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tropicbreeze

australian hurricane season Severe Tropical Cyclone Ita

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The TCWC Brisbane has picked up on the low near the SolomonsIDQ10810Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology QueenslandTropical Cyclone Three Day Outlook for the Coral SeaIssued at 2:30 pm EST on Wednesday 2 April 2014for the period until midnight EST Saturday 5 April 2014.Existing Cyclones in the  Eastern Region:Nil.Potential Cyclones:  A weak low is currently located close to the Solomon Islands near 10S 159.5E. The low is expected to remain slow moving over the northern Coral Sea during the outlook period, but may adopt a more westerly track over the weekend. Further slow devlopment is expected over the outlook period.Likelihood of a tropical cyclone in the Eastern Region on:Thursday   Very low   Friday   Very low   Saturday   Low    TCWC Darwin has it moving across Cape York Peninsula and into the Arafura SeaIn the longer term, a tropical low in the northern Coral Sea is expected to move west and may cross Cape York Peninsula into the northern region mid next week. 

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JTWC Tropical Cyclone Formation Alert WTPS21 Issued at 03/0330Zpost-22057-0-99587000-1396575776_thumb.jEC is leaning towards it being close to Darwin near the middle of April. 

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JTWC have upgraded the system to Tropical Cyclone 23P, with winds of 35kts. Shear should prevent significant intensification over the next day or so as 23P heads westwards, but should eventually ease, allowing intensification as the system heads westwards towards the Cape York Peninsula.

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Now this one is starting very similarly to Monica, near same place, near same track, only about a week or two earlier in the season.

 

AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT BUREAU OF METEOROLOGYTROPICAL CYCLONE WARNING CENTRE BRISBANETROPICAL CYCLONE FORECAST TRACK MAPTropical LowIssued at 10:54 am EST Saturday 5 April 2014. No Tropical Cyclone Advice is current for this system.post-22057-0-13741000-1396662901_thumb.jIDQ20018TROPICAL CYCLONE TECHNICAL BULLETIN: AUSTRALIA - EASTERN REGIONIssued by BRISBANE TROPICAL CYCLONE WARNING CENTRE at: 0110 UTC 05/04/2014Name: Tropical Low  Identifier: 15UData At: 0000 UTCLatitude: 11.8SLongitude: 156.3ELocation Accuracy: within 40 nm [75 km]Movement Towards: west southwest [240 deg]Speed of Movement: 4 knots [8 km/h]Maximum 10-Minute Wind: 30 knots [55 km/h]Maximum 3-Second Wind Gust: 45 knots [85 km/h]Central Pressure: 998 hPaRadius of 34-knot winds NE quadrant:  Radius of 34-knot winds SE quadrant:  Radius of 34-knot winds SW quadrant:  Radius of 34-knot winds NW quadrant:  Radius of 48-knot winds NE quadrant:  Radius of 48-knot winds SE quadrant:  Radius of 48-knot winds SW quadrant:  Radius of 48-knot winds NW quadrant:  Radius of 64-knot winds:  Radius of Maximum Winds:  Dvorak Intensity Code: T2.5/2.5/D0.5/24HRSPressure of outermost isobar: 1006 hPaRadius of outermost closed isobar: 180 nm [335 km]FORECAST DATADate/Time   : Location   : Loc. Accuracy: Max Wind : Central Pressure[uTC]   : degrees :   nm  [km]: knots[km/h]: hPa+06:  05/0600: 12.0S 155.6E: 050 [095]:  035  [065]:  994+12:  05/1200: 12.1S 154.9E: 065 [120]:  035  [065]:  993+18:  05/1800: 12.3S 154.5E: 075 [140]:  040  [075]:  992+24:  06/0000: 12.4S 154.1E: 090 [165]:  040  [075]:  992+36:  06/1200: 12.7S 153.4E: 110 [200]:  045  [085]:  989+48:  07/0000: 12.9S 152.9E: 130 [235]:  055  [100]:  983+60:  07/1200: 12.7S 152.3E: 150 [275]:  060  [110]:  980+72:  08/0000: 12.6S 151.6E: 165 [310]:  065  [120]:  977+96:  09/0000: 12.2S 149.8E: 210 [390]:  085  [155]:  960+120: 10/0000: 12.6S 147.5E: 300 [555]:  085  [155]:  961REMARKS:The tropical low has been moving southwest slowly and maintaining deep convection near the centre. The system has shown improved organisation in the past 12 hours and is expected to continue this trend due to being located in a favourable environment. The system is expected to maintain a slow west-southwestwards track and continue deepening in the next 24 hours.The current intensity is based on Dvorak analysis yielding a DT=3.0. The Final T number is based on MET=PT=2.5.Longer term movement is likely to remain in a general westwards quadrant, however it is a little difficult to say whether this will be north of the west or south of the west.The system is not expected to affect Queensland weather during the next 72 hours.Copyright Commonwealth of Australia==The next bulletin for this system will be issued by: 05/0700 UTC by Brisbane TCWC. 

