Hurricane Paloma: Discussion #13

HURRICANE PALOMA DISCUSSION NUMBER 13
NWS TPC/NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL172008
1000 AM EST SAT NOV 08 2008

THE LAST FIX FROM THE AIR FORCE PLANE SUGGESTED THE MINIMUM PRESSURE
HAS DROPPED TO LEAST 943 MB. IN ADDITION...PEAK FLIGHT LEVEL WINDS
FROM THE AIR FORCE PLANE WERE 134 KT WITH SFMR READINGS OF 127
KT...THOUGH THE LATTER VALUE COULD BE A LITTLE INFLATED DUE TO
SHOALING AROUND LITTLE CAYMAN/CAYMAN BRAC. SINCE THE PLANE
DEPARTED...CLOUD-TOP TEMPERATURES HAVE WARMED A BIT...SO PERHAPS
PALOMA'S INTENSITY HAS PEAKED. THE INITIAL INTENSITY REMAINS AT 120
KT...AND THE HURRICANE COULD HAVE BEEN A LITTLE STRONGER A FEW
HOURS AGO. TWO MORE PLANES WILL BE IN THE AREA IN A FEW HOURS.

RADAR FROM CAMAGUEY AND REPORTS FROM THE AIR FORCE RESERVE SUGGEST
THAT PALOMA IS STARTING AN EYEWALL REPLACEMENT CYCLE WITH
CONCENTRIC EYEWALLS NOTED. THIS STRUCTURE...COMBINED WITH SHEAR
THAT IS LIKELY TO INCREASE TODAY...SUGGESTS THAT SLOW WEAKENING IS
LIKELY. HOWEVER...PALOMA IS EXPECTED TO REMAIN A MAJOR HURRICANE UP
THROUGH LANDFALL. THEREAFTER A RAPID WEAKENING SEEMS PROBABLE DUE
TO THE EFFECTS OF LAND AND RATHER HIGH SHEAR FORECAST BY ALL GLOBAL
MODELS. THIS WEAKENING SHOULD CONTINUE OVER THE ATLANTIC OCEAN AND
PALOMA COULD START TO DISSIPATE IN A FEW DAYS. THE OFFICIAL
FORECAST IS FAIRLY CLOSE TO THE SHIPS MODEL INITIALLY AND THEN IS A
BLEND OF THE REST OF THE INTENSITY GUIDANCE AFTER LANDFALL IN CUBA.

THE HURRICANE HAS TURNED A LITTLE MORE TO THE RIGHT AND APPEARS TO
BE MOVING AT 060/8. NO CHANGE IN THE STEERING PATTERN IS EXPECTED
IN THE SHORT-TERM...REQUIRING AN EASTWARD ADJUSTMENT OF THE NHC
FORECAST. THEREAFTER...THE MODELS ARE IN MUCH BETTER AGREEMENT THAT
PALOMA WILL DECOUPLE AND THE LOW-LEVEL CENTER WILL BE LEFT BEHIND
OVER THE SOUTHWESTERN ATLANTIC OCEAN. LITTLE CHANGE IS MADE TO THE
FORECAST IN THE LATER PERIODS AND THE OFFICIAL FORECAST ISN'T TOO
FAR FROM THE MODEL CONSENSUS. IT IS WORTH EMPHASIZING THAT PALOMA
WILL LIKELY BE QUITE WEAK AS IT BEGINS TO MOVE WESTWARD AT THE END
OF THE PERIOD DUE TO STRONG WESTERLY SHEAR.

EXCEPTIONALLY HIGH STORM SURGE VALUES OVER 20 FEET ARE POSSIBLE
ALONG THE SOUTH COAST OF CUBA IN THE GULF OF GUACANAYABO DUE TO THE
TRACK AND INTENSITY OF PALOMA.

PALOMA IS TIED FOR THE SECOND STRONGEST ATLANTIC HURRICANE EVER
NOTED IN NOVEMBER...THE STRONGEST BEING LENNY IN 1999.

FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS

INITIAL 08/1500Z 19.9N 79.3W 120 KT
12HR VT 09/0000Z 20.4N 78.2W 110 KT
24HR VT 09/1200Z 21.0N 77.0W 85 KT...INLAND
36HR VT 10/0000Z 21.5N 76.4W 60 KT
48HR VT 10/1200Z 22.0N 76.0W 45 KT
72HR VT 11/1200Z 22.5N 75.8W 30 KT...DISSIPATING
96HR VT 12/1200Z 23.0N 76.3W 25 KT...REMNANT LOW
120HR VT 13/1200Z 23.0N 77.0W 20 KT...REMNANT LOW


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