Tropical Storm Emily Heading Differences
In the graphic above, you can clearly see a difference between the National Hurricane Center direction of movement and what was found by recon. The red icons are NHC locations at 11pm and 5am, and the white icons are Vortex Data Messages, which are the messages that recon sends when they have a closed center. All of the multicolored flags are observations taken by the recon planes. The VDM’s were sent out over a 4 hour period, and 2 more will be added in a couple hours. The VDM’s are hard data, while the NHC positions are estimates. Usually the NHC uses the VDM’s for center locations, but in this case I believe the NHC has ignored them. The NHC is insisting that Emily is moving WNW, while the data shows a due west movement. I think this west movement will continue for at least the next 6 hours, and the NHC needs to correct their forecast to meet these positions.
Generally I am not critical of the NHC, but in this case I am very much critical. Emily will be making landfall today in Hispaniola, and slight differences in track mean the difference of landfalling in either Haiti or the Dominican Republic. I will update again during the afternoon and again tonight, but please keep watch of the NHC at http://www.nhc.noaa.gov. Keep in mind this difference in direction when you do look at their forecasts.