First I'd like to say that NHC's latest forecast for Fabian through 3 days looks very reasonable. West to west-northwest with a possition northeast of the Lesser Antilles in 72 hours.
*After that is when things start to get interesting*. My first thing is a little rant about some of the ideas of seen from other people...by no means is NHC forecasting recurvature yet! It shows a NW curve from 96-120 hours. They aren't even showing a track to the north yet. In addition, from the 96 hour to 120 hour period, THEY SHOW THE STORM ACCELERATING! If the system was going forecast to recurve, you'd think it would slow down. That isn't the case in NHC's latest forecast track. Another thing to take into consideration...the error margin for the latest track on Fabian is easily the *largest* error margin I've seen this year for a five day forecast. Major uncertainty looms.
I will caution you about one thing...there have been storms in the past that have gone northwest only to curve back west and hit the United States. There was one or maybe two in the 40's if I remember correctly, and Dora and Betsy are a couple of notable examples from the 60's. The NOAA jet that is sampling the environment to the north of the storm should tell us a lot more about the high pressure area that is currently steering Fabian mostly w/wnw. In addition, the 72 hour NHC forecast point is at 21.0N and 62.0W. I don't know, but it seems to me like that may be a bit too far east for Fabian to do much more than just move northwest for a short period of time. Fabian's eventual track will also depend highly upon the location of the trough...something tells me that the front will do little more than just weaken the ridge enough to move Fabian northwest. And what if the front pulls out quickly? That adds even more chance of a sharp west turn. What if Fabian strengthens enough to create its own environment (which I sort of doubt)? There are so many questions at this point, but there are few answers. But the potential does exist for Fabian to turn west after the 120 hour period. The timing also seems suspect due to the fact that Fabian is a slow mover. It is VERY hard to believe that the most crucial moments with Fabian may not come until next weekend? It's a slow mover. Something tells me that Fabian may even miss the trough just because of slow movement.
Either way, NHC's track seems to be lacking sense to me. If the storm should recurve...then why does it speed up from 96-120 hours? Could the forecasters quietly be torn between a recurve or a building ridge? Or are the models just whacked? I guess we'll see with time.
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