Madagascar – Tropical Storm Enawo Moves Closer (Updated)

Update, 07 March 2017

ECHO reported on 07 March that ENAWO continued moving west south-west over the south-western Indian Ocean and towards north-eastern Madagascar, strengthening. On 7 March at 6.00 UTC, its centre was located approx. 50 km north-east of Antalaha city (Antsiranana Province) and had a maximum sustained wind speed of 231 km/h.

NASA Global Precipitation Measurement mission (GPM) found heavy rainfall in the storm, with precipitation falling at a rate of over 220 mm (8.7 inches) per hour in intense downpours.

NASA say that Enawo is predicted to gradually weaken to tropical storm force while moving southward over Madagascar passing just east of Antananarivo on 09 March.

According to WMO figures, 104 mm of rain fell in 24 hours to 07 March in Sambava, and and 71 mm during the same period in Antalaha.

JRC estimations indicate a maximum storm surge height of 1.3 metres along the coast of Helodrano Antongila Bay, on 07 March at 13.00 UTC.

The Madagascar Meteorological Service has placed the following regions under alert:

A Red Alert or Alerte Rouge is in effect for: Sur Vohimarina, Andapa, Sambava, Antalaha, Soanierana-Ivongo, Vavatenina, Fenoarivo-Atsinanana, Mananara-Avaratra, Maroantsetra, Sainte Marie.

A Yellow Alert or Alerte Jaune is in effect for: Sur Ambanja, Nosy-Be, Ambilobe, Antsiranana, Mampikony, Bealanana, Antsohihy, Befandriana-Avaratra, Analalava, Mandritsara, Port-Berger, Anosibe-Anala, Andilamena, Moramanga, Ambatondrazaka, Amparafaravola, Antanambao-Manampotsy, Marolambo, Mahanoro, Vatomandry, Vohibinany, Toamasina.

On Mar. 6, GPM rainfall data found rain falling at a rate of over 220 mm (8.7 inches) per hour in intense downpours. Many of these storms were reaching altitudes above 16 km (9.9 miles).
Credits: NASA/JAXA, Hal Pierce

Original Report, 06 March 2017

Tropical Storm Enawo formed a few days ago in the Southern Indian Ocean, just northeast of the island nation of Madagascar. Enawo is the ninth tropical cyclone to form in the Southern Indian Ocean this season.

By 05 March Enawo had intensified and upgraded to a Category One Tropical Cyclone with further wind and rainfall intensification is expected. It is thought that the storm will mainly affect the north-eastern coast of Madagascar.

Earlier today the European Commission Directorate General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO) said that Enawo is strengthening and had continued moving west south-west over the south-western Indian Ocean and towards north-eastern Madagascar.

ECHO said “On 6 March at 06.00 UTC, its centre was located approximately 400 km north-east of Antalaha city (Antsiranana Province), and it had a maximum sustained wind speed of 167 km/hour.”

Over the next 24 hours Enawo is forecast to strengthen further and continue moving west south-west towards the north-eastern coast of Madagascar.

1 Metre Storm Surge, Heavy Rain and 180 kmh Winds

ECHO added that Enawo “may make landfall close to Ambohitralanana municipality (Antsiranana province) on 7 March morning as an intense Tropical Cyclone, with maximum sustained winds of 170-180 km/hour. Heavy rain, storm surge and strong winds may affect the north-eastern and central-eastern areas of the country.”

Current estimations by the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission indicate a maximum storm surge height of 1 metre in Rantranavona (Helodrano Antongila Bay, Toamasina Province) on 7 March at 15.00 UTC.

NASA Image, 03 March

NASA-NOAA’s Suomi NPP satellite passed overhead and captured an image of the storm on 03 March at 0954 UTC. The Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) instrument aboard the NASA-NOAA Suomi NPP satellite captured a visible image of Enawo.

The VIIRS image showed a concentration of thunderstorms around the centre of circulation and a large area of storms in the northwestern quadrant.

This visible image of newly developed tropical cyclone Enawo was taken from the VIIRS instrument aboard NASA-NOAA’s Suomi NPP satellite on March 3 at 0954 UTC (4:45 a.m. EST). The tropical storm formed northeast of the African island country of Madagascar.
Credits: NOAA/NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response Team

At 0900 UTC (4 a.m. EST) on 03 March 2017, the Joint Typhoon Warning Center or JTWC issued their first warning on Enawo. At that time, Enawo was located near 12.7 degrees south latitude and 56.8 degrees east longitude, about 445 nautical miles (512 miles/ 924 km) north of Port Louis, Mauritius. Enawo was moving to the west-southwest at 10 knots (11.5 mph/18.5 kph) had maximum sustained winds near 35 knots (40 mph/62 kph).

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