T.D #4 Develops in the Gulf

August 16, 2009

Tropical Depression #4 developed in the Gulf of Mexico overnight. The good news is this storm should make landfall well to our east along the Florida panhandle. As of this morning T.D 4 looks great on radar, but surface observations still indicate a weakly organiszed system. I think this will end up getting its act together fairly quickly and we’ll see a 50-60 mph tropical storm at landfall, somewhere around Panama City Florida later this evening. For us, rain chances will perk up starting later today, but any sort of direct tropical problems will not come from this system.

Ana continues to hang on out over the western Atlantic. As of now, Ana is weak at best, and really having some problems in the dry air out there. I suspect Ana will degenerate as it moves westward and interacts with the land masses of the Caribbean, though if it does not, conditions will be favorable for some more development. The forecast track of Ana is ominous in that it ends up in the Gulf of Mexico on a heading toward the Louisiana coast, but the NHC has this as a tropical depression at that point. Ana is something to watch, but certainly not worry about.

Bill is gathering strength several hundred miles east of Ana. Bill will likely become a hurricane over the next few days as conditions are quite favorable for more development. It’s becoming increasingly likely that Bill will not be a Gulf of Mexico threat due to a large upper level trough digging across the eastern U.S by late this week. Some models have been hinting at this for a while, and some other reliable models are jumping on board with this solution.

All in all, I feel much better about our situation here in Louisiana. As recently as last night it looked like there could be a threat or two to our coastline. At this point, we can pretty much write off one threat as T.D 4 will miss us well to the east. Ana has many obstacles to overcome to even survive, and Bill should stay way to our east per my current thinking. Good stuff indeed for Louisiana. We need a break!

Now my unofficial, amateur weatherdork forecast.

Sunday: Becoming mostly cloudy with a 40% chance for thunderstorms late in the afternoon. Highs will be in the middle 90s, with southeasterly wind around 5-10 mph.

Sunday Night: Partly cloudy with a 20% chance for a shower or thunderstorm. Lows will be in the middle 70s.

Monday: Mostly cloudy with a 50% chance for thunderstorms. Highs will be in the lower 90s.

Monday Night: Mostly cloudy with a 40% chance for thunderstorms. Lows will be in the lower to middle 70s.

Tuesday: Mostly cloudy with a 60% chance for thunderstorms. Highs will be in the upper 80s to near 90.

Wednesday through Friday: Scattered thunderstorms will still be possible though chances will drop off. I’ll put chances around 30% for this time frame with highs rebounding into the middle 90s. Lows will be in the middle 70s.

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