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Now Tropical Cyclone Ita. Seems to want to pay Port Moresby a visit. But GFS has it heading down along the Queensland coast still offshore, by Sunday April 13 out from about Bundaberg. 

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There's still a huge spread in the model tracks. In a weeks time Ita could be anywhere between 2 points about 2000 kms apart. At the moment it's moving west (280 degrees) at 6 KPH.

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The JTWC has upped the intensity of Ita to 60 kt, mainly due to increased central convection and well-defined banding to the north of the system. Furhtermore, the peak intensity of Ita has been increased to 110 kt (near landfall) which could indicate that Ita may be a big threat for the Australian coast near Cairns. 

 

The forecast track of the JTWC can be seen below:

Posted Image

Of note is that the track forecast of Ita has also switched to a of recurve scenario with a more northerly placed starting point.

 

Sources:

http://www.usno.navy.mil/JTWC/

http://www.ssd.noaa.gov/PS/TROP/floaters/23P/23P_floater.html

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Although Ita is still drifting, seems the models are getting a little closer together. EC seems to favour the crossing of the Cape near Coen, into the Gulf and then swing back to the south east and cross the coast again near Karumba.

 

From Brisbane TCWC at: 0115 UTC 08/04/2014

REMARKS:Using EMBD Centre with a 1.1 degree LG surround, yielding a DT of 4.5.  MET is also 4.5, though it is arguable that the 21Z image from 27 hours ago had a LG eye with a LG surround, though this was a very transient feature at the time. Now 12 hour-old Ascat data showed numerous values near the centre of at least 50 knots, broadly consistent with the current DT. 

 

TC Ita remains near stationary, trapped between mid level ridges over eastern Australia and to Ita's east.  The mid level ridge over eastern Australia is expected to ridge zonally out into the southwestern reaches of the Coral Sea over the next few days, thereby inducing the forecast westward motion.  Towards the end of the week global modelling varies in its treatment of an approaching upper trough, with some models introducing a low amplitude upper trough and thereby allowing Ita to move into the Gulf of Carpentaria, whilst other global models introduce an upper trough of sufficient amplitude that Ita remains in the Coral Sea or moves over northern Queensland.

 

Ita lies in a low shear environment with good upper level outflow.  The system is expected to remain in an environment that ordinarily would be expected to be favourable for development, though allowances have been made for the high terrain over Papua New Guinea, which may hinder development over the short term.

 

Copyright Commonwealth of Australia

 

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Issued at 11:08 am EST Tuesday 8 April 2014

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Cat 4 on the Australian Scale before landfall I see. Looking increasingly dangerous for anyone in it's path. Winds are up to 65kts currently, making Ita a Severe Tropical Cyclone (BOM classification). Interesting point from BOM about interaction with Papua New Guinea, this looks to already be having an effect with shallower convection on the northern side of the developing, ragged eye.

