09/06 Ryan’s “3 Atlantic Hurricanes” Wednesday Forecast
The Atlantic Tropics are a bit more crowded than they were yesterday after two more systems strengthened into hurricanes:
Hurricane Irma continues to be the biggest threat for a U.S. landfall, and has sustained Category 5 strength, as well as 185 mph winds, for a record number of hours in the Atlantic Ocean. Having moved through the Northeastern Lesser Antilles overnight, Irma is just beginning to ravage Puerto Rico, and will then move on to the British and U.S. Virgin Islands. Hurricane Warnings have already been issued for the Northern coasts of the Southeastern Bahamas and the Dominican Republic, while the Central Bahamas and Cuba have issued hurricane watches and are expecting contact by Friday. Saturday brings the storm closer to the Southern tip of Florida, and this is where “forecast uncertainty” increases. The current NHC forecast has it heading North-Northwest through Miami as a Category 4 storm by Sunday, and riding the East Coast into the GA/SC area. There is a smaller chance that the trough associated with the stationary boundary expected to be in the area doesn’t weaken the Atlantic ridge as much as expected, so the storm could go slightly further West, making landfall anywhere between Pensacola and Tampa, while there’s an even smaller chance it could head Northeast into the Atlantic without hitting Florida directly.
Jose is expected to gradually strengthen over the next few days, potentially reaching “major hurricane” status (Cat. 3 or higher) by Friday. The current path has it moving Northeast of the Lesser Antilles, avoiding any significant landfall, but the track is being inched West with each update. This system needs to be watched closely to prepare those already devastated islands for a possible second storm only days after Irma.
Katia became a hurricane earlier today, and isn’t expected to intensify drastically. This storm will wander aimlessly for a few days in the Southwestern Gulf, before eventually being directed to the South by a building High in Northern Mexico. This would cause the storm to landfall near the Veracruz area as a hurricane/tropical storm overnight Friday.
Locally, we’ll see some of the best weather of the Summer! The cold front that is expected to redirect Irma passed through during the overnight/early morning hours, and we’ll see increasing high pressure over the next several days. Expect clear, sunny days with considerably lower humidity and no chance of rain outside of a stray shower on Monday as Irma passes somewhere to our East. Please take the time to enjoy this string of gorgeous weather.