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Tropical Cyclone Gelena Brings Wind and Rain to Rodrigues

Tropical Cyclone Gelena brought wind and rain to Rodrigues on Saturday.  At 10:00 p.m. EST on Saturday the center of Tropical Cyclone Gelena was located at latitude 20.5°S and longitude 63.7°E which put it about 55 miles (90 km) southeast of Rodrigues, Mauritius.  Gelena was moving toward the east-southeast at 18 m.p.h. (29 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 959 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Gelena was the equivalent of a major hurricane when it moved past Rodrigues.  Winds to hurricane/typhoon force extended out about 40 miles (65 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 150 miles (240 km) from the center.  The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Tropical Cyclone Gelena was 20.6.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) was 15.9 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) was 36.5.

The northeastern part of the eyewall of Tropical Cyclone Gelena appeared to cross Rodrigues.  Winds to hurricane/typhoon force may have occurred when that part of the eyewall moved over the island.  Winds to tropical storm force will continue for a few more hours until Gelena moves farther away from Rodrigues.  Conditions on Rodrigues should gradually improve on Sunday while Tropical Cyclone Gelena moves farther away.  Gelena will weaken as it moves over colder water.

Elsewhere over South Indian Ocean, Tropical Cyclone Funani made a transition to an extratropical cyclone.  At 4:00 p.m. EST the center of Tropical Cyclone Funani was located at latitude 31.9°S and longitude 77.4°E which put it about 1390 miles (2245 km) southeast of Mauritius.  Funani was moving toward the southeast at 28 m.p.h. (45 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 996 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Gelena Strengthens to Equivalent of a Major Hurricane

Tropical Cyclone Gelena strengthened into the equivalent of a major hurricane on Friday.  At 4:00 p.m. EST on Friday the center of Tropical Cyclone Gelena was located at latitude 16.8°S and longitude 56.9°E which put it about 265 miles (425 km) north of Port Louis, Mauritius.  Gelena was moving toward the southeast at 15 m.p.h. (24 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 125 m.p.h. (205 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 155 m.p.h. (205 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 953 mb.

The circulation around Tropical Cyclone Gelena strengthened and grew larger on Friday.  An eye appeared intermittently at the center of Gelena on satellite imagery.  A ring of strong thunderstorms surrounded the eye and the strongest winds were occurring in the ring of storms.  More bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of the circulation.  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 175 miles (280 km) from the center.

The Hurricane Intensity Index (HII) for Tropical Cyclone Gelena was 23.6.  The Hurricane Size Index (HSI) was 17.3 and the Hurricane Wind Intensity Size Index (HWISI) was 40.9.  Those indices indicated that tropical Cyclone Gelena was capable of causing major regional damage.

Tropical Cyclone Gelena will move through an environment somewhat favorable for intensification for another 12 to 24 hours.  Gelena will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  An upper level trough near Madagascar will produce westerly winds which are blowing toward the top of Tropical Cyclone Gelena.  Those winds will produce some vertical wind shear and they will inhibit upper level divergence toward the western periphery of Gelena.  The wind shear will inhibit intensification, but Tropical Cyclone Gelena could strengthen on Saturday.

Tropical Cyclone Gelena will move south of a subtropical ridge.  The ridge will steer Gelena in a southeasterly direction.  On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Gelena will pass north of Mauritius.  However, Gelena could approach Rodrigues within 36 hours.  Tropical Cyclone Gelena could bring strong winds and heavy rain to Rodrigues.

Elsewhere over the southern Indian Ocean, Tropical Cyclone Funani was speeding toward colder water.  At 4:00 p.m. EST on Friday the center of Tropical Cyclone Funani was located at latitude 26.3°S and longitude 73.4°E which put it about 805 miles (1295 km) east-southeast of Rodrigues.  Funani was moving toward the southeast at 28 m.p.h. (45 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 85 m.p.h. (135 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 105 m.p.h. (170 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 977 mb.

