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Monthly Global Tropical Cyclone Summary March 2006
[Summaries and Track Data] [Prepared by Gary Padgett]


                                MARCH, 2006

  (For general comments about the nature of these summaries, as well as
  information on how to download the tabular cyclone track files, see
  the Author's Note at the end of this summary.)

  SPECIAL NOTE:  TPC/NHC now has all the storm reports and the track
  charts for the 2005 Atlantic and Eastern North Pacific seasons available
  online.  Links to the reports and track charts may be accessed at the
  following URLs:>>

  Also, the Central Pacific Hurricane Center has available online their
  annual summary for the 2005 tropical cyclone season in that region.  The
  link is:>

  And finally, the Canadian Hurricane Centre has a summary available of
  the 2005 tropical cyclones which entered their Response Zone.  This
  summary may be accessed at:>


                            MARCH HIGHLIGHTS

   --> Two severe tropical cyclones form off Western Australia--one makes
   --> Very destructive tropical cyclone strikes Queensland
   --> Another severe tropical cyclone in Coral Sea recurves away from


                    ********** EXTRA FEATURE **********


     Tropical cyclones in the Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico, and
  Caribbean Sea are assigned names by the Tropical Prediction Center/
  National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida.   A separate alphabetical
  set of alternating male/female names is used each year with the name
  of the first tropical storm beginning with the letter "A".  Names are
  repeated every six years.  The names of hurricanes which cause a lot
  of damage and/or fatalities are usually retired from the list with
  another name of the same alphabetical rank and gender replacing it.
  Following the 2005 season, the names Dennis, Katrina, Rita, Stan
  and Wilma were retired and have been replaced in the list for 2011
  with Don, Katia, Rina, Sean and Whitney, respectively.  It seemed
  likely that Emily also would have been retired, but Mexico did not
  request it, so Emily remains in the list for 2011.

     The highest number of tropical storms named in one season in the
  Atlantic was 27 during the incredibly active 2005 season, which has
  become the most active Atlantic tropical cyclone season on record.
  Other very active seasons include 1887 (19 storms), 1933 (21 storms),
  1969 (18 storms) and 1995 (19 storms).

     The list of names for 2006 is the same one used during the active
  hurricane season of 2000 when fourteen tropical cyclones were named,
  down through Nadine.  The only name retired after the 2000 season was
  Keith, and that name has been replaced with Kirk in the 2006 list.

     TPC/NHC also has warning responsibility for the Eastern North
  Pacific Ocean from the west coast of Mexico out to longitude 140W.
  Six separate alphabetical sets of names are used for this basin in
  the same manner as in the Atlantic.  Initially, the Eastern Pacific
  name sets contained only 21 names, omitting "Q" and "U" and ending
  with the letter "W", as in the Atlantic.  When the active 1985 season
  threatened to exhaust the list, the names Xina, York and Zelda were
  drafted to accommodate any additional storms which might develop.
  (Hurricane Xina was named in late October, 1985.)  The decision was
  made sometime in the latter 1980s to extend the list with these three
  names in odd-numbered years, and to add the names Xavier, Yolanda and
  Zeke in even-numbered years (to preserve the alternating gender
  scheme).  During the Northeast Pacific's year of record activity in
  1992, all 24 names were allotted to tropical cyclones forming east of
  140W, ending with Tropical Storm Zeke in late October.  Had more storms
  developed, they would have been named with the letters of the Greek
  alphabet (Alpha, Beta, etc), which is also the backup plan for the
  Atlantic basin in case more than 21 tropical storms develop in a single

    The list for this year was last used in 2000 when seventeen tropical
  cyclones were named, the last one being Rosa.   The most active season
  to utilize this set of names was in 1982, when 19 cyclones were named,
  down through Tara.

     The Central Pacific Hurricane Center, located in Honolulu, has
  tropical cyclone warning responsibility for that portion of the North
  Pacific Ocean lying between longitudes 140W and 180.  The majority of
  the tropical storms and hurricanes seen in that region are visitors
  from east of 140W, but on the average about one tropical storm forms
  in the Central Pacific each year, and when this happens, the storm is
  given a Hawaiian name.   The list consists of four sets of twelve
  names each, using only the letters of the Hawaiian alphabet.  All the
  names are used--the first storm to form in a given year is assigned
  the next available name on the list.  No tropical cyclones were named
  by CPHC in 2003 or in 2004.  The last storm to form in Central Pacific
  waters was Hurricane Huko in late October, 2002, so the next name to be
  assigned will be Ioke.

     Names for 2006 are (** indicates name has already been assigned):

            ATLANTIC                EASTERN PACIFIC        CENTRAL PACIFIC

    Alberto **     Leslie        Aletta **      Miriam          Ioke
    Beryl          Michael       Bud            Norman          Kika
    Chris          Nadine        Carlotta       Olivia          Lana
    Debby          Oscar         Daniel         Paul            Maka
    Ernesto        Patty         Emilia         Rosa            Neki
    Florence       Rafael        Fabio          Sergio          Oleka
    Gordon         Sandy         Gilma          Tara            Peni
    Helene         Tony          Hector         Vicente         Ulia
    Isaac          Valerie       Ileana         Willa           Wali
    Joyce          William       John           Xavier          Ana
    Kirk                         Kristy         Yolanda         Ela
                                 Lane           Zeke            Halola

                            ACTIVITY BY BASINS

  ATLANTIC (ATL) - North Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico

  Activity for March:  No tropical cyclones


  NORTHEAST PACIFIC (NEP) - North Pacific Ocean East of Longitude 180

  Activity for March:  No tropical cyclones


  NORTHWEST PACIFIC (NWP) - North Pacific Ocean West of Longitude 180

  Activity for March:  1 tropical storm **

  ** - treated as a tropical storm by JTWC only

                         Sources of Information

     Most of the information presented below is based upon tropical
  cyclone warnings and significant tropical weather outlooks issued
  by the Joint Typhoon Warning Center of the U. S. Air Force and
  Navy (JTWC), located at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.   In the companion
  tropical cyclone tracks file, I normally annotate track coordinates
  from some of the various Asian warning centers when their center
  positions differ from JTWC's by usually 40-50 nm or more.   All
  references to sustained winds imply a 1-minute averaging period
  unless otherwise noted.

     Michael V. Padua of Naga City in the Philippines, owner of the
  Typhoon 2000 website, normally sends me cyclone tracks based upon
  warnings issued by the Japanese Meteorological Agency (JMA) and the
  Philippines' Atmospheric, Geophysical & Astronomical Services
  Administration (PAGASA).  A very special thanks to Michael for the
  assistance he so reliably provides.
      In the title line for each storm I have referenced all the cyclone
  names/numbers I have available:   JTWC's depression number, the 
  JMA-assigned name (if any), JMA's tropical storm numeric designator,
  and PAGASA's name for systems forming in or passing through their
  area of warning responsibility.

                              TROPICAL STORM
                            (TC-01W / BASYANG)
                               3 - 13 March

  A. Storm Origins

     Tropical Storm 01W originated from a disturbance associated with a 
  near-equatorial trough located approximately 410 nm south-southeast of 
  Yap.  At 2030 UTC 3 March JTWC issued a TCFA on this system, remarking: 
  "Animated enhanced infrared imagery reveals that deep convection over a 
  tightening low-level circulation center has increased.  An upper-level 
  analysis shows that the area is under low to moderate vertical wind 
  shear, has an increasingly symmetric 850-mb vorticity signature, and 
  has excellent poleward outflow."  The first warning on Tropical 
  Depression 01W was written at 04/0000 UTC, locating the centre 
  approximately 240 nm east-southeast of Palau.  At this time, the system 
  was drifting slowly towards the northwest at 3 kts, heading towards a 
  weakness in the subtropical ridge.

