An inclement weather event is ongoing across Trinidad and Tobago this morning. We’ve been expecting this active weather since Thursday and increased confidence in its potential impacts on Saturday. As of 3:00 AM Monday 17th June 2019, scattered to widespread showers, generally light to moderate with heavy pockets, as well as isolated thunderstorms are moving across mainly Trinidad.
What to Expect Over Next 24 Hours
Scattered to widespread showers and thunderstorms are forecast to persist through the late afternoon mainly across Trinidad, with intermittent overcast periods. Across Tobago, isolated to scattered showers are forecast to interrupt an overcast day across the island with a lower chance for thunderstorm activity than Trinidad.
By the evening, heavy showers and thunderstorms are forecast to subside, though lingering showers across both islands remain in the forecast.
Seas are generally forecast to remain moderate, with waves up to 2.0 meters in open waters and below 1.0 meters in sheltered areas. Note that in the vicinity of heavy showers or thunderstorms, seas may be locally rough and/or choppy, both in open waters and sheltered areas.
Temperatures across both islands are forecast to remain generally cool, with maximum high temperatures between 28°C and 29°C across both islands due to showers and cloud cover.
Possible Impacts to Trinidad and Tobago
Flooding: Generally with heavy showers and thunderstorm activity, street flooding, particularly in flood-prone areas or areas with poor drainage, is possible as well as flash flooding in areas where more prolonged heavy rainfall may occur. As of the 00Z model guidance, over the next 24 hours (2:00 AM Monday through 2:00 AM Tuesday), generally, 30-50 millimeters of rainfall is forecast across Trinidad, with Southern and Eastern Trinidad receiving up to 75 millimeters. Across Tobago, generally, 10-20 millimeters of rainfall is forecast, with higher totals possible along Tobago’s Southern coasts.
Frequent Lightning: In addition, with thunderstorms, frequent lightning is likely. As of 3:00 AM, two thunderstorms were moving across parts of Eastern and Southern Trinidad producing frequent lightning, with over 1,300 lightning strikes detected since midnight, with over 900 of these strikes being dangerous cloud-to-ground lightning.
Gusty Winds: Gusty winds, generally between 50-60 KM/H are also possible. These wind gusts will generally occur prior to, in the vicinity of, or occur during heavy showers or thunderstorms. With wind gusts up to 60 KM/H, whole trees are expected to be in motion and there may be some inconvenience when walking against the wind gusts. Light outdoor objects may topple or become airborne such as garbage cans, loose galvanize or construction material and other outdoor furniture. Tents may jump.
Landslides: In landslide-prone areas, particularly in areas that receive heavy rainfall, landslides and/or mudflows may occur. These landslides, in addition to gusty winds, may down trees, utility poles and impede traffic on roadways.
What’s Causing This Inclement Weather?
A tropical wave (08), with its axis a few hundred kilometers east of Trinidad and Tobago is approaching the Windwards. A deep surge in tropical moisture associated with this wave is moving across T&T presently and is forecast to persist over the next 72 hours. In addition, an upper-level trough is favorably positioned west of the region. This is creating favorable upper-level conditions for the development of heavy showers and thunderstorms across the Southern Windwards.
These favorable conditions are forecast to remain in place throughout the day, with upper level divergent and low-level convergence aiding in the development of showers and thunderstorms with the passage of the wave axis. The Intertropical Convergence Zone, or the ITCZ, is also shifting across T&T for the first time for 2019 as a result of this tropical wave. Another tropical wave, further east, Tropical Wave 09, will move across the region on Tuesday, generating another round of inclement weather, though the Adverse Weather Alert issued by the Trinidad and Tobago Meteorological Service ends at 3:00 PM on Monday.