Featured Stories | Storm Central

NHC watching two areas of concern in the Atlantic

storms
Courtesy: National Hurricane Center

As we head into the latter part of August, the National Hurricane Center is warning that it is time for systems to form more regularly in the Atlantic basin.
Currently, the NHC is watching two areas of concern.
Disturbance #1 is a “long shot,” but Disturbance #2 has a window of opportunity in the far eastern Atlantic, before it could run into problems.

Disturbance #1 is a large cluster about 2/3 of the way to the Caribbean islands from Africa that’s showing some signs of rotation. It’s on the edge of a large plume of Saharan dust that is dominating the eastern tropical and subtropical Atlantic. In order to move farther north, the disturbance is going to have to deal with some of that dusty air and marginal upper-level winds.

The chance of Disturbance #1 becoming anything more than a blob of moisture near the Bahamas or Florida are low.

However, Disturbance #2 has more potential and already has a slight circulation. The system is forecast to move off Africa into the Atlantic later today where it will have sufficient moisture around it to fight off the Saharan dust for at least a few days. The dust generally prevents formation of a tropical system.

According to the NHC, system #2 could organize and become a tropical depression or tropical storm over the weekend but chances are good that it will weaken before it gets near the islands especially if it drifts north into the dry, dusty air.

The upper-level steering winds across the Atlantic are fairly weak at the current time, so it will take an unusually long time for either system to encroach on any US land mass.