  B. Synoptic History

     Tropical Depression 01W was upgraded to a 35-kt tropical storm at 0600 
  UTC 4 March while located approximately 260 nm east-southeast of Palau. 
  Tropical Storm 01W did not intensify further.  The system maintained 
  its peak strength of 35 kts for a little over 24 hours while drifting 
  north-northwestward.  Plagued by moderate wind shear, TS-01W became 
  disorganized on 5 March and was downgraded to a tropical depression at 
  05/1800 UTC.  At this time, the centre was relocated to a position 
  approximately 210 nm east of Palau after enhanced satellite imagery and 
  a 05/1028 UTC QuikScat pass revealed the formation of a weak LLCC to 
  the south of the previous location.  A further relocation was required 
  at 06/0000 UTC, placing the centre a little further to the south. 
  Turning onto a westerly heading, TC-01W passed 195 nm south of Palau 
  late 6 March/early 7 March.  After multi-spectral satellite imagery 
  failed to reveal the poorly-defined LLCC, JTWC issued the final warning 
  at 07/0000 UTC. 

     JTWC continued to monitor the remnants of Tropical Storm 01W through 
  their STWOs and considered the development potential to be fair at 0600 
  UTC 8 March after multi-spectral satellite imagery indicated a 
  consolidating LLCC with convection wrapping around the western 
  periphery.  At this time, the system was located approximately 305 nm 
  east-southeast of Zamboanga, Philippines, and tracking towards the 
  west-northwest.  Continuing on this heading, the system made landfall 
  over Mindanao late on 8 March.  Did TC-01W reach the southern 
  Philippines as a re-vitalised tropical storm?  Some analysts felt that 
  the system did.  However, it was never officially re-upgraded and JTWC 
  downgraded the disturbance back to poor status at 09/0600 UTC and 
  dropped it from their STWOs altogether at 10/1730 UTC.  Re-emerging 
  back over the waters of the Sulu sea, the LOW crossed Palawan Island 
  early on 11 March before dissipating halfway across the South China Sea 
  early on 13 March. 

     The peak intensity estimated by JMA was 30 kts with the lowest CP 
  estimated at 1004 mb.  PAGASA issued only three warnings on Tropical 
  Depression Basyang after it entered their AOR before it was downgraded. 
  The first was released at 06/1200 UTC and the final at 07/0200 UTC.  
  The peak 10-min avg MSW assessed by that agency was also 30 kts. 

     Graphics depicting the track of Tropical Storm 01W/Basyang may be 
  found at the following link:>>

  C. Damage and Casualties

     There were no reports of damages and casualties associated with 
  Tropical Storm 01W/Basyang.

  (Report written by Kevin Boyle)


  NORTH INDIAN OCEAN (NIO) - Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea

  Activity for March:  No tropical cyclones


  SOUTHWEST INDIAN OCEAN (SWI) - South Indian Ocean West of Longitude 90E

  Activity for March:  1 tropical disturbance
                       1 tropical storm

                          Sources of Information

     The primary sources of tracking and intensity information for
  Southwest Indian Ocean tropical cyclones are the warnings issued by
  the Tropical Cyclone Warning Centre on La Reunion Island, part of
  Meteo France (MFR), and the Regional Specialised Meteorological Centre
  for the basin.    However, tropical cyclones in this region are named 
  by the Sub-regional Tropical Cyclone Advisory Centres in Mauritius and 
  Madagascar with longitude 55E being the demarcation line between their 
  respective areas of naming responsibility.  The La Reunion centre only 
  advises these agencies regarding the intensity of tropical systems.  
  References to sustained winds imply a 10-minute averaging period unless
  otherwise stated.

     In the companion tropical cyclone tracks file, I occasionally
  annotate positions from warnings issued by the Joint Typhoon Warning
  Center (JTWC) of the U. S. Air Force and Navy, located at Pearl
  Harbor, Hawaii, when they differ from MFR's coordinates by usually
  40-50 nm or more.  The JTWC warnings are also the source of the
  1-minute average maximum sustained wind values included in the
  tracks file.    Additionally, information describing details of
  satellite imagery and atmospheric circulation features included in
  the narratives is often gleaned from the JTWC warnings.

            Southwest Indian Ocean Tropical Activity for March

     Three tropical systems were in warning status during the month of
  March in the Southwest Indian Ocean basin, all during the first part of
  the month.  Intense Tropical Cyclone Carina was near its peak intensity
  over the east-central portion of the basin on 1 March, but encountered
  a hostile environment which led to its very rapid weakening and
  dissipation by 3 March.  The report on Carina may be found in the
  February summary.

     Severe Tropical Storm Diwa operated from the 2nd until the 10th over
  the western portion of the basin, passing southward between the Mascarene
  Islands (Reunion and Mauritius) and Madagascar.  Diwa originated as a
  large, sloppily-organized monsoon depression which gradually acquired
  tropical storm characteristics.  A report on Diwa follows.

     Meteo France on La Reunion (MFR) issued two warnings on another
  system, numbered as Tropical Disturbance 12.  At 0600 UTC on 4 March this
  disturbance was centered approximately 200 north-northeast of Tromelin
  Island, or about 335 nm due north of the center of Tropical Storm Diwa.
  Peak 10-min avg winds were estimated at 25 kts, locally reaching 30 kts
  in squalls.  The system moved rapidly southeastward around the north-
  eastern periphery of Diwa, and the second and final MFR warning at 1200
  UTC placed the center of the disturbance about 190 nm east of Tromelin
  and about 240 nm northeast of Diwa's center.  No more warnings were
  issued, and due to the large size of the circulation around Diwa, it
  is assumed that the weak Tropical Disturbance 12 was absorbed into the
  circulation of the tropical storm.

     A graphic depicting the track of Tropical Disturbance 12 and Tropical
  Storm Diwa may be found at the following link:>

                           TROPICAL STORM DIWA
                            (MFR-11 / TC-16S)
                               2 - 10 March

  Diwa: contributed by Malawi

  A. Introduction and Storm Origins

     Tropical Storm Diwa was a large, odd tropical storm which occupied
  the first week of March moving slowly southward through the Southwest
  Indian Ocean between Madagascar and the Mascarene Islands.  Diwa was
  in its early stages actually a monsoon depression which developed gales
  along its periphery.  In the author's opinion, the Meteorological Service
  of Mauritius is to be commended for assigning a name and treating the
  system as a tropical storm when it was apparent it was intensifying and
  becoming an increasing threat.  Another unusual feature of Tropical Storm
  Diwa was that it achieved its peak intensity and most tropical-like
  structure after moving into subtropical latitudes--something rarely seen
  in the Southwest Indian basin.

     MFR issued their first warning on the pre-Diwa system at 0600 UTC on
  2 March, calling it simply a "zone of disturbed weather" located about
  175 nm southeast of the island of Agalega.   Around the same time JTWC
  included the disturbance in a STWO, noting that it was a elongated LLCC
  embedded within the monsoon trough east of Madagascar.  Convection had
  been increasing near the low-level disturbance, and an upper-level ridge
  axis to the north was helping to provide an environment of low vertical
  shear and favorable diffluence aloft.   On their second bulletin, issued
  at 02/1200 UTC, MFR upgraded the area to Tropical Disturbance 11 with
  winds estimated at 25 kts.  St. Brandon, well to the southeast, reported
  10-min avg winds of 35 kts with a SLP of 1002 hPa at 02/2100 UTC.  JTWC
  upgraded the development potential to 'fair' at 1800 UTC since convection
  was persisting near the LLCC.

