Ian powers up for Round 2

The danger of life-threatening inundation from storm surge persists in Central Florida as Hurricane Ian takes aim at the Carolinas and Georgia as a Cat1 hurricane.

Coastal Georgia is under a tropical storm warning, while South Carolina is under a hurricane warning. (Image: NHC)

As of 8 pm Thursday, Ian was moving toward the north-northeast at about 10 mph with maximum sustained winds at 75 mph. The storm is about 215 miles south of Charleston, South Carolina and about 300 miles south-southwest of Cape Fear, North Carolina.

Tropical Storm Ian was upgraded to a hurricane, according to the 5 pm National Hurricane Center advisory, as Central Florida continues to experience massive amounts of rain.

Ian came ashore Wednesday afternoon near Cayo Costa, Florida, with winds of 150 mph and began a punishing march northeastward across the state.

“A turn toward the north is expected tonight, followed by a turn toward the north-northwest with an increase in forward speed Friday night. On the forecast track, Ian will approach the coast of South Carolina on Friday,” the National Hurricane Center said. “The center will move farther inland across the Carolinas Friday night and Saturday.”

National Weather Service Discussion #29

Ian remains a hybrid tropical cyclone with characteristics of an extratropical low, including a comma-pattern on satellite images and some frontal features in the outer circulation. The cyclone continues to have a warm core, however, and all indications are that it will re-develop strong convection over the center overnight. Based on Melbourne Doppler radar velocity data of persistent 70-80- kt winds from 5-10 thousand feet, and earlier sustained winds of about 60 kt near that band from an observation in New Smyrna Beach, the initial wind speed is raised to 65 kt. This makes Ian a hurricane again. An Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft is scheduled to fly through Ian this evening and will provide a better intensity estimate.

Ian finally appears to be making more of a turn to the north- northeast this afternoon. The hurricane should turn to the north overnight due to the incoming trough diving southward over the southern United States and then north northwestward on Saturday with an increase in forward speed. While the overall synoptic pattern is similar in all of the models, Ian has been uncooperative and remains right of the previous track. Thus, the new forecast is adjusted to the east, and lies east of the model consensus. Assuming Ian re-develops thunderstorms near the core overnight, it should take the expected north-northwest turn, but this shouldn’t be considered a confident forecast yet. Because of the uncertainty, the Hurricane Warning has been extended eastward into North Carolina to Cape Fear.

The hurricane is moving over the Gulf Stream for the next day or so, where it has some time for further re-intensification. Additionally, the trough interaction should provide a baroclinic energy kick. These factors point to some strengthening before landfall tomorrow. The new forecast is close to the GFS and regional hurricane models and is a bit stronger than before. It should be emphasized that while we don’t expect Ian to be a classic hurricane at landfall, this does not diminish the danger it poses. Strong winds and storm surge will also extend far from the center and will begin well before the center arrives.

National Hurricane Center – Miami, FL

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Air Quality Index

©2022 Hamilton County Weather | All Rights Reserved

Hamilton County Weather is reader-supported. When you buy through links on my site, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you.