Tropical Storm Isaac

Old Sarge's picture

Okay, Folks, the word is that the latest named storm, Isaac, is tracking toward Gulf Coast Florida as early as next week.

Here is the update I received from the weather folks as of 1050 hours EDT today:
(NOTE: All this is old business to us, but the usual reminders for the sheep)


With the potential for Tropical Storm Isaac to impact west central
and southwest Florida by early next week... now is the time to take
precautions and secure your property. The following are some
suggestions for preparing for the storm.

Grocery stores may sell out of items soon. Stock up on...
batteries for radios and flashlights
canned or dried food and drinking water
first aid supplies
prescription medicine
Cash... credit cards and atm's may not work without power
fuel for automobiles... generators and chain saws

Around the house...
store loose items such as trash cans or yard furniture
secure windows with shutters... boards... etc.
Make sure battery operated radios are working
move boat to a safe location
trim large trees that could fall on house
make sure valuable papers are secure

Make reservations now. Plan to evacuate if you live...
in a Mobile home
on the coast
in a low lying flood prone area
in a high rise

If you must evacuate to a public shelter remember to bring...
first aid kit
baby food and diapers
change of clothes
battery powered radio and extra batteries
sleeping bags or blankets
valuable papers

Remember... pets are not allowed in most public shelters. Check to
see if there is a pet friendly shelter in your area.

If you are staying at home...
turn refrigerator to maximum cold
turn off propane tanks
unplug small appliances
fill sterilized jugs and bottles with water for drinking
fill Bath tub and containers with water for sanitary purposes

When winds become strong...
stay away from windows
remain in a small interior room on the first floor
close all interior doors
secure and brace exterior doors.

Precautions outside your home should be started now while the
weather is still good. It may be impossible to work outside soon.


I will be updating this thread as events warrant. Stay Alert!


Old Sarge's picture

Well, Folks, at this hour the reports from NHC show that Isaac has weakened slightly, but still at Tropical Storm strength.

The storm is now moving erratically but still tracking WNW. The storm should pass to the south of the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico today, and approach the Dominican Republic tonight and Friday. Isaac could still become a hurricane on Friday before it reaches Hispaniola.

Total rainfall accumulations of 8 to 12 inches, with maximum amounts of 20 inches, are possible over Hispaniola. A storm surge as much as 3 to 5 feet is expected.

What all this means for us in Florida is, Isaac is on track to make landfall at or near Key West at 0200 on Monday, and sideswipe Florida through Wednesday. This storm is already a rainmaker, so effects similar to Debby earlier this summer will most likely happen: local flooding, high tides and storm surge, and possibly tornadoes spawning off the storm.

The next NHC update is later this morning; I'll post any significant changes then.

Old Sarge's picture

Okay, Folks, state and county governments are kicking into gear at this hour. Here's the first blurb from Tallahassee:

Governor Scott has directed the Florida Division of Emergency Management (DEM) to continue to closely monitor Tropical Storm (TS) Isaac and provide frequent updates to the public. Although it is too early to forecast the effects TS Isaac may have on Florida, all employees should begin to review readiness plans.

According to DEM, at 5:00 am EDT Thursday, TS Isaac was located approximately 1,275 miles from Miami. There are no tropical storm watches or warnings in effect for Florida, but most of the state is within the five-day projected storm path.

And here's something from the County:

Sandbags Available At All County Service Units Starting on Aug. 23

Hillsborough County is making sandbags available to the public from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., starting tomorrow morning (Aug. 23) at all three County Public Works Service Units:

* West Service Unit - 9805 Sheldon Road
* South Service Unit - 8718 Old Big Bend Road
* East Service Unit - 4702 Sydney Road

Filled sandbags will be available to the elderly/disabled. Sandbag materials will be available to those physically able to make their own. Additionally, each citizen must sign their name and provide their home address acknowledging the receipt of 25 sandbags or less.

Citizens also can call 813-635-5400 to report flooding/road problems or request additional information.

Old Sarge's picture

Okay, Everyone, here's the latest, as of this hour (in military time, 240615R AUG 12):

Isaac is a very large in area, but weak in strength, tropical storm. It's becomes less organized, and maintaining a westward track across the Caribbean. Storm warnings remain in effect for Dominica, Haiti, Cuba, and the southern Bahamas, but hurricane warnings have all expired.

Isaac is generating a lot of rain, with 8-12" forecast with locally heavy amounts up to 20". Storm surges associated with Issac are down to 1-3 feet.

According to the latest track, the storm is being predicted as turning WNW to NW soon, hitting Haiti just after midnight tonight; striking Cuba Saturday morning; and being off the Dry Tortugas by early Monday morning. Projections show the center will be well to the west of Tampa, but the upper-right quadrant of the storm will sweep over us Monday and into Tuesday.

Unless the storm does something radical over the next 48 hours, it looks like Isaac will be a replay of Debby: lots of rain and some windy conditions, but nothing devastating.

Old Sarge's picture

And here, Folks, is the latest on Isaac, as of this hour:

A Tropical Storm Warning is now in effect for a swath from Tarpon Springs to Bonita Beach. Isaac is currently at 60mph winds and a pressure of 997 millibars; this shows that the storm is strengthening as it travels NW along the Florida Straits.

According to the projections I see, Isaac will move near or over the Florida Keys Sunday or Sunday night, and move over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico by early Monday. The storm is expected to reach Category 1 strength by the time it strikes the Keys.

What all this means for Tampa Bay is, storm surges up to 5 feet are currently expected even under Tropical Storm conditions; these could increase as the storm intensifies and moves toward our area. Rainfall is being called in the 8-12" range, with local amounts higher. The Little Manatee River is already at flood stage; more flooding will most likely occur.

I'll update everyone as I get the next updates.

Old Sarge's picture

Well, anyone with interests on the Gulf Coast needs to know:

Hillsborough, Manatee, DeSoto and Sarasota Counties have all closed their schools for Monday 8/27. Pinellas County will announce their closing decision at 1500 today.

Three Manatee District Schools have been designated emergency shelters and will open at 10 A.M., Sunday August 26th.

The three designated shelters are:

Nolan Middle School
6615 Greenbrook Blvd.
Bradenton, FL.
(Special Needs)
(Pet Friendly)

Manatee High School
1000 32nd Street West
Bradenton, FL
(Pet Friendly)

Braden River High School
6545 S R 70 East
Bradenton, FL

I'll post Emerg. Mngt. information as I receive it.

Old Sarge's picture

Good Morning, Folks! Well, this one turned out to be a real snoozer - literally. I slept like an rock through the Tornado Warning last night with no incident, and the main bulk of the storm seems to have passed us by. Central FLA dodged a bullet, this time...

At this writing, here are the current watch/warnings:

The entire area is still under a Tropical Storm Warning. There is little chance for hurricane conditions at this time. The chance for tropical storm conditions at this time is down to 35 percent. Maximum winds of 20 to 30 mph with gusts to 40 mph. Tides are expected to be between 1 and 3 feet above normal with minor coastal flooding possible. The most likely period of impact will be during high tides on Monday. 2 to 4 inches of rainfall will be possible with this storm.

A Tornado Watch is in effect for Hillsborough and Pinellas until 0900 today.
A Flood Warning is in effect until Wednesday night for the Alafia River. Flood stage is 13 feet; the river is expected to reach that level by Wednesday.
A Flood Warning has been extended until Friday for the Little Manatee River. Flood stage is 11 feet; the river is expected to reach 14 feet by Tuesday morning.

Just as an aside, computer projections expect Isaac to gain strength as it moves across the Gulf, and will make landfall as a Category 1 storm in the vicinity of - get this - New Orleans, LA. I will continue to monitor the local weather effects, but from my vantage point, it looks like the main weather situation is effectively over.