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Posted Image

It seems like Ita may make a brief landfall north of Cairs, with winds of 100kts (around 115mph). Sea temperatures in the region are currently very warm, quite capable of supporting a cat 3 as being modelled by the JTWC.

 

No eye as of yet but I'm sure we'll see one start to emerge today.

 

Posted Image

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GFS has Ita crossing the coast then swinging back into the Coral Sea and intensifying, but continuing south east. EC has it just making the Gulf then turning back south east.

 

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Issued at 10:45 am EST Wednesday 9 April 2014.

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IDQ20023Australian Government Bureau of MeteorologyQueensland Tropical Cyclone Warning Centre

Media: The Standard Emergency Warning Signal should NOT be used with this warning.

PRIORITY

TROPICAL CYCLONE ADVICE NUMBER 3Issued at 4:42 pm EST on Wednesday 9 April 2014

A Cyclone WATCH has been declared for coastal areas from Cape Grenville to Cairns.

 

At 4:00 pm EST Severe Tropical Cyclone Ita, Category 3, was estimated to be 770 kilometres east northeast of Lockhart River and 710 kilometres northeast of Cooktown, and moving west at 15 kilometres per hour.

 

SEVERE TROPICAL CYCLONE ITA, CATEGORY 3, is expected to continue moving in a general westwards direction towards the far north Queensland coast, while intensifying. GALES extend 220 kilometres out from the centre and may develop between Coen and Cooktown late Thursday and develop elsewhere between Cape Grenville and Cairns during Friday.

 

Severe Tropical Cyclone Ita poses a significant threat to communities along the far north Queensland coast and at this stage it is expected to approach the coast between Lockhart River and Cape Flattery and make landfall late Friday as a SEVERE CATEGORY 4 TROPICAL CYCLONE with VERY DESTRUCTIVE WINDS near the core and GALES extending some distance from the landfall location.

 

The sea may rise steadily up to a level which will be significantly above the normal tide between Cape Grenville and Cairns close to landfall on Friday, with damaging waves, strong currents and flooding of low-lying areas possible. People living in low lying areas that may be affected by this flooding should take measures to protect their property as much as possible and be prepared to follow instructions regarding evacuation of the area if advised to do so by the authorities.

 

Very heavy rain, which may lead to flash flooding, is expected to develop about the Peninsula and northern parts of the North Tropical Coast and Tablelands districts on Thursday and persist into Friday.People between Cape Grenville and Cairns should consider what action they will need to take if the cyclone threat increases and listen to the next advice at 11pm EST.

- Information is available from your local government- For cyclone preparedness and safety advice, visit Queensland's Disaster Management Services website (www.disaster.qld.gov.au)- For emergency assistance call the Queensland State Emergency Service (SES) on 132 500 (for assistance with storm damage, rising flood water, fallen trees on buildings or roof damage).

 

Details of Severe Tropical Cyclone Ita at 4:00 pm EST:.Centre located near...... 11.3 degrees South 150.2 degrees East.Location accuracy........ within 20 kilometres.Recent movement.......... towards the west at 15 kilometres per hour.Wind gusts near centre... 205 kilometres per hour.Severity category........ 3.Central pressure......... 963 hectoPascals

 

The next advice will be issued by 11:00 pm EST Wednesday 09 April.

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Ita is slowly but surely becoming more organised, currently with maximum sustained winds of 90mph, gusting up to 115mph. With low shear and high sea surface temperatures, Ita should continue to intensify for the next couple of days, peaking as a fairly weak Category 4 on the Australian scale (Cat 3 on the SS Scale).

 

Doesn't look overly menacing to look at currently but I'm sure it'll be being watched closely by people in North Eastern Queensland.

Posted Image

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Ita continues to streadily strengthen as has already been said, winds are up to 85kts according to BOM. I think some quicker strengthening could be imminant; the CDO is much more symmetrical now Ita has moved away from Papua New Guinea, and the eye has become better defined, albeit cloud filled. Shear is still low and waters very toasty, which lends weight to the possibility of a burst of intensification if that eye clears out.

