Powerful Tropical Cyclone Kenneth Makes Landfall in Northern Mozambique

Powerful Tropical Cyclone Kenneth made landfall in northern Mozambique on Thursday.  At 11:00 a.m. EDT on Thursday the center of Tropical Cyclone Kenneth was located at latitude 12.1°S and longitude 40.5°E which put it about 60 miles (95 km) north of Pemba, Mozambique.  Kenneth was moving toward the west-southwest at 13 m.p.h. (20 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 140 m.p.h. (225 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 165 m.p.h. (270 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 937 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Kenneth continued to intensify until it made landfall near Quissanga, Mozambique.  Winds to hurricane/typhoon force extended out about 45 miles (75 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 160 miles (260 km) from the center.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Tropical Cyclone Kenneth was 28.2.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) was 16.3 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) was 44.5.  Those indices mean that Tropical Cyclone Kenneth was capable of causing significant regional damage.  In addition to wind damage Kenneth will cause a significant storm surge at the coast.  Locally heavy rain will produce flooding over parts of northern Mozambique.

Tropical Cyclone Kenneth will weaken when it moves inland over northern Mozambique.  However, It will take several days for the circulation around Kenneth to spin down.  The circulation could linger in that area for several days.  If that happens, persistent rainfall will exacerbate flooding of rivers and streams, which would hinder rescue and recovery efforts.

Elsewhere over the southern Indian Ocean, Tropical Cyclone Lorna was swirling well to the east-southeast of Diego Garcia.  At 11:00 a.m. EDT on Thursday the center of Tropical Cyclone Lorna was located at latitude 11.0°S and longitude 86.1°E which put it about 950 miles (1530 km) east-southeast of Diego Garcia.  Lorna was moving toward the east-southeast at 6 m.p.h. (10 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 75 m.p.h. (120 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 988 mb.

Major Tropical Cyclone Kenneth Brings Strong Wind, Rain to Comoros

Major Tropical Cyclone Kenneth brought strong wind and rain to the Comoros on Wednesday.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Kenneth was located at latitude 11.3°S and longitude 42.8°E which put it about 35 miles (55 km) north of the Comoros.  Kenneth was moving toward the west at 13 m.p.h. (20 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 115 m.p.h. (185 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 145 m.p.h. (235 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 954 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Kenneth intensified rapidly on Tuesday into the equivalent of a major hurricane.  A small circular eye appeared at the center of circulation on infrared satellite images.  The eye was surrounded by a ring of strong thunderstorms and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of the circulation.  Storms near the core were generating strong upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the tropical cyclone in all directions.

Winds to hurricane/typhoon force extended out about 35 miles (55 km) from the center of Tropical Cyclone Kenneth.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 130 miles (215 km) from the center of circulation.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Kenneth was 20.1.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) was 11.0 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) was 31.1.  Tropical Cyclone Kenneth was capable of causing major damage.

The southern half of the eyewall of Tropical Cyclone Kenneth passed over northern Grande Comore (Njazidja).  Mitsamiouli and Mbeni were likely to have experienced winds to hurricane/typhoon force.  Strong winds may have also affected the capital, Moroni.  Major wind damage may have occurred in those areas.  Heavy rain falling on steep slopes may cause flash flooding.  Easterly winds blowing up the slopes would have enhanced rainfall and the greatest risks for flooding were on the eastern sides of the mountains.  Those easterly winds may have also generated a significant storms surge along the northeast coast of Grande Comore (Njazidja).

Tropical Cyclone Kenneth will move through an environment very favorable for intensification during the next 12 to 18 hours.  Kenneth will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  It will move under the axis of an upper level ridge where the winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Kenneth is likely to intensify more while it moves across the Mozambique Channel.

Tropical Cyclone Kenneth will move north of a subtropical ridge.  The ridge will steer Kenneth a little to the south of due west.  On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Kenneth will make landfall on the north coast of Mozambique between Ibo and Mocimboa da Praia in about 18 hours.  Kenneth is likely to be a strong tropical cyclone at the time of landfall.  It will be capable of causing major wind damage and a storm surge at the coast.  Tropical Cyclone Kenneth will also drop heavy rain when it moves inland over northern Mozambique and it could cause additional flooding in that region.

