A long night is ahead in coastal North Carolina where winds above 75 mph will reach a good portion of that area. Tornadoes have been possible across northeastern North Carolina this evening, and the threat for tornadoes continues into tomorrow morning ahead of Arthur. A tornado watch is in effect for most of eastern NC for this threat until 8AM. Winds near 100 mph are visible on radar near Beaufort and Harkers Island, NC coming ashore in the northeastern eyewall. Gusts are possible well over 105 mph. Please see official sources (local officials and the NHC) for official information. Landfall officially came at 11:15pm near Beaufort, NC. Current information from the NHC is as follows:
- Winds: 100 mph (Category 2 Hurricane)
- Pressure: 976 mb
- Location: Nearing Beaufort, NC and Cape Lookout, NC
- Movement: NNE at 18mph, acceleration expected to continue
Impacts tonight into tomorrow morning:
- Wind: Sustained at 100 mph and gusts to 115 mph for much of Hatteras Island and the eastern part of North Carolina to the right of where Arthur tracks
- Rainfall: 2-5″ of rainfall will occur on Hatteras Island and eastern North Carolina and extreme southeastern Virginia. 1-2″ of rain for central NC, SE VA, and the southern Delmarva.
- Tornadoes: Possible on the northern side of Arthur as it tracks northward. These should be short lived and weak
- Surge/Waves: Waves up to 20 feet will top 3-5 foot storm surge on Hatteras island with lower numbers in the sound of eastern NC.
- Erosion will continue on eastward facing beaches
Tomorrow Night/Saturday Morning:
- Winds may reach 40-60 mph in eastern Massachusetts as Arthur passes to the east. Any deviation to the west in track may bring hurricane force winds to that area
- Rainfall: 2-4″ of freshwater rainfall is probable in eastern Mass, Rhode Island, and parts of Long Island
- Waves will climb along the coast of the mid-Atlantic states and New England.
- 4th of July: Likely rained out in eastern New England. Do NOT go in the water!!
Landfall is occurring now near Cape Lookout. The strongest rain band is off shore with winds topping out near 100 mph in the southeastern quadrant. No major changes have occurred in the recent few hours, but some deterioration is possible why Arthur is overland. Something interesting is occurring in the eye, but that information can be seen at the end of this post.
Arthur will track over eastern North Carolina overnight bringing the impacts mentioned above. Small deviations in track is possible due to friction with wobbles. Arthur should be moving away from North Carolina around sunrise tomorrow morning. Due to enhanced interaction with land, intensification is not expected over the next 24 hours. After that time, the trough we discussed yesterday will be interacting with hurricane Arthur and weakening should commence. The balancing act between weakening induced by the trough and intensification due to acceleration should allow slow weakening off the east coast of the US. Interaction with Nova Scotia late on Saturday will commence the final weakening trend.
The Eye Story: Extra Information
Breezing over radar imagery earlier I saw what appears to be birds or bugs stuck in the eye of Hurricane Arthur. I said appears because there is no official confirmation on this, but this is how I came to that information. Current reflectivity radar, and snapshots from earlier in Dual Pol. High ZDR means that the radar is picking up flat horizontal objects and low CC means that the objects are likely not rain. What is long, flat, and not rain: My first thought was birds with wings, but birds or fluid trapping are also possible. Opinions welcome!
As always, i’ll be updating on twitter @JonathanBelles
-Jonathan saying “Stay Safe!”
As expected, today was a day of slow intensification and abundant monitoring. All resources continue to be used to monitor Arthur, and this storm continues to follow guidance from days ago. Thus far this is a well forecast storm. As of 11 pm, the information from the NHC are as follows:
- Winds: 70 mph
- Pressure: 988 mb
- Location: 380 miles SW of Cape Hatteras, NC
- Movement: Due north at 8 mph (slightly faster from last advisory)
Arthur has gained a well formed eye today and has greatly improved it’s structure with a complete eyewall at times this afternoon. Winds at times were within 1 or 2 mph of hurricane status. Arthur’s eye remains cloudy. The eastern and southern side continues to be the strong side of this storm, however banding on the western (land) side of Arthur have been strong to severe at times. We should see improved thunderstorm activity on the northern side over night. The eye should also clear out as intensification continues.
