" range on Thursday as the winds die down and the dust storm dissipates.


Figure 1.. Strong northwesterly winds carry dust over Sydney, Australia, at 00 UTC 9/23/2009. Image credit: NASA.


Figure 2.. A strong cold front passing through eastern Australia this morning generated a sustained winds in excess of 20 mph over a large portion of the region.

Severe drought has affected large regions of Southeast Australia over the past three years (Figure 3). In isolated areas near Melbourne, the drought is the worst on record. The resulting loss of vegetation has created large regions of loose dust, which the strong winds from this week's storm was able to loft in the air and transport long distances.


Figure 3.. Rainfall deficiencies for Australia for the past three years. Image credit: Australian Bureau of Meteorology.

Atlanta floods ease
Very heavy rains exceeding fifteen inches soaked the Atlanta, Georgia region early this week, triggering widespread major flooding that continues today. Rainfall eased yesterday, and all of the rivers in the Atlanta area have crested and are now falling. Record flood levels were observed on at least seven rivers and creeks in the Atlanta area yesterday, breaking records that had been set as long ago as 1919. Utoy Creek near Atlanta broke its previous flood record by nearly 11 feet on Tuesday. The floods have killed at least nine people and did $250 million in damage. Portlight.org is experimenting with a new disaster relief strategy for this flood--they have decided to adopt a single family to help, the Baxter family of Lithia Springs, Georgia. The Baxters lost their home, car, furniture, clothes, and everything else in their house, and need assistance to defray the short-term expenses of lodging, food, and clothing, so help out if you can.


Figure 4. Radar estimated rainfall for the Atlanta, Georgia region ending on September 22. More than 15 inches (white colors) had fallen in and around Atlanta.

There are no threat areas in the Atlantic to discuss today, and none of our reliable computer models are forecasting tropical storm development over the next seven days.

Jeff Masters

Parkinson Avenue 06:15 (LNRSYDNEY)
Unusual sunrise 1
Parkinson Avenue 06:15

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629. tornadodude
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 13:29 (GMT)
Member Since: 28.06.2006 Posts: 24 Comments: 8185
628. somemalayguy117
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 13:20 (GMT)
Finally a yellow spot in the Atlantic.

A TROPICAL WAVE LOCATED NEAR THE CAPE VERDE ISLANDS IS PRODUCING
DISORGANIZED SHOWER ACTIVITY. SOME SLOW DEVELOPMENT OF THIS SYSTEM
IS POSSIBLE DURING THE NEXT DAY OR TWO AS IT MOVES WEST-
NORTHWESTWARD AT 10 TO 15 MPH. THERE IS A LOW CHANCE...LESS THAN
30 PERCENT...OF THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE
NEXT 48 HOURS.
627. foggymyst
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 13:20 (GMT)
Good morning to all.. hello Orca, feeling better?
Member Since: 23.09.2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 383
625. popartpete
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 13:10 (GMT)
I hope there is no repeat of the superstorm of '93. I was in the Florida Derecho of that storm: like a two hour cat 2 hurricane. Trees were down, powerlines, damage to buildings. It was a nightmare.
Member Since: 10.07.2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 416
624. WxLogic
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:53 (GMT)
Quoting mikatnight:
nevermind...


Hehe...
Member Since: 14.08.2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4881
623. WxLogic
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:52 (GMT)
Quoting GTcooliebai:
So I guess it all depends on the strength of El Nino? Also I wonder if that indicates a slow or fast start to the winter season which may depend on where your at. Could we also be in for a "Superstorm" like the one in '93 if what your telling me about these cold snaps come true?


I've been pondering about that possibility. I'm on a wait and see mode... hehe.
Member Since: 14.08.2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4881
622. Orcasystems
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:49 (GMT)
Good Morning :)


AOI

AOI

AOI

AOI
Member Since: 1.10.2007 Posts: 81 Comments: 26493
621. GTcooliebai
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:38 (GMT)
Quoting WxLogic:


You're correct... but that just a perception since the "Cooler/Colder" weather El Nino brings is mainly due to the storminess increase in the south than an actual colder than normal airmass. This is my opinion. Also the cold spells are typically less in their duration than with La Nina...