Elsewhere over the South Indian Ocean, Tropical Cyclone Lorna moved gradually farther away from Diego Garcia.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Lorna was located at latitude 10.3°S and longitude 84.8°E which put it about 855 miles (1380 km) east-southeast of Diego Garcia.  Lorna was moving toward the east at 4 m.p.h. (6 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 45 m.p.h. (75 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 997 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Kenneth Develops North of Madagascar

Tropical Cyclone Kenneth developed north of Madagascar on Tuesday.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Kenneth was located at latitude 10.7°S and longitude 47.2°E which put it about 310 miles (500 km) east-northeast of the Comoros.  Kenneth was moving toward the west at 12 m.p.h. (19 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 70 m.p.h. (110 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 85 m.p.h. (135 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 981 mb.

The circulation around Tropical Cyclone Kenneth organized rapidly on Tuesday.  A band of showers and thunderstorms wrapped around the eastern side of the center of circulation.  Microwave satellite imagery indicated that an eye might be forming at the center of Kenneth.  Other bands of showers and thunderstorms were developing outside the core of the circulation.  Storms around the core were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the tropical cyclone in all directions.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 130 miles (210 km) from the center of circulation.

Tropical Cyclone Kenneth will move through an environment favorable for intensification during the next day or two.  Kenneth will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  It will move under an upper level ridge.  The winds are weak near the core of the ridge and vertical wind shear will be limited as long as Tropical Cyclone Kenneth stays under the central part of the ridge.  Kenneth is likely to intensify into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon during the next 12 to 24 hours.  Once an eye forms, Tropical Cyclone Kenneth could intensify rapidly and it could strengthen into the equivalent of a major hurricane.

Tropical Cyclone Kenneth will move north of a subtropical ridge during the next several days.  The ridge will steer Kenneth a little to the south of due west during that time period.  On its anticipated track the core of Tropical Cyclone Kenneth could pass near the Comoros in about 24 hours.  Kenneth could be the equivalent of a major hurricane by that time.  It could cause major wind damage and a significant storm surge at the coast.  Kenneth could also drop heavy rain, which could cause flash flooding along the steeper slopes.   Tropical Cyclone Kenneth could make landfall on the coast of northern Mozambique within 48 hours.

Elsewhere over the South Indian Ocean, Tropical Cyclone Lorna developed east of Diego Garcia on Tuesday.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Lorna was located at latitude 9.7°S and longitude 82.9°E which put it about 715 miles (1155 km) east-southeast of Diego Garcia.  Lorna was moving toward the southeast at 13 m.p.h. (20 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 45 m.p.h. (75 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 997 mb.

NHC Upgrades Hurricane Michael to Cat. 5

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) upgraded Hurricane Michael to Category 5 on the Saffir-Simpson Scale after it completed and released its post storm analysis on Friday.  NHC does a post storm analysis of every tropical cyclone in its area of responsibility after the end of the hurricane season.  The maximum sustained wind speed at the time of landfall in northwest Florida of Hurricane Michael, which was given originally as 155 m.p.h. (250 km/h), was increased to 160 m.p.h. (260 km/h) after the post storm analysis.  Hurricane Michael becomes one of only four hurricanes to make landfall in the U.S. as a Category 5 hurricane.  The other Category 5 hurricanes to hit the U.S. were the Labor Day Hurricane which hit the Florida Keys in 1935, Hurricane Camille which hit Mississippi in 1969 and Hurricane Andrew which hit south Florida in 1992.

The National Hurricane Center prepares a Tropical Storm Report on every tropical cyclone in its area of responsibility and those reports are available on NHC’s web site.  J. L. Beven II, R. Berg and A. Hagen were the authors of the Tropical Cyclone Report on Hurricane Michael.  They explain in the Tropical Cyclone Report how they arrived at the intensity of Hurricane Michael at landfall.  They analyzed aircraft data including flight level winds and SMFR intensities.  They did an analysis of the Dopper wind velocities observed by the WSR-88D radar at Eglin Air Force Base.  They also considered available data on the surface winds and pressures and satellite derived estimates of the intensity of Hurricane Michael.  Based on analysis of all of that information, they concluded that the intensity of Hurricane Michael when it made landfall in northwest Florida was 160 m.p.h. (260 km/h).  Their full Tropical Cyclone Report on Hurricane Michael is available on NHC’s website at https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/data/tcr/AL142018_Michael.pdf.

