FORECAST: Breezy Sunday; watching Tropical Depression #3

Cesar Mills
July 8, 2018

Earlier this week, Colorado State University updated its forecast for the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season, lowering the number of named storms expected to 11, 4 hurricanes and 1 major hurricane.

A low-pressure system and tropical wave in the central Atlantic shows a 70 percent change of developing into a tropical depression in the next five days, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Maximum sustained winds remained at near 35 miles per hour with some higher gusts, but the storm is expected to remain well off the North Carolina coast.

NWS forecasters said the system located about 350 miles off the Carolina coast is becoming better organized and could be declared a tropical depression late Friday, but the Carolinas will probably not feel any impacts over the weekend. It forms when sea temperatures in the tropical Pacific are warmer than average, and cause higher speed, high-level winds across the southern United States, reducing tropical storm formation.

There are no watches or warnings in effect for the storm.

Tropical Depression Two, in the lower right of this GOES-16 satellite image, is moving west toward the Caribbean. Gradual strengthening is forecast during the next few days and while it is expected to reach Category 1 hurricane strength by Tuesday, the track remains offshore. However, forecasters say upper-level winds could make conditions unfavorable for sustaining the storm.

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There's a second area being watched by the hurricane center on Thursday.

That's a huge turnaround from past year when no less than three Category 4 storms hit US shores, virtually destroying Puerto Rico's power grid, bringing record flooding to Texas and bowling over the Florida Keys.

The storm is sitting on some cooler waters beneath Beryl. It is forecast to become a tropical storm by sometime Friday.

Over the next 36 hours, wind shear that could prevent intensification is expected to remain low.

"Beryl has been a bit of a surprise today, which is not uncommon for tiny tropical cyclones such as itself", the NHC 5 p.m. Thursday advisory said, noting, "It's usually hard to get a good handle on the intensity of these types of cyclones".

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