What a spectacle we are having as the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane season has entered its peak phase right on target, based on the historical record. Three named tropical cyclones, FLORENCE, HELENE, and ISAAC, plus two other potentially cyclonic systems are all active in the northern Atlantic basin this Wednesday 12 September 2018 while the tropical-wave assembly line over Equatorial Africa keeps churning new cyclonic seeds, sending them westward toward the Cape Verde Islands region and ‘Hurricane Alley’ beyond.
A still strengthening Hurricane FLORENCE is the most dangerous of these systems as it continues to move toward the Carolinas and a potential landfall projected somewhere south of the Cape Hatteras region. Florence, which is already some 700 km in diameter, is slowing down as it approaches land and growing more dangerous, as it grows in size, generates more rain, and pushes a increasingly larger mound of water toward what could be record amounts of storm surge along the coastal region.
A massive evacuation effort from the coastal regions of South and North Carolina, as well as parts of Virginia, in underway already to protect life. Projected massive levels of storm surge, extreme rain, and wind, will affect a large region well inland of the coastline from Georgia to New Jersey and points beyond. The potential for damage to property and infrastructure, and risk to human life and the environment is quite large as this dangerous storm comes over land this week.
HELENE, a weakening hurricane is making a turn toward the north and eventually the northeast over open waters posing no risk to land. An also weakening Tropical Storm ISAAC continues to move toward the Windward Islands and the Caribbean where it may generate heavy rains and possible flooding. Isaac warrants close monitoring as it enters the warn waters and favorable Caribbean environment.
The disturbed weather system over the southern Gulf of Mexico, just off the Yucatan peninsula is generating heavy rain and thunderstorms over a vast region from Northern Nicaragua and the Gulf of Honduras to the central Gulf of Mexico. All interests around the Gulf need to monitor this one closely for potential further development in the next day or so.
With so much current cyclonic activity over the entire north Atlantic basin, and plenty of fuel for additional cyclonic activity coming from weather systems and tropical waves over Equatorial Africa we must all remain alert. Be prepared. MITIGATE!