  B. Synoptic History

     MFR upgraded the disturbance to a 30-kt tropical depression at 0600
  UTC on 3 March, and at 1200 UTC the system was upgraded to Tropical
  Storm Diwa, centered at the time about 125 nm west of St. Brandon.  The
  MFR warning noted that the system had a monsoon depression structure
  with weak winds near the center but with gales, locally reaching 40 kts,
  over 100 nm from the center in the eastern semicircle under the
  convective bands.  JTWC issued a TCFA at 03/2100 UTC and the first
  warning on TC-16S followed at 04/0000 UTC.   In its formative stages
  Diwa had moved basically to the south, but by now was moving on a slow
  southwesterly track under the influence of ridging to the southeast.
  After having reached tropical storm intensity, however, the storm did
  not strengthen significantly during the next three days.  By the 5th
  Diwa had turned to the south, although it made a jog to the southwest on
  the 6th.   Tropical Storm Diwa passed about 200 nm west of Mauritius
  around 0900 UTC on 5 March and about 100 nm west of Reunion Island around
  1500 UTC the same day.  Earlier on 3 March, while Diwa's center was a
  little less than 200 nm northwest of Mauritius, a wind gust to 59 kts was
  recorded at 2130 UTC at Savannah, a location in the southeastern part of
  Mauritius near L'Escalier.  (This observation, as well as the earlier
  one taken from St. Brandon, was sent by Patrick Hoareau.)

     After the aforementioned jog to the southwest, Diwa's motion became
  primarily south-southeastward ahead of an approaching baroclinic zone.
  The storm gradually began to strengthen--the MSW was upped to 40 kts at
  06/0600 UTC and to 50 kts at 07/0000 UTC.  Diwa was experiencing
  favorable poleward and equatorward outflow with the deepest convection
  located in the southeastern quadrant.  Both JTWC and MFR upped their
  respective MSW estimates to 55 kts at 0600 UTC 8 March.  Diwa by this
  time was tracking southeastward at 15 kts along the southwestern
  periphery of a mid-level ridge to the east.  The tropical storm was
  beginning to interact with a baroclinic zone to the south, but enhanced
  poleward outflow was leading to an increase in convection.  Based upon
  MFR's analysis, Severe Tropical Storm Diwa reached its peak intensity
  of 60 kts (10-min avg) at 08/1200 UTC while centered approximately
  475 nm south-southeast of Reunion Island.   MFR maintained Diwa at
  60 kts for the next warning at 1800 UTC, but JTWC issued their final
  warning at that time, deeming extratropical transition to be well
  under way and estimating the intensity at only 35 kts.   Six hours later
  MFR classified Diwa as a 55-kt extratropical storm but continued to
  issue warnings for the next 36 hours as ex-Diwa continued to track off 
  into the subtropical South Indian Ocean.  The final MFR warning, issued
  at 10/1200 UTC, placed a weakening 40-kt center a little more than
  1300 nm southeast of Reunion Island.

     A graphic depicting the track of Severe Tropical Storm Diwa may be
  found at the following link:>

  C. Damage and Casualties

     No reports of damage or casualties resulting from Tropical Storm Diwa
  have been received.

  (Report written by Gary Padgett)



  Activity for March:  2 tropical LOWs
                       2 severe tropical cyclones (hurricanes)

                         Sources of Information

     The primary sources of tracking and intensity information for
  Northwest Australia/Southeast Indian Ocean tropical cyclones are 
  the warnings and advices issued by the Tropical Cyclone Warning
  Centres at Perth, Western Australia, and Darwin, Northern Territory. 
  References to sustained winds imply a 10-minute averaging period
  unless otherwise stated.

     In the companion tropical cyclone tracks file, I occasionally
  annotate positions from warnings issued by the Joint Typhoon Warning
  Center (JTWC) of the U. S. Air Force and Navy, located at Pearl
  Harbor, Hawaii, when they differ from the Australian centres' coor-
  dinates by usually 40-50 nm or more.  The JTWC warnings are also the
  source of the 1-minute average maximum sustained wind values included
  in the tracks file.   Additionally, information describing details of
  satellite imagery and atmospheric circulation features included in
  the narratives is often gleaned from the JTWC warnings.

                 Northwest Australia/Southeast Indian Ocean
                        Tropical Activity for March

     After a rather quiet February in which only one minor tropical cyclone
  (Emma) formed, the tropical seas off northern and northwestern Australia
  became quite active during March.  Four tropical LOWs were tracked by
  the Darwin and Perth TCWCs with two of these becoming the very intense
  cyclones Floyd and Glenda.     Reports on these two severe tropical
  cyclones follow.

     A weak tropical LOW formed late on 28 February just west of the
  Indonesian island of Jamdena, where the Arafura and Banda Seas meet.
  During the first week of March this system drifted southwestward, then
  erratically westward, crossing the island of Timor and passing south
  of Sumba.  By 5 March the westward motion ceased and the LOW turned
  toward the southeast toward the Kimberley region of Western Australia.
  The highest MSW estimated for this LOW was 30 kts briefly on 2 March;
  the remainder of the time peak winds were estimated at only 25 kts.
  Gale warnings were issued by Darwin and Perth in the anticipation that
  the LOW would strengthen into a tropical cyclone.  This failed to
  materialize, however, and the final gale warning by BoM Perth was issued
  at 0400 UTC on 7 March.  By 0400 UTC on 8 March the weakening LOW was
  inland in the Kimberley region.

     A graphic depicting the operational track of this tropical LOW may
  be found at the following link:>

     The Perth TCWC also issued several gale warnings in late March for a
  tropical LOW which formed over waters southwest of Christmas Island and
  east of the Cocos Islands.  The first warning was issued at 0300 UTC on
  26 March and the system subsequently drifted pretty much due southward.
  The final gale warning was issued by Perth at 27/0600 UTC, but the
  remnant LOW continued to generate some Dvorak ratings of T2.5/2.5 by
  various agencies until early on the 29th.  A very broad cyclonic
  circulation existed in the area with possible multiple LLCCs, and there
  were considerable differences in the center fixes from the satellite
  analysis agencies.   Disturbed weather continued in the region for
  several days, and during the first week of April another LOW developed
  which ultimately became Tropical Storm Elia in the Southwest Indian Ocean
  basin.   There does not appear to be, however, any direct continuity 
  between the late March tropical LOW and the LLCC which became Elia.

     A graphic depicting the operational track of the late March tropical
  LOW may be found at the following link:>

                       SEVERE TROPICAL CYCLONE FLOYD
                               19 - 27 March

  (Editor's Note:  The following report on Severe Tropical Cyclone Floyd
  is based largely on a preliminary report on this storm written and sent
  to the author by Joe Courtney, a forecaster at the Perth TCWC.  A very 
  big thanks to Joe for sending the report.)

  A. Introduction

     Floyd was a midget tropical cyclone that reached top-end Category 4
  (Australian cyclone scale) intensity before rapidly weakening under
  northwesterly shear.  Tropical cyclone advices were issued for the
  western Pilbara region and for upper western coastal areas of Western
  Australia as Floyd approached, but the system weakened and remained
  offshore and did not impact coastal parts.  Floyd did have an economic
  impact as some resource companies evacuated offshore oil and gas

  B. Origins and Synoptic History

     A tropical LOW developed on 18 March south of the Indonesian island
  of Sumba and moved to the west to southwest, gradually strengthening.
  The LOW is estimated to have reached cyclone intensity around 2100 UTC
  on 20 March while located roughly 450 nm west-northwest of Cape
  Leveque.  The moderate easterly shear on the 21st gradually eased and
  Floyd developed rapidly later on the 22nd, reaching Category 3 (65 kts)
  intensity around 23/0000 UTC while located about 560 nm north-northwest
  of Exmouth.   Infrared satellite imagery on the 22nd had revealed very
  cold cloud tops.

