and yet another category five hurricane this season. Data from both NOAA and Air Force hurricane hunters indicate a significant pressure drop today and winds have increased to 145 knots. This is based on a 700 mb wind of 161 knots recently measured by an Air Force plane and a recalibrated SFMR surface wind of 146 knots. Satellite intensity estimates were unanimously 140 knots from all agencies. Because Rita will be crossing an area of high heat content during the next 12 to 24 hours...it is expected that the hurricane will maintain its strength. Thereafter...the ocean heat content is not as high and the intensity changes will be controlled mainly by eyewall replacement cycles and decreasing heat content. Some weakening is anticipated but Rita is forecast to make landfall as a major hurricane...at least category three. There has been no change in the steering pattern and Rita is moving westward or 275 degrees at 11 knots. The high pressure system that has been forcing Rita westward is forecast to weaken and shift eastward. This will allow the hurricane to turn gradually toward the west-northwest and northwest during the next day or two. The core of Rita is basically moving toward the Texas coast and this is consistent with the track model consensus.
Try and follow a 6 hr track rather then 2 hrs and you get what it has done all day and that is move a whole .01 which is due west since early today 12 hrs ago.
Note from the NHC There has been no change in the steering pattern and Rita is moving westward or 275 degrees at 11 knots
where did those guys go now anyway? they been posting non stop the last 3 hrs where did they go?
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