Tropical Storm Fay crossing Florida; may return for a second swipe

by Artemis on August 19, 2008

Tropical Storm Fay moved across the middle of the Florida panhandle today bringing with her sustained winds of up to 65mph, heavy rains of 5 to 10 inches and the odd tornado. Despite being over land for most of the day her winds haven’t weakened much and she is still capable of causing some havoc as she heads across the rest of Florida and makes her way back out into the Atlantic. The map below shows the expected track over the next three days.

Tropical Storm Fay

What happens when Fay emerges over the Atlantic is where it gets a little difficult to predict. Most of the predictions are for Fay to briefly emerge over the Atlantic, pick up a little strength and then get pushed back in to northern Florida by a ridge of high-pressure. That scenario is lookirivativesng highly likely but how strong Fay will be on returning to the U.S. is less certain, if she pushes further out over the ocean she could have the time to build to hurricane strength before returning back to land. She could also hit further up the coast into Georgia or even the Carolina’s. Some models even show Fay returning to the Gulf of Mexico making this a really difficult storm for forecasters to predict.

The main risk from Fay is currently flooding and the damage to agricultural land at a time when hay production and pasture is vulnerable.

Catastrophe derivatives on the Insurance Futures Exchange increased in price in the run up to Fay making landfall and the first trades were seen of the new Florida Tropical Wind contracts. On the 18th of August the exchange saw $40,000 worth of catastrophe derivatives traded (possibly a record?).

Keep up to date with our Atlantic Tropical Storm Season page.

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