     Severe Tropical Cyclone Floyd reached its maximum intensity of 105 kts
  at 24/0000 UTC, centred approximately 530 nm northwest of Exmouth.  The
  cyclone at the time was making a turn to the south due to the approach
  of a mid-latitude trough.  The eye of the system was very small with a
  diameter of about 10-15 nm, and the minimum CP was estimated at 915 hPa.
  JTWC's peak 1-min avg MSW was a comparable 115 kts, and hurricane-force
  winds extended outward from the center only about 20 nm.   Arguably
  Floyd may have reached Category 5 intensity on the basis of an infrared
  image at 23/2330 UTC showing a Data T-number of 6.5.  However, images
  at 23/2130 and 24/0130 UTC showed Data T-numbers of only 5.5 and 5.0,

     Floyd slowly weakened as it moved on a southeasterly track towards the
  northwestern coastline of Western Australia.  Microwave imagery showed
  that Floyd underwent an eyewall replacement cycle on the 24th,
  culminating around 25/0000 UTC.   The cyclone's intensity at that time
  was still estimated at 90 kts, but Floyd continued to weaken more rapidly
  thereafter as it encountered increasing upper-level northwesterlies.  The
  storm reached a point about 155 nm northwest of Exmouth at 26/1200 UTC,
  but had encountered cooler SSTs and strong upper-level winds.  A post-
  cyclone analysis revealed that likely winds were below gale force by
  26/1800 UTC, but operationally Floyd was maintained as a tropical cyclone
  until 0200 UTC on the 27th when it was downgraded to a tropical LOW.
  A QuikScat image at 26/0925 UTC had indicated that peak winds were barely
  of gale force.   The final advice, issued at 27/0200 UTC, placed the
  center of the former tropical cyclone to the west-northwest of Exmouth,
  near 20.9N/111.6E.  The remnant LOW continued to drift southwards off
  the Western Australian coast for a few more days.

     A graphic depicting the track of Severe Tropical Cyclone Floyd may be
  found at the following link:>

  C. Damage and Casualties

     There are no impacts from Tropical Cyclone Floyd, although some
  economic losses were incurred with the evacuation of some offshore
  oil and gas installations.

  (Report based largely on a report received from Joe Courtney of the
  BoM Perth TCWC)

                               23 - 31 March

  A. Introduction and Storm Origins

     Glenda was a severe tropical cyclone which followed closely on the
  heels of Floyd in waters off Western Australia.  Whereas Floyd dissipated
  offshore, Glenda made landfall near Onslow as a Category 3 cyclone
  (Australian scale) with peak 10-min avg winds estimated near 95 kts.
  The storm had peaked a couple of days earlier as a Category 5 cyclone but
  fortunately weakened some as it approached the coast.

     Glenda had its origins over the Northern Territory.  On 20 March a
  1004-hPa tropical LOW was located over the Top End near Katherine.  This
  LOW subsequently moved westward and by early on the 22nd had moved out
  over the Joseph Bonaparte Gulf about 55 nm west of Port Keats.  BoM
  Darwin initiated tropical cyclone advices on the developing system at
  2130 UTC on 23 March with the LOW centered on the coast about 45 nm
  east-northeast of Wyndham.  The LOW moved very slowly for a couple of
  days, remaining in the extreme southern portion of the Joseph Bonaparte
  Gulf before commencing a westerly heading which took it inland across the
  extreme northeastern portion of Western Australia.   Environmental
  conditions were very favorable for intensification with a developing
  anticyclone over the disturbance, providing low vertical shear and
  good radial outflow.

     Emerging into the Timor Sea on 26 March, the LOW began to slowly
  strengthen and BoM Perth began issuing shipping warnings at 26/1500 UTC.
  The system was then centered approximately 200 nm northeast of Broome
  and moving west-southwestward at about 4 kts.   Associated convection
  continued to consolidate and JTWC issued their first warning on TC-20S
  at 27/0000 UTC.  Three hours later, Perth upgraded the system to Tropical
  Cyclone Glenda, centered about 140 nm north of Derby and moving westward
  at 5 kts.

  B. Synoptic History

     Once named as a cyclone, Glenda intensified very rapidly.  At 27/1200
  UTC, only nine hours after being upgraded, Glenda had reached severe
  tropical cyclone (i.e., hurricane) status with 65-kt winds.  The storm
  embarked on a west-southwesterly track which gradually became more
  southwesterly.   Environmental conditions were very favorable for
  intensification and Glenda continued to strengthen, reaching its peak
  intensity of 115 kts at 28/1200 UTC while centered about 245 nm north-
  northeast of Port Hedland, moving southwestward at 10 kts.  (JTWC's
  peak 1-min avg MSW was 140 kts at 28/1200 UTC.)   Glenda's estimated
  lowest CP was 910 hPa.  The storm was being steered by a 500-mb ridge
  to the southwest over Australia, and as a mid-latitude trough over the
  west coast of Australia began to create a weakness in the ridge, the
  cyclone turned to a more southwesterly track toward the northwestern
  coastline of Western Australia.

     Fortunately Glenda's strength began to ebb as the dangerous storm
  neared the coast.   By 0800 UTC on 30 March the center of Severe
  Tropical Cyclone Glenda was beginning to cross the coastline between
  Onslow and Dampier.  The CP was then estimated at 930 hPa and peak
  gusts near the center were estimated at 135 kts, which translates into
  a 10-min mean wind of 95 kts.  At 30/1200 UTC Glenda's center was
  located only 20 km east of Onslow and moving south-southwestward at
  11 kts.  Once inland Glenda's track became more southerly with hints
  of a recurvature to the south-southeast by the time the final advice
  was issued at 31/0300 UTC.  As is typical with landfalling tropical
  cyclones, Glenda began to quickly weaken after the center had moved
  inland.  The final BoM advice placed the center of the former tropical
  cyclone about 250 km south-southeast of Exmouth with a MSW of 30 kts.
  (Interestingly, JTWC issued their final warning on Glenda with the
  center barely inland and with the MSW (1-min avg) estimated at 90 kts.)

     A report on Severe Tropical Cyclone Glenda may be found on BoM's
  website at the following URL:>

     A graphic depicting the track of Tropical Cyclone Glenda may be found
  at the following link:>

  C. Damage and Casualties

     The weakening of the cyclone, coupled with the preparedness of the
  city of Onslow, helped to avert major damage.  The BoM report referenced
  above seems to be a work in progress, and it is likely that further
  information will be added after a post-storm analysis is completed.

  (Report written by Gary Padgett)



  Activity for March:  1 hybrid storm
                       2 severe tropical cyclones (hurricanes) **

  ** - one of these originated in Fiji's AOR east of 160E

                         Sources of Information

     The primary sources of tracking and intensity information for
  Northeast Australia/Coral Sea tropical cyclones are the warnings
  and advices issued by the Tropical Cyclone Warning Centres at
  Brisbane, Queensland, and Darwin, Northern Territory, and on very
  infrequent occasions, by the centre at Port Moresby, Papua New
  Guinea.  References to sustained winds imply a 10-minute averaging
  period unless otherwise stated.

     In the companion tropical cyclone tracks file, I occasionally
  annotate positions from warnings issued by the Joint Typhoon Warning
  Center (JTWC) of the U. S. Air Force and Navy, located at Pearl
  Harbor, Hawaii, when they differ from the Australian centres' coor-
  dinates by usually 40-50 nm or more.  The JTWC warnings are also the
  source of the 1-minute average maximum sustained wind values included
  in the tracks file.   Additionally, information describing details of
  satellite imagery and atmospheric circulation features included in
  the narratives is often gleaned from the JTWC warnings.

     For the portion of Tropical Cyclone Wati's track lying east of
  longitude 160E, the following applies:

     The primary sources of tracking and intensity information for
  South Pacific tropical cyclones are the warnings and advisories
  issued by the Tropical Cyclone Warning Centres at Nadi, Fiji (for
  waters north of latitude 25S), and Wellington, New Zealand (for
  waters south of latitude 25S).  References to sustained winds imply
  a 10-minute averaging period unless otherwise stated.

                        Northeast Australia/Coral Sea
                         Tropical Activity for March

     Three significant cyclonic storm systems traversed waters between the
  coast of Queensland and 160E during the month of March.  The first, 
  during the opening days of the month, was a subtropical, hybrid-type 
  storm which brought high winds, heavy seas and moderate rainfall to 
  southeastern Queensland.   The second system, Severe Tropical Cyclone 
  Larry, formed well out in the Coral Sea around mid-month, intensifying 
  into a Category 5 cyclone as it marched westward toward the Queensland 
  coastline.  Larry made landfall near Innisfail on the 19th with peak 
  10-min avg winds estimated at around 110-115 kts.  The storm was reported
  to have been the most destructive to strike Queensland in almost 
  20 years.  Finally, a visitor from Fiji's AOR, Tropical Cyclone Wati, 
  moved into the eastern Coral Sea and became a fairly strong hurricane, 
  but very fortunately for residents of Queensland, recurved southeastward
  and did not affect the Australian coastline.   Reports on all three of 
  these storm systems, authored by Simon Clarke, follow.

