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  • Writer's pictureBryan Norcross

Eastern Atlantic Disturbance a bit better organized and a new area to watch in the Gulf

The eastern Atlantic Tropical Disturbance is chugging west on a path toward the southernmost Caribbean islands. On the current schedule, the system will reach the islands on Tuesday.

The consensus of the computer forecast models is that the disturbance is wrapped in enough moisture that it can hold off the very dry air just to the north. Otherwise, the atmospheric conditions appear conducive for it to develop into a tropical depression or tropical storm before it gets to the islands. The system is moving pretty fast, which can inhibit development, so it’s also possible that it moves through the islands as a just a gusty moisture surge and develops in the southern Caribbean Sea.

The National Hurricane Center is giving it a good chance of developing into at least a tropical depression in the next few days.

A well-established, blocking high-pressure system over the Atlantic will hold the system to the south into midweek. The consensus of the long-range computer models is that another high-pressure system over the U.S. will ensure that it not be able to turn north and will continue across the southern Caribbean. Long-range projections of just-developing system are always iffy, however. So we’ll wait to be 100% sure that it doesn’t turn north like Elsa did this time last year. But it looks unlikely at this point.

Well to the north, a cold front is pushing out of the northern Rockies. In a few days, it will reach the northern Gulf of Mexico and die out. Warm southerly winds ahead of the front and winds from the northeast behind the old front might get a weak low-pressure system spinning in the extreme northwestern Gulf.

It doesn’t look like it would last very long if a system did develop, but there’s a long history of storms spinning up quickly in that corner of the Gulf near Texas and Louisiana. As of now, the National Hurricane Center is only giving the potential system a slight chance of developing into at least a tropical depression. There is nothing to look at in the Gulf at this moment. It will take a few days for the front to reach the coast. Then we’ll see.

Otherwise, nothing appears ready to spin up this week.


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