Tag Archives: Vanuatu

Tropical Cyclone Oma Strengthens Northwest of New Caledonia

Tropical Cyclone Oma strengthened over the Coral Sea northwest of New Caledonia on Monday.  At 10:00 p.m. EST on Monday the center of Tropical Cyclone Oma was located at latitude 19.9°S and longitude 162.1°E which put it about 295 miles (475 km) west-northwest of Noumea, New Caldonia.  Oma was moving toward the south-southwest at 9 m.p.h. (15 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 966 mb.

The circulation around Tropical Cyclone Oma strengthened on Monday.  A broken ring of thunderstorms developed around a large eye at the center of circulation.  The eye had a diameter of approximately 60 miles (95 km).  The strongest winds were occurring in the parts of the ring with active thunderstorms.  Bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the large inner core of Tropical Cyclone Oma.  Storms near the core were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the tropical cyclone.  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 200 miles (320 km) from the center.

Tropical Cyclone Oma will be moving through an environment favorable for intensification during the next 24 to 36 hours.  Oma will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28.5°C.  It will move through an area where the upper level winds are weak and there is little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Oma is likely to intensify during the next day or so.

Tropical Cyclone Oma will move around the western end of a subtropical ridge over the South Pacific Ocean.  The ridge will steer Oma in a southwesterly direction during the next several days.  On its anticipated track the center of Tropical Cyclone Oma will pass west of New Caledonia.  However, rainbands on the eastern side of the circulation could drop locally heavy rain over New Caledonia.  Those rainbands could also produce winds to tropical storm force over northern New Caledonia.

Tropical Cyclone Oma Strengthens to Equivalent of Hurricane/Typhoon

Tropical Cyclone Oma strengthened to the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon over the Coral Sea north of New Caledonia on Friday.  At 1:00 p.m. EST on Friday the center of Tropical Cyclone Oma was located at latitude 15.4°S and longitude 164.2°E which put it about 300 miles (485 km) north of New Caledonia.  Oma was moving toward the west-southwest at 4 m.p.h. (6 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 969 mb.

The circulation around Tropical Cyclone Oma continued to become better organized on Friday.  A ring of thunderstorms wrapped around much of the center of circulation and there were indications on satellite images that an eye could be forming.  The strongest thunderstorms were the northwestern part of the ring.  The ring was thinner east of the center and there were several breaks in that portion of the ring.  Storms near the center were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from core of the tropical cyclone.  Bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the center of circulation.  The bands were stronger north and west of the center and the stronger winds were occurring in that part of Tropical Cyclone Oma.

Tropical Cyclone Oma will move through an environment favorable for intensification during the next day or two.  Oma will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  It will move through an area where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Oma is likely to strengthen more and there is a chance that it could intensify into the equivalent of a major hurricane.

Tropical Cyclone Oma will move slowly around the western end of a strengthening subtropical ridge.  The ridge will steer Oma slowly toward the southwest during the next 24 hours.  Tropical Cyclone Oma will move toward the southwest more rapidly in a day or so when the subtropical ridge is stronger.  On its anticipated track the core of Tropical Cyclone Oma could pass near the northernmost islands of New Caledonia in 24 to 36 hours.

Tropical Cyclone Oma Spins Northwest of Vanuatu

Tropical Cyclone Oma continued to spin over the Coral Sea northwest of Vanuatu on Thursday.  At 7:00 p.m. EST on Thursday the center of Tropical Cyclone Oma was located at latitude 15.3°N and longitude 165.1°E which put it about 260 miles (420 km) northwest of Port Vila, Vanuatu.  Oma was nearly stationary.  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 979 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Oma exhibited evidence of greater organization on Thursday.  The inner end of a rainband wrapped more tightly around the center of circulation.  Other bands of showers and thunderstorms also exhibited greater organization.   Storms around the center of circulation generated more upper level divergence which pumped mass away from the tropical cyclone.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 200 miles (320 km) from the center of circulation.

Once Tropical Cyclone Oma starts to move, it will move through an area favorable for intensification.  Oma will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  It will move into a region where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear.  Tropical Cyclone Oma will be likely to intensify and it will likely strengthen into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon.

Tropical Cyclone Oma has been in an area where the winds at the steering level were weak and it has moved little during the past several days.  An upper level ridge east of Oma is forecast to strengthen during the next few days.  When the ridge strengthens, it will start to steer Tropical Cyclone Oma toward the southwest.  On its anticipated track Oma will move slowly away from Vanuatu and it could be north of New Caledonia in a few days.