This could pretty well be a Modoki inclined El Nino... there's just something not quite right with this El Nino.
So I guess it all depends on the strength of El Nino? Also I wonder if that indicates a slow or fast start to the winter season which may depend on where your at. Could we also be in for a "Superstorm" like the one in '93 if what your telling me about these cold snaps come true?
Member Since: 31.08.2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
620. mikatnight
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:28 (GMT)
nevermind...
Member Since: 18.10.2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
619. mikatnight
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:28 (GMT)
Hi WxLogic, assume you meant not quite right, right?
Member Since: 18.10.2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
618. mikatnight
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:26 (GMT)
Quoting Autistic2:


You took my line and improved it. Thanks!


We pods try to help the humans whenever possible...
Member Since: 18.10.2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
617. WxLogic
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:24 (GMT)
Quoting GTcooliebai:
I'm not sure if that is always the case. According to this website Link El Nino does not cause warmer winters in the South La Nina does.


You're correct... but that just a perception since the "Cooler/Colder" weather El Nino brings is mainly due to the storminess increase in the south than an actual colder than normal airmass. This is my opinion. Also the cold spells are typically less in their duration than with La Nina...

This could pretty well be a Modoki inclined El Nino... there's just something not quite right with this El Nino.
Member Since: 14.08.2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4881
616. GTcooliebai
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:19 (GMT)
I think this area is in the same area that one of our invest was in earlier this season, but failed to develop. Also I here the MJO is in an upward motion.
Member Since: 31.08.2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
615. IKE
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:18 (GMT)
Quoting SAINTHURRIFAN:
what concerns me is that these gulf waters are untapped so the heat potential is there, if the shear level is tolerable. thats why i dont get to excited about these fronts this time of the year especially if they stall and have some sort of mesoscale rotation with it. well nice talking to you fellas time for a vicepresidents meet at americas lovliest shipyard.and storm if your lurking its about the nsc those beautiful new 440 ft cutters we are building for your coast guard goo day.


Have a good day SAINT.

Gotta head to work myself.

L8R every-one.
Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
614. Autistic2
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:18 (GMT)
Quoting mikatnight:


Circles are very popular on this blog.
Yellow one's are rooted to orange...
Orange ones are rooted to red...
and red ones are...
***POOF!***


You took my line and improved it. Thanks!
Member Since: 29.08.2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 429
613. SAINTHURRIFAN
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:16 (GMT)
what concerns me is that these gulf waters are untapped so the heat potential is there, if the shear level is tolerable. thats why i dont get to excited about these fronts this time of the year especially if they stall and have some sort of mesoscale rotation with it. well nice talking to you fellas time for a vicepresidents meet at americas lovliest shipyard.and storm if your lurking its about the nsc those beautiful new 440 ft cutters we are building for your coast guard goo day.
Member Since: 20.08.2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 706
612. GTcooliebai
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:15 (GMT)
Quoting WxLogic:
GFS keeps trending stronger with the FRNT passage. By this time last year we were already cooler by 10 to 12 degrees... at least here in CFL (in the low 80s for Highs).

Definitely El Nino is making this Winter warmer... as expected.
I'm not sure if that is always the case. According to this website Link El Nino does not cause warmer winters in the South La Nina does.
Member Since: 31.08.2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
611. mikatnight
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:15 (GMT)
Quoting GTcooliebai:
They may require another yellow circle for that area in the NW caribbean.


Circles are very popular on this blog.
Yellow one's are rooted to orange...
Orange ones are rooted to red...
and red ones are...
***POOF!***
Member Since: 18.10.2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
610. Autistic2
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:14 (GMT)
For a decade after I got out of the CG I did not think about tropical weather. If we were not under a Hurricane Warning I did not care. Then I got married had kids chilled out etc.
Member Since: 29.08.2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 429
609. superpete
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:13 (GMT)
Quoting Weather456:
Good Morning

Tropical Update
Good morning & thanks for the observations
Member Since: 10.10.2007 Posts: 0 Comments: 615
608. IKE
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:09 (GMT)
Quoting SAINTHURRIFAN:
yes wilma but i was giving examples of the northern gulf which can still be struck in oct and rarely nov i agree sw fla gets a higher percentage in oct and nov.ike your close to my age you should remember kate it hit your area right before thanksgiving after we got juan in late oct in early nov that was a odd year we also got elena.