Tropical Cyclone Wallace Churns Northwest of Australia

Tropical Cyclone Wallace continued to churn northwest of Australia on Sunday.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Sunday the center of Tropical Cyclone Wallace was located at latitude 15.3°S and longitude 116.4°E which put it about 435 miles (700 km) north of Karratha, Australia.  Wallace was moving toward the southwest at 11 m.p.h. (17 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 65 m.p.h. (105 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 987 mb.

The circulation around Tropical Cyclone Wallace exhibited signs of greater organization on Sunday.  The inner end of a band of showers and thunderstorms wrapped around the southern and western sides of the center of circulation.  More thunderstorms formed in other bands that were revolving around the core of Tropical Cyclone Wallace.  Storms near the core were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away to the west and south of the tropical cyclone.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 140 miles (220 km) from the center of circulation.

Tropical Cyclone Wallace will move through an environment somewhat favorable for intensification during the next 24 hours.  Wallace will move over water where Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C.  It will move near the western end of an upper level ridge over northern Australia.  The ridge will produce easterly winds which will cause moderate vertical wind shear.  The shear will limit intensification, but it may not be great enough to prevent Tropical Cyclone Wallace from getting stronger.  Wallace could strengthen into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon during the next 24 hours.

The ridge over northern Australia will steer Tropical Cyclone Wallace toward the west-southwest during the next few days.  On its anticipated track Wallace is forecast to remain north of Western Australia.

Tropical Cyclone Wallace Develops North of Western Australia

Tropical Cyclone Wallace developed over the Timor Sea north of Western Australia on Friday.  At 2:00 p.m. EDT on Friday the center of Tropical Cyclone Wallace was located at latitude 11.7°S and longitude 125.7°E which put it about 280 miles (440 km) north-northeast of Kuri Bay, Australia.  Wallace was moving toward the west at 6 m.p.h. (9 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 45 m.p.h. (75 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 60 m.p.h. (95 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 997 mb.

The Australian Bureau of Meteorology posted a Tropical Cyclone Warning from Kalumburu to Beagle Bay.

More thunderstorms developed near the center of a Tropical Low over the Timor Sea on Friday and the Australian Bureau of Meteorology designated the system as Tropical Cyclone Wallace.  The distribution of thunderstorms in the circulation around Wallace was asymmetrical.  Most of the thunderstorms were occurring west of the center of circulation and in bands in the western half of the tropical cyclone.  Bands in the eastern half of of Tropical Cyclone Wallace consisted primarily of showers and lower clouds.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 150 miles (240 km) from the center of circulation.

Tropical Cyclone Wallace was moving north of an upper level ridge.  The ridge was producing strong easterly winds which were causing significant vertical wind shear.  Those winds and the shear were probably the cause of the asymmetrical distribution of thunderstorms.  Storms west of the center of circulation were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away to the west of Tropical Cyclone Wallace.

Tropical Cyclone Wallace may move into an area more favorable for intensification during the next day or two.  Wallace could move into an area where the upper level winds are not quite as strong.  Tropical Cyclone Wallace will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  So, if it moves into an area where the shear is less, then Tropical Cyclone Wallace is likely to strengthen.  There is a chance Wallace could intensify into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon during the next two or three days.

Tropical Cyclone Wallace will move around the northwestern end of a subtropical ridge over Australia.  The ridge will steer Wallace toward the west-southwest during the next several days.  On its anticipated track the core of Tropical Cyclone Wallace is forecast to stay north of the coast of Western Australia during the next few days.

Major Tropical Cyclone Joaninha Brings Wind and Rain to Rodrigues

Major Tropical Cyclone Joaninha brought wind and rain to Rodrigues on Monday night.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Monday the center of Tropical Cyclone Joaninha was located at latitude 19.3°S and longitude 63.9°E which put it about 45 miles (75 km) from Rodrigues, Mauritius.  Joaninha was moving toward the southeast at 10 m.p.h. (16 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 125 m.p.h. (200 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 155 m.p.h. (250 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 946 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Joaninha was the equivalent of a major hurricane.  Winds to hurricane/typhoon force extended out about 50 miles (80 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 180 miles (290 km) from the center.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Tropical Cyclone Joaninha was 23.6.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) was 18.7 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) was 42.3.  Joaninha was capable of causing major damage.

