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  • Writer's pictureBryan Norcross

Tropical disturbances in the Atlantic showing better chances of development

Of the three areas of disturbed weather that we’re watching in the Atlantic, Tropical Disturbance #1 near the Southeast coast is the best developed. It may turn into a tropical depression or tropical storm today before it makes landfall. The systems far out in the Atlantic just bear watching.

Tropical Disturbance #1 has a well-organized circulation, but the thunderstorms are being ripped away by strong upper-level winds. If those hostile winds let up briefly, the system could quickly turn into a tropical depression or tropical storm before it reaches the Georgia or South Carolina coast tonight.

The National Hurricane Center is waiting to see if there is a bit clearer sign that the thunderstorms can remain with the circulation before issuing warnings for the coast. The big question will come when the system passes over the warm Gulf Stream water today. If the upper winds let up just a bit, gusty thunderstorms will likely form near the center of circulation, and the system would likely meet tropical depression or tropical storm criteria.

Tropical downpours are already pushing inland, and they will only become gustier if the system can organize.

In any case, it does not appear that there’s a risk of anything terribly strong, but coastal residents in Georgia and southeastern South Carolina should stay aware.

Tropical Disturbance #2 is what’s left of the large disturbance we’ve been tracking since last week. It’s now a small cluster of thunderstorms attached to weak low-pressure area in the middle of the Atlantic. It’s embedded in a dense plume of Saharan dust.

The system will continue its dusty trek for the next couple days, reaching the eastern Caribbean islands about Wednesday. About that time, the upper-level winds are forecast to become a bit less hostile, but it’s not clear that the dust won’t have taken a significant toll on the system. In any case, it will bear watching.

The National Hurricane Center is giving it a low-medium chance of developing into at least a tropical depression, but it has a good ways to go.

Tropical Disturbance #3 is a large area of disturbed weather over and just off the African coast. Long-range computer forecast models show a somewhat organized disturbance emerging from the cluster near the coast in the next few days. It appears it would take a more southerly route across the ocean than its brother, Tropical Disturbance #2.

Bear in mind, forecasts for weak or developing systems are always iffy. In any case, nothing is imminent.

In the Pacific, Hurricane Enrique is tracking just offshore of the Mexican coast in the vicinity of Puerta Vallarta. The resort city is tucked at the back of a bay away from the Pacific coastline, so they are only feeling fringe effects. Hurricane Warnings are in effect, however, for the immediate coast of the Mexican state of Jalisco.


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