                         SUBTROPICAL HYBRID STORM
                                1 - 6 March

  A. Introduction and Origins

     Exactly two years ago to the date, a subtropical hybrid storm swept 
  down the Coral Sea and lashed the southeastern Queensland and the 
  northern New South Wales regions of Australia with heavy rains and gale-
  force winds (see separate report in the March, 2004, global summary).  A 
  similar and perhaps more intense event unfolded in the first week of 
  March, 2006. 

     On 1 March 2006, a strong pressure gradient became established along 
  the south coast of Queensland, generated by a strong (1032 hPa) HIGH 
  in the southern Tasman Sea and a low pressure area well to the east 
  of Townsville.  This forced a large area of strong to gale force 
  onshore winds onto the coastline south of the Whitsunday Islands. 

     By 02/0000 UTC warm air advection extended from inland Queensland 
  over to southeastern Queensland and adjacent waters as a new 1008-hPa 
  LOW developed near 23.0S/154.5E (approximately 210 nm east of Yeppoon).
  Over the ensuring 18-hour period this LOW moved southward to near 
  24.0/154.5E (approximately 70 nm northeast of Sandy Cape, Fraser Island)
  while steadily deepening to 1000 hPA.  At this time, a ship reported 
  storm-force winds to 50 kts near the centre.

  B. Synoptic History

     Over the ensuing three-day period, the complex low pressure system 
  drifted quite slowly in a general southerly direction between 50 and 
  60 nm off the south Queensland coast with new centres periodically 
  forming and being re-absorbed into the overall complex system.  This 
  LOW was not a traditional tropical cyclone, but rather a sheared-type
  hybrid with storm-force winds concentrated around the LOW's southern 
  quadrant.  Satellite imagery throughout the life of the subtropical 
  hybrid clearly showed an upper-level cloud structure concentrated to the
  east and south of the LLCC.  At times a large, clear "eye-like" feature 
  could be seen in visible satellite images as the LOW hovered off the 
  south Queensland coast.  Occasionally, the deep convection attempted 
  (unsuccessfully) to wrap around the western side of the centre. 

     Two distinct peaks in intensity were observed.  The first peak 
  occurred at approximately 04/0600 UTC with the main centre of the LOW 
  (998 hPA) near 27.0S/154.8E.  Low-level clouds in satellite imagery 
  depicted a vigorous surface cyclonic circulation with convection 
  along the southern eye wall.  There were no observations near the 
  convective areas near the eye, but storm-force winds were reported 
  farther out.  BoM estimated that winds of at least 60 kts may have 
  been experienced near the centre at this time.

     The second peak occurred approximately at 04/2300 UTC with the main 
  centre of the LOW (995hPa) near 27.2S/154.2E.  This occurred on 
  Sunday morning local time as the LOW edged slightly towards Brisbane 
  with strong winds induced by cold air northwest of Brisbane producing 
  a strong area of low-level warm air advection south and west of the 
  centre.  Most of the wind damage occurred around Brisbane's eastern 
  suburbs and through Moreton Bay at this time.  BoM reported high 
  inbound wind speeds in the southern quadrant of up to 55kts.

     Subsequently the LOW accelerated to the east-southeast at 20 kts away 
  from the coast and started to fill.  The final gale warning was issued 
  by BoM at 06/0600 UTC with the LOW (1000 hPA) located near 29.5S/160.0E 
  (approximately 380 nm east of Yamba).  The LOW was subsequently captured
  by the mid-latitude westerlies and accelerated across the Tasman Sea, 
  eventually washing out to the north of New Zealand on 8 March 2006. 

     A graphic depicting the track of this hybrid storm system may be 
  found at the following link:>

     The operational track in tabular format may be accessed at the 
  following link: >

  C. Synoptic Observations and Damage Reports
     The following notes and observations (slightly edited) were provided 
  by BoM:

  (1) Wind and Wind Damage

  Maximum 10-min avg reported below:

     Cape Moreton                   53 kts (03/1430 UTC)
     Double Island Point            49 kts (03/0430 UTC)
     Spitfire Channel               38 kts (04/2256 UTC)
     Inner Beacon                   37 kts (03/1435 UTC) and (04/2200 UTC)
     Banana Bank                    36 kts (03/1530 UTC)
     Gold Coast Seaway              36 kts (04/0800 UTC)
     Point Lookout                  53 kts (04/0500 UTC)
     Ship near 25.1S/154.0E     180/52 kts (03/1200 UTC)
     Ship near 26.7S/153.7E     180/52 kts (04/0900 UTC)
     Ship near 26.4S/153.9E     230/55 kts (05/0000 UTC)

     Wind damage affected many areas in southeastern Queensland.  A 
  Counter Disaster and Rescue Service spokeswoman said volunteers had 
  been "flat out" as trees crushed houses and cars.  A nursing home at 
  Kirra was evacuated when a tree fell on a unit.  No residents were 
  injured.  In Brisbane, residents of a unit block in Wooloowin and a 
  house in Chermside were lucky to escape when trees fell on their 

     Traffic accidents kept police busy and one vehicle crashed into a 
  house at St Lucia.  Energex staff reported blackouts from 100,000 
  homes and businesses from Friday morning to Sunday afternoon.  At 
  Mt. Tamborine and Bonogin boggy grounds hampered restoration efforts, 
  and in Beaudesert trees and branches continued to damage wires.  In 
  Moreton Bay on Sunday, 5 March, boats were damaged and ripped from 
  their moorings.  One of these yachts was found later in the week at 
  Noosa Heads.

  (2) Landslide on Gold Coast 

     A landslide occurred at Burleigh Heads, where about 30 metres of land 
  shifted in a vacant Council allotment, eventually moving towards four 
  nearby villas.

  (3) Waves and Storm Surge

     The second highest significant wave height since 1976 was recorded at 
  the EPA's Brisbane wave recording station on Saturday (4 March). 
  Significant wave heights up to 7.2 m were recorded by an EPA wave 
  monitoring buoy located 0.5 nm southeast of Point Lookout, North 
  Stradbroke Island, while individual waves up to 15.0 m (and possibly 
  16.7 m) were also recorded.  Significant wave heights of 5.4 m, 5.3 m 
  and 5.5 m were also recorded respectively at the Sunshine Coast, Gold 
  Coast and Tweed Heads wave recorders.  These waves were the second, 
  fifth and third highest wave events at these sites. 

     Severe Beach erosion occurred on the Sunshine and Gold Coasts.  On 
  the Gold Coast erosion scarps up to 2 metres formed along the beaches.  
  Waves surged up into walkways and an amount of beach fencing was lost.  
  The Elephant Rock car park was closed, full of sand.  Large sections of 
  beach fencing (up to 100 m) were also lost at Miami and Mermaid beaches.
     A significant storm surge occurred with storm water outlets blocked by 
  surging waves and this caused localised flooding of low lying coastal 
  areas such as Flat Rock Creek and Marine Parade at Kirra.
     The Mayor of Redcliffe said there was a significant storm surge in 
  Moreton Bay.  However, following the issue of the first Severe Weather 
  Warnings, sand bagging was carried out and this prevented large-scale 

     Significant coastal erosion also occurred on the coastal side of 
  Fraser Island.