Yeah, I remember it. Definitely remember Elena. I didn't follow the tropics as much back then.
Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
607. GTcooliebai
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:08 (GMT)
Quoting mikatnight:
They may require another yellow circle for that area in the NW caribbean.
Member Since: 31.08.2009 Posts: 0 Comments: 5628
606. mikatnight
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:08 (GMT)
Quoting Autistic2:
I thought CV season was over?


Almost, but not quite entirely,
unlike tea...
Member Since: 18.10.2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
603. SAINTHURRIFAN
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:07 (GMT)
yes wilma but i was giving examples of the northern gulf which can still be struck in oct and rarely nov i agree sw fla gets a higher percentage in oct and nov.ike your close to my age you should remember kate it hit your area right before thanksgiving after we got juan in late oct in early nov that was a odd year we also got elena.
Member Since: 20.08.2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 706
602. TheCaneWhisperer
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:06 (GMT)
El Niño events that develop early in the summer can also lead to drier than normal conditions across Alabama and Georgia in the late summer and early fall. However, El Niño’s strongest impacts on the Southeast occur in the colder months, bringing wet, stormy, and cool winter and spring seasons to the Southeast with many implications to agriculture in Florida.

I think the bold sentence is STRONGLY wrong lol.
601. IKE
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:06 (GMT)
Quoting Autistic2:
I thought CV season was over?


I think it's over as far as affecting the islands.

Here's what StormW said yesterday in his blog about the yellow-circled wave...

"The recent run of the CMC and GFS wind shear forecast maps indicate upper level winds to become more conducive, with wind shear increasing in about 2-3 days. Based on this, save any dry air intrusion, I am calling for continued SLOW development of this area during the next 48 hours, with conditions becoming less favorable near 72 hours.

This area should move generally toward the west for the next 48 hours, with a turn to the NW, and eventually recurving.

I will continue to monitor this area during the next 72 hours for any changes."
Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
600. Autistic2
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:05 (GMT)
The last yellow CV circle went from yellow to orange to red to POOF!
Member Since: 29.08.2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 429
599. Autistic2
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:03 (GMT)
I thought CV season was over?
Member Since: 29.08.2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 429
598. mikatnight
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:02 (GMT)
Member Since: 18.10.2005 Posts: 4 Comments: 3052
597. SAINTHURRIFAN
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 12:02 (GMT)
winter warmer? winter starts dec 20 and from what ive seen posted by every weather agency and top notch forecasters call for one of the colder winters in years for the se. also even seen some comparisons to 77-78 which was a bitterly cold winter.i agree sept has been warmer.
Member Since: 20.08.2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 706
595. IKE
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:59 (GMT)
SAINT...my car has no A/C working in it. That's the main reason I look forward to cooler/drier weather.

Here's what Accuweather says about the Cape Verde wave this morning...

"This wave will move westward the next couple of days and probably will not strengthen as it is forecast to eventually turn northwestward into cooler water and more hostile upper-level winds."
Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
593. TheCaneWhisperer
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:59 (GMT)
Quoting SAINTHURRIFAN:
well thats good to know lol interesting how us gulf coast folks get excited about these early fall fronts, but i always remember what john hope would say" sometimes fall fronts in the gulf start out as a mild blessing but become a major curse.


Major fronts already just means more chances for storms to form and if anything were to form in the NW Caribbean, it would most likely be pulled up and out. Wilma was pulled up and out ahead of a major front in the gulf.
592. WxLogic
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:58 (GMT)
GFS keeps trending stronger with the FRNT passage. By this time last year we were already cooler by 10 to 12 degrees... at least here in CFL (in the low 80s for Highs).

