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Fusion of Atmospheric Systems and Heavy Rainfalls

in Southern Indian Ocean-December 2014

(SEE UPDATE BELOW: Heavy Rainfalls and Cyclone KATE approaching)

  The Weather Systems in the Southern Indian Ocean have turned out to be very dynamic. The Inter Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) has propelled Cyclone BAKUNG towards the Southern Indian Ocean since 12 December 2014. This Cyclone caused disastrous floods and loss of lives in Indonesia a few days earlier. Its remnants have triggered rainfall in Mauritius since 13 December. The combination of other Atmospheric Systems is having a serious impact in this zone. However, BAKUNG has moved towards the South East into the Sub-Tropical Zone and dissolved. Click picture to verify.

[Cocos Islands Forecast

IDW10600

Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology

Western Australia

Cocos (Keeling) Islands Forecast

Issued at 5:55 am WST on Saturday 13 December 2014

Weather Situation:

Tropical Cyclone Bakung lies approximately 700km well to the west-northwest and is moving slowly westwards over the next few days.]

The ITCZ has turned out to be very dynamic and it is carrying humidity, heat, thunder, lightning and rain in various parts of Mauritius. The South East Trade Wind (SETW) has accelerated the remnant rain clouds of BAKUNG and those of the ITCZ. As a result light rain-14.8 mm in Rouillard and 38 mm in Mon Bois have been recorded by the Meteorological Services of Mauritius on Saturday 13 December. Moderate rain-56.3 mm showered Vacoas and maximum of 62.8 mm in Grand Bassin on Sunday 14th. The temperature reached 34.20 Celsius on Monday 15 December. The thunder and lightning activity started on 16th and Moka recorded 39 mm of rain as maximum for that day. This system is comparable to the period between 2008 to 2010, when the thunderstorm activities were very intense and rainfalls occurred mostly between midday to midnight.

The striking feature of the atmospheric system took place on Wednesday 17th, when the wind changed direction to the North. Dark cumulus clouds started moving at low altitudes and rainfall rate maximised to 56 mm in Plaisance airport region on the 18th. Unfortunately, a person died after being struck by lightning while he was fishing at Midlands Dam.

The Meteorological Services mentioned since Saturday 13th that the rain will continue until Tuesday 16thDecember. But, the meteorologists failed to see that the Inter Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), the Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) and the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) have all turned into an enhanced phase. So, their fusion is inevitable as they have all interacted in the zone of convection, i.e. in the South West Indian Ocean basin. As a consequence, all the clouds are bound to make landfall both on the Mascarene Islands and in the open ocean. Click here to see live.

Refer to the picture of NOAA Climate Prediction Center/US regarding forecasts for 17-23 December 2014.

The Meteorological Services are rather late in forecasting that Floods are highly likely to occur with the combination of all the atmospheric systems and with the recent saturating showers. The MMS has issued, today 19 December 2014, a Special Bulletin alerting possibility of Extreme Rainfall conditions. Click here to verify.

NB:

  • This fusion of the atmospheric systems is exactly what I Predicted since October 2006. Unfortunately, the Assessors of the Fact Finding Committee (FFC) which was instituted after the Deadly Flood of 26 March 2008 when 4 citizens lost their life, failed to consider and to mention in their report.
  • Usually, such Weather Systems continue to prevail during various days; example like the Heavy and continuous before after the Torrential Rain of 13 February 2013. 100 mm of rain were recorded in Sans Soucis on 10 February (before) and 97 mm at Rouillard on 17 February (after).
  •  It is noteworthy that it is this zone of the South West Indian Ocean that holds World Records in terms of Extreme Weather Conditions as recorded in the archives of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO):
  1. 12 hrs with 1,144 mm and 24 hrs with 1,825 mm of rain during Cyclone Denise (7-8 January 1966);
  2. 72 hrs with 3,929 mm and 96 hrs with 4,869 mm of rain during Cyclone Gamede (24-26 February 2007) and
  3. 10 days with 5,672 mm of rain during Cyclone Hyacinte (18-27 January 1980).

The question that can be asked: does the Meteorological Services of Mauritius carry out coordination and consultation with Météo-France-Reunion which is the Regional Specialized Meteorological Centre (RSMC) for this zone of the Indian Ocean?

Météo-France-Reunion recorded the following rainfall as at 19 December 2014: Pointe des Trois Bassins-34.2 mm, Mascarin 39.4 mm, Belle Vue Bras-Panon-85.1 mm

Note that, although I have been continuing in tracking disasters, this article is late because:

a) I let the Meteorological Services of Mauritius to monitor the weather conditions, as I do it sometimes to keep a check and balance;

b) I informed the Director of Secretariat AMCOMET/WMO on 15 December, about the impact of Cyclone BAKUNG in South Indian Ocean, as described above and

c) The internet service by Orange MT has faulted, perhaps because of the recent thunderstorms and/or because of lack of professionalism, as mentioned in earlier articles.

Keep watch and take safety precautions (as I fear that two young persons may be drowned)!

P.KANHYE.                                                              6.00 pm 20 DECEMBER 2014

 

UPDATED 2.50 PM 25 DECEMBER 2014 

The Rainfalls continued almost throughout Mauritius with a maximum at Belle Mare- 57.2 mm and Port Louis-50.4 mm on Saturday 20 December 2014. Reunion Island recorded 87.4 mm at Bras-Long on 22 December.

 

The thunder and lightning activity continued with Rain reaching maximum at Mon Bois-63.8 mm and Grand Bassin with 54.2 mm. The striking feature was that Port Louis was showered by 60 mm and lesser in other regions by the day of Tuesday 23rd. The Rainfall rate was higher during whole night. The Rain distribution was as follows:

 

  • Pailles-105.8 mm;
  • Moka -62.4 mm;
  • Mon Bois-64.2;
  • Mare aux Vacoas-59.4 mm and the other localities experienced lesser amount.

 

Port Louis was under Flood as from 4.00 pm and during whole night until the morning of Wednesday 24th with 135.4 mm. It is noteworthy that it is the Central Plateau and the Port Louis district was flooded.

 

The newly appointed Minister of Environment, Honourable Raj Dayal who is now responsible also of the National Emergency Centre, handled the Disaster Management Centre. His former duty as commissioner of the police force helped him to intervene with his team at Canal Dayot and Sable Noir which were submerged in the Deadly Flash Flood of 30 March 2013. In fact, there was general panic in the habitants of these localities as from 4.00 pm yesterday, with the fear of second disaster. About a hundred houses were flooded and a few dozens of persons were evacuated from Pailles and Cité La Cure towards safe refugee centres. Fire Rescuers had a tremendous task of intervening in households flooding. Moreover, 18 holiday trekkers were also saved from the ravines of Black River Gorge. However, the rainfall pattern of this year is not the same.

 

I have indicated above that 2 persons may be drowned. In fact, one person has been reported today to have been drowned at Ile aux Aigrettes, Mahebourg.

 

Observations:

 

  1. The Mauritius Meteorological Services (MMS) was late in forecasting the impact of the three Atmospheric Systems-ITCZ, MJO and ACC. The MJO is still carrying the Rain Clouds from Sub-Saharan Africa and Madagascar and is fusing with the ACC just in the South West zone of Reunion Island. The Rain Clouds carried by the ITCZ, which is weaker than the MJO and the ACC, has no other way than to be absorbed in. This is the zone where moist, dry and warm air interact with the cool air from the atmosphere. The Rain Clouds become heavier and are bound to fall. Mauritius and Reunion being located at this Triple are in the zone of convection. So, the Heavy Rainfalls caused Flooding in the localities mentioned above. The Radar Imagery of Météo-France-Réunion shows this Weather System very clearly. Besides, Sister Island Reunion is already on 'orange alert'Click here to verify.
  2. The Meteorological Services have issued a Special Weather Bulletin at 10.45 am on 24 December. Rainfalls reaching 135.4 mm have already been recorded between 23 and 24 December. In such conditions a TORRENTIAL RAIN WARNING should have been issued by the Meteorological Services, whose criteria accordingly, is as follows: ‘The criteria for torrential rain vary from country to country. Torrential rain conditions is said to exist when the prevailing weather at Mauritius or Rodrigues produces 100 millimeters of widespread rains in less than 12 hours and that this heavy rain is likely to continue for several hours.’
  3. The Meteorological Services of Mauritius are showing their incompetence in the same way in other similar situations like 13 February 2013 and 30 March 2013. The grounds, rivers, drains and ponds are already saturated with water. So, this Warning should have been issued as early as today 25 December. This Protocol demands to be reviewed in the context of Mauritius.

 

It is also to be noted that Christmas 2012 was under showers. Santa Klaus was also disturbed on Christmas of 2013 with continuous rain until the end of December, when Cyclone Dumile was named on 01 January 2014.

 

Reunion Island recorded 61.2 mm of rain until today at Bras-Panon.

 

Predictions: This Rainy Condition is highly likely to continue for the next 13 days, by which time Mauritius, Reunion and Rodrigues will under further Extreme Weather Conditions by the approaching Cyclone KATE. Cocos and Christmas Islands located in the far North East are having Christmas under Heavy Rainfalls and Cyclonic conditions.

 

KEEP WATCH FOR NEXT ARTICLE ON Cyclone KATE.

 

P.KANHYE.                                CHRISTMAS 25 DECEMBER 2014.

 

Read more: MAURITIUS METEOROLOGICAL SERVICES AND TROPICAL DEPRESSION 02 S- INCOMPETENCE AND/OR POLITICAL INTERFERENCE;

                    ADJALI FIRST TROPICAL CYCLONE OF SEASON 2014-2015 FOR SOUTH INDIAN OCEAN;

                  BANSI SECOND TROPICAL CYCLONE OF SEASON 2014-2015 FOR SOUTH INDIAN OCEAN;

                   FIRST TROPICAL DISTURBANCE SEASON 2014-2015;

                   CYCLONE NAMES FOR SEASON 2014-2015 SOUTH INDIAN OCEAN;

                   RAINFALL AND CYCLONE PATTERNS and others. 

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