6:25pm – First, I have to admit, Isaac isn’t a hurricane yet. However, it could be classified as one at any time. Hurricane Hunter Aircraft caught a wind near 74 which is the threshold between a tropical storm and hurricane.
Next, this is the perfect time to utilize our new stormtracking tool! We have made a significant upgrade we will use during times of developing weather. Instead of putting graphics in order before we go on the air, we will have all of the tools we need on the fly. In this snapshot, we can look at the most current weather models (shown as colored lines) and how that compares to the National Hurricane Center forecast (shaded regions). The center of the storm right now is less than 350 miles from New Orleans.
Isaac won’t be remembered for bringing catastrophic wind damage. Here is the GFS model’s depiction for sustained wind. NOTE: The lines are lines of equal wind, NOT equal pressure. So, on this map the center of Isaac is still right along the southern Louisiana coast around 8am Wednesday morning. Instead of strong wind, the surge and rain will be the biggest problems for folks along the coast.
Torrential rainfall will be a considerable threat from Isaac. Here, we’re examining the latest model analysis of rainfall through Friday afternoon. Areas immediately east of the track could get more than a foot of rain in 36 hours or so! To put that in perspective, that is about a third of the precipitation we get in Rockford in an entire year! What’s interesting to note is the track does favor heavy rainfall for Southern Illinois. St. Louis could even get a few inches of much-needed rainfall. Even though we may not get any drought-busting rains, Isaac will bring some great relief to drought-stricken areas along the Ohio River Valley.
Looking long range, the track will favor rain this far north this weekend. The only problem will be the fact that the heaviest rain will likely be east of the forecast track. Still, it’s enough for this forecaster to hike up a 30% chance of rain and thunder on Saturday. Because the system will be picking up forward momentum as a remnant low pressure system, it will only last for one day here.
Posted under tropical weather