Hurricane Gonzalo has rapidly intensified into a major hurricane with sustained winds currently around 115 mph, and pressure is down to 970 mb. Latest recon data shows that this storm has rapidly intensified over the last few hours so the pressure has likely dropped and the winds have increased since the last advisory at 5 pm ET. Gonzalo will continue to head northwest before turning north and eventually northeast towards Bermuda. Bermuda was recently impacted by Fay, and Hurricane Gonzalo could even be a bigger blow to the island.
Right now, there is nothing that is stopping Gonzalo from rapidly intensifying since it is not currently being negatively impacted by shear, and the sea surface temperatures are warm enough to promote further strengthening. The strong upper-level trough that is currently moving across the United States will keep Gonzalo from hitting the United States and will be responsible for making the storm take a northeast turn. This is the same trough that was responsible for the severe weather across the United States this week.
As Gonzalo moves further north, it could be impacted by some shear (that may or may not cause the storm to weaken), and the waters up towards Bermuda will be several degrees cooler. There is the possibility that this could cause the storm to weaken some, but still, this storm will still likely be a damaging hurricane. If you live or have friends and family in Bermuda, make sure prepare for this potential impacts of this storm. Gonzalo is expected to hit or come close to Bermuda on Friday.
We’ll continue to keep a close watch on everything at Firsthand Weather, and be sure to follow us on Facebook for the latest updates on this powerful hurricane.
Matthew Holliday is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma, where he completed a B.S. in Meteorology and a B.S. in Geographic Information Science. He is currently pursing his master's degree in meteorology and climatology at Mississippi State University. Matthew founded Firsthand Weather in 2010 as a senior in high school and maintained the site through his undergraduate career. Research that was conducted by Matthew while at OU involved determining the synoptic environment in which various types of wave clouds (including vertically propagating waves and trapped waves) develop in Boulder, Colorado and Norman, OK. Matthew also did research on spatial changes in tornado activity across the United States . The goal of this study was to determine if spatial changes in tornado activity had occurred and if those changes could be linked to changes in average surface dew point temperature. Matthew has completed coursework in dynamics, thermodynamics, cloud physics, calculus and differential equations, statistics, remote sensing, GIS, synoptic meteorology, and mesoscale meteorology. His goal is to provide his audience with a deeper understanding of what drives our weather and climate, while making it easy and enjoyable to learn.