Definitely El Nino is making this Winter warmer... as expected.
Member Since: 14.08.2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4881
590. Canekid98
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:53 (GMT)
we have a yellow circle! buisseness up front party in da back
589. SAINTHURRIFAN
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:48 (GMT)
well thats good to know lol interesting how us gulf coast folks get excited about these early fall fronts, but i always remember what john hope would say" sometimes fall fronts in the gulf start out as a mild blessing but become a major curse.
Member Since: 20.08.2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 706
588. IKE
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:42 (GMT)
Quoting earthlydragonfly:


I dont think thats it... The blog is very very slow because there is not much potential for storms to develop.


That's exactly what it is and while I've been mentioning for a few days about cold-fronts coming into the SE USA the next couple of weeks, I've never said that they would "shut down the gulf".

Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
587. earthlydragonfly
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:39 (GMT)
Quoting SAINTHURRIFAN:
one last note i at 45 must be getting old are everyone on here is young lol.seems like nobody remembers these storms.


I dont think thats it... The blog is very very slow because there is not much potential for storms to develop.
Member Since: 1.07.2005 Posts: 10 Comments: 1681
586. IKE
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:39 (GMT)
TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
800 AM EDT THU SEP 24 2009

FOR THE NORTH ATLANTIC...CARIBBEAN SEA AND THE GULF OF MEXICO...

A TROPICAL WAVE LOCATED NEAR THE CAPE VERDE ISLANDS IS PRODUCING
DISORGANIZED SHOWER ACTIVITY. SOME SLOW DEVELOPMENT OF THIS SYSTEM
IS POSSIBLE DURING THE NEXT DAY OR TWO AS IT MOVES WEST-
NORTHWESTWARD AT 10 TO 15 MPH. THERE IS A LOW CHANCE...LESS THAN
30 PERCENT...OF THIS SYSTEM BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE DURING THE
NEXT 48 HOURS.

TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION IS NOT EXPECTED DURING THE NEXT 48 HOURS.

$$
FORECASTER BEVEN
Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858
585. SAINTHURRIFAN
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:34 (GMT)
one last note i at 45 must be getting old are everyone on here is young lol.seems like nobody remembers these storms.
Member Since: 20.08.2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 706
584. Cavin Rawlins
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:32 (GMT)
BBL,

Tropical Update
Member Since: 24.07.2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
583. WxLogic
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:25 (GMT)
Good Morning...
Member Since: 14.08.2008 Posts: 4 Comments: 4881
582. SAINTHURRIFAN
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:25 (GMT)
boc is a ripe area for storms to form from stalled out cold fronts. interesting i posted yesterday morning about 1985 where juan formed in late oct did loop to loop off the la/ms coast as a 90mph hurricane and 1 week before thanksgiving the same year kate hit panama city fla as a cat 2 hurricane. in 1995 opal came up from boc hit fla panhandle as a major hurricane.in 1996 tropical storm josephine hit the fla panhandle as a 70 mph tropical storm. oct 3 2002 lili hits central la as a hurricane,was a cat 4 in the gulf at one point.in 1964 oct hurricane hilda struck la coast in oct as a major hurricane. the point in this ramble is storms some severe due affect the northern gulf coast in oct and rarely nov.so while constantly staing cold fronts are going to shut down the gulf in late sept or oct is not always true. plus i live on the ms coast and birmingham is 250 miles to the ne and from what i read from the no nws they say slightly cooler 60's for lows . so imo water temps in the mid to upper 80's are not going to rapidly cool off in the next couple weeks because of some weak fronts. have a great day.
Member Since: 20.08.2005 Posts: 5 Comments: 706
581. IKE
24. syyskuuta 2009 klo 11:12 (GMT)
One front comes through the SE USA by early next week...another front possible the end of next week..another possibly stronger front a few days after that.

I don't see anything in the tropics for the next 10-14 days other than the low in the Bay of Campeche in a few days. Unlikely it gets to be a named system.

Member Since: 9.06.2005 Posts: 23 Comments: 37858

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About JeffMasters

Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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