MY 2021 ATLANTIC HURRICANE SEASON BIRDSEYE VIEW POST #42A (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.**********
…UPDATE…WEDNESDAY JULY 7 2021 11:07 AM EDT...
Left: Satellite Image of Tropical Storm Elsa nearing landfall as of 1351Z. Right: Doppler radar taken at the same time:
Through the morning hours…Tropical Storm Elsa fired a renewed thunderstorm flare that covered areas over and northeast of the center. As a result…Elsa stopped weakening below 65 mph max sustained winds and is now approaching landfall near the Steinhatchee and Horseshoe beach areas of north Florida. See update below written at 9:15 PM EDT last night which outlines Elsa’s impacts expected across the eastern US through Friday. In the meantime…National weather service station reports show a broad area of breezy winds across west-central and northern parts of peninsular Florida…reaching the east coast at Jacksonville. These breezy winds are beginning to spread across southeast Georgia as far north as Brunswick and Valdosta. Note that the observations below may be missing stronger wind going on near the landfall area in between stations. Note that in addition to wind…heavy rain with flash flooding potential…coastal sea swells…and quick spin up tornadoes are hazards for those in the path of Elsa in the next day or so.
Here are some of the latest north Florida National weather service station reports of wind (in mph):
**Venice…sustained 18…gust 26 (now)
**Port Charlotte…sustained 18…gust 33 (8:53 AM EDT)
**Tampa…sustained 13…gust 24 (now)
**St Petersburg…sustained 16…gust 24 (now)
**Lakeland…sustained 12 (now)
**Spring Hill…sustained 24…gust 33 (6:53 AM EDT)
**Clearwater…sustained 10…gust 22 (now)
**Horseshoe Beach & Steinhatchee region…sustained 16…gust 28 (now)
**Gainesville…sustained 20…gust 31 (now)
**Lake City…sustained 14…gust 28 (now)
**Jacksonville…sustained 26…gust 35 (now)
Here are some of the latest southeast Georgia National weather service station reports of wind (in mph):
**Waycross…sustained 9 (now)
**Valdosta…sustained 14…gust 21 (now)
**Brunswick…sustained 14…gust 22 (now)
**Savannah…sustained 7 (now)
…UPDATE…WEDNESDAY JULY 7 2021 4:27 AM EDT...
Elsa has weakened to a top-end tropical storm with 70 mph max sustained winds while lacking thunderstorms near the center. Thunderstorm activity has only increased in a heavy rain band that has spread onshore onto the Florida peninsula along the US Highway 17-98 corridor west of Orlando…with this band containing gusty winds (see Lakeland observation below for example). Will watch for this heavy rain band to shift east to Orlando later this morning. Winds have not yet picked up further north toward the Florida/Georgia border region but are expected to do so later this morning (see Gainesville and Lake City observations). The heavy rain band reminds us that quick spin-up tornadoes and flash flooding are other hazards with Elsa…see update below written at 9:15 PM EDT last night which outlines Elsa’s impacts expected across the eastern US through Friday. The center of Elsa is defined on Doppler radar…tracking north toward a landfall near the Steinhatchee and Horseshoe beach area later this morning. Here are some of the latest north Florida National weather service station reports of wind (in mph):
**Sarasota…sustained 21…gust 30 (now)
**Venice…sustained 23…gust 30 (now)
**Port Charlotte…sustained 26…gust 40 (11:53 PM EDT)
**Tampa…sustained 15…gust 30 (12:53 AM EDT)
**St Petersburg…sustained 38…gust 48 (11:53 PM EDT)
**Lakeland…sustained 26…gust 33 (now)
**Orlando…sustained 13 (now)
**Spring Hill…sustained 15 (now)
**Clearwater…sustained 21…gust 37 (12:55 AM EDT)
**Homosassa Springs…sustained 9…gust 23 (now)
**Horseshoe Beach & Steinhatchee region…sustained 13…gust 20 (now)
**Gainesville…sustained 8 (now)
**Lake City…sustained 6 (now)
…UPDATE…TUESDAY JULY 6 2021 11:30 PM EDT...
Although no hurricane force winds were measured by aircraft recon recently as Elsa’s thunderstorms have weakened…the NHC is keeping Elsa at hurricane force (75 mph max sustained winds) in the event Elsa re-fires thunderstorms with the aid of the divergent southwesterly flow aloft and before landfall. See update below written at 9:15 PM EDT which outlines Elsa’s impacts expected across the eastern US through Friday. In the meantime…here are some of the latest north Florida National weather service station reports of wind (in mph) which suggests Elsa’s tropical storm force wind field is spreading onshore from Sarasota.