The southwestern portion of the eyewall of Tropical Cyclone Joaninha was very near Rodrigues.  Winds to hurricane typhoon force were occurring in that part of the eyewall.  Winds to tropical storm force are likely to affect all of Rodrigues.  The circulation around Joaninha was somewhat asymmetrical.  Most of the stronger rainbands were occurring in the eastern half of the circulation and the heaviest rain is likely to fall east of Rodrigues.  However, heavy rain in the eyewall could cause flooding in some locations.

Tropical Cyclone Joaninha will move through an environment favorable for intensification during the next 24 hours.  Joaninha will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C.  It will move through a region where there will be little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Joaninha could strengthen slightly while it passes by Rodrigues.

An upper level trough near Madagascar will produce northwesterly winds which will steer Tropical Cyclone Joaninha toward the southeast.  On its anticipated track Joaninha will move away from Rodrigues on Tuesday.  Conditions in Rodrigues should improve gradually as Tropical Cyclone Joaninha moves away.

Elsewhere over the South Indian Ocean, weakening Tropical Cyclone Veronica was skirting the coast of Western Australia.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Monday the center of Tropical Cyclone Veronica was located at latitude 21.1°S and longitude 115.4°E which put it about 140 miles (230 km) northeast of Learmonth, Australia.  Veronica was moving toward the southwest at 10 m.p.h. (16 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 40 m.p.h. (65 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 992 mb.  Tropical Cyclone Veronica dropped heavy rain over parts of Western Australia and flooding was occurring in some locations.

Iba Develops Into Rare South Atlantic Tropical Storm

Tropical Storm Iba developed into a rare South Atlantic Tropical Storm on Sunday.  At 8:00 p.m. EDT on Sunday the center of Tropical Storm Iba was located at latitude 19.2°S and longitude 36.0°S which put it about 260 miles (420 km) east of Linhares, Brazil.  Iba was moving toward the south at 3 m.p.h. (5 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 65 m.p.h. (105 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1000 mb.

More thunderstorms developed near the center of a low pressure system off the east coast of Brazil and the Instituto Nacional de Meteorologia designated the system as Tropical Storm Iba.  The circulation around Tropical Storm Iba was still organizing.  Bands of showers and thunderstorms were developing and starting to revolve around the center of circulation.  Storms near the center of circulation were beginning to generate upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the tropical storm.

Tropical Storm Iba will be in an environment favorable for intensification during the next 24 to 36 hours.  Iba will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C.  It will move under the narrow eastern end of an upper level ridge.  The upper level winds right over Tropical Storm Iba will be relatively weak and there will not be significant wind shear.  Iba will likely strengthen during the next 24 to 36 hours.  There is a chance that Tropical Storm Iba could strengthen into a hurricane.

Tropical Storm Iba is in an area where the steering winds are weak.  Iba may drift slowly toward the south during the next day or so.  On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Iba will stay just off the coast of Brazil during the next 48 hours.

Tropical Cyclone Veronica Stalls, Weakens Near Western Australia Coast

Tropical Cyclone Veronica stalled and weakened near the coast of Western Australia west of Port Hedand.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Sunday the center of Tropical Cyclone Veronica was located at latitude 20.5°S and longitude 117.5°E which put it about 70 miles (110 km) west of Port Hedland.  Veronica was moving toward the southwest at 2 m.p.h. (3 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 70 m.p.h. (110 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 85 m.p.h. (135 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 974 mb.  A Tropical Cyclone Warning remained in effect from Port Hedland to Mardie including Karratha and Barrow Island.

