11 p.m. UPDATE: The broad area of low pressure over the southwestern Caribbean now has a 30 percent chance of formation through five days.
It’s producing numerous showers and thunderstorms extending from Central America eastward through Hispaniola, according to the latest Tropical Weather Outlook from the National Hurricane Center in Miami.
Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Leslie is approaching hurricane status in the middle of the Atlantic, no threat to land. At 11 p.m., Leslie was about 510 miles east-southeast of Bermuda with top sustained winds around 70 mph.
Leslie is forecast to become a hurricane tonight or early Wednesday.
8 p.m. UPDATE: The remnants of Tropical Storm Kirk are likely to redevelop into a tropical cyclone during the next day or two before it moves into an area of highly unfavorable upper-level winds as it approaches the Caribbean, according to the latest Tropical Weather Outlook from the National Hurricane Center in Miami.
At 8 p.m., the remnants were about 750 miles east of the Windward Islands and moving quickly westward at 20-25 mph. Chance of tropical formation in the next 48 hours was 70 percent.
Meanwhile, off the coast of North Carolina, a low pressure area still has a 50 percent chance of becoming a tropical system. An Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft reported that the circulation has become better defined but the associated showers and thunderstorms remain disorganized.
11 p.m. UPDATE: Tropical Storm Kirk’s top sustained winds decreased to near 35 mph as it accelerated westward across the Atlantic, according to the latest National Hurricane Center advisory. It’s now a tropical depression.
Kirk is about 835 miles west-southwest of the southernmost Cabo Verde Islands and moving rapidly around 25 mph.
Little change in the maximum winds is forecast during the next several days. But forecasters said Kirk could degenerate into a trough of low pressure as it moves quickly across the tropical central Atlantic over the next several days.
5 p.m. UPDATE: Tropical Storm Kirk continues on its rapid westward trek across the tropical Atlantic, speeding due west at 23 mph, according to the latest National Hurricane Center advisory.
Kirk is about 645 miles southwest of the southernmost Cabo Verde Islands with maximum sustained winds near 40 mph. Some strengthening is forecast during the next day or two.
However, Kirk could encounter shear that could weaken the storm over the Caribbean.
Meanwhile, newly named Subtropical Storm Leslie is crawling toward the west in the middle of the Atlantic. Maximum sustained winds are near 40 mph, but Leslie is forecast to dissipate in a few days.
11 a.m. UPDATE: Tropical Storm Kirk continues its westward trek, and is now moving west at 21 mph. It is 545 miles southwest of the Cape Verde Islands and still has maximum sustained winds of 40 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center. Kirk’s forecast of continued westward movement and strengthening early in the week hasn’t changed.
Meanwhile, a new storm, Leslie, has formed. A subtropical storm, Leslie has maximum sustained winds of 40 mph, and is out in the middle of the Atlantic on the same latitude as South Carolina. Leslie is only moving west at about 3 mph and isn’t expected to move very far in the next two days, forecasters say.
NHC forecasters predict Leslie will likely be absorbed by a larger low-pressure system by mid-week.
Finally, Tropical Depression 11 is no more. The remnants of the depression were expected to weaken further in the next day or so. They have maximum sustained winds of 25 mph and are about 350 miles east-northeast of the Windward Islands.
Atlantic Ocean- Tropical Depression 11 and Other storms On this Sunday the National Hurricane Center is issuing advisories on weakening Tropical Depression Eleven, located several hundred miles east of the Windward Islands ….https://t.co/garxEbOHTlpic.twitter.com/iH5TWSeWx8
Forecasters say Kirk will begin moving more quickly across the ocean as of Tuesday and is expected to strengthen in the next two days. However, they add it may begin weakening in the middle of the week.
Meanwhile, Tropical Depression 11, what forecasters are calling a “poorly organized” storm, is likely to dissipate by this evening. It’s 415 miles east-northeast of the Windward Islands and had maximum sustained winds of 30 mph.
11 p.m. UPDATE: Kirk is about 425 miles south-southwest of the southernmost Cabo Verde Islands and moving west-northwest about around 16 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center advisory. Top sustained winds were still 40 mph.
A faster westward motion across the deep tropical Atlantic Ocean is expected Sunday through Tuesday. Some strengthening is forecast through Sunday night, with little change in intensity expected on Monday and Tuesday.
