By PDC’s Senior Weather
Specialist Glenn James
The Pacific Disaster Center’s (PDC Global) Sunday, December 10, 2023, Tropical Cyclone Activity Report…for the Pacific Ocean, the Indian Ocean, and adjacent Seas
Current Tropical Cyclones:
Tropical cyclone 03P (Jasper)…is located approximately 263 NM east-southeast of Cairns, Australia
Northeast Pacific Ocean:
The North Pacific hurricane season officially ended on November 30, 2023. Routine issuance of the Tropical Weather Outlook will resume on May 15, 2024. During the off-season, Special Tropical Weather Outlooks will be issued as conditions warrant.
The eastern Pacific basin hurricane season was above normal, with 17 named storms, of which 10 were hurricanes and eight of those major hurricanes.
From August 16 to 21, Tropical Storm Hilary brought widespread heavy rainfall and flooding to Southern California, with some areas receiving up to 600% of their normal August rainfall. Hilary resulted in the first ever issuance of Tropical Storm Watches and Warnings for the Southern California coastline by NOAA’s National Hurricane Center. In addition, the Center distributed key hazard focused messages for Hilary in Spanish through the agency’s new language translation project.
Hurricane Otis made landfall near Acapulco, Mexico, on October 25 as a category-5 hurricane, with sustained winds of 165 mph. Otis holds the record as the strongest landfalling hurricane in the eastern Pacific, after undergoing rapid intensification in which wind speeds increased by 115 mph in 24 hours.
Central North Pacific:
The central North Pacific hurricane season officially ended on November 30, 2023. Routine issuance of the Tropical Weather Outlook will resume on June 1, 2024. During the off-season, Special Tropical Weather Outlooks will be issued as conditions warrant.
The central Pacific basin had a near-normal season with four tropical systems traversing the basin.
Hurricane Dora, a category-4 storm, passed south of Hawaii in early August, marking the first major hurricane in the central Pacific basin since 2020. The strong gradient between a high pressure system to the north and Dora to the south was a contributing factor to the wind-driven, fast-moving wildfires in Hawaii.
Western Pacific, Indian Ocean and adjacent Seas:
Southwest Pacific Ocean…
Tropical cyclone 03P (Jasper)
According to the JTWC warning number 25, sustained winds were 45 knots…with gusts to 55 knots
Animated enhanced infrared satellite imagery depicts tropical cyclone 03P (Jasper) accelerating along track leaving behind necessary upper-level support, with previously observed deep convection having come to a rapid halt over the past six hours. Additionally, poleward outflow appears to have considerably weakened.
Synoptic observation reports from Marion Reef, 113 NM south-southwest of the low-level circulation center (llcc), reported 43 knot south-southeasterlies, and Lihou Reef lighthouse, 74 NM west of the llcc, reported 22 knot south-southwesterlies.
A passive microwave radiometer derived wind speed image revealed an asymmetric wind field, with the highest values along the western periphery of the system.
Hovering near the same intensity over the next 12 hours and battling moderate (15-20 knot) vertical wind shear and dry mid-level air (relative humidity near 55 percent), TC 03P is forecast to approach a southern apex near 18 degrees south and gradually turn to a west-northwestward track.
Afterwards, from 12 to 72 hours, low (5-10 knot) vertical wind shear, and a re-moistening of the mid-layer are likely to provide a short-lived re-intensification phase prior to a landfall event (near 66 hours). Once landfall occurs, the TC vortex is anticipated to track westward and come to dissipation over land prior to 96 hours.