Saturday, September 12, 2009

Hurricane Fred (2009)

Storm Active: September 7-12

On September 6, a strong, organized, tropical wave associated with an area of low pressure moved off of Africa and quickly developed into Tropical Depression Seven the next day. The depression passed south of the Cape Verde Islands and intensified into Tropical Storm Fred on September 7. Fred's center became well-defined, and the system strengthened through the next day, becoming Hurricane Fred on September 8 with 75 mph winds and a pressure of 987 millibars. Hurricane Fred jumped to Category 3 intensity in just 12 hours and reached its peak intensity of 120 mph winds and a pressure of 958 millibars on September 9. At his time, Fred had a distinct eye feature, and it became the most southeasterly major hurricane ever to form in the Atlantic Ocean. Fred curved to the north, due to a ridge to its west, and its southeast side weakened. As a result, strong wind sheer ripped at the system from that direction, causing Fred to weaken, becoming a tropical storm on September 11. Convection began to separate from the center to the north, and Fred became nearly stationary, drifting east, then south, and weakening all the time and making a tight loop in the Eastern Atlantic. By mid-afternoon on September 12, Fred was a minimal tropical storm, with almost no convection. It was then downgraded to a remnant low that night, and moved west. The low continued to produce shower activity, but dissipated on September 16. However, a new low formed in association with Fred's remnants 500 miles south of Bermuda and the area was monitored once again. The low continued to drift west, and finally dissipated, becoming part of a frontal boundary, on September 20.

Hurricane Fred at Category 3 intensity in the far east Atlantic.

Track of Fred. Note that the triangles signifying Fred's remnant low continued much farther west before dissipating.

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