Where We Go From Here: Forecast Intensity
Intensity is the bigger variable in this forecast. Dry air has been the biggest battle thus far, but even with that in place Arthur continues to intensify. Shear thus far has been limited, but not zero as seen below as the yellow lines in knots. Shear will become a major factor in 2-3 days or so, but for now it is not inhibitive. Fuel from below in terms of very warm waters and somewhat depthy warm waters has helped Arthur organize and intensify. The waters are even warmer ahead as the cyclone parallels the Gulf Stream over the next day or so. I fully expect to wake up tomorrow with a hurricane off the coast. Thursday will be an intensification day for Arthur, and it should continue to intensify until either landfall or until it leaves the Gulf Stream on early Friday morning. Thankfully Arthur will accelerate toward cooler waters and land tomorrow as well. One final factor that will affect Arthur’s intensity will arrive late tomorrow in the form of a somewhat abnormal cold front and trough. Troughs this time of year are not out of the ordinary, but front this strong are. That trough will add energy and speed to Arthur’s envelope, which will unfortunately drench eastern New England during the fireworks and it may add some extra strength as well. There is a narrow window where that intensification kick could occur before major shear moves in from the cold front. The current NHC forecast brings Arthur up to 85 mph, and I have no reason to argue with that. Maximum intensity should occur shortly after interaction with North Carolina, somewhere off the coast of the mid-Atlantic states.
I must stress to you that you skip this section, go on to the next one and then come back to up to this one before reading into any of the lines of the next graphic. Each of those lines are a different model recently produced. These models have the data from the hurricane hunter flights this morning and early afternoon. Consolidation of the track models has been good thus far. Impacts will likely reach well into inland North Carolina and the mid-Atlantic on Thursday and into Friday. It is important to stress that the eye and eyewall may come very close to the barrier islands of North Carolina, impacts will be felt inland as well. Hurricane Warnings are in effect for much of the NC coastline, and an evacuation order has been put in place for Hatteras. My professional opinion is that this will make landfall on the barrier islands as it passes through unless rightward wobbles occur, but lately leftward wobbles have been more common. Models indicate that a good deal of this system’s effects will be felt on the left or westward side as it brushes New England on July 4th.
- Wind: Winds of hurricane force will be felt near the eyewall of to-be-hurricane Arthur with tropical storm force winds extending 90 miles outward from the center. This wind field is expected to expand as it travels northward.
- Waves: 12-20 feet on top of storm surge. Enjoy the beaches this holiday weekend if you do not have to evacuate, but do NOT go in the water!
- Storm Surge/Inundation: 2-4 feet on the outer banks and in some of the outlets. If you are on a low lying island of on low lying ground, water there may rise up to 4 feet.
- Rainfall: 2-4″ of fresh water is expected to fall in eastern North Carolina and in eastern New England as Arthur passes by. Heavier rainfall will occur closer to the eyewall over water
The Bottom Line:
A hurricane will approach eastern North Carolina tomorrow night into Friday (July 4th) morning with hurricane force winds, torrential rainfall, and very choppy seas. Prepare for a hurricane 1 or 2 categories stronger than forecast so that you are not caught off guard. Fireworks for Independence Day should go off without a hitch up and down the eastern seaboard with the exception of New England. Unfortunately, those displays will have to be delayed or cancelled due to weather. The weekend looks good. Hurricane Hunters will fly once again this evening and tomorrow morning as long as needed.
Stay tuned on twitter @JonathanBelles for updates,
PS -> These posts should be posting to Google Plus now as well. Find me there +Jonathan Belles
2AM information on Tropical Depression #1:
- ABOUT 105 MI SE OF CAPE CANAVERAL FL
- MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS: 35MPH
- PRESENT MOVEMENT: SW AT 2 MPH
- PRESSURE: 1009 MB
- Rainfall: 1-3″ FL east coast Tue-Wed, 2-4″ northern Bahamas
- Wind: Winds up to 40 mph on the east coast FL Tuesday into Wednesday. TS force winds will slowly move up the coast through the week
- Waves: up to 6 ft off the east coast of FL, moving up the coast. This is not a good boating week on the east coast of FL. Waves should calm in Florida some by July 4th.