Stronger Tropical Cyclone Gelena Moves Toward Rodrigues

A stronger Tropical Cyclone Gelena moved toward Rodrigues on Thursday.  At 10:00 p.m. EST on Thursday the center of Tropical Cyclone Gelena was located at latitude 14.8°S and longitude 54.5°E which put it about 340 miles (550 km) north-northwest of Port Louis, Mauritius.  Gelena was moving toward the south-southeast at 11 m.p.h. (17 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 972 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Gelena strengthened into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon on Thursday.  An eye cleared at the center of circulation.  A ring of strong thunderstorms surrounded the eye and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Storms near the core were generating strong upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the tropical cyclone.  Several bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Tropical Cyclone Gelena.  Winds to hurricane/typhoon force extended out about 35 miles (55 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 140 miles (225 km) from the center.

Tropical Cyclone Gelena will move through an environment favorable for intensification.  Gelena will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  It will move through an environment where the upper level winds are weak and the there will be little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Gelena will intensify during the next 24 to 36 hours and it could strengthen rapidly at times.  Gelena will likely become the equivalent of a major hurricane during the next 36 hours.

Tropical Cyclone Gelena will move south of a subtropical ridge which will steer the tropical cyclone toward the southeast.  On its anticipated track the core of Gelena will pass north of Mauritius in about 24 hours.  Tropical Cyclone Gelena could approach Rodrigues in 36 to 48 hours.  Gelena could be the equivalent of a major hurricane at that time.

Elsewhere over the Southwest Indian Ocean Tropical Cyclone Funani intensified into the equivalent of a major hurricane as it moved away from Rodrigues.  At 10:00 p.m. EST on Thursday the center of Tropical Cyclone Funani was located at latitude 22.2°S and longitude 69.3°E which put it about 430 miles (690 km) east-southeast of Rodrigues, Mauritius.  Funani was moving toward the southeast at 16 m.p.h. (26 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 950 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Funani Brushes Rodrigues, Gelena Also a Threat

The western edge of Tropical Cyclone Funani brushed Rodrigues on Wednesday and Tropical Cyclone Gelena also posed a threat to the island.  At 4:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Funani was located at latitude 18.1°S and longitude 65.1°E which put it about 515 miles (830 km) east-northeast of Port Louis, Mauritius and about 155 miles (250 km) northeast of Rodrigues.  Funani was moving toward the southeast at 7 m.p.h. (11 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 105 m.p.h. (170 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 125 m.p.h. (205 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 968 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Funani rapidly intensified into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon on Wednesday.  An eye was apparent on satellite images.  A ring of strong thunderstorms surrounded the eye and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Storms near the core of Funani generated strong upper level divergence which pumped mass away from the tropical cyclone.  Bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Tropical Cyclone Funani.  There were more bands in the eastern half of the circulation.  Winds to hurricane/typhoon force extended out about 35 miles (55 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 140 miles (225 km) from the center.

Tropical Cyclone Funani will be in an environment favorable for intensification for another 12 to 24 hours.  Funani will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  It will move through an area where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Funani could strengthen into the equivalent of a major hurricane during the next 24 hours.  Funani will move over cooler water at the end of the week and it will start to weaken in a less favorable environment.

Tropical Cyclone Funani is moving south of a subtropical ridge which is steering the tropical cyclone toward the southeast.  A general motion toward the southeast is expected to continue during the next few days.  On its anticipated track the core of Tropical Cyclone Funani will pass east of Rodrigues.  Surface observations on Rodrigues indicate that the western portion of Funani is dropping rain on that island, but winds are generally blowing at less than tropical storm force.

Tropical Cyclone Gelena also poses a threat to Rodrigues.  At 4:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Gelena was located at latitude 12.5°S and longitude 53.2°E which put it about 535 miles (865 km) north-northwest of Port Louis, Mauritius.  Gelena was moving toward the south-southwest at 3 m.p.h. (5 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.

Tropical Cyclone Gelena also intensified rapidly on Wednesday.  A tiny, pinhole eye was apparent on satellite imagery.  A thin ring of thunderstorms surrounded the eye and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Storms near the core of Gelena were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the tropical cyclone.  Bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Tropical Cyclone Gelena.  There were more bands in the northern half of the circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 90 miles (150 km) from the center of circulation.

Tropical Cyclone Gelena will also move through an environment favorable for intensification.  Gelena will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  It will move through an area where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Gelena is likely to intensify into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon during the next 24 hours.  Gelena could strengthen into the equivalent of a major hurricane during the next several days.

Although Tropical Cyclone Gelena is currently weaker and smaller than Tropical Cyclone Funani, it may pose a greater risk to Rodrigues.  Gelena is forecast to pass closer to Rodrigues than Funani will pass and Gelena may be the equivalent of a major hurricane when it moves near Rodrigues.  Gelena could bring strong winds and heavy rain to Rodrigues in about 48 hours.

Tropical Cyclone Funani Develops Northeast of Mauritius

Tropical Cyclone Funani developed northeast of Mauritius on Tuesday.  At 10:00 p.m. EST on Tuesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Funani was located at latitude 15.8°S and longitude 64.0°E which put it about 505 miles (815 km) east-northeast of Port Louis, Mauritius and about 265 miles (425 km) north of Rodrigues.  Funani was moving toward the southwest at 5 m.p.h. (8 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 990 mb.

The circulation around Tropical Cyclone Funani organized quickly on Tuesday.  An inner rainband wrapped around the northern side of the center of circulation.  Bands of showers and thunderstorms developed and were revolving around the core of Funani.  There were more bands on the eastern side of the circulation.  Storms near the core began to generate upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the tropical cyclone.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 120 miles (195 km) from the center of circulation.

Tropical Cyclone Funani will be moving through an environment favorable for intensification during the next several days.  Funani will be moving over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  It will move under an area where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Funani could intensify into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon within 24 hours and it could strengthen into the equivalent of a major hurricane in about 48 hours.

Tropical Cyclone Funani will move near the southeastern end of a subtropical ridge.  The ridge and a trough over the southwestern Indian Ocean will steer Funani in a general south-southwesterly direction.  On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Funani will remain east of Mauritius and La Reunion.  Funani could be near Rodrigues in about 24 hours.  It could be the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon at that time.

Elsewhere over the South Pacific Ocean, Tropical Cyclone 13S formed east of Madagascar.  At 10:00 p.m. EST on Tuesday the center of Tropical Cyclone 13S was located at latitude 12.3°S and longitude 53.6°E which put it about 570 miles (920 km) north of Port Louis, Mauritius.  It was moving toward the west-northwest 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 1002 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Hola Passes Near Iles Loyaute

Tropical Cyclone Hola passed near the Iles Loyaute (Loyalty Islands) on Friday.  At 4:00 p.m. EST on Friday the center of Tropical Cyclone Hola was located at latitude 20.9°S and longitude 168.0°E which put it about 175 miles (280 km) northeast of Noumea, New Caledonia.  Hola was moving toward the southeast at 19 m.p.h. (31 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 969 mb.

The circulation of Tropical Cyclone Hola exhibited signs of weakening on Friday.  The eye appeared and disappeared intermittently.  There were occasional breaks in the rings of thunderstorms around the intermittent eye.  The distribution of rainbands became more asymmetrical.  All of the stronger bands were south and east of the center of circulation.  The bands north and west of the center consisted primarily of showers and low clouds.  An upper level trough off the east coast of Australia was producing northwesterly winds which were blowing toward the top of the circulation.  Those winds were also causing moderate vertical wind shear and they may have tilted the upper portion of the circulation toward the southeast.

Tropical Cyclone Hola will weaken during the next few days.  Hola will initially pass over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C.  However, the upper level trough will continue to cause moderate vertical wind shear which will weaken Hola.  Tropical Cyclone Hola will also move over colder water when it moves farther to the south.  The colder water and vertical wind shear will cause the structure of Tropical Cyclone Hola to transition gradually to an extratropical cyclone during the next several days.

The upper level trough is pushing Tropical Cyclone Hola toward the southeast and a general southeasterly motion will continue.  On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Hola will move away from the Iles Loyaute and New Caledonia.  Hola could approach northern New Zealand in a couple of days.

The strongest winds and heavy rain were occurring on the eastern side of Tropical Cyclone Hola.  Hola will continue to bring gusty winds and locally heavy rain to the Iles Loyaute until it moves away.  It should have minimal impacts on New Caledonia.  Tropical Cyclone Hola could make landfall on the North Island of New Zealand in two or three days.  It could be a strong extratropical cyclone at that time and it could bring strong wind and heavy rain to parts of northern New Zealand.

Tropical Cyclone Hola Stalls Between Vanuatu and New Caledonia

Tropical Cyclone Hola stalled between Vanuatu and New Caledonia on Thursday.  At 10:00 p.m. EST on Thursday the center of Tropical Cyclone Hola was located at latitude 18.4°S and longitude 165.5°E which put it about 200 miles (320 km) west of Port Vila, Vanuatu.  Hola was moving toward the south at 2 m.p.h. (3 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 120 m.p.h. (195 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 961 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Hola weakened slightly while it move slowly between Vanuatu and New Caledonia.  The small eye was no longer visible on satellite images.  Thunderstorms were still occurring in the core of the circulation.  Most of the bands of showers and thunderstorms were in the eastern half of the circulation.  There were fewer thunderstorms west of the center of circulation.  The wind field exhibited a similar asymmetrical distribution.  Winds to hurricane/typhoon force extended out about 40 miles (65 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 150 miles (240 km) in the eastern half of the circulation and about 100 miles (160 km) in the western half of the circulation.

Tropical Cyclone Hola will move through an environment marginally favorable for intensification on Friday.  Hola will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  An upper level trough east of Australia will produce northwesterly winds which will blow toward the top of the circulation.  Those winds will cause increasing vertical wind shear and the shear could become strong enough to inhibit intensification.  Tropical Cyclone Hola could intensify during the next 12 to 24 hours, but it will begin to weaken when the shear increases.

Tropical Cyclone Hola is near the western end of a subtropical ridge and it was in a region where the steering winds were weak on Thursday.  The upper level trough east of Australia will start to steer Hola toward the southeast on Friday.  On its anticipated track the center of Tropical Cyclone Hola could approach the Iles Loyaute (the Loyalty Islands) within 24 hours.  Hola will likely still be the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon at that time.

Tropical Cyclone Hola Brings Wind and Rain to Vanuatu

Tropical Cyclone Hola brought strong winds and heavy rain to Vanuatu on Wednesday.  At 10:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Hola was located at latitude 17.4°S and longitude 165.5°E  which put it about 180 miles (290 km) west of Port Vila, Vanuatu.  Hola was moving toward the west-southwest at 7 m.p.h. (11 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 105 m.p.h. (170 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 125 m.p.h. (205 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 959 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Hola intensified rapidly into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon on Wednesday.  A very small circular eye developed at the center of circulation.  A ring of strong thunderstorms formed around the eye and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Rainbands were revolving around the core of the Tropical Cyclone Hola.  The strongest rainbands were occurring in the eastern side of the circulation.  The rainbands were weaker in the western half of Hola.  Storms around the core of the circulation were generating strong upper level divergence which was pumping mass away to the east of the tropical cyclone.  The circulation of Tropical Cyclone Hola was fairly small.  Winds to hurricane/typhoon force extended out about 30 miles (50 km) from the center of circulation.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 120 miles (195 km) from the center.

Tropical Cyclone Hola will move through an environment favorable for intensification for another 24 to 36 hours.  Hola will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  It is moving under a region where the upper level winds are weak and there is little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Hola is likely to intensify during the next 24 hours and it could become the equivalent of a major hurricane.

Tropical Cyclone Hola was moving around the northwestern end of a subtropical ridge which was steering the tropical cyclone toward the west-northwest.  Hola is forecast to turn more toward the south when it rounds the end of the ridge on Thursday.  It could move toward the southeast when it moves farther south.  On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Hola could approach New Caledonia and the Iles Loyaute in a little over 24 hours.

Rainbands in the eastern half of Tropical Cyclone Hola brought gusty winds and locally heavy rain to parts of Vanuatu on Wednesday.  Wind and rain could increase over New Caledonia and the Iles Loyaute by Friday.

Tropical Cyclone Hola Develops Over Vanuatu

Tropical Cyclone Hola developed over Vanuatu on Tuesday.  At 4:00 p.m. EST on Tuesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Hola was located at latitude 16.2°S and longitude 168.1°E which put it near Ambrym and about 110 miles (180 km) north of Port Vila, Vanuatu.  Hola was moving toward the west-southwest at 6 m.p.h. (10 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 992 mb.

A large area of showers and thunderstorms northwest of Fiji moved slowly westward toward Vanuatu during the past few days.  The system was designated Tropical Cyclone Hola when a center of circulation developed in the area of storms on Tuesday.  Thunderstorms formed on all sides of the center, but there were more thunderstorms on the western side of the center.  Bands of showers and storms were beginning to revolve around the core of the circulation.  The storms near the center were starting to generate upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the center of circulation.

Tropical Cyclone Hola will move through an environment favorable for intensification during the next two or three days.  Hola will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  The upper level winds over that area are weak and there is little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Hola should intensify during the next 48 to 72 hours.  Rapid intensification could occur once the core of the circulation is fully organized.  Hola could strengthen into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon during the next 24 hours.  Hola could become the equivalent of a major hurricane within three days.

Tropical Cyclone Hola is moving near the northwestern end of a subtropical ridge which is steering Hola toward the west-southwest.  A slow motion toward the southwest is forecast during the next day or so while Hola rounds the northwestern end of the ridge.  Tropical Cyclone Hola will turn more toward the southeast after it rounds the subtropical ridge.  On its anticipated track the center of Tropical Cyclone Hola will move near Ambrym, Malekula, Paama, Lopevi, and Epi.  Hola is forecast to pass west of Port Vila, but it could be near New Caledonia and the Iles Loyaute in two or three days.

Tropical Cyclone Hola will strengthen as it moves slowly toward the southwest during the next 24 hours.  The stronger tropical cyclone will produce gusty winds and it will drop heavy rain over the central parts of Vanuatu.  Heavy rain will fall over Espiritu Santo, Maewo, Ambae, Pentecost, Malo, Ambrym, Paama, Lopevi, Tongoa, Epi, Emae, the Shepherd Islands, Nguna, Emao, and Efate.  Locally heavy rain could create the potential for floods in some of those locations.

Tropical Cyclone Caleb Forms Over South Indian Ocean

Tropical Cyclone Caleb formed over the South Indian Ocean on Thursday.  At 8:00 a.m. EDT on Thursday the center of Tropical Cyclone Caleb was located at latitude 13.0°S and longitude 100.7°E which put it about 255 miles (410 km) east-southeast of Cocos Island.  Caleb was moving toward the south-southeast at 6 m.p.h. (9 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 995 mb.

Although there is a well defined low level circulation in Tropical Cyclone Caleb, the distribution of thunderstorms is asymmetrical.  The strongest thunderstorms are occurring in the northwestern quadrant of the circulation and they are in the primary rainband.  Those thunderstorms contain the strongest winds.  There are few thunderstorms in the other parts of the circulation, although there are some bands of lower clouds and showers in those regions.  The thunderstorms in the primary rainband are generating upper level divergence which is pumping out mass to the west of Tropical Cyclone Caleb.

Tropical Cyclone Caleb is in an environment that is marginal for intensification.  Caleb is moving over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C.  So, there is enough energy in the upper ocean to support intensification.  However, an upper level ridge located southeast of Caleb is producing easterly winds which are blowing across the top of the tropical cyclone.  The easterly winds are generating moderate vertical wind shear and the shear is probably the reason why most of the thunderstorms are occurring in the northwestern quadrant of the circulation.  The moderate shear will inhibit intensification, but some strengthening may be possible if the upper level winds abate.

A ridge to the east of Caleb is steering the tropical cyclone toward the south-southeast and that general motion is expected to continue for another day or two.  Eventually, a second ridge is forecast to strengthen and steer Tropical Caleb back toward the northwest.