Keeping an eye on the tropics: 2 systems could become hurricanes


This broad area of low pressure is meandering around with most thunderstorm activity well to the east in the NW Caribbean Sea.

There is a 90 percent chance that the system near the Caribbean develops later today or tomorrow, and an 80 percent chance for the system in the Gulf of Mexico. The reasoning behind the policy change is to offer more advanced warning for areas potentially seeing tropical storm or hurricane force winds by a system that is within two days of developing into one.

Without a well-defined center of circulation, a potential tropical storm labeled Invest 93 is forecast to move into the Gulf of Mexico and develop into a tropical cyclone within the next 48 hours, generating excessive rains, high winds and heavy seas.

Far to the east is what the hurricane center is calling Potential Tropical Cyclone Two.

It appears nearly certain that a 93-L will become a tropical system in the Gulf by Wednesday. The metros (and surrounding suburbs) of New Orleans and Houston could see large impacts from this system depending on the exact track.

As of Friday the National Weather Service in Mobile didn't think whatever forms in the Gulf will head for Alabama's Gulf Coast.

Potential Tropical Cyclone Two is now about 815 miles east-southeast of the Windward Islands, moving swiftly toward the west.

A tropical storm warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area, in this case within 24 hours, while a tropical storm watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area, generally within 48 hours.

As the system moves into the Gulf, enough tropical moisture will spread across the southern and central Florida Peninsula to trigger locally flooding downpours into Monday.

A second tropical wave (#1 on map) continued to track westward across the central Atlantic on Sunday morning and may get its own visit from the Hurricane Hunters on Monday. However, sustained surface winds of between 40 to 50 knots (45 to 55 mph/73 to 89km/h) with higher gusts on the northern periphery of the potential storm are expected to impact Barbados late Monday into Tuesday morning.