Tropical Storm Barry has formed in the Gulf of Mexico

Thursday, July 11, 2019 - 11:12am

THE LOW PRESSURE AREA OVER THE NORTHERN GULF OF MEXICO HAS BECOME TROPICAL STORM BARRY.  THE STORM IS BEING STEERED BY A WEAK LOW- TO MID-LEVEL RIDGE TO THE NORTH, AND A WEAKNESS IN THE RIDGE IS FORECAST TO DEVELOP DURING THE NEXT 24-48 HOURS. THIS SHOULD ALLOW THE CYCLONE TO TURN NORTHWESTWARD AND EVENTUALLY NORTHWARD. HOWEVER, THERE IS A LARGE SPREAD IN THE TRACK GUIDANCE. THE HWRF AND HMON FORECAST BARRY TO MOVE ALMOST DUE NORTH FROM ITS CURRENT POSITION WITH A LANDFALL IN MISSISSIPPI, WHILE THE UKMET TAKES THE CYCLONE TO THE UPPER TEXAS COAST. THE GFS, ECMWF, AND CANADIAN MODELS LIE BETWEEN THESE EXTREMES. OVERALL, THERE HAS BEEN A SLIGHT EASTWARD SHIFT OF THE GUIDANCE ENVELOPE, SO THE NEW FORECAST TRACK IS ALSO ADJUSTED SLIGHTLY TO THE EAST. IT SHOULD BE NOTED, THOUGH, THAT THE NEW TRACK IS WEST OF THE CONSENSUS MODELS. BARRY IS BEING AFFECTED BY NORTHERLY SHEAR, AND WATER VAPOR IMAGERY INDICATES MID- TO UPPER-LEVEL DRY AIR MOVING INTO THE CYCLONE FROM THE NORTHEAST. SOME MODERATE SHEAR IS NOW EXPECTED TO PERSIST UNTIL THE CYCLONE MAKES LANDFALL.  BARRY IS EXPECTED TO BECOME A HURRICANE JUST BEFORE LANDFALL IN LOUISIANA.

 

KEY MESSAGES: 1. BARRY IS EXPECTED TO BRING STORM SURGE, RAINFALL, AND WIND HAZARDS TO THE CENTRAL GULF COAST DURING THE NEXT SEVERAL DAYS.

2. THERE IS A DANGER OF LIFE-THREATENING STORM SURGE INUNDATION ALONG THE COAST OF SOUTHERN AND SOUTHEASTERN LOUISIANA WHERE A STORM SURGE WARNING HAS BEEN ISSUED. THE HIGHEST STORM SURGE INUNDATION IS EXPECTED BETWEEN THE MOUTH OF THE ATCHAFALAYA RIVER AND SHELL BEACH. RESIDENTS IN THESE AREAS SHOULD LISTEN TO ANY ADVICE GIVEN BY LOCAL OFFICIALS.

3. A TROPICAL STORM WARNING AND HURRICANE WATCH ARE IN EFFECT FOR MUCH OF THE LOUISIANA COAST AND ADDITIONAL WATCHES AND WARNINGS COULD BE REQUIRED LATER TODAY. RESIDENTS IN THESE AREAS SHOULD ENSURE THEY HAVE THEIR HURRICANE PLAN IN PLACE. 4. THE SLOW MOVEMENT OF THIS SYSTEM WILL RESULT IN A LONG DURATION HEAVY RAINFALL THREAT ALONG THE CENTRAL GULF COAST AND INLAND THROUGH THE LOWER MISSISSIPPI VALLEY THROUGH THE WEEKEND AND POTENTIALLY INTO EARLY NEXT WEEK. FLASH FLOODING AND RIVER FLOODING WILL BECOME INCREASINGLY LIKELY, SOME OF WHICH MAY BE SIGNIFICANT, ESPECIALLY ALONG AND EAST OF THE TRACK OF THE SYSTEM.

THE IMPACTS WE CAN EXPECT FROM BARRY HERE IN ROWAN COUNTY ARE GOING TO BE NON EXISTENT AT THIS POINT AS THE STORM SYSTEM IS EXPECTED TO STAY WEST AND MOVE THROUGH THE MIDSECTION OF THE COUNTY INTO EARLY NEXT WEEK. RAINFALL TOTALS FOR THE COUNTY THROUGH SUNDAY ARE AROUND A HALF AN INCH. MOST OF THAT RAINFALL WILL COME TODAY AND FRIDAY AND WILL HAVE NO ASSOCIATION WITH BARRY AT ALL. 

 

I WILL CONTINUE TO MONITOR MODEL AND FORECAST DATA AS IT COMES IN ON BARRY. IF YOU HAVE ANY FRIENDS, FAMILY OR LOVED ONES ALONG THE GULF COAST. PLEASE KEEP THEM AWARE OF WEATHER UPDATES OVER THE NEXT FEW DAYS AS LOSS OF POWER IS LIKELY WITH THIS SYSTEM. AS ALWAYS THANK YOU FOR FOLLOWING ROWAN COUNTY WEATHER

 

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