Hurricane Franklin was the first hurricane to make landfall in the Mexican state of Veracruz since Hurricane Karl in 2010. The sixth named storm, first hurricane and the first of ten consecutive hurricanes of the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season, Franklin formed on August 7 out of a tropical wave that was first tracked in the southeastern Caribbean Sea on August 3. The storm strengthened within a favorable environment and made landfall on the Yucatán Peninsula as a moderate tropical storm early on August 8 north of Belize. Weakening occurred as it crossed the peninsula, but Franklin re-emerged into the Bay of Campeche later that day, restrengthening quickly to become the season's first hurricane. It made landfall near Lechuguillas, Veracruz, on August 10 as a Category 1 hurricane, before rapidly weakening over the mountainous terrain of Mexico and dissipating shortly afterwards. On August 12, the storm's remnant mid-level circulation combined with a developing low in the Eastern Pacific to form Tropical Storm Jova.
|Category 1 hurricane (SSHWS/NWS)|
|Formed||August 7, 2017|
|Dissipated||August 10, 2017|
|Highest winds||1-minute sustained: 85 mph (140 km/h) |
|Lowest pressure||981 mbar (hPa); 28.97 inHg|
|Damage||$15 million (2017 USD)|
|Areas affected||Belize, Cayman Islands, Mexico (Yucatán Peninsula, Veracruz, Western Mexico), Texas|
|Part of the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season|
Franklin's main impacts were located in Eastern Mexico, specifically in the state of Veracruz where Franklin made landfall as a hurricane. Strong winds downed trees and power lines, in addition to damaging homes and crops. Heavy rains flooded some rivers and caused a few landslides. Damages in that area totaled US$15 million. Other areas that Franklin affected, primarily by bringing heavy rain, included the Yucatán Peninsula and Belize. No deaths were reported to have occurred due to Franklin.
On August 3, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) began monitoring a tropical wave that was located in the southeastern Caribbean Sea for possible tropical cyclogenesis. Relatively little change in organization occurred over the next two to three days as it moved westward at 10–15 mph (16–24 km/h), although global models continued to indicate that it could develop further once it entered to the Bay of Campeche. Early on August 5, convection associated with the tropical wave increased, signaling organization. Continued improvement of the wave led to development of a broad area of low pressure on August 6 roughly 150 miles (240 km) east of Honduras, which led to the designation of Potential Tropical Cyclone Seven at 21:00 UTC that day. A buoy over the western Caribbean near the disturbance reported sustained gale-force winds, and combined analysis with satellite images indicated that the circulation had become better defined, prompting the NHC to upgrade the disturbance to Tropical Storm Franklin at 00:00 UTC on August 7.
Located in a relatively favorable environment, with the only inhibiting factor being proximity to land, Franklin strengthened to an initial peak intensity of 60 mph (95 km/h) on August 7 before moving ashore near Pulticub, Quintana Roo, at 03:00 UTC on August 8. The cyclone weakened considerably while over the peninsula, however the satellite presentation remained well-defined, and the inner core tightened up considerably. Later that day, Franklin emerged into the Bay of Campeche and immediately began strengthening again, becoming a hurricane at 21:00 UTC on August 9. It achieved its peak intensity at 00:00 UTC on August 10 with winds of 85 mph (140 km/h) and a pressure of 981 mbar (29.0 inHg), before making landfall in Vega de Alatorre with winds of 80 mph (130 km/h) about five hours later. This made it the first hurricane to strike the Veracruz region since Karl in 2010. The cyclone rapidly weakened over the mountainous terrain of Mexico and dissipated shortly afterwards. The mid-level circulation of Franklin, however, remained intact as it traversed the mountainous terrain, and the remnants eventually regenerated into Tropical Storm Jova in the Eastern Pacific, early on August 12.