  (4) Rainfall

     As the system remained over water, there was not widespread heavy 
  rainfall associated with this event.  Some areas received useful rain:

  24hrs to 01/2300 UTC
     Byfield (Capricornia)        123 mm
     Samuel Hill (Capricornia)    110 mm
     Tuan (near Noosa)             75 mm
     Rainbow Beach                 64 mm 

  24hrs to 02/2300 UTC
     Strathmay                    113 mm
     Kingfisher Resort             89 mm
     Oyster Creek                  73 mm
     Carbrook                      71 mm

  24hrs to 03/2300 UTC
     Springbrook                  169 mm
     Tomewin                      158 mm
     Coolangatta                  124 mm
     Tallebudgera                  91 mm
     Gold Coast Seaway             80 mm

  24hrs to 04/2300 UTC
     Springbrook                   92 mm
     Mt. Nebo                      79 mm
     Tomewin                       63 mm
     Coolangatta                   60 mm

  (Report written by Simon Clarke with significant input by Jeff
  Callaghan of the Brisbane TCWC)

                        SEVERE TROPICAL CYCLONE LARRY
                              (TD-15F / TC-17P)
                                16 - 21 March

  A. Introduction

     Tropical Cyclone Larry was the first cyclone to make a major impact 
  in coastal Queensland in almost twenty years.  The last cyclone to 
  cause significant damage was Tropical Cyclone Aivu (1989), and prior 
  to that Tropical Cyclone Winifred (1986).  Larry crossed the 
  coastline close to Innisfail at almost the identical location as 
  Winifred twenty years earlier and subsequently cut a swathe of 
  destruction from the coast to the adjacent Atherton Tablelands, 
  eventually producing flooding rains across the Northern Goldfields 
  and Gulf Country of Queensland.

     A preliminary report on Tropical Cyclone Larry, authored by the 
  Australian Bureau of Meteorology is available on-line at the 
  following URL:>

  B. Storm Origins

     An area of organised convection established itself in the 
  northeastern Coral Sea to the south of the Solomon Islands as early 
  as 16 March.  A tropical LOW developed with increasing low to mid- 
  level organisation and flaring convection.  Initially, the LOW 
  drifted slowly in a general south-southwesterly direction before 
  turning to the south-southeast and back again to the southwest under 
  the influence of a building upper-level ridge to its southeast.

     Early stages of development depicted an elongated low-level central 
  circulation with a trough extending west of the low centre out to 300 nm 
  and two complex areas of consolidating convection.  The system lay 
  underneath an outflow region in the upper-level subtropical ridge 
  which allowed very weak vertical shear and good outflow in all 
  quadrants.  Hence, conditions were favourable for development.  The 
  LOW consolidated, and by 17/1800 UTC had deepened to 995 hPa while 
  centered near 16.6S/157.6E, or approximately 680 nm east of Cairns. 
  The system was moving west-southwestward at 15 knots and was 
  officially named Tropical Cyclone Larry.  (Editor's Note:  At 17/0000
  UTC the pre-Larry LOW just reached 160E and was assigned a tropical
  disturbance number (15F) by RSMC Nadi, but as the system turned back
  to the west and remained in Brisbane's AOR, the Fiji number is 
  essentially irrelevant.)

  C. Synoptic History

     The Bureau of Meteorology, Brisbane, issued its first Tropical 
  Cyclone Watch for coastal and island communities between Cape 
  Tribulation and Proserpine at mid-morning on 18 March (local time) as 
  it was clear that the cyclone would indeed move in an almost direct 
  westerly path due to solid mid-level ridging to the cyclone�s south.

     The cyclone continued to intensify as it approached the coast, 
  benefiting from improved radial outflow and a low shear environment. 
  Hurricane intensity was attained at 19/0000 UTC with 65-kt winds 
  (10-min avg) about 480 nm east of Cairns (approximately 17.7S/151.1E).  
  A ship with the ELZI5 call sign reported ESE 41.7-kt avg winds at both 
  0900 UTC and 1200 UTC near 18.24S/154.42E and 19S/154.48E, 
  respectively.  Larry continued to move westwards at 15 kts to the south
  of Willis Island where radar and satellite imagery commenced picking up
  Larry�s well defined eye (see Link 6 below).  The eye passed to the 
  north of Flinders Reef where winds of 79 kts from the east were reported
  at 19/2100 UTC.  The cyclone eventually crossed the coastline at 
  Innisfail (17.6S/146.2E) at 19/2030 UTC (at 6:30 AM local time).  Two 
  hours previously, the Bureau of Meteorology estimated that it had reached
  a peak strength of 915 hPa with maximum 10-min avg winds of 115 kts. 

  [Note: This is where Category 5 starts on the Australian Cyclone 
  Severity Scale, which uses peak gusts as its measure rather than 
  sustained winds.  This certainly caused confusion in the world-wide 
  media at the time with comparisons to Hurricane Katrina from the 
  previous Atlantic season.  However, based on the Saffir-Simpson Scale 
  (which uses 1-minute average sustained winds), Larry would have 
  probably been a low-moderate Category 4 storm by US standards.  A 
  complete comparison between the two systems can be found as a special 
  feature within the February, 2006 Summary.] 

     As Larry approached the coast, satellite and radar imagery depicted a 
  significant increase in very strong convection in the northern 
  eyewall as the cyclone made landfall.  This convection subsequently 
  wrapped rapidly into the southeast quadrant and came ashore to the 
  south of Innisfail, where some of the most severe damage was 
  observed.  The eyewall subsequently malformed as it squeezed its way 
  onto the Atherton Tablelands between Atherton and Ravenshoe. 

     Larry progressively weakened as it tracked overland toward the west-
  southwest at 30 km/hr (16 kts) for several hundred kilometers, 
  finally losing cyclone status at 20/1530 UTC near Iffley Station 
  (19.0S/141.2E), inland south of the Gulf of Carpentaria.  The Bureau 
  of Meteorology continued to issue Severe Weather Warnings as the 
  remnant system moved westward into the Northern Territory.

     A graphic depicting the track of Severe Tropical Cyclone Larry may be 
  found at the following link:>

     The operational track of Larry in tabular format may be accessed at
  the following link:>

  (C)  Observations

     The preliminary BoM Report at the following URL provides the most 
  salient observations recorded with the cyclone and also provides 
  further links to wind and pressure charts:>

     Further observations can be found at the Australian Weather News 
  Website (see Links 6 & 7 below). 

     For the purposes of this report, it is not intended to reproduce any 
  further data here.

  (D) Preliminary Damage Reports

     Similar to Cyclone Ingrid in the previous year, Larry was not only a 
  significant weather event, but also a major media story, not only 
  locally, but globally following on from media focus on the prolonged 
  and damaging Atlantic hurricane season of 2005.

     However, there was some criticism at the time that many people were 
  not aware that Larry was approaching until a very late stage. 
  Nonetheless, the fact that only 30 people were reported as sustaining 
  minor injuries is a testament to the quality of the warning system in 
  place to deal with such a cyclone.

     Prior to landfall, evacuation centres were established in communities 
  between Innisfail and Ingham.  An official disaster declaration gave 
  authorities the power to legally enforce evacuation if necessary. 
  Hundreds of people were evacuated from the small coastal communities 
  in the cyclone�s path, including tourists holidaying at resorts on 
  Bedarra Island and Dunk Islands.

     Both Cairns and Townsville airports were closed and all flights in 
  the area cancelled.  Ports were closed, with large vessels shifted to 
  sea to ride out the storm.  Disaster response teams, thousands of 
  sandbags, and Australian Defence Forces Black Hawk helicopters were 
  positioned to provide assistance when needed. 

     Larry was a relatively small cyclone in size with the most 
  significant wind damage being confined to the stretch of coastline 
  between Cairns and Cardwell, and extending 110 km inland to Mount 
  Garnet to the west.   The cyclone caused damage to houses, 
  businesses, infrastructure, crops and forestry totaling at least 
  AUD1.5 billion (USD1.1 billion).  The eye of cyclone Larry crossed 
  the coast between Innisfail and Mission Beach, causing widespread and 
  extensive damage to housing, buildings and crops.