Meanwhile, poorly organized Tropical Depression 11 is creeping northwestward about 440 miles east of the Windward Islands with sustained winds of 30 mph.
The depression is forecast to dissipate on Sunday or early Monday.
5pm UPDATE: (Eliot Kleinberg)
Tropical Storm Kirk, which formed overnight, continued Saturday to cross the Atlantic Ocean, steering toward a possible collision with the islands of the eastern Caribbean by the end of next week, according to a 5 p.m. National Hurricane Center advisory.
At 5 p.m. Saturday, Kirk was about 430 miles south of the Cabo Verde Islands and was moving west-northwest at 15 mph, up slightly from its earlier 14 mph pace. Top sustained winds were 40 mph.
” A faster westward motion across the deep tropical Atlantic Ocean is expected Sunday through Tuesday,” the advisory said.
ORIGINAL POST: (Eliot Kleinberg)
Tropical Storm Kirk has formed out in the eastern Atlantic, and is expected to move quickly across the ocean and possibly threaten islands as early as Thursday, the National Hurricane Center said Saturday in an 11 a.m. advisory.
At 11 a.m., Kirk was far south of the Cabo Verde Islands. Top winds were 40 mph, just 1 mph over the minimum to be a tropical storm. It was moving west near 14 mph and was expected to speed up from Sunday through Tuesday.
“Some strengthening is forecast through Sunday, with little change in intensity forecast on Monday and Tuesday,” the advisory said.
More than 5 million people were under hurricane warnings or watches on the U.S. East Coast on Tuesday as Hurricane Florence barreled toward the Carolinas with Category 4 winds and an expected landfall Friday, according to the National Weather Service.
Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Isaac continued to weaken slightly as it moved toward the Caribbean. Top winds dropped to 65 mph at 11 p.m.
A tropical storm warning was issued for Martinique, Guadeloupe and Dominica. Tropical storm conditions are expected on those islands by Wednesday night or early Thursday.
Elsewhere in the Atlantic, Hurricane Helene is still packing 100-mph winds but it should soon fade away as it moves into the open ocean.
According to the hurricane center, gradual weakening is likely over the next couple of days, and Helene is expected to become a tropical storm by Thursday. Helene is forecast to accelerate and turn toward the northeast by the end of the week.
UPDATE 8 p.m.: Hurricane Florence remains at 140 mph as it threatens the U.S. East Coast with deadly storm surge and heavy rainfall. At 8 p.m., the storm was about 725 miles east-southeast of Cape Fear, N.C., according to the National Hurricane Center.
On the current forecast track, the hurricane center predicts, the center of Florence will move over the southwestern Atlantic between Bermuda and the Bahamas through Wednesday, then approach the coast of North Carolina or South Carolina in the hurricane warning area on Thursday and Friday.
Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Isaac began to lose some of its organization as it moved quickly westward about 610 miles east of the Lesser Antilles.
Isaac is forecast to move near or over the central Lesser Antilles on Thursday, into the eastern Caribbean on Thursday night, then into the central Caribbean by the weekend.
At 8 p.m., Isaac’s maximum sustained winds were 70 mph, just below hurricane strength. The storm is expected to be near hurricane strength when it moves through the central Lesser Antilles, with some weakening forecast later on Friday and Saturday.
UPDATE 5 p.m.: Hurricane Florence’s wind speeds increased to 140 mph this afternoon as hurricane and storm surge warnings go up along the South Carolina and North Carolina coast.
A hurricane warning means tropical storm-force winds are expected in the area within 36 hours.
As of 5 p.m., Florence was about 785 miles east-southeast of Cape Fear, N.C., and moving west-northwest at 17 mph.
While Florence is expected to reach wind speeds of 150 mph, the forecast calls for it to decrease to a 115 mph Category 3 hurricane near landfall.
UPDATE 2 p.m.: Hurricane Florence maintained 130 mph wind speeds this afternoon, but is getting better organized and growing in size.
National Hurricane Center forecasters during the intermediate 2 p.m. advisory said hurricane-force winds have expanded outward up to 60 miles with tropical storm-force winds reaching out 170 miles from the storm’s center.
There were no changes to the storm surge watches and warnings for the Carolina’s. Forecasters are predicting between a 2-to 12-foot surge depending on where the storm comes ashore and if the peak surge occurs during high tide.
