Sep 14, 2011

DAY 105

Tropical Storm Maria is now moving north at 9 mph. She is still weak and poorly organized, but her central pressure has started to fall again. She has a pressure of 1003 mb and maximum sustained winds of 50 mph. The upper level low that has been pestering her for almost a week is now pretty much gone. So Maria should have some more favorable conditions ahead of her. There is a front approaching from the northwest and there is a little upwelling of cold water from Katia's wake, but Maria will still have a decent chance to become our 3rd hurricane of the season. 

Maria has about 48 hours of decent environmental conditions, and she has a long way to go before she can make it to hurricane status. It will be very close. The Hurricane Center is still not forecasting Maria to become a hurricane in their 3 day forecast cone, but they have increased the her probability to 24% by Thursday at 8pm. She is forecast to continue moving north and stay to the west of Bermuda. Tropical Storm Warnings are in effect there. If she does reach hurricane strength, the most likely time for this to occur is sometime Thursday as she sweeps right past Bermuda.

Elsewhere in the tropics, computer models are forecasting another wave to develop off the coast of Africa in about 5 days. But any Cape Verde development now will likely curve quickly out into the north Atlantic.  For the next couple of months, we will have to watch for trough splits of the southeast US coast and Gulf of Mexico. And also for Caribbean development.

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