Austin / Travis County and South Central Texas Weather Statement #4
Prepared by UT University/Incident Meteorologist Troy Kimmel
705am CT – Monday / 15 June 2015
.. No Significant Changes Overnight ..
.. Flash Flood Watch Issued for Austin Metropolitan Area and the IH35
Corridor Counties Until 7am Thursday Morning ..
.. Probability of A Tropical Cyclone Forming Over the Western Gulf Holding at 80% ..
.. All Interests on the Texas and Southwest Louisiana Coasts Should Remain in
Close Touch with Latest NWS Information on this Developing System ..
LATEST INFRARED NASA SATELLITE PICTURE LINK: http://1.usa.gov/1dE8AiI
According to the forecasters at the National Hurricane Center (NHC) in their latest
outlook at 8am CDT…
Thunderstorm activity with the broad area of low pressure in the south-central Gulf of Mexico has become a little more concentrated this morning. A Hurricane Hunter aircraft is just now beginning its investigation of the system, and will help to determine whether the low-level circulation has become any better defined since yesterday. Satellite observations overnight suggest that the low continues to produce tropical-storm-force winds well to the east and northeast of the center. Upper-level winds are forecast to become more favorable for development while this system moves northwestward across the western Gulf of Mexico, and a tropical depression or tropical storm could form at any time before the system reaches the Texas coast sometime tomorrow. Interests in and along the northwestern Gulf of Mexico should monitor the progress of this system. Regardless of tropical cyclone formation, tropical storm conditions are possible along portions of the middle and upper Texas coast and the western Louisiana coast Monday night and Tuesday. The system is also likely to bring heavy rainfall with possible flooding across portions of eastern Texas and western Louisiana. For additional information, please see High Seas Forecasts and products issued by your local National Weather Service forecast office. * Formation chance through 48 hours...high...80 percent * Formation chance through 5 days...high...80 percent
A couple things to continue to remember as we watch this system…
(1) With this system.. in whatever form it takes.. expected to make landfall on the Texas coast
by late tonight into early Tuesday, we will have little if any lead time should watches
and warnings become necessary.
(2) The NHC’s chance of future development for this system remains at 80%.
(3) Climatologically, we must watch the Gulf of Mexico for early hurricane season systems.. we
are in that early part of the season.
(4) The Gulf of Mexico waters are quite warm with lots of potential latent heat to contribute for any
tropical development (if it occurs)
(5) Remember that there are two things that largely determine what effect a tropical cyclone has on
a given location… first, how well developed or strong the system becomes, of course, and, secondly,
it’s exact track across the given area. There are limitless potential scenarios for this system but one
thing to remember is that if the track stays east of our area (say into southeast Texas), we will be
on what is normally the drier side of the system (especially if it becomes better developed). If it tracks
more overhead or to west and southwest of our area, we end up in what is normally the wetter part of
the system. At this moment, it appears that the first scenario (track staying east of our local IH35
corridor area) appears most likely, but we must all continue to watch this system carefully since parts
of Texas may be making preparations for a possible tropical cyclone, if this system develops over the
Gulf of Mexico, by later tonight into tomorrow.
As mentioned above, all interests along and inland along the Texas coast should be monitoring the
latest information from the NWS/National Hurricane Center as well as local NWS offices. Everyone
should be ready in case the system becomes better organized and NWS issued tropical cyclone
watches and warnings are required later tonight or tomorrow.
It is also important to remember that even if it doesn’t become better developed, the system is still
expected cause widespread rain showers and thunderstorms over the eastern half the state for the
first through middle part of the new week (depending upon exact track).
Finally, it’s important to note that the ground across the area from the IH35 corridor counties eastward
through southeast Texas (Houston area) is saturated or nearly saturated so additional rainfall that might
be associated with this approaching system will cause problems quickly. Those problems could grow to be
quite serious in a quick period of time!!
The latest NWS/Weather Prediction Center Quantitative Precipitation Forecast (QPF)
from now through the next five days indicates forecast precipitation amounts of 6 to 7 inches or more
around the Houston/Galveston areas of southeast Texas… with averages around 2 to 3 inches
across the IH35 corridor area with amounts picking up as you move eastward into the maximum
rainfall area over southeast Texas.
Let this continue to be a “heads up” for everyone as we wrap up the latter part of our weekend
and start to think about what appears to be a busy weather pattern for the start of our work week
central and eastern Texas.
Continuing to monitor… tk