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Weekly Updates: Africa | Asia | Latin America

01 November 2010


The US National Weather Service is continuing to forecast Tomas to move off to the west, for the next 24 hours or so, before it turns sharply and heads due north. Landfall is looking more and more certain along Haiti's southern peninsula in the vicinity of Dumord, Sud. Although it sounds like this will leave the the location of both the earthquake and the cholera outbreak alone, it won't. The worst damage from hurricanes in the northern hemisphere usually occurs in the "right front quadrant". For everyone who isn't a meteorologist, the important thing to take away from this is, the worst damage will likely occur slightly to the right of the storm track. In this case that means, that while it is still unlikely that Port-au-Prince will receive the worst of the storm, there will likely be significant damage to an already devastated city. Further north in the areas still recovering from the cholera outbreak, there is a possibility that it will begin to spread again. As the storm passes the island, many locations will receive heavy rainfall, especially those in the more mountainous central parts of the island.

Now for the good news. The storm has weakened significantly overnight. Wind speeds are down, the amount of moisture that Tomas has to work with is more limited than it was yesterday. All of this happened when shear (wind moving in different directions at different heights) and dry air combined to significantly weaken the system overnight. So far today Tomas has regained some strength but remains a moderate tropical storm.  At the moment it does look like Tomas will be a weak hurricane at landfall.

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