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Hurricane DOUGLAS

Hurricane Douglas Discussion Number  26
NWS Central Pacific Hurricane Center Honolulu HI   EP082020
1100 AM HST Sun Jul 26 2020
Hurricane Hunters from the Air Force 53rd Weather Reconnaissance 
Squadron are back out sampling Douglas. The hurricane has been 
resilient, with deep convection persisting to the west and north of 
the center under increasing vertical wind shear. The Hurricane 
Hunters have found that the center pressure has risen slightly, and 
a blend of SFMR and adjusted flight level winds supports lowering 
the initial intensity to 75 kt. Island-based radars are detecting 
the mid-level circulation of Douglas, which could be tilted 
slightly to the north due to the wind shear.

Slow weakening is expected as Douglas passes near, or over, 
portions of the main Hawaiian Islands. SSTs will slowly increase 
along the forecast track, but southerly vertical wind shear will 
tilt the system and disrupt the circulation aloft, leading to 
gradual weakening through at least the next four days. However, 
Douglas is expected to remain a hurricane as it passes very near, or 
over, portions of the main Hawaiian Islands today and tonight. The 
intensity forecast was changed little from the prior advisory and 
is in line within a tightly clustered guidance envelope through 36 
hours and near consensus thereafter. 

Hurricane Hunter data was essential in determining the initial 
motion of 290/14 kt. Douglas will continue to be steered by a low- 
to mid-level ridge toward the west-northwest during the next couple 
of days, taking the center dangerously close to the islands from 
Maui to Kauai through tonight, where a Hurricane Warning remains in 
effect. The updated forecast track was changed little from the 
previous forecast and remains near the southern edge of a tightly 
clustered guidance envelope during the next couple of days. By day 
three, an acceleration toward the west is expected as the 
increasingly shallow system is steered along the low-level trade 

Key Messages

1. Douglas will pass dangerously close to, or over, the islands 
today and tonight, bringing a triple threat of hazards, including 
but not limited to damaging winds, flooding rainfall, and 
dangerously high surf, especially along east facing shores.

2. It is remains important that you do not focus on the exact 
forecast track of Douglas. Due to Douglas' angle of approach to the 
islands, any wobble in the track could lead to significant 
differences in where the worst weather occurs. Even if the center 
remains offshore, severe impacts could still be realized over the 
islands, as they extend well away from the center.
3. Terrain effects can cause strong localized acceleration of the 
wind through gaps and where winds blow downslope. These 
acceleration areas will shift with time as Douglas passes near the 
islands. Hurricane force wind gusts are possible even within the 
tropical storm warning area. Winds will also be stronger at the 
upper floors of high rise buildings.
INIT  26/2100Z 21.2N 155.7W   75 KT  85 MPH
 12H  27/0600Z 21.8N 158.0W   70 KT  80 MPH...NEAR OAHU
 24H  27/1800Z 22.6N 161.0W   65 KT  75 MPH
 36H  28/0600Z 23.1N 164.3W   55 KT  65 MPH
 48H  28/1800Z 23.4N 167.7W   50 KT  60 MPH
 60H  29/0600Z 23.8N 171.2W   45 KT  50 MPH
 72H  29/1800Z 24.1N 175.2W   40 KT  45 MPH
 96H  30/1800Z 24.4N 177.0E   35 KT  40 MPH
120H  31/1800Z 25.6N 170.0E   30 KT  35 MPH
Forecaster Wroe