Friday, July 2, 2010

Tropical Deja Vu?

No, the above image isn't a copy of a map from earlier this week showing Hurricane Alex approaching the Mexican coast South of Texas (note the "L" just off the Texas coast on the upper-right portion of the 4-panel image).  It is a computer forecast model from this morning produced by the European Center for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (ECMWF for short, thank goodness), and is valid at 7am Central Time this coming Friday, July 9th.  Now, keep in mind we're talking 7 full days out into the future, and the system depicted in the image above has not yet even formed in the Carribean Sea as of this writing, but the ECMWF has a pretty solid track record of accurately forecasting tropical systems.  It will certainly be interesting to see how this pans out over the coming week.

Meanwhile, beneficial rains continue to fall across much of southern and central Texas thanks to Alex.  The image below is of the New Braunfels, TX WSR-88D radar (KEWX), taken just a few moments ago.  This image depicts the radar's estimate of rainfall totals across the region since yesterday:
The dark purple areas Southwest of Houston (KHGX) indicate rainfall estimates of 8-10 inches, while the brighter red and orange areas depict rainfall estimates of 3-6 inches.  As you can see, widespread estimates of 2-4 inches are observed across much of the remainder of the region.

Texans know to be thankful for any amount of rain we receive during the summer months, but we could have some serious problems across portions of the southeast half of the state if another tropical system moves across the region as predicted by the ECMWF model forecast that I first spoke about.  Time will tell....stay tuned!

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