Update: Mauritius will be in Class 3 cyclone warning tomorrow morning wednesday 17jan2018 at 4am.
The wind has been significantly picking up these last past hours on the East Coast of Mauritius. It was confirmed this morning at 4am that we are in Class 2 cyclone warning – all schools have been closed and the general public is adviced to get ready. Unfortunately all the agencies now agree and the probability of a direct hit on both Mauritius and Reunion Island is becoming reality – still uncertain though but all the agencies have agreed most of the time, so we will see.
Here is the latest forecast by JWTC (1pm local time). BERGUITTA is now located 450km East-North-East from Mauritius (according to the latest Mauritian weather bulletin, the you can read here). The cyclone has been downgraded to Tropical Cyclone – however, the pros believe it is due to the eyewall replacement cycle.
Eye wall replacement cycle
So because i had no clue what they were talking about, well i looked it up! It means that a new eye begins to develop around the old eye. This causes the cyclone to slowdown. It happens to intense tropical cyclones or larger ones. If I understood well, it reduces the speed, thus the category – however it can spread the cyclone force winds out, thus hurting a larger area. The cyclone can also bounce back to a higher category again. You can read more about this phenomenon on theweatherprediction.com.
You can read more about the Mauritian Cyclone Warning System and how to prepare yourself on my former post: Top Things to know about cyclones in Mauritius.
Pictures of the Ocean
I went out for a little walk to get some pictures of the Ocean. The water has risen drastically – rocks on which the kids usually play are covered by water and the waves on the reef are getting quite impressive. Considering the cyclone is still over 400km away, I wonder what it is going to look like tomorrow morning.
As you can see we have a reef out several hundreds meters from the shore and yet big waves are already crashing. There is a 2m drop at the rocks! I was listening to a Meteorologist from Reunion Island this morning saying that waves over 7m high, so I guess we will have that here too…. The hotel next door to where i was walking has put sand bags and taken all their sun loungers away.
The next weather report will be out around 4pm local time (GMT+4) and we will see then if the system is speeding up or still taking it’s sweet time! The next step is Class 3 cyclone warning and then it starts to get serious. For the moment the center of BERGUITTA should arrive around Mauritius on The night from Wednesday to Thursday and on Reunion Island Thursday late morning.
I have been looking around for satellite images and found EUMETSAT – it is actually really cool and you can get images for all over the world!
How awesome is that? and How humbling! We are so tiny tiny and insignificant… You can clearly see how BERGUITTA is starting to influence our weather now on both islands.
This is one of the reasons why I enjoy blogging so much, I discover new stuff all the time – things I would never have thought about looking into, had I not been blogging! Anyways, stay safe wherever you are!