Tuesday Afternoon Forecast Discussion Update

Hurricane Dean made a landfall at Costa Maya, Mexico during the early morning hours today, around 3:30 a.m. This hurricane was a category five at the time of landfall with maximum sustained winds of 165 mph. Gusts with Dean were up to 200 mph causing heavy damage in the Mayan Riviera. Just to give you an idea of Dean’s uniqueness, only three category five hurricanes have ever struck the United States. The Labor Day Hurricane struck in 1935 as a category five, Hurricane Camille struck in 1969 as a category five, and Hurricane Andrew struck south Florida in 1992 as a category five. In fact, on this date in 1992 Andrew was closing in on South Florida. Even though Dean did not strike the U.S., hurricanes often weaken slightly before running ashore, making the category five label quite rare.

The Bermuda high is tightening its grip over the state and the west to east flow on the southern end of the ridge is guiding Dean back over the Bay of Campeche and towards a second landfall in Mexico. This landfall should take place near Veracruz around noon tomorrow. Therefore, the system won’t be a problem for us. We will remain hot and steamy, with lots of sunshine for tomorrow and Thursday.

On Friday we will have lots of sunshine, with scattered thunderstorms possible in the afternoon. The ridge will start weakening as a front drops in during the Sunday-Monday time frame. This will set the stage for a good coverage of scattered thunderstorms over the weekend and early next week. Even with that setup, the rain threat will mainly occur in the afternoon hours. There will be a tropical disturbance marching westward towards Florida in the days ahead. This feature is still poorly organized, but development is possible. We’ll continue to monitor this features progress and we’ll keep posted.

Chief Meteorologist Wes Wyatt
WVUA-TV Weather