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Regional Observations during the Landfall of Tropical Cyclone Juliette (2001) in Baja California, Mexico

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  • 1 Unidad La Paz, Centro de Investigación Científica y de Educación Superior de Ensenada B.C., Baja California Sur, Mexico
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Abstract

This paper presents an observational analysis of tropical cyclone landfall over the eastern Pacific Ocean. The tropical cyclone that developed during the 2001 season off the Mexican coast was named Juliette and made landfall in the Baja California peninsula. Juliette approached land over the southwestern peninsula, and the evolution of a localized region of cyclonic circulation occurred over the Gulf of California. The storm passage was associated with extensive property damage to the population in the southern peninsula, with most of the damage caused by heavy rainfall and strong winds. The intensity of the circulation associated with Juliette indicates that this was a strong system in the record of landfall during the period 1992–2002.

All available sources of observations are collected to investigate characteristics of the circulation motion and structure. In situ observations, including surface and upper-air data, are applied to document the evolution of storm flow while the center was located near and over the southern peninsula. Imagery from a geostationary satellite is used to determine characteristics of convective patterns. The analysis indicates development of distinct bands of deep convection and a period of slow system motion, which are related to large precipitation. Low-level winds are used to identify characteristics of the incident circulation along the Pacific coast. However, the nocturnal nature of the event and the lack of observations at critical times limit the attempts to explain how the incident circulation is associated with that observed over the gulf the next morning.

Corresponding author address: Dr. Luis M. Farfán, Centro de Investigación Científica y de Educación Superior de Ensenada B.C., Unidad La Paz, Miraflores 334, La Paz 23050, BCS, Mexico. Email: farfan@cicese.mx

Abstract

This paper presents an observational analysis of tropical cyclone landfall over the eastern Pacific Ocean. The tropical cyclone that developed during the 2001 season off the Mexican coast was named Juliette and made landfall in the Baja California peninsula. Juliette approached land over the southwestern peninsula, and the evolution of a localized region of cyclonic circulation occurred over the Gulf of California. The storm passage was associated with extensive property damage to the population in the southern peninsula, with most of the damage caused by heavy rainfall and strong winds. The intensity of the circulation associated with Juliette indicates that this was a strong system in the record of landfall during the period 1992–2002.

All available sources of observations are collected to investigate characteristics of the circulation motion and structure. In situ observations, including surface and upper-air data, are applied to document the evolution of storm flow while the center was located near and over the southern peninsula. Imagery from a geostationary satellite is used to determine characteristics of convective patterns. The analysis indicates development of distinct bands of deep convection and a period of slow system motion, which are related to large precipitation. Low-level winds are used to identify characteristics of the incident circulation along the Pacific coast. However, the nocturnal nature of the event and the lack of observations at critical times limit the attempts to explain how the incident circulation is associated with that observed over the gulf the next morning.

Corresponding author address: Dr. Luis M. Farfán, Centro de Investigación Científica y de Educación Superior de Ensenada B.C., Unidad La Paz, Miraflores 334, La Paz 23050, BCS, Mexico. Email: farfan@cicese.mx

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