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HURRICANE PATRICIA DISCUSSION NUMBER 14
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL EP202015
400 AM CDT FRI OCT 23 2015
Data from three center fixes by the Hurricane Hunters indicate
that the intensity, based on a blend of 700 mb-flight level and
SFMR-observed surface winds, is near 175 kt. This makes Patricia
the strongest hurricane on record in the National Hurricane Center's
area of responsibility (AOR) which includes the Atlantic and the
eastern North Pacific basins. The minimum central pressure
estimated from the aircraft data, 880 mb, is the lowest ever for
our AOR. It seems incredible that even more strengthening could
occur before landfall later today, but recent microwave imagery
shows hints of a concentric eyewall developing. If the trend
toward an eyewall replacement continues, it would cause the
intensity to at least level off later today. The official forecast
shows only a little more strengthening before landfall. Given the
very mountainous terrain that Patricia should encounter after
landfall, the cyclone should weaken even faster over land than
predicted by the normal inland decay rate.
Recent center fixes show that the hurricane is gradually turning
toward the right, and the initial motion estimate is 340/10 kt. The
track forecast scenario remains about the same. Patricia should
continue to move around the western periphery of a mid-level
anticyclone today and turn north-northeastward ahead of a trough to
the northwest tonight and Saturday. The official track forecast is
somewhat slower than the latest model consensus and lies between
the GFS and ECMWF solutions.
The global models continue to depict the development of a cyclone
near the Texas coast over the weekend. Based on the predicted
upper-level winds, this system should be non-tropical in nature.
However this cyclone is expected to draw significant amounts of
moisture from Patricia's remnants, and could result in locally
heavy rainfall over portions of the northwestern Gulf of Mexico
coastal area within the next few days. Refer to statements from
local National Weather Service forecast offices for details.
We would like to acknowledge deeply the Air Force Hurricane Hunters
for their observations establishing Patricia as a record-breaking
hurricane. Clearly, without their data, we would never have known
just how strong a tropical cyclone it was.
1. Confidence is high that Patricia will make landfall in the
hurricane warning area along the coast of Mexico as an extremely
dangerous category 5 hurricane this afternoon or evening.
Preparations to protect life and property in the hurricane warning
area should have been completed, or rushed to completion, as
tropical storm conditions are beginning to affect the area.
Residents in low-lying areas near the coast in the hurricane warning
area should evacuate immediately, since the storm surge could be
catastrophic near and to the east of where the center makes
2. In addition to the coastal impacts, very heavy rainfall is
likely to cause life-threatening flash floods and mud slides in the
Mexican states of Jalisco, Colima, Michoacan and Guerrero continuing
FORECAST POSITIONS AND MAX WINDS
INIT 23/0900Z 17.0N 105.5W 175 KT 200 MPH
12H 23/1800Z 18.8N 105.4W 180 KT 205 MPH
24H 24/0600Z 21.7N 104.2W 60 KT 70 MPH...INLAND
36H 24/1800Z 24.5N 102.5W 20 KT 25 MPH...POST-TROP/REMNT LOW