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BOM is now saying it's possible Ita might make it to Cat 5.

 

IDQ20018TROPICAL CYCLONE TECHNICAL BULLETIN: AUSTRALIA - EASTERN REGIONIssued by BRISBANE TROPICAL CYCLONE WARNING CENTREat: 1839 UTC 09/04/2014Name: Severe Tropical Cyclone ItaIdentifier: 15UData At: 1800 UTCLatitude: 11.5SLongitude: 148.7ELocation Accuracy: within 10 nm [20 km]Movement Towards: west [262 deg]Speed of Movement: 7 knots [14 km/h]Maximum 10-Minute Wind: 85 knots [155 km/h]Maximum 3-Second Wind Gust: 120 knots [220 km/h]Central Pressure: 959 hPaRadius of 34-knot winds NE quadrant: 90 nm [165 km]Radius of 34-knot winds SE quadrant: 120 nm [220 km]Radius of 34-knot winds SW quadrant: 120 nm [220 km]Radius of 34-knot winds NW quadrant: 90 nm [165 km]Radius of 48-knot winds NE quadrant: 50 nm [95 km]Radius of 48-knot winds SE quadrant: 50 nm [95 km]Radius of 48-knot winds SW quadrant: 50 nm [95 km]Radius of 48-knot winds NW quadrant: 50 nm [95 km]Radius of 64-knot winds: 30 nm [55 km]Radius of Maximum Winds: 10 nm [20 km]Dvorak Intensity Code: T5.0/5.0/S0.0/24HRSPressure of outermost isobar: 1004 hPaRadius of outermost closed isobar: 85 nm [155 km]FORECAST DATADate/Time   : Location   : Loc. Accuracy: Max Wind : Central Pressure[uTC]   : degrees :   nm  [km]: knots[km/h]: hPa+06:  10/0000: 11.8S 147.8E: 025 [045]:  085  [155]:  960+12:  10/0600: 12.1S 147.2E: 035 [065]:  090  [165]:  955+18:  10/1200: 12.3S 146.4E: 050 [090]:  095  [175]:  950+24:  10/1800: 12.9S 146.1E: 060 [115]:  100  [185]:  944+36:  11/0600: 14.0S 145.2E: 080 [150]:  105  [195]:  939+48:  11/1800: 14.8S 144.4E: 100 [185]:  075  [140]:  950+60:  12/0600: 15.7S 144.0E: 120 [220]:  040  [075]:  983+72:  12/1800: 16.7S 144.3E: 140 [255]:  030  [055]:  997+96:  13/1800: 18.2S 147.6E: 185 [340]:  030  [055]: 1001+120: 14/1800: 19.2S 150.5E: 270 [500]:  035  [065]:  996REMARKS:Centre embedded 0.6 degrees in CMG. DT is 5.0. MET supports. Final T 5.0. System continues at a near constant intensity in the high category 3 range during the previous 24 hours with transient eyes becoming evident then dissipating.

 

Little change in the environment or prognosed track. If anything NWP models are becoming more tightly clustered about a landfall between Cape Melville and Cape Flattery on Friday night AEST 11/4/13. The system remains situated in a low vertical wind shear enviroment with sea surface temperatures greater than 28 degrees. CIMSS upper winds depict very good outflow above the system.

 

Steering is towards the west under the influence of a mid-level ridge extending from Queensland into the central Coral Sea. This ridge is eroded late in the week by an approaching SWT allowing southerly and eventually southeasterly movement. Although the environment is favourable for further development, Ita has remained at a constant intensity during the last 24 hours, possibly due to interaction with the Papua New Guinea land mass immediately to the north. Further intensification is forecast from later Thursday as the system moves away from this influence. Have limited intensity to upper category 4 at this stage as CIMSS winds depict a tongue of slightly elevated deep layer shear later in the track, and this is reflected in the STIPS and SHIPS prognoses which are currently capping at approximately 100 to 105 knots [1 minute]. Nevertheless, intensification to category 5 is possible.

