The eye of Hurricane Lane’s current forecast track has shifted to the right, increasing the threat of tropical storm and Hurricane force winds to the Hawaiian Islands. The storm is still a category three hurricane at this time, and is expected to become a tropical storm by Friday of this week. There is a very real chance of a direct hit to Hawaii at this time.
Please continue to pray for the hurricane to dissipate before making landfall or to miss the Hawaiian Islands. Also, please pray that the sub-tropical ridge to remain strong and push Lane south of Hawaii. Please pray for people to remain calm, heed the potential watches and warnings, and prepare the storm. Please pray for homes and property to be protected from damaging winds and rains.
Here is an update from the Central Pacific Hurricane Center.
Aircraft from the NOAA Aircraft Operation Center and the U.S. Air Force Reserves 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron departed Hurricane Lane late Sunday evening. In the meantime, we are relying on satellite imagery to track Lane's progress. A warm spot, which appears to be indicative of an eye, appeared in the infrared satellite imagery several hours ago. Radar reflectivity data sent from the NOAA aircraft between 0510z and 0722z showed that Lane's eyewall was open in the southeastern quadrant. More recently, a 1237z SSMI microwave image appears to show that the eyewall has now become distinct in all quadrants. All of the satellite fix agencies (PHFO, SAB, and JTWC) based their subjective Dvorak current intensity estimates on an "eye pattern". These estimates ranged from 90 to 102 knots. The latest UW-CIMSS ADT estimate appears to be an unrealistically low 77 knots. Since the aircraft observations were much stronger earlier tonight and the overall appearance of the hurricane appears to be improving, we will maintain the initial intensity at 110 knots. The initial motion for this advisory is 275/12 knots. Lane continues to track westward along the southern flank of a large subtropical ridge. There is still significant spread in the track guidance beyond day 2 due to the variations in the way the individual models handle the erosion of the western portion of this ridge as an upper-level trough digs down northwest of the main Hawaiian Islands in about 72 hours. The latest forecast track through 48 hours is close to the previous forecast. However, due to overwhelming evidence that the western end of the ridge will erode from days 3 through 5, we again had to shift the track far to the right. The latest forecast track is much closer to the TVCN/TVCX and GFEX consensus models. It is also to the right of the ECMWF, and to the left of the GFS and HWRF track guidance. Note that another NOAA G-IV mission to sample the environment around Lane is scheduled for this afternoon. The data from this aircraft will be used to improve the initial fields in the hurricane forecast models. The latest intensity forecast has been nudged up slightly compared with the previous one. Lane will remain over 27-28 degree C waters through the forecast period. Shear of 10 to 15 knots is expected during the next 6 hours or so, followed by reduced shear during the 12 to 48 hour time periods. After that, vertical shear is expected to increase, which would likely result in steady weakening. Lane may possibly become a tropical storm by day 5. This intensity forecast closely follows the IVCN consensus guidance. Note that with the eye becoming more distinct, there is a possibility that Lane may be undergoing a new period of intensification. Additional reconnaissance aircraft will be flying into the system soon, so we expect to receive direct measurements of the cyclone's intensity in a few hours. Due to the large uncertainty in the future track and intensity of Lane, all interests in the Hawaiian Islands, including the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, should continue to closely monitor the future progress of this system. Based on the latest trends in the forecast, direct impacts on the islands appear to be increasingly likely. The latest trends in tropical cyclone wind speed probabilities also suggest that a Tropical Storm or Hurricane Watch may be needed for some parts of the island chain later today or tonight.