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Tropical Storm Josephine forms in mid-Atlantic; earliest 10th storm of season on record

Wayne K. Roustan, Sun Sentinel on

Published in Weather News

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Tropical Storm Josephine, which formed in the mid-Atlantic Thursday morning, is headed on a path toward the Caribbean islands, but National Hurricane Center forecasters said it is currently no threat to the U.S.

"We have it curving off the Atlantic coastline," said Dennis Feltgen, with the National Hurricane Center. "We don't see this, right now, as any threat to the state of Florida or the United States."

Josephine is also a record-breaker because it's the earliest 10th tropical storm on record.

"Josephine is the earliest tenth tropical storm on record in the Atlantic, with the next earliest tenth storm being Tropical Storm Jose on August 22, 2005," the hurricane center noted in a forecast discussion posted at 11 a.m. Thursday.

Tropical Storm Josephine was moving west-northwest at 15 mph toward the Caribbean islands with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph, according to the advisory.

The system is expected to move generally west to north-westward across the tropical Atlantic over the next several days, according to the NHC. It is forecast to take a sharp turn east, keeping it off the U.S. East Coast.

 

Josephine is the first named storm in the Atlantic this month. Based on