Copyright Commonwealth of Australia

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Ita us now a cat 5 on the Australian scale, with winds of 110kts according to BOM. Note that this isn't a cat 5 on the SS scale, we will find out shortly what JTWC assesses the wind speed at. The eye has cleared out, and is surrounded by very deep convection. Further intensification is likely. Queensland are bracing themselves for a destructive monster.

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Issued at 5:00 pm EST Thursday 10 April 2014.

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ACCESS G model has the remnants tracking ALL the way down the Queensland coast to 23s before moving off shore next Tuesday

If that scenario comes off . 4-5 days of big trouble for QLD coasters

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JTWC have increased the winds to 115kts on their latest update, cat 4 on the SS scale. Cat 5 on this scale is still a distinct possibility as shear remains low and outflow excellent.

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I think it might just make it to a Category 5 on the SS scale. JTWC going for a peak of 135 knots, just shy of Category 5 (~155mph), but looking at the visual images over the past few hours it looks like Ita is becoming rapidly more organised. The eye is almost clear, and Central Dense Overcast has become much more solid.

Posted Image

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Current state of Ita

 

Ita has continued to rapidly strengthen, and the JTWC has increased the maximum intensity to 135 kt, just shy of category 5 intensity (SSHS-scale). The eyewall has become very circular, and the convection in the eyewall has deepened significantly. However, in the last hour or so (as of 19:32 UTC), the convection in the eastern part of the eyewall has weakened slightly, which may be indicating that Ita could have reached its peak intensity. Still, Ita remains a very dangerous tropical cyclone.

 

A Dvorak satellite image loop of Ita can be seen below:

 

Posted Image

Dvorak satellite image loop of Ita.

 

Of note is also that Ita is a relatively small cyclone, with a radius of hurricane force winds of about 185 km1. Yet it couldn't be emphasized enough that Ita remains a highly dangerous cyclone.

 

Track forecast disagreements

 

There is some disagreement between the JTWC and the Bureau of Meteorology about how far Ita will track inland before recurving to the southeast. The Bureau of Meteorology forecasts a track deeper inland, which also results in more significant weakening. The track forecast of the Bureau of Meteorology can be seen below:

 

Posted Image

Track forecast of Ita from the Bureau of Meteorology.

 

Of note is that with such an inland track, the areas located far to the southeast of Cairns will most likely not experience tropical storm force winds (i.e. winds above 35 kt). The biggest threats will be rain, flash floods and destructively high waves in this case.

 

For comparison, the track forecast from JTWC is indicated below:

 

Posted Image

Track forecast from JTWC.

 

Though the track forecast is only slightly more to the east (and so Ita emerges over sea earlier than in the forecast from the Bureau of Meteorology, just to the south of Cairns), the consequences intensity-wise would be that the area near and to the southeast of Cairns would also experience tropical storm force winds. This is because Ita will not weaken as much in the forecast by the JTWC, due to decreased land interaction.

 

MIMIC-TC structure analysis 

 

Finally, a MIMIC TC loop from CIMSS, showing the intensification of Ita during the past 24 hours (as of 19:30 UTC):

Posted Image

MIMIC TC satellite loop from CIMSS.

 

What can be seen is that during the last few hours (as of 19:30 UTC), the eyewall (shown as the red colours in the image; i.e. the low brightness temperatures) has become more defined in the southern part of the eyewall, indicative of increased organization.

 

 

Let's hope people in the area which will most likely be hit will stay safe!

 

= calculated by taking the maximum radius of 64 kt-winds (southwest-northeast quadrant) from the text advisory from JTWC converted from nautical miles to kilometres.

 

Sources:

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9000 people live in communities close to where the eye will cross the land.

Expected landfall time: Near 5pm Queensland time ( 8am Friday British time ).

Follow up rainfall projection: 200-500mm in 24hrs.

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The Eye of the Storm

 

MTSAT-2 early morning visible image of the eye of Cyclone ita.

 

 

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