Preparations and impactEdit
Immediately upon classification of Franklin as a potential tropical cyclone, tropical storm warnings were issued for much of the eastern side of the Yucatán Peninsula on August 6; a small portion of the coastline was issued a hurricane watch with the possibility of Franklin nearing hurricane intensity as it approached the coastline the next night. Approximately 330 people were reported to have gone into storm shelters, and around 2,200 relocated from the islands near the coastline to farther inland in advance of the storm. In Belize, damage was reported to be minimal as the storm tracked slightly more northwards than expected, lessening impacts. However, some areas still received up to a foot of rain.
As Franklin approached the state of Veracruz, schools were shut down. Throughout the state, many trees were downed, isolated power outages were reported, and homes were damaged. Banana plantations, an invaluable source of income for local residents, were also impacted and some reported total losses. Some rivers were flooded, roads were cut off, and a few landslides were reported. A total of 1,562 people evacuated their homes in Huauchinango, located in the state of Puebla. Shelters were prepared while sailors and soldiers performed evacuations throughout mountainous regions as a precautionary measure. Damages throughout the region totaled US$15 million.
Although rains from the outer bands of Franklin did not impact the United States, swells and rip currents were experienced across part of the coast of South Texas. The National Weather Service in Brownsville, Texas, issued a high surf advisory through the night of August 10.
- Other tropical cyclones named Franklin.
- Tropical Storm Chantal (2001) – strong tropical storm that struck the Yucatán Peninsula.
- Hurricane Diana – Similarly timed storm that took a similar path.
- Hurricane Earl (2016) – similar early-season storm that struck Mexico the previous year.
- Tropical Storm Harvey (2011) – strong tropical storm that struck south of Belize.
- "NHC Graphical Outlook Archive". National Hurricane Center. August 3, 2017. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
- "NHC Graphical Outlook Archive". August 5, 2017. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
- "NHC Graphical Outlook Archive". National Hurricane Center. August 5, 2017. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
- Richard Pasch (August 6, 2017). "Potential Tropical Cyclone Seven Discussion Number 1". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
- John L. Beven II (March 12, 2018). Hurricane Franklin (PDF) (Report). Tropical Cyclone Report. Miami, Florida: National Hurricane Center. Retrieved March 26, 2018.
- Stacy Stewart (August 8, 2017). "Tropical Storm Franklin Tropical Cyclone Update". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved August 9, 2017.
- Stacy Stewart (August 8, 2017). "Tropical Storm Franklin Discussion Number 7". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved August 9, 2017.
- Stacy Stewart (August 9, 2017). "Hurricane Franklin Discussion Number 13". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved August 9, 2017.
- Philip Klotzbach [@philklotzbach] (August 10, 2017). "#Franklin made landfall in the state of Veracruz in Mexico as a Cat. 1 hurricane - the 1st Veracruz hurricane landfall since Karl (2010)" (Tweet). Retrieved August 11, 2017 – via Twitter.
- Richard Pasch (August 10, 2017). "Remnants of Franklin Discussion Number 16". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved August 10, 2017.
- Eric Blake (August 12, 2017). "Tropical Storm Jova Discussion Number 1". National Hurricane Center. Retrieved August 12, 2017.
- "Hurricane Franklin weakens to tropical storm after hitting Mexico again". upi.com. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
- "Roads in Puebla and Veracruz flooded by 'Franklin'". The Yucatan Times. August 10, 2017. Retrieved August 11, 2017.
- "Hurricane Franklin hits Mexico". WION-TV. August 10, 2017. Retrieved August 11, 2017.
- "Companion Volume to Weather, Climate & Catastrophe Insight" (PDF). Aon Benfield. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
- Dolce, Chris; Erdman, Jonathan (August 10, 2017). "Tropical Storm Franklin Weakening After Landfall as a Hurricane in Eastern Mexico; Major Inland Flood Threat Looms". weather.com. The Weather Company. Retrieved August 10, 2017.
- "High Surf Advisory". Brownsville, Texas: National Weather Service. August 10, 2017. Archived from the original on August 10, 2017.