The southern eyewall of Tropical Cyclone Veronica moved over the coast of Western Australia west of Port Hedland on Saturday night.  Veronica was the equivalent of a major hurricane and there would have been a period of strong winds near the coast.  It likely caused some wind damage and generated a storm surge at the coast.  An upper level trough west of Australia produced strong northwesterly winds that reached the top of Tropical Cyclone Veronica as it neared the coast.  Those winds produced very strong vertical wind shear and they blew the upper half of the circulation southeast of the lower half of the tropical cyclone.  The decoupling of the upper and lower parts of the circulation caused Tropical Cyclone Veronica to weaken very quickly during the past 12 hours.  Veronica weakened from the equivalent of a major hurricane to a tropical storm.

The strong wind shear also generated an asymmetrical distribution of rainfall.  Most of the rain was falling in the southeastern half of the circulation which was over Western Australia.  Bands in the northwestern half of the circulation consisted primarily of showers and lower clouds.  Locally heavy rain could produce flooding in a few locations, but the rapid weakening of Tropical Cyclone Veronica will reduce the risk of flooding.

Tropical Cyclone Veronica will continue to weaken quickly because of the strong vertical wind shear.  The decoupling of the upper and lower halves of the circulation has resulted in little motion during the past few hours.  However, the lower half of Veronica will be steered more by the winds in the lower troposphere.  Those winds will steer Tropical Cyclone Veronica toward the west-southwest during the next day or two.  On its anticipated track the lower half of Veronica will move near the coast of Western Australia.  On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Veronica will pass near Wickham, Karratha, Dampier, Onslow and Exmouth.  Veronica will bring some gusty winds, but it should pose a limited risk.

Elsewhere over the South Indian Ocean, Tropical Cyclone Joaninha was strengthening northwest of Rodrigues.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Sunday the center of Tropical Cyclone Joaninha was located at latitude 17.4°S and longitude 62.0°E which put it about 180 miles (290 km) northwest of Rodrigues, Mauritius.  Joaninha was moving toward the southeast at 2 m.p.h. (3 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 110 m.p.h. (175 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 130 m.p.h. (210 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 956 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Trevor Makes Landfall in the Northern Territory

Tropical Cyclone Trevor made landfall on the coast of the Northern Territory of Australia southeast of Port McArthur early on Saturday.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Friday the center of Tropical Cyclone Trevor was located at latitude 16.5°S and longitude 137.0°E which put it about 50 miles (80 km) east-southeast of Port McArthur, Northern Territory.  Trevor was moving toward the southwest at 12 m.p.h. (19 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 115 m.p.h. (185 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 145 m.p.h. (230 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 949 mb.  A Tropical Cyclone Warning was in effect from Port Roper, Northern Territory to Burketown, Queensland.

Tropical Cyclone Trevor intensified into the equivalent of a major hurricane before it made landfall.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Trevor was 17.8.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) was 16.8 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) was 34.6.  Tropical Cyclone Trevor was capable of causing major damage when it made landfall.  It could have generated a storm surge of up to 12 feet (4 meters at the coast).

Tropical Cyclone Trevor will continue to move southwestward and it will gradually weaken as it moves farther inland.  Trevor will also drop heavy rainfall while it moves inland.  Flood Watches have been issued for parts of the eastern Northern Territory and western Queensland.

Elsewhere, Tropical Cyclone Veronica was advancing slowly toward the coast of Western Australia.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Friday the center of Tropical Cyclone Veronica was located at latitude 18.9°S and longitude 117.1°E.  Veronica was moving toward the south at 6 m.p.h. (10 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 90 m.p.h. (145 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 115 m.p.h. (185 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 962 mb.  A Tropical Cyclone Warning was in effect for the portion of the coast from Wallal to Mardie including Port Hedland and Karratha.

The structure of Tropical Cyclone Veronica changed significantly on Friday.  A large eye with a diameter of about 40 miles (65 km) developed at the center of circulation.  A ring of strong thunderstorms surrounded the eye and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Several bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Veronica.  Winds to hurricane/typhoon force extended out about 45 miles (75 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 150 miles (240 km) from the center.

Tropical Cyclone Veronica is moving around the western end of a subtropical high pressure system.  The high will steer Veronica toward the southeast during the next 24 hours.  On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Veronica will make landfall on the coast of Western Australia west of Port Hedland in about 24 hours.  Veronica will be the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon when it makes landfall and it will be capable of causing serious damage.