Tropical Cyclone Oma Forms Northwest of Vanuatu

Tropical Cyclone Oma formed over the Coral Sea northwest of Vanuatu on Tuesday.  At 10:00 a.m. EST on Tuesday the center of Tropical Cyclone Oma was located at latitude 13.8°S and longitude 165.6°E which put it about 330 miles (535 km) northwest of Port Vila, Vanuatu.  Oma was moving toward the east at 7 m.p.h. (11 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 988 mb.

A distinct low level center of circulation formed within a broader area of low pressure northwest of Vanuatu on Tuesday and the Fiji Meteorological Service designated the system as Tropical Cyclone Oma.  The distribution of thunderstorms around Oma was asymmetrical.  Many of the stronger thunderstorms were occurring in bands northwest of the center of circulation.  Bands southeast of the center consisted primarily of showers and lower clouds.  The thunderstorms northwest of the center were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away to the northwest of the tropical cyclone.

An upper level ridge northeast of Vanuatu was producing southeasterly winds which were blowing toward the top of Tropical Cyclone Oma.  Those winds were causing moderate vertical wind shear and they were inhibiting upper level divergence to the southeast of Oma.  The wind shear was the probable cause of the asymmetrical distribution of thunderstorms.

Tropical Cyclone Oma will move through an environment somewhat favorable for intensification during the next several days.  The upper level ridge will continue to cause vertical wind shear.  However, Oma will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C.  Tropical Cyclone Oma could slowly strengthen during the next day or two.

Tropical Cyclone Oma is currently embedded in a monsoon trough that is steering it toward the east.  A subtropical ridge is forecast to strengthen east of Vanuatu.  Oma will slow down while the ridge builds east of Vanuatu and it could linger northwest of Vanuatu for several days.  The ridge will eventually turn Tropical Cyclone Oma toward the south.  The timing and location of that turn will be important.  If Oma moves farther east before it turns southward, then it could approach northwest Vanuatu in 24 to 36 hours.  If Oma stalls and then turns southward, then the strongest part of the tropical cyclone could pass west of Vanuatu.  Tropical Cyclone Oma could eventually move near New Caledonia in a few days.

Tropical Cyclone Keni Brings Winds and Rain to Fiji

Tropical Cyclone Keni brought wind and rain to Fiji on Monday.  At 11:00 p.m. EDT on Monday the center of Tropical Cyclone Keni was located at latitude 19.4°S and longitude 178.0°E which put it about 100 miles (160 km) west-southwest of Suva, Fiji.  Keni was moving toward the east-southeast at 21 m.p.h. (34 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 80 m.p.h. (130 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 100 m.p.h. (160 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 976 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Keni intensified rapidly on Monday into the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon.  A primary rainband wrapped tightly around the center of circulation and a small eye formed at the center.  A ring of strong thunderstorms surrounded the eye and the strongest winds were occurring in that ring of storms.  Other bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of Tropical Cyclone Keni.  The strongest bands were east and south of the center of circulation.  Storms in the core of Keni were generating upper level divergence which was pumping away mass to the east of the tropical cyclone.  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 155 miles (250 km) from the center.

Tropical Cyclone Keni will remain in an environment favorable for intensification for about another 12 to 18 hours.  It will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C.  Keni is moving under the southwestern portion of an upper level ridge which is producing northwesterly winds which blowing toward the top of the circulation.  Those winds were causing some vertical wind shear, but the shear will not be strong enough to prevent intensification during the next few hours.  Tropical Cyclone Keni will move under strong upper level winds in about 12 to 18 hours and then the wind shear will increase.  Increased wind shear will cause Keni to start to weaken.

The ridge is steering Tropical Cyclone Keni toward the east-southeast and that general motion is expected to continue for another 12 to 18 hours.  An upper level trough approaching from the west will steer Keni more toward the southeast after that time.  On its anticipated track the core and strongest part of Tropical Cyclone Keni will pass southwest of Fiji.  However, clockwise flow around Keni will continue to cause gusty winds and drop heavy rain on Fiji.  The heavy rain could cause flash floods.  Keni could bring wind and rain to Tonga in 18 to 24 hours.

Tropical Cyclone Keni Forms East of Vanuatu

Tropical Cyclone Keni formed east of Vanuatu on Sunday.  At 11:00 p.m EDT on Sunday the center of Tropical Cyclone Keni was located at latitude 16.9°S and longitude 172.0°E which put it about 215 miles (350 km) east of Port Vila, Vanuatu.  Keni was moving toward the east-southeast at 7 m.p.h. (11 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 994 mb.

A distinct center of circulation consolidated in an area of showers and thunderstorms between Vanuatu and Fiji on Sunday and the Fiji Meteorological Service designated the system as Tropical Cyclone Keni.   The circulation of Tropical Cyclone Keni organized quickly.  Several bands of thunderstorms wrapped part of the way around the center of circulation.  Other bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the core of the circulation.  Storms near the center were generating upper level divergence which was pumping mass away from the tropical cyclone.