An area of disturbed weather over the extreme northwestern Caribbean could become a tropical depression Thursday as it moves across the western Gulf of Mexico.
Forecasters gave it a 50 percent chance of formation over the next 48 hours and a 70 percent chance of formation over five days.
If it becomes a tropical storm, it would be named Joyce.
UPDATE 11 a.m.: Hurricane Florence lost some wind speed this morning, but is expected to restrengthen today as it crosses warm water as it stays on a track toward the coast.
The National Hurricane Center estimates Florence is a low-end Cat 4 storm with 130 mph winds, but will regain 140 mph power, and possibly grow to have wind speeds of 150 mph.
There has been no significant change in Florence’s track, which has it making landfall late Thursday or early Friday somewhere along the coastline of the Carolina’s.
Tropical Storm Isaac has triggered new watches for Caribbean islands.
Hurricane watches have also been issued for Guadeloupe, Dominica and Martinique, and a tropical storm watch has been issued for Antigua and Montserrat.
The National Hurricane Center this morning issued hurricane and storm surge watches for much of the North Carolina and South Carolina coastline, with Florence expected to be a Category 4 hurricane at landfall late Thursday or early Friday.
As of the 5 a.m. advisory, Florence was a 140-mph storm about 975 miles east-southeast of Cape Fear, N.C. It was moving west-northwest at 15 mph.
A special update issued at 7:45 a.m. said Hurricane Hunters found Florence had weakened to 130 mph, but is expected to restrengthen later today.
“These fluctuations are normal. There is nothing to stop this in the atmosphere from it staying a major hurricane,” said Ken Graham, director of the National Hurricane Center.
The Weather Prediction Center is forecasting as much as 20 inches of rain over part of North Carolina through Tuesday.
“That’s the really scary scenario with Florence,” said Michael Bell, an associate professor for science at Colorado State University. “Certainly, we’re not expecting a Hurricane Harvey, which was almost eight days of rain. But even a few days of tropical rainfall can cause flooding.”
According to Colorado State University hurricane researcher Phil Klotzbach, the last time there was a storm as strong as Florence as far north as it is was 2010’s Hurricane Earl.
While mid-August through mid-October is the busiest period for Atlantic hurricanes, Sept. 10 is the pinnacle — a time when warm water and low wind shear conspire in earnest to turn tropical waves into menacing storms.
“It sure is living up to that distinction this year,” Klotzbach said Monday in a social media post. “Currently we have three hurricanes and two other areas given a medium chance of development in the next five days.”
Isaac fell to a tropical storm late Monday, but is expected to restrengthen briefly before weakening again.
In the northeastern Atlantic, a non-tropical area of low pressure is forecast to form along a trough of low pressure located over the northeastern Atlantic. It has a 50 percent chance of development over five days.
The next names on the 2018 storm list are Joyce and Kirk.
UPDATE 6:30 a.m.: Life-threatening freshwater flooding is likely from heavy rainfall, which may extend inland over the Carolinas and Mid Atlantic. Large swells affecting Bermuda and portions of the U.S. East Coast will continue this week, which may cause life-threatening surf and rip currents.
UPDATE 11 p.m.: Hurricane Florence is taking aim at the U.S. East Coast with Category 4 winds, spurring North Carolina’s governor to urge coastal residents to evacuate. At 11 p.m., the storm’s winds remained at 140 mph but some strengthening is expected, according to the National Hurricane Center.
On the current forecast track, the hurricane center predicts, the center of Florence will move over the southwestern Atlantic between Bermuda and the Bahamas on Tuesday and Wednesday, then approach the coast of North Carolina or South Carolina on Thursday.
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper is urging residents to evacuate the state’s coastal areas as Florence moves closer to landfall.
Florence, currently in the open Atlantic Ocean about 1,250 miles from the Northern Leeward Islands and 1,500 miles from Bermuda, has maximum winds of 100 mph, according to the Hurricane Center. The hurricane is heading northwest at about 12 mph.
A tropical wave coming off Africa has a 60 percent chance of developing in the next five days as it moves over the eastern Atlantic, according to the National Hurricane Center’s 2 a.m. tropical outlook. The chance of development in 48 hours is 60 percent.