Tropical Storm Michael Track Chart, Advisory #13

Current Location: 21.2N, 85.3W
Geographic Reference: 85 miles NE of Cozumel, MX
Movement: North-northwest at 11 mph
Max Winds: 70 mph gusting to 85 mph
Current Hurricane Severity Index: 6 out of a possible 50 points (2 size, 4 intensity)
Max Predicted Hurricane Severity Index: 20 out of a possible 50 points (8 size, 12 intensity)
Current Radius of Tropical Storm-Force Winds: 140 miles
Max Predicted Radius of Tropical Storm-Force Winds: 230 miles
Organizational Trend: Steadily Strengthening
Forecast Confidence: Average

Key Points
1. Michael continues to strengthen and is likely a hurricane.
2. We are forecasting landfall to occur Wednesday afternoon near Panama City, Florida with winds of 120 mph.
3. Heavy rain is possible in some of the areas that were affected by Hurricane Florence.

Our Forecast
Reports from a reconnaissance plane inside Michael indicate that winds have reached hurricane strength northeast of the center. We are initiating this advisory with max winds of 70 mph as we wait for the National Hurricane Center to make the official upgrade.

Model guidance remains in very good agreement on a landfall in the Florida Panhandle between Apalachicola and Pensacola. We have not made any significant changes to the track in this advisory. Our forecast takes the center of Michael inland near Panama City early Wednesday afternoon with max sustained winds of 120 mph. It is quite possible that Michael could be even stronger at landfall.

As Michael makes landfall, it will begin accelerating very rapidly to the northeast across Georgia and the Carolinas. The rapid forward speed across the southeast U.S. will mean that Michael will continue to produce tropical storm-force wind when it emerges into the Atlantic late on Thursday. However, Michael will be undergoing a transition to a non-tropical low pressure system Thursday night and Friday. When this happens, its core of stronger winds will weaken but its wind field will expand significantly. This could result in tropical storm conditions all along the Mid Atlantic Coast Thursday night and Friday morning.

Michael’s rapid forward speed as it tracks through the Carolinas will limit its capacity to produce heavy rain, but we are still expecting several inches of rain to fall there on Thursday.

Expected Impacts Offshore
Lund, Atwater, and Mississippi Canyon Eastward: Squalls are forecast to reach the deepwater areas off the southeast Louisiana coast during the morning or early afternoon on Tuesday, making today the last guaranteed full day of good flying weather. Tropical storm conditions are likely Tuesday night/Wednesday morning.

Walker Ridge, Green Canyon, and Ship Shoal: Squalls should generally pass well to the east of this area.

Expected Impacts Inland
Florida Panhandle / Extreme Southeast Alabama / SW Georgia: Severe damage due to wind and tidal surge is expected near where the center tracks. This includes well-built structures. Widespread power outages are expected. These power outages could last for an extended period of time. Flooding rains are also likely.

Georgia and Carolinas: Inland flooding will be possible, including for some of the areas that were flooded in Florence. Power outages due to wind are also possible.

Our next advisory will be issued by 3 PM CDT

Meteorologists: Chris Hebert / Claude Aultman

Forecast Confidence:   Average Hurricane Severity Index
Fcst Hour Valid Lat. Lon. Max Sustained Winds Max Gusts Category Size Intensity Total
0 9AM CDT Mon Oct 08 21.20N 85.30W 70 mph 85 mph Tropical Storm 2 4 6
12 9PM CDT Mon Oct 08 23.00N 86.00W 80 mph 100 mph Category 1 4 5 9
24 9AM CDT Tue Oct 09 25.00N 86.60W 100 mph 120 mph Category 2 7 8 15
36 9PM CDT Tue Oct 09 27.00N 86.70W 105 mph 125 mph Category 2 8 9 17
48 9AM CDT Wed Oct 10 29.20N 86.20W 115 mph 140 mph Category 3 8 11 19
53 2PM CDT Wed Oct 10 30.10N 85.70W 120 mph 145 mph Category 3 8 12 20
60 9PM CDT Wed Oct 10 31.40N 85.00W 80 mph 100 mph Category 1 3 5 8
72 9AM CDT Thu Oct 11 33.60N 81.50W 60 mph 80 mph Tropical Storm 2 3 5
84 9PM CDT Thu Oct 11 35.80N 77.30W 50 mph 70 mph Tropical Storm 1 2 3
96 9AM CDT Fri Oct 12 38.30N 72.00W 60 mph 75 mph Extratropical Storm 3 3 6
108 9PM CDT Fri Oct 12 40.50N 64.50W 65 mph 80 mph Extratropical Storm 4 3 7
120 9AM CDT Sat Oct 13 43.00N 57.00W 65 mph 80 mph Extratropical Storm 5 3 8

The yellow cone represents track error from the previous five hurricane seasons. Over the past five hurricane seasons, the center of the storm tracked within the yellow cone 75% of the time. The cone does not represent the forecast uncertainty in the current advisory for this storm. In addition, hurricane-force winds, very high tides, large waves, and heavy rainfall can often extend well outside the yellow cone.