     More than 1000 buildings were damaged by the cyclone, many of which 
  were damaged beyond repair.  A breakdown of the structural damage 
  caused by Larry can be found at Link 1.  The towns of Babinda and 
  Silkwood bore the brunt of the winds, as they were clipped by the 
  northern and southern portions of Larry's eyewall.

     More than 120,000 homes lost power during the cyclone with many areas 
  without electricity for several days.  More remote areas were without 
  power for several weeks.  Road and rail transport was disrupted for 
  several days. 

     The initial cost estimate of damage to crops alone was estimated to 
  be as high as 1 billion (AUS) dollars.  Between 90 and 100% of the 
  banana crop in the region, which accounts for 80% of the nation�s 
  supply, was wiped out by Larry.  Sugar cane was also flattened in 
  areas in Larry's path, with much of the crop "snapped and ripped out 
  by the roots".  The stack on the chimney at Mourilyan Sugar Mill was 

     Larry crossed the coast at a neap tide, so the significant storm 
  surge and effects of the waves only caused the sea level to exceed 
  highest astronomical tide in a few locations and resulted in only 
  minor salt water inundation. Sea levels exceeded the predicted tide 
  by 1.75 metres at Clump Point, 1.76 metres at Cardwell and 1.54 
  metres at Mourilyan. 

     As Larry moved inland, heavy rains fell across northwestern 
  Queensland with totals approaching 600 mm in 48 hours in the region to
  the north of Mount Isa.  The rain caused rapid rises to major flood 
  stages and the highest river levels on instrumental record in the 
  Leichhardt River system. In the Flinders River basin to the east, 
  moderate flooding occurred onwards from 25 March. 

     At the time of writing, insurers have reported more than 18,000 
  claims as a result of the cyclone, and insured losses are expected to 
  exceed AUD350 million (USD225 million).

  E. Displaced Cassowaries

     The following news item was obtained from a link to a press release
  sent to Gary Padgett by Matthew Saxby.  A special thanks to Matthew for
  sending this interesting story.

     "They have borne Cyclone Larry and weeks of torrential rain, but now 
  the luckless residents of Innisfail face a new dilemma, a posse of 
  hungry marauding cassowaries.   The critically endangered and famously 
  testy flightless bird, known for its ability to disembowel humans with 
  its razor-sharp claws, is running amok through the backyards and 
  suburban streets of north Queensland in search of food. 

     "The birds are believed to have left rainforest areas after much of 
  the fruit-bearing plants they depend on were knocked down by Larry's 
  260 km/h winds.   It is expected to be months before the birds' food 
  sources begin to replenish.
     "Meanwhile, roaming cassowaries are reported to have chased several 
  residents through town.  One recently fell into a backyard swimming pool
  and had to be rescued.   The people of Innisfail and surrounds have now 
  been warned not to feed the birds.   Queensland Parks and Wildlife 
  rangers have set up food stations throughout the cyclone-affected region
  to entice cassowaries back into the forests and save them from being 
  hit by cars or chased by dogs.  At least six cassowaries have died in 
  the Mission Beach region, south of Innisfail, since the cyclone, all 
  struck by cars. 

     "The birds are vital to the survival of the World Heritage-listed wet
  tropics rainforest because they are the only animals capable of 
  distributing the seeds of more than 70 species of trees whose fruit is 
  too large for any other forest-dwelling animal to eat and thus relocate.
  There are less than 1200 cassowaries left in Australia. 
     "Rangers had to remove roadside feeding stations in the weeks after 
  Larry because too many of the endangered birds were being drawn to 
  traffic.   Smaller birds found in suburban streets are being relocated 
  into rainforest areas.   During the evening, hundreds of flying foxes 
  can also be seen hovering over Gordonvale, south of Cairns.  The loss of 
  their regular food sources has led them to raid backyard trees in search
  of fruit."

  (E) Links

  Link 1--Bureau of Meteorology Official Report:>

  Link 2--Alternative Report, pictures and in depth links:>

  Link 3--Further satellite imagery:>

  Link 4--Satellite Imagery of Larry after landfall:>

  Link 5--Larry to the south of Willis Island:>

  Link 6--Larry - Synoptic and Satellite Details 19 March :>

  Link 7--Larry - Synoptic and Satellite Details 20 March:>

  Link 8--Complete Radar Loop of Larry:>

  (Report written by Simon Clarke with additions by Gary Padgett)

                       SEVERE TROPICAL CYCLONE WATI
                            (TD-16F / TC-18P)            
                              17 - 28 March

  A. Introduction

     Wati aroused much interest in Queensland as it emerged from the 
  northeastern Coral Sea on an initial path that was almost identical 
  to that of Cyclone Larry which had just cut a destructive path across 
  Australia's northeastern coastline.  As events were to unfold, Wati 
  was eventually swept to the southeast parallel to the Queensland 
  Coast, passing between Lord Howe and Norfolk Islands before crossing 
  the North Island of New Zealand as a powerful extratropical cyclone 
  almost a week later.

  B. Storm History

     The cyclone was first identified as a westward-moving depression 
  (TD-16F) approximately 325 nm east of the northern tip of Vanuatu as 
  early as 17 March 2006.  The depression moved westwards with 
  improving organisation as a result of decreasing vertical wind shear, 
  good equatorial outflow and high SSTs.    By 18/1800 UTC, the 
  developing depression rounded the northern tip of Vanuatu before 
  entering the Coral Sea on a 15-kt west-southwesterly track.  The 
  depression was upgraded to cyclone status at 19/1200 UTC by the RSMC 
  Nadi and named Wati as deep convection increased and became 
  superimposed over the LLCC.  The developing cyclone was located near 
  15.9S/163.2E (about 300 nm north-northwest of Noumea, New Caledonia) 
  at this time. 

     Wati was initially steered to the west-southwest under the influence 
  of a large subtropical ridge to the south.  Early development was 
  somewhat inhibited by the presence of Tropical Cyclone Larry to its 
  east, which restricted outflow on the southern periphery of Wati, 
  which in turn confined favourable outflow to the equatorward 

     As Tropical Cyclone Larry weakened overland, Wati's radial outflow 
  improved and the system intensified under low vertical wind shear 
  conditions.  By 21/1800 UTC, the cyclone was located near 17.4S/ 
  153.7E (approximately 400 nm east of Innisfail) and had attained 
  hurricane status (Severe Category 3 under the Australian Cyclone 
  Severity Scale).  At this time Wati entered a weak steering flow 
  environment and become quasi-stationary before eventually being 
  captured by a major shortwave trough digging northwards from near New 
  Zealand.  This trough induced a recurvature in Wati's track toward 
  the southeast parallel to the Queensland coast.  Peak intensity was 
  achieved at 23/1800 UTC:  950 hPa and maximum 10-min avg winds of 
  85 kts near 20.3S/157.1E (approximately 460 nm east of Proserpine).   

     Soon afterward, Wati commenced extratropical transition due to 
  increasing vertical wind shear.  The cyclone accelerated to the 
  southeast from 6 kts to 16 kts as it slowly lost both its embedded 
  centre and its convective organization due to the increasing 
  northwesterly wind shear. 

     Cold air was advected into the centre and the LLCC became detached 
  to the northwest of the sheared convective cloud mass.  By 25/0600 UTC 
  Wati had undergone complete extratropical transition near 28.4S/ 
  163.3E (approximately 460 nm east of Cape Moreton, Australia).  The 
  storm remained a powerful 988-hPa extratropical system at this time 
  with winds estimated to 50 kts.

     The extratropical Wati passed as close as 150 nm to the west-
  southwest of Norfolk Island before sliding southwards and then almost 
  due east over the North Island of New Zealand.  The system was 
  finally absorbed in the mid-latitude westerlies to the east of New 
  Zealand after 28/0600 UTC.

     A graphic depicting the operational track of Tropical Cyclone Wati 
  may be found at the following link:>

     The operational track of Wati in tabular format may be accessed at
  the following link:>

  (C) Observations and Preliminary Damage Reports

     Wati remained an ocean-based storm throughout its life.  The main 
  impacts of the cyclone were associated with the high seas and ocean 
  swells generated across the Coral and Tasman Seas.  Battering waves 
  and large swells up to 5 metres in height affected the Capricorn and 
  Southern Coast of Queensland from 23 through 25 March.

