Tropical Storm Bret (1993)
Tropical Storm Bret over Venezuela.
|Formed||August 4, 1993|
|Dissipated||August 11, 1993|
|Highest winds||1-minute sustained:
60 mph (95 km/h)
|Lowest pressure||1002 mbar (hPa); 29.59 inHg|
|Damage||$25 million (1993 USD)|
|Areas affected||Windward Islands, Venezuela, Colombia, Costa Rica, Nicaragua|
|Part of the 1993 Atlantic hurricane season|
Tropical Storm Bret was the second named storm of the 1993 Atlantic hurricane season. The third tropical cyclone of the season, Bret formed on August 4 from a westward moving, African tropical wave. Bret would later peak as a 60 mph (95 km/h) tropical storm as it neared Trinidad. Tropical Storm Bret took an extremely southerly course through the Caribbean, passing over the north coasts of Colombia and Venezuela. High terrain in the northern portions of those countries severely disrupted the circulation of Tropical Storm Bret. Bret had weakened to a tropical depression but re-strengthened to a tropical storm before it made landfall in Nicaragua on August 10. Tropical Storm Bret again weakened over Central America, though it reached the Pacific Ocean and ultimately became Hurricane Greg.
Though Bret was only a tropical storm, it caused heavy damage and nearly 200 deaths as it moved through the southern Caribbean Sea during August of the 1993 Atlantic hurricane season. Bret was the deadliest Atlantic tropical cyclone in 1993, in addition to causing the most fatalities by an Atlantic tropical cyclone since Hurricane Gilbert in 1988.
A tropical wave moved off the coast of Africa on August 1. Unlike the other waves before it, this one retained its convection, due to favorable upper level winds and warm water temperatures. The convection concentrated around the wave, and banding features appeared, and increased satellite intensity estimates. Because of this, Tropical Depression Three developed 1,250 mi (2,010 km) east of Trinidad on August 4 at the low latitude of 10° N.
An established deep-layered high pressure system forced the depression westward, where it became Tropical Storm Bret early on August 5. Bret's westward momentum increased, and the low level circulation was able to strengthen with favorable upper level outflow. On August 6 the storm peaked at 60 mph (95 km/h) winds, and retained that strength until passing over Trinidad and Tobago on August 7. Its low level inflow was restricted to the south as it crossed the Venezuela coastline late on August 7, and Bret weakened as it continued westward.
After spending hours over Venezuela, Bret again reached the extreme southern Caribbean Sea late on August 7. Early the next day, after passing near the capital city of Caracas, the storm hit the Falcón State of the country, where soon after it entered northeastern Colombia. There, Bret's circulation came near the Pico Cristóbal Colón, the tallest mountain in Colombia with a peak of 18,947 ft (5,775 m). Because of this, the storm quickly weakened, but was still a minimal tropical storm when it exited the country on August 9.
Over the Southwestern Caribbean Sea, conditions were favorable for Bret to re-intensify. However, the circulation was so disrupted that it was declared dissipated early on August 9; post-analysis did not confirm that Tropical Depression Bret had actually dissipated. The circulation re-organized and developed more convection, and by that night, it was again declared a tropical depression. The storm had had re-strengthened into Tropical Storm Bret by August 10. Bret continued its fast westward movement, and quickly reached winds of 45 mph (75 km/h) before making a final landfall in southern Nicaragua near Bahia Punta Gorda on August 10.
As it headed towards the Pacific, it was designated Tropical Depression Eight-E. However, it rapidly weakened over Central America and dissipated near the Pacific coast on August 11. It continued west-northwestward, re-organized, and later became 135 mph (215 km/h) Hurricane Greg. In the Pacific, Hurricane Greg would last until August 28, at which time it had been declared dissipated.
|Death Tolls by Country|
Tropical Storm Bret caused devastation throughout its path, especially in Latin America. In total, Bret left 211 fatalities, and $25 million (1993 USD, $40.8 million 2014 USD) in damage. Bret afflicted its worst affects on Venezuela, where there were 173 fatalities, and the entire damage total was reported in that country.
Bret passed between Trinidad and Tobago on August 7. Rainfall and light winds on those islands resulted in some power outages. In addition, houses on southern Trinidad and central Tobago sustained minor damage, mostly from flooding and trees falling. On nearby Grenada, a weather station reported sustained winds of 37 mph (59 km/h), with gusts to 45 mph (85 km/h). A ship known as the Lady Elaine, reported winds of 45 mph (75 km/h), while anchored at Hog Island on the south coast of Grenada. In addition, wind gusts of 53 mph (85 km/h) were reported on Isla Margarita.
When Tropical Storm Bret crossed the southern Caribbean Sea and northern South America, it brought heavy rainfall, amounting to as much as 13.3 in (340 mm) of rain in some locations. The capital city of Caracas, Venezuela experienced nearly six in (150 mm) of rain, with fairly strong wind gusts of 50-60 mph (85-95 km/h). Because of this, severe mudslides were seen. 10,000 homes were destroyed from the mudslides in Venezuela, killing 173 people and causing $25 million in damage (1993 USD).
After re-intensifying somewhat, Tropical Storm Bret made landfall in Nicaragua, causing ten fatalities in that country, nine of which perished when a Spanish vessel sank. Tropical Storm Bret also left 35,000 people homeless in Nicaragua.
- Rappaport, Edward (December 9, 1993). "Tropical Storm Bret Preliminary Report". National Hurricane Center. p. 1. Retrieved 4 May 2010.
- Cobb and Rappaport (August 4, 1993). "Tropical Depression Three Advisory Number 1". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved 4 May 2010.
- Avila, Lixion (August 5, 1993). "Tropical Storm Bret Advisory Number 3". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved 4 May 2010.
- Mayfield, Max (August 9, 1993). "Tropical Storm Bret Advisory Number 20". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved 4 May 2010.
- Mayfield, Max (August 10, 1993). "Tropical Depression Eighteen-E Discussion Number 1". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved 4 May 2010.
- Pasch, Richard (November 28, 1993). "Hurricane Greg Preliminary Report". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved 4 May 2010.
- Pasch, Richard; Rappaport, Edward N (March 1995). Monthy Weather Review. American Meteorological Society. Retrieved 4 May 2010.
- "Trinidad and Tobago Tropical Storm Bret Aug 1993 UN DHA Information Report 1". ReliefWeb. August 7, 1993. Retrieved April 18, 2011.
- Pasch, Richard (November 22, 1993). "Tropical Storm Bret Preliminary Report (Page 3)". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved April 18, 2011.
- Veghel L. J. Van, Manfred & Hoetjes, Paul C. Hoetjes (July 11, 1994). "Effects of Tropical Storm Bret on Curaco Reefs". University of Amsterdam. Retrieved 4 May 2010.