Tag Archives: Hurricane Kenneth

Kenneth Rapidly Intensifies Into a Hurricane

One time Tropical Storm Kenneth rapidly intensified into a hurricane on Sunday.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Sunday the center of Hurricane Kenneth was located at latitude 16.2°N and longitude 128.4°W which put it about 1290 miles (2075 km) west-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California.  Kenneth was moving toward the west at 14 m.p.h. (22 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 90 m.p.h. (150 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 105 m.p.h. (170 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 980 mb.

The structure of Hurricane Kenneth improved significantly during the past few hours.  A small circular eye emerged at the center of circulation.  A ring of strong thunderstorms surrounded the eye and the strongest winds are occurring in this ring of thunderstorms.  Additional bands of showers and thunderstorms intensified south and east of the center.  Thunderstorms near the core of Kenneth were generating strong upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the hurricane.

Hurricane Kenneth will continue to move through an environment favorable for intensification on Monday.  Kenneth will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature (SST) is near 28.5°C.  Hurricane Kenneth is moving through a region where the winds in the upper levels are weak and there is not much vertical wind shear.  Hurricane Kenneth could continue to intensify for another 12 to 24 hours.  The speed of the upper level winds could increase in a day or so, and more vertical wind shear would inhibit intensification.  Eventually Hurricane Kenneth will move over cooler SSTs and start to weaken.

Kenneth if moving south of a subtropical ridge which is steering the hurricane toward the west.  The ridge is forecast to continue to steer Kenneth westward for another 12 to 24 hours.  Hurricane Kenneth will turn toward the north when it reaches the western end of the ridge.  On its anticipated track Hurricane Kenneth would pose no direct threat to land.