     Cyclone watch advisories were issued by BoM Brisbane for Lord Howe 
  Island and cyclone warnings were issued by the BoM Sydney for Norfolk 
  Island.  However, Wati tracked almost midway between the islands 
  without causing significant damage to either.
     Following extratropical transition, Wati maintained much of its 
  energy which was unleashed on the North Island of New Zealand on 
  26 March, bringing heavy rain and strong winds.  The New Zealand Herald 
  reported high school students stranded near Whangaruru on Northland's 
  east coast after being unable to cross the rising Punaruku Stream, 
  15 nm north of Hikurangi.  The 25 students and two teachers were safely 
  rescued without injury.  Elsewhere, fallen tree branches caused minor 
  property damage.
     In the 48 hours to 9 AM on 27 April, totals of 147 mm of rain were 
  recorded in Kaikohe and 143 mm in Kerikeri, with close to 100 mm in 
  many other parts of the region.  Northeasterly gales affected exposed 
  parts of Northland on the 26 April with a gust of 76.5 kts recorded 
  at Cape Reinga.

  (D) Links

     A satellite image of Wati in formative stages of development can be 
  found at:>

     Photographs of large swells on the Gold Coast whipped up by Wati can 
  be found at:>

     Interesting images of Wati undergoing extra tropical transition at:>

  (Report written by Simon Clarke)


  SOUTH PACIFIC (SPA) - South Pacific Ocean East of Longitude 160E

  Activity for March:  1 tropical depression
                       1 tropical cyclone of hurricane intensity **

  ** - system spent most of its life west of 160E in Brisbane's AOR

                  South Pacific Tropical Activity for March

     Three tropical depressions were numbered by RSMC Nadi during March.
  The first of these, Tropical Depression 14F, formed on 13 March over
  waters between Fiji and New Caledonia.  This system formed in a region
  of fairly high vertical shear and never became well-organized.  Deep
  convection remained sheared well east of the center and winds were never
  estimated greater than 25 kts.    The depression was slow-moving and
  drifted generally in a southerly direction for 2 or 3 days, the final
  reference in Nadi's Tropical Disturbance Summaries being at 2100 UTC 
  on the 16th.  No track was given for this system in the companion global
  cyclone tracks file.

     A system moving eastward from the Coral Sea reached 160E and was
  numbered Tropical Depression 15F before reversing direction.  This
  depression developed into the intense Severe Tropical Cyclone Larry which
  dealt a very destructive blow to the Queensland coast.  Tropical
  Depression 16F formed on 17 March northwest of Fiji and began marching
  westward where it strengthened into Tropical Cyclone Wati near Vanuatu
  on the 19th.  Wati continued westward as it intensified, entering
  Brisbane's AOR as a 50-kt tropical cyclone at 20/0000 UTC.  Since Wati
  spent most of its lifetime and reached its greatest intensity west of
  160E, the report on this cyclone was included in the preceding section
  of this summary covering the Northeast Australia/Coral Sea basin.



     The purpose of this section is to list some websites where many and
  varied types of tropical cyclone information are archived.  Many readers
  will know about these already, but for the benefit of those who don't,
  I wanted to include them. 

  (1) Aircraft Reconnaissance Information

     Various types of messages from reconnaissance aircraft may be
  retrieved from the following FTP site:>

     Information regarding how to interpret the coded reconnaissance
  messages may be found at the following URL:>

  Links are also included to websites with further information about the
  U. S. Air Force 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron and the NOAA Air-
  craft Operations Center.

  (2) Archived Advisories

     All the advisory products (public advisories, forecast/advisories,
  strike probabilities, discussions, various graphics) issued by TPC/NHC
  are archived on TPC's website.  For the current year (using 2004 as an
  example), the archived products can be found at:>

  Links to tropical products archives for earlier years are available at
  the following URL:>

  JTWC warnings for past storms are archived on the NRL Monterry website:>

  On the NRL site, the link to past years can be found in the upper left 
  corner of the screen.

     I am not aware at the moment of any other TCWC which archives all
  its tropical cyclone warning/advisory products for public access, but
  if I learn of any, I will add them to this list.

  (3) Satellite Imagery

     Satellite images of tropical cyclones in various sensor bands are
  available on the NRL Monterrey and University of Wisconsin websites,
  courtesy of Jeff Hawkins and Chris Velden and their associates.  The
  links are:>>

  On the NRL site, the link to past years can be found in the upper left 
  corner of the screen.  For the CIMSS site, a link to data archives is 
  located in the lower left portion of the screen.

     Additional tropical satellite imagery, along with looping ability for
  composite microwave imagery for the Western Hemisphere north of the
  equator, can be found at:

  (1) For the Eastern North Pacific:>

  (2) For the Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea:>

     I'm sure there are other sites with available imagery available, and
  as I learn of them, I will add the links to this list.


                              EXTRA FEATURE

     In order to shorten the amount of typing in preparing the narrative
  material, I have been in the habit of freely using abbreviations and
  acronyms.   I have tried to define most of these with the first usage
  in a given summary, but I may have missed one now and then.  Most of
  these are probably understood by a majority of readers but perhaps a
  few aren't clear to some.  To remedy this I developed a Glossary of
  Abbreviations and Acronyms which I first included in the August, 1998
  summary.  I don't normally include the Glossary in most months in
  order to help keep them from being too long.  If anyone would like to
  receive a copy of the Glossary, please e-mail me and I'll be happy
  to send them a copy.


  AUTHOR'S NOTE:  This summary should be considered a very preliminary 
  overview of the tropical cyclones that occur in each month. The cyclone
  tracks (provided separately) will generally be based upon operational
  warnings issued by the various tropical cyclone warning centers.  The
  information contained therein may differ somewhat from the tracking and
  intensity information obtained from a "best-track" file which is based
  on a detailed post-seasonal analysis of all available data. Information
  on where to find official "best-track" files from the various warning
  centers will be passed along from time to time.

    The track files are not being sent via e-mail.  They can be retrieved
  from the archive sites listed below.  (Note: I do have a limited e-mail
  distribution list for the track files.    If anyone wishes to receive
  these via e-mail, please send me a message.)

    Both the summaries and the track files are standard text files
  created in DOS editor.  Download to disk and use a viewer such as
  Notepad or DOS editor to view the files.

     The first summary in this series covered the month of October,
  1997.   Back issues can be obtained from the following websites
  (courtesy of Michael Bath, Michael V. Padua, Michael Pitt, Chris
  Landsea, and John Diebolt):>>>>>

     Another website where much information about tropical cyclones may
  be found is the website for the UK Meteorological Office.  Their site
  contains a lot of statistical information about tropical cyclones
  globally on a monthly basis.  The URL is:>


     JTWC now has available on its website the Annual Tropical Cyclone
  Report (ATCR) for 2004 (2003-2004 season for the Southern Hemisphere).
  ATCRs for earlier years are available also.

     The URL is:>

     Also, TPC/NHC has available on its webpage nice "technicolor"
  tracking charts for the 2004 Atlantic and Eastern North Pacific
  tropical cyclones; also, storm reports for all the 2004 Atlantic
  and Eastern North Pacific cyclones are now available, as well as
  track charts and reports on storms from earlier years. 

     The URL is:>

     A special thanks to Michael Bath of McLeans Ridges, New South Wales,
  Australia, for assisting me with proofreading the summaries.


  Gary Padgett
  E-mail:  [email protected]
  Phone:  334-222-5327

  Kevin Boyle  (Eastern Atlantic, Western Northwest Pacific, South
                China Sea)
  E-mail:  [email protected]

  Simon Clarke  (Northeast Australia/Coral Sea, South Pacific)
  E-mail:  [email protected]


Document: summ0603.htm
Updated: 9th July 2006

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