The Caribbean Sea could generate a tropical depression or late-season storm next week

The Caribbean Sea could generate a tropical depression or late-season storm next week

After computer forecast models hinted for weeks at tropical activity in the Caribbean, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) has highlighted an area in the Atlantic basin for potential tropical development.

A wide area of ​​low pressure is expected to form in the southwestern Caribbean Sea in the middle of next week. Environmental conditions appear favorable for the gradual development of this system as it meanders over the Caribbean Sea until the end of next week, the NHC said.

As of Saturday, the chance of potential disruption is low over the next seven days. This chance may increase as the timing of potential tropical development approaches.

Why will hurricane season remain active until November?

While it is too early to know with certainty where the future system will track, computer forecast models indicate that it will likely meander off the coast of Central America for a period of time before being pulled to the north and east by a significant decrease in the jet stream along its length. East Coast.

If a tropical storm forms, it will be named Vince, the penultimate name on the list of Atlantic basin names for 2023.

Difficult forecasts

Despite the El Niño weather pattern, known for increased wind shear — the change in wind speed and direction with height — over the western Atlantic Basin during the final months of the season, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said conditions appear generally favorable for tropical cyclone formation in Caribbean Sea and Eastern Pacific Ocean.

Due to the pattern known as the Central American vortex, computer forecast models generally have difficulty accurately predicting the formation of tropical cyclones.

According to researchers at the National Weather Service’s Environmental Modeling Center, the Global Forecast System computer model — known as GFS — is notorious for predicting the formation of tropical cyclones in the western Caribbean that never develop.

The GFS was the first major model to recognize the potential tropical development of this action, so it is not known whether the disturbance is a ghost storm system that will never materialize or if the model deserves credit for identifying the pattern first.

When does the last typical hurricane hit the US coast?

Late in the season

The potential development comes late in the season but is not unusual. According to climatology, the last tropical cyclone of the Atlantic basin season forms around November 19. Hurricane season officially ends on November 30.

Fortunately for the lower 48, the normal time period for a potential direct hit will have ended by the time the disturbance forms.

The record for the most recent hurricane to hit the mainland United States is Kate’s landfall in Florida on November 21, 1985.

Residents in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico will likely have to monitor the system for potential impacts during Thanksgiving week.

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