MY 2021 ATLANTIC HURRICANE SEASON BIRDSEYE VIEW POST #24B (Special Update)
*******Note that forecasts and outlooks in this post are NOT the official forecast from the National Hurricane Center (NHC). They are my own detailed views on the Atlantic tropics based on current observations and latest computer model runs. As such do not make decisions based on my posts...consult news media...watches and warnings from your local weather office...and any evacuation orders issued by local governments to make the most informed and best decisions. Visit the NHC website hurricanes.gov (hurricanes dot gov) for the latest watches/warnings and official forecasts on active tropical cyclones.**********
...SATURDAY JUNE 19 2021 3:23 PM EDT...
Left: Satellite image of Tropical Storm Claudette taken earlier today at 1226Z. Right: the latest satellite image of Claudette as of this writing…taken 1901Z
The vigorous broad tropical low pressure in the northern Gulf of Mexico…designated potential tropical cyclone three…finally developed a well-defined singular cloud swirl center as it made landfall in SE Louisiana at 5 AM EDT…which gave it the scientific criteria to finally be named Tropical Storm Claudette. The center of Claudette is now over southern Mississippi and will soon be downgraded to a tropical depression as it continues to slowly weaken from landfall. Naming this system Claudette does not change the impacts…which will be as follows:
**Winds have been confined to the east of the swirl center due to the push of upper-level winds keeping Claudette’s thunderstorms down east…and reached their peak and hit tropical storm force (40 to 45 mph) early this morning along coastal SE Louisiana…coastal Mississippi…and coastal Alabama…best examples are the National Weather Service station data for Mobile, AL and Gulfport, MS. Winds are now dying down in this area per the latest data as Claudette weakens from landfall. Winds were also briefly breezy in SE and east-central Mississippi (Meridian and points south) but have since climbed down.
**Some winds have picked up inland and away from the landfall region (in Alabama see Montgomery… Birmingham… Tuscaloosa…and Auburn weather station data. In the western Florida panhandle see Panama City… Apalachocola… and Tallahassee data. In the SW corner of Georgia see Bainbridge data). However these winds are below tropical storm force with only very isolated damage potential.
**Based on the latest doppler radar…thru the remainder of this weekend the area of heavy rainfall with flash flooding potential is narrowed down to NE Mississippi…Alabama…Georgia… northwest Florida… eastern Tennessee… the Carolinas… and southern Virginia. Should you encounter a flooded road…do not drive into the water or your vehicle could become stuck and you could drown.
**The surface southerly flow on the east side of Claudette combined with upper westerlies over the SE US is producing shear favoring tornadoes. A tornado watch is in effect for the western Florida panhandle… SE Alabama… and SW Georgia as of this writing. It would not surprise me if additional tornado watches are issued in SE Georgia and the Carolinas for the remainder of this weekend.
**Claudette has the potential to re-strengthen over land and then along or just offshore the US east coast Sunday thru Tuesday either by non-tropical mechanisms… tropical mechanisms… or both. Based on the latest forecast track… gusty winds with isolated damage potential could occurr over northwest Georgia… the Carolinas… and southern Virginia Sunday and into Monday. Note that a tropical storm watch has been raised for much of the coast of North Carolina as of this writing. Quickly passing coastal sea swells and rip currents as well as offshore choppy seas are a possibility Monday through Wednesday from the Carolinas through New England on the US Atlantic coast…and the Nova Scotia coast. The potentially strengthening remains of Claudette could impact Nova Scotia directly with wind on Wednesday depending on the exact track.
**For an in depth technical discussion on this system…refer to the area of interest #1 section of full update #24 found on the home page of this site.