Tropical Cyclone Habana Weakens East of Rodrigues

Tropical Cyclone Habana continued to weaken east of Rodrigues on Sunday. At 5:00 p.m. EDT on Sunday the center of Tropical Cyclone Habana was located at latitude 22.0°S and longitude 71.1°E which put it about 425 miles (685 km) east of Rodrigues. Habana was moving toward the east at 5 m.p.h. (8 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 991 mb.

Tropical Cyclone Habana continued to weaken over the South Indian Ocean east of Rodrigues during the weekend. An upper level trough east of Madagascar was producing strong westerly winds which were blowing toward the top of Habana. Those winds were creating moderate vertical wind shear and the shear was the main factor causing Tropical Cyclone Habana to weaken. There was no longer an eye at the center of Habana. Bands of shower and thunderstorms were still revolving around the center of circulation. Winds to tropical storm force extended out 150 miles (240 km) from the center.

Tropical Cyclone Habana will remain in an environment that will cause it to weaken during the next several days. The upper level trough continue to create moderate vertical wind shear. Habana will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperatures will be near 26°C. However, the wind shear will be too strong and it will prevent intensification. Tropical Cyclone Habana is likely to continue to weaken gradually.

Tropical Cyclone Habana will move through a region where two weather systems will compete to steer it. The westerly winds in the upper levels will try to push Habana toward the east. A high pressure system in the lower levels will try to push Habana toward the west. The upper level trough could push Tropical Cyclone Habana slowly toward the east during the next 12 to 24 hours. When Habana weakens further, the circulation will not extend as high into the atmosphere. So, the high pressure system in the lower levels will push Tropical Cyclone Habana toward the west during the upcoming week. On its anticipated track Habana could be southeast of Rodrigues by the end of the week.