Tropical Cyclone Cebile intensified rapidly on Sunday from a tropical storm to the equivalent of a major hurricane over the South Indian Ocean. At 4:00 p.m. EST on Sunday the center of Tropical Cyclone Cebile was located at latitude 14.5°S and longitude 82.5°E which put it about 850 miles (1375 km) southeast of Diego Garcia. Cebile was moving toward the southwest at 8 m.p.h. (13 km/h). The maximum sustained wind speed was 130 m.p.h. (215 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 160 m.p.h. (260 km/h). The minimum surface pressure was 945 mb.
Tropical Cyclone Cebile intensified very rapidly during the past 24 hours as it moved through a very favorable environment. The maximum sustained wind speed increased from 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h) to 130 m.p.h. (215 km/h). The circulation of Tropical Cyclone Cebile is very well organized. There is a circular eye at the center of circulation. The eye is surround by a ring of strong thunderstorms and the strongest winds are occurring in the ring of storms. Rainbands are revolving around the core of the circulation. Tropical Cyclone Cebile is generating strong upper level divergence which is pumping away mass and allowing the surface pressure to decrease rapidly.
The circulation of Tropical Cyclone Cebile is symmetrical. Winds to hurricane/typhoon force extend out about 35 miles (55 km) from the center of circulation. Winds to tropical storm force extend out about 150 miles (240 km) from the center. The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Tropical Cyclone Cebile is 25.1. The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) is 12.7 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) is 37.8.
Tropical Cyclone Cebile continues to move through an environment favorable for intensification. Cebile is moving over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C. The upper level winds are weak and there is little vertical wind shear. Tropical Cyclone Cebile is likely to intensify further and it could become the equivalent of a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Scale.
Cebile is moving near the western part of a subtropical ridge which is steering the tropical cyclone toward the southwest. A general southwesterly motion is expected to continue for the next few days. On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Cebile will remain well south of Diego Garcia.
Elsewhere in the tropics, Tropical Cyclone 08S was moving near the northern end of New Caledonia. At 4:00 p.m. EST on Sunday the center of Tropical Cyclone 08S was located at latitude 18.8°S and longitude 162.1°E which put it about 370 miles (600 km) northwest of Noumea, New Caledonia. It was moving toward the southeast at 11 m.p.h. (17 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 986 mb.