Chris lives – 041700L update

August 4, 2006

The hurricane hunter found that Chris still has a closed circulation, a very weak one, but still one none the less. Recon has left the storm and won’t be in it again until after midnight, so Chris will go on until 5 AM at least. I would say it’s a 50/50 as to whether it survives further, which is slightly more favorable to Chris than my thinking of eight hours ago.

Last night I was looking at past storms that formed (or weakened) in the vicinity of Cuba. Came to the conclusion that land interaction alone won’t kill Chris, it will take unfavorable atmospherics as well, meaning that if Chris can get to that favorable spot in between the upper level lows that it’s been chasing unsuccessfully over the past 36 hours or so, then he’ll survive regardless of how he tracks with regards to Cuba.

1979’s Frederic is an example. It was a hurricane that was weakened to a tropical depression north of Hispanola by unfavorable atmospherics. It tracked along the southern coast of Cuba, became a tropical storm, then crossed over the western tip of Cuba and became a hurricane.  Further strengthened into a category four hurricane before making landfall in Alabama.

The Sea Surface Temperatures are certainly there for a similar resurgence, but at this time the atmospherics are not. Guidance from the SHIPS model indicates that if Chris survives it wouldn’t make hurricane strength.  The forecast track is west-northwest across the Gulf of Mexico with landfall just south of Texas. Modal guidance is in unusually close agreement with this scenario throughout the five day period.

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