**Sarasota…sustained 25…gust 54 (now)
**Venice…sustained 21 (now)
**Port Charlotte…sustained 22…gust 37 (now)
**Tampa…sustained 12…gust 24 (now)
**St Petersburg…sustained 29…gust 39 (now)
**Spring Hill…sustained 15…gust 24 (9:53 PM EDT)
**Clearwater…sustained 14…gust 24 (now)
**Homosassa Springs…sustained 10…gust 18 (now)
**Gainsville…sustained 6 (now)
**Lake City…calm (now)
...TUESDAY JULY 6 2021 9:15 PM EDT...
Satellite image of Hurricane Elsa as of 0050Z:
Aircraft reconnaissance as of 8 PM EDT has measured Elsa at category 1 hurricane strength with 75 mph maximum sustained winds. See post #42 available on the home page of this site for technical information on why Elsa has strengthened in the short-term…and what to expect in the longer-term.
(1) The western Bahamas and north shore of western Cuba may see coastal sea swells tonight. No additional rain is expected over western Cuba based on the latest satellite pictures. A stray outer band of rain generated by Elsa may reach the western Bahamas tonight.
(2) Tropical Storm force winds have ended in the Florida Keys. Coastal sea swells and rainfall from outer bands may continue tonight.
(3) Coastal storm surge will remain a concern for the western part of the Florida peninsula tonight. Tropical storm force winds (below hurricane force) have reached the Port Charlotte region. Tropical storm force winds to category 1 hurricane force winds are expected to arrive in the hurricane warning region from Tampa Bay and vicinity northward to the Steinhatchee River tonight. Tropical storm force winds (below hurricane force) are likely inland from the Steinhatchee River…across Lake City and Live Oak regions…and into the eastern Florida/Georgia border region late tonight into early tomorrow. The prior preparation for tropical storm conditions should encompass tonight’s potential for category 1 hurricane force winds…it just means that now more people could see some wind damage and power outages. Here are some of the latest National weather service station reports of wind in the region (in mph):
**Sarasota…sustained 23…gust 32 (now)
**Venice…sustained 31…gust 40 (7:55 PM EDT)
**Port Charlotte…sustained 23…gust 43 (7:48 PM EDT)
**Tampa…sustained 13…gust 25 (7:53 PM EDT)
**St Petersburg…sustained 28….gust 41 (now)
**Spring Hill…sustained 15…gust 23 (6:53 PM EDT)
**Clearwater…sustained 13…gust 26 (now)
(4) The east side of the Florida peninsula could still see sea swells and rip currents and some breezy winds tonight.
(5) All of the Florida peninsula could see heavy rains with flash flooding potential tonight.
(6) Interests in the Florida panhandle could still see coastal sea swells tonight. The heaviest rainfall will likely stay to the east due to the shearing upper southwesterly winds over Elsa.
(7) Interests inland over southeast Georgia could see tropical storm force winds from Elsa by early tomorrow (Wednesday) as Elsa rakes time to weaken after its north Florida landfall. Use tonight to prepare for possible isolated damage and power outages. Heavy rain with possible flash flooding is also another hazard to consider here.
(8) For coastal Georgia and the coastal Carolinas…on Wednesday (tomorrow) and Thursday Elsa could retain tropical storm force winds even if the center never quiet makes it back over water after its north Florida landfall…as Elsa could get aided by the divergent nature of the shearing upper southwesterly flow as we are currently seeing. I recommend interests along the coastal areas of Georgia and the Carolinas to begin preparing for possible tropical storm force winds and coastal sea swells. Inland areas in the eastern Carolinas could also see breezy winds with more isolated damage potential. Heavy rain with possible flash flooding is also another hazard to consider here.
(9) Interests across the northeastern US coastal region should monitor the progress of Elsa as the following hazards may occur by late Thursday through Friday as the tropical storm transitions into a potentially vigorous remnant frontal cyclone:
**Heavy rainfall from eastern Virginia to Maine
**Gusty winds with some damage potential from coastal Virginia to coastal Massachusetts
**Coastal sea swells from coastal Virginia to coastal Maine