Tropical Cyclone Keni will move through an environment favorable for intensification during the next 24 hours.  Keni will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C.  It is under a small upper level ridge and the upper level winds are weak.  So, there will be little vertical wind shear on Monday.  Tropical Cyclone Keni will intensify during the next 24 hours and it could become the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon.

Tropical Cyclone Keni on the southwestern edge of a subtropical ridge which is steering Keni toward the east-southeast.  A general motion toward the east-southeast is expected to continue for another 24 to 36 hours.  On its anticipated track Tropical Cyclone Keni could be approaching Fiji within 24 hours.  Keni could be the equivalent of a hurricane/typhoon when it near Fiji.  Keni will bring gusty winds and locally heavy rain to parts of Fiji.  The heavy rain could cause flash floods in some locations.

Tropical Cyclone Josie Brings Wind and Rain to Fiji

Tropical Cyclone Josie brought wind and rain to Fiji on Saturday.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Saturday the center of Tropical Cyclone Josie was located at latitude 19.2°S and longitude 177.4°E which put it about 105 miles (170 km) southwest of Suva, Fiji.  Josie was moving toward the east-southeast at 14 m.p.h. (22 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 998 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Josie formed within an area of thunderstorms that had persisted west of Fiji for several days.  A center of circulation developed within the area of thunderstorms and the Fiji Meteorological Service designated the system as Tropical Cyclone Josie.  The circulation of Tropical Cyclone Josie was somewhat asymmetrical.  Most of the stronger thunderstorms were occurring in the eastern half of the circulation.  The strongest winds were occurring in a primary rainband east of the center of circulation,  The bands in the western half of the circulation consisted primarily of showers and lower clouds.  Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 160 miles (260 km) east of the center of circulation.

Tropical Cyclone Josie will move through an area somewhat favorable for intensification during the next day or two.  Josie will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 28°C.  It will move near an area where westerly winds are blowing in the upper levels and those winds may already be responsible for the asymmetrical distribution of stronger storms.  The upper level winds will cause moderate vertical wind shear, but the shear may not be strong enough to prevent some intensification.  Tropical Cyclone Josie could intensify slowly during the next 24 to 48 hours.

Tropical Cyclone Josie is moving near the eastern end of a ridge which is steering Josie toward the east-southeast.  The westerly winds in the middle troposphere will continue to steer Tropical Cyclone Josie toward the southeast during the next several days.  On its anticipated track the center of Josie will pass south of Viti Levu.  The center of Tropical Cyclone Josie will move near Kadavu and Ono in about 12 hours.  Even though the center of circulation will pass south of Viti Levu, Tropical Cyclone Josie will drop heavy rain there and the potential for flash floods will exist.  Josie will also bring gusty winds and heavy rain to Kadavu and Ono.

Tropical Cyclone 13P Develops Over the Coral Sea

Tropical Cyclone 13P developed over the Coral Sea northwest of New Caledonia on Monday.  At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Monday the center of Tropical Cyclone 13P was located at latitude 17.2°S and longitude 159.7°E which put it about 550 miles (885 km) northwest of Noumea, New Caledonia.  It was moving toward the south at 11 m.p.h. (17 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 998 mb.

A distinct low level center of circulation developed within an area of showers and thunderstorms over the Coral Sea on Monday.  The strongest rainband extended from northeast of the center, south of the the center and then west of the center.  Additional rainbands were forming in other part of the circulation.  Storms near the center of circulation were beginning to generate upper level divergence which was pumping mass away to the south of the tropical cyclone.

Tropical Cyclone 13P will move through an environment favorable for intensification on Tuesday.  It will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 29°C.  An upper level trough near the east coast of Australia is producing northerly winds which are blowing toward the top of the circulation.  The core of Tropical Cyclone 13P is east of the strongest upper level winds, but the winds are causing moderate vertical wind shear.  Despite the vertical shear, the tropical cyclone is forecast to intensify during the next 24 hours.

Tropical Cyclone 13P is moving around the western end of a subtropical ridge which is steering it toward the south.  There is some variability in the guidance from the numerical models about the future strength of the ridge.  Some models do not strengthen the ridge much and those model predict that Tropical Cyclone 13P will move almost straight southward.  Other models increase the strength of the ridge and steer the tropical cyclone more toward the south-southwest.  A general motion toward the south or south-southwest seems most likely during the next 24 to 36 hours.  On its anticipated track the core of Tropical Cyclone 13P would pass west of New Caledonia, but it could move closer to the east coast of Australia.

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.