Monthly Archives: July 2008

Post & Courier offers buyouts to employees

The Post & Courier is offering to buy out their employees to help cut back salaries without layoffs. This scares me. We need newsrooms; despite the rise of citizen journalism, there is still an important place for the trained, professional newsgatherers who hunt the stories, who have the access and the discretion necessary to advance a story objectively. Newsrooms still drive the agenda in the country. The blogosphere gives us an unprecedented opportunity to provide a check and balance against an increasingly corporate media, but the blogosphere still largely thrives on the newsrooms. Newspapers need to stop focusing on the medium and start focusing on the message; becoming platform-agnostic is the only way newsrooms will survive, and it’s frightening how many publications simply do not get this.

A scorcher in store

Charleston’s got another scorcher in store for today, with a heat advisory in effect once again from noon until 9 PM for heat indices over 105 degrees. With such heat and humidity, thunderstorms are a distinct possibility, much in the way they fired up over Charleston yesterday. Keep an eye to the skies — preferably from indoors or in the shade with lemonade if you must be outside — it’s going to be a typical July day in Charleston.

Serious Business: Web PR, Cell Phones, and more!

Tonight’s Serious Business was a resounding success. Thanks to everybody who stopped in and really made it something great. Here’s hoping next week is just as good.

Here’s the recorded show, in case you missed it — and it was a good one. We went in-depth on PR practices with bloggers, new vs. old media, and you’ll even find out what my baseball bandwagon is this year…

Remember that, for now at least, we’re doing this every Sunday at 8:30 over on Ustream.tv. Check out the show’s website for links to the show as well as a link to the Facebook page. Fan the show if you deem it worthy. :) I’ll have more at the show website soon; it needs a WordPress install, I just need time.

Bye Bye, Bertha, Hello Dolly

It’s been a pretty busy July, wouldn’t you say? As the National Hurricane Center stopped advisories today on Bertha, which has been around since July 3, Tropical Storm Dolly sprouted up from a wave in the Caribbean. It skipped the depression phase and just went right to being a tropical storm, which is a bit unusual but it got itself together in a hurry. It’s going to run into the Yucatan and dump a bunch of rain before crossing into the Gulf of Mexico. Slow strengthening is expected…we’ll see what happens.

And as for Cristobal? While it stopped affecting Charleston late last night, it’s now dumping some rain on the Outer Banks. It’s lost a little intensity and isn’t expected to gain much more as it continues to move northeast. NHC is expecting it to accelerate away in the next day or so and lose tropical characteristics.

I definitely get the feeling this is going to be a busier year than we’ve seen in the last couple years. Just gotta stay vigilant…

Cristobal has formed

Tropical Storm Cristobal from Wilmington radar site

Tropical Depression Three has just been upgraded to Tropical Storm Cristobal with the 2:00 advisory. It’s moving northeast at 7 MPH and packing minimal tropical storm-force winds of 40 MPH.

The good news for us here in Charleston is that all tropical storm advisories were dropped in the 11am advisory. Tropical Storm Warnings are still up from South Santee River to the North Carolina/Virginia border, which means for a bit of a blustery, wet time for those of you on the Grand Strand and points northward in the next couple days.
Cristobal had been getting it together fairly quickly today over fairly warm water with decent conditions to strengthen, and it’s now pelting some pretty heavy rain on North Carolina (as you can see in the radar image above). Some gradual strengthening is expected, but Cristobal is probably not going to strengthen so rapidly that it becomes a hurricane; it will likely peak at about 55 MPH before being accelerated to the northeast and into unfavorable conditions.

Charleston and surrounding areas will continue to see some light rain on and off, but for this area, this event is quickly coming to a close…yielding to a very HOT day tomorrow, with upper 90s expected inland.

TD 3: Knocking on the door of Cristobal?

Here’s a radar fix on Tropical Depression Three as of about 9:30 this morning from the Early Branch NEXRAD site (KCLX). It’s fairly close to Charleston, about 65 miles or so southeast of here. Movement is quite slow; drifting north and northeast at an estimated 4, but the radar loop in the last couple hours hasn’t shown much at all. It’s close to tropical storm status with estimated maximum sustained winds of 35 mph.

The depression will throw bands of rain onshore; a lot of the heavier rain will be north of here. Showers will continue to be intermittent and short-lived through the day, much as the last couple days have been.

TD 3 has been showing signs of slow, gradual strengthening and could become Tropical Storm Cristobal later today or tonight. We’re not expected to feel tropical-storm force winds in Charleston, though gusts that high are occasionally possible. Charleston is still under a tropical storm watch for this reason, though as the storm continues to drift north and then gradually pick up some steam (as it’s expected to do), those advisories will be lifted.

For more, keep an eye on Hurricane Local Statements as issued by National Weather Service field offices. Charleston’s field office is issuing reports specific to Charleston with each advisory.

Tropical Depression Three classified

Invest 96 has been classified as Tropical Depression Three as of 11:00. The center of the storm is roughly 65 miles from Charleston. The advisory classifying the tropical depression also initiated a tropical storm watch for the Charleston coastline (from Edisto to South Santee). A tropical storm warning was raised from South Santee up through the Grand Strand. While National Hurricane Center forecasters do not foresee rapid strengthening, this is a storm still worth watching considering where it is. The track currently takes the storm straddling the coast; however, in the absence of strong steering currents, there is a lot of uncertainty in this forecast right now.

While TD 3 won’t kick up too terribly much wind, it’s a good reminder to make sure you’re prepared in case something comes along that does kick up a lot of wind.

I’ll try to have more tomorrow morning in the form of another video blog on Charleston Weather. In the meantime, it’s time for bed…

Is 96 close to depression status? (Updated)

Note: This is an archived post about Invest 96 in July 2008. For current information about Invest 96 in the 2010 tropical season, please see Weather Underground.

Good ol’ Invest 96 is starting to tighten up and begin to show good convection around a reformed center, which means it’s pretty likely a depression could be getting its act together there in short order (say, within the next day or so). I just wrapped a quick webcast about 96’s current state and its future. (Excuse the technical difficulties; I need a camera operator!)

Update – The Hurricane Center just released this little ditty on 96 (more here):

SATELLITE IMAGES AND SURFACE REPORTS INDICATE THAT THE AREA OF LOW PRESSURE OFF THE GEORGIA COAST IS BECOMING BETTER DEFINED AND A TROPICAL DEPRESSION IS FORMING. IF PRESENT TRENDS CONTINUE…ADVISORIES ON A TROPICAL DEPRESSION WILL BE INITIATED AT 11 PM THIS EVENING.

As they say…”More at 11…”