(Storm Tracker)
Sat Aug 16 2008 09:51 AM
Fay's Florida Impact Potential

In what is continuing to appear as a likely Florida impact by Fay, very much is up in the air as too the scope of potential impact. A potential exists for either a tropical storm or a hurricane to impact practically the entire state. Of course, a sooner northward turn could spare most or even all of Florida if such a turn occured taking Fay east of the state. For the time being though, this seems less likely. If the track remains up through the central or western most Florida Keys, than a tragectory parallelling the state would have compelling impacts.

Aside from the fact that current land interaction will impact course direction, future intensity is even more a mystery. For the immediate, and until a clearly defined center has emerged or reformed away from Hispanola, than am wary of speculating "worse case scenario". Just for the moment though, it is interesting to take note of how a tropical cyclone was able to maintain its overall integrety while over the island of Hispanola. In all my years of Hurricane Chasing, I cannot recall a track, where any weak or strong tropical cyclone had remained so intact!

While waiting for first daylight visible satellite, and for the center to emerge over water later today, I believe the truest test of what may lie ahead will be to see how fast Fay begins to organize and deepen. One thing for sure, Florida's recent drought conditions may soon be remedied. Lake Okachobee ( no way I spelled that right ), remains way below normal and significant rains ( minus the wind ) would be welcomed. Interestingly, for much of the state, Monday marks the first day of school for the new calander year. Might be a "snow day" (or days) for an awful lot of children. Fay might prove to be the "first test" for residents and tourists of the Florida Keys. New bridge modifications in Key Largo are now operational, thus allowing a northward flow of traffic to evacuate ( IF necessary ) out of the Keys, without the delays caused by boaters needing the bridge to open for their own safe departure. Then there is the economic boon. Recession? Slow retail sales? Not any longer - as soon as the first Watches or Warnings are hoisted for parts of Florida, bottled water, candles, propane, canned goods, batteries, bottles of liquor, and a hole host of commodities will start flying off the shelves.. Hmmm, lets see if gas prices coincedentally spike back over the $4.00 gallon price too.

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