Tropical Storm Alvin marks the beginning of 2013 eastern Pacific hurricane season

tropical-storm-alvin-marks-the-beginning-of-2013-eastern-pacific-hurricane-season

May 15th marked the start of the 2013 Eastern Pacific hurricane season, and right from the start, the first tropical depression and subsequent tropical storm of the season has formed. Tropical Storm Alvin, off the coast of Mexico, is the first named storm of the 2013 eastern Pacific hurricane season. 

Unstable weather pattern crossed into the eastern Pacific Ocean waters west of Panama and south of Mexico to become better organized system. Tropical Depression 1-E (TD1E) formed early on May 15 and by the end of the day it strengthened into Tropical Storm Alvin, fueled by warm ocean water and light wind shear. 

Total precipitable water animation (Credit: MIMIC/TPW/CIMSS)

According to latest public advisory issued by US National hurricane Center at 09:00 UTC on May 16, 2013, the center of Tropical Storm Alvin was located near latitude 9.1 north and longitude 106.9 west. Alvin is moving toward the west-northwest near 17 km/h (10 mph) and this motion is expected to continue for the next couple of days.

NHC reported maximum sustained winds near 85 km/h (50 mph) with higher gusts. Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 75 km (45 miles) from the center. The estimated minimum central pressure is 1003 mb (29.62 inches). Strengthening is forecast and Alvin could become a hurricane in the next day or two. 

Tropical storm force wind speed probabilities map (Source: National Hurricane Center)

Alvin is expected to become the first hurricane of the season, in the next day or two. No significant impacts are expected as Alvin moves away from land into the open Pacific Ocean.

TS Alvin forecast track (Source: National Hurricane Center)

Eastern Pacific hurricane season starts half month earlier than Atlantic hurricane season due to warmer waters and typically weaker wind shear. According to National Hurricane Center, four to five tropical cyclones (tropical depressions, tropical storms, hurricanes) occur in the central Pacific Ocean basin each year, with around two-thirds of these systems originate from the eastern Pacific.

MODIS Aqua satellite image taken on May 16, 2013 (Credit: LANCE/MODIS) 

Satellite Animations

 

 

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