Tropical Storm Donatacu, now Nymia, produced waterspouts and squalls in Florida Keys

Written by Staff Writer Staff Writer Jeffrey Thomas in Atlanta, Georgia

Into the Gulf of Mexico and straight into open waters near the Bahama Islands, the Donatacu within the hurricane warning area only breached to the north in direct relation to the swath of bands of rain thunderstorms associated with the slow moving frontal passage. In the process, it generated intense squalls and/or gusty downpours over many of the islands of the outer island chain, the Overseas Territory of the Bahamas, and portions of the Florida Keys.

At 1900 AST, Donatacu was located just outside the warning area to the north of Grand Bahama Islands, but only barely registering as a tropical depression as it moved southwest just north of the island of New Providence. It then quickly degenerated on its northwestern flank into a remnant low, but steady to stronger wind shear out to the east of its center predominated in a northerly fashion as it reached the outer Bahamas. Precipitation amounts ranging from an inch or less to around two inches were widely reported in coastal and overlying areas, with localized amounts reaching up to six inches. Precipitation totals in the Florida Keys and southeastern Cuba were more modest, with amounts of less than an inch recorded, and worst were seen elsewhere in the lower Keys, where a couple of inches of rain were reported.

Both the Bahamas and Florida Keys were temporarily placed under tropical storm warnings, as was the Florida Peninsula, except the west coast of Florida, where tropical storm watches were issued.

Into the early hours of Sunday, these weakened remnants of Donatacu (nor’easter) were rapidly moving westward across the deep water of the central Atlantic, well over 1,000 miles southwest of the Lesser Antilles.

As it moved out to sea to the west of the Cabo Verde Islands, a surface trough was moving across the Caribbean Sea, not unlike a projectile being released from the bow of a vessel in that warm Gulf of Mexico waters. The subtropical trough will initially pull the circulation as far south as the Florida peninsula and across Central America, where strong squalls, gale-force winds and heavy rains could develop throughout the day Sunday.

Back in the Gulf of Mexico, the next system was brought ashore near Morgan City, Louisiana, and rapidly weakening into a tropical depression. Since then, the system has moved northward over the open water of the eastern Atlantic, and is slowly moving off the North Carolina coast. At 2040 AST, tropical depression Nymia was located about 30 miles northwest of Ocracoke Inlet, North Carolina, moving at 15 mph with winds of 35 mph.

The longer range computer model guidance shows continued activity over the next day or so, but gradual weakening as the system tracks west along the Atlantic Coast. At 2039 AST, Nymia was forecast to have dissipated and left just remnants of moisture over the Atlantic Ocean.

As these conditions continue to unfold, a simple triangle pattern develops in the tropical Atlantic where three structures build by wave heights, where one area develops along the coastal United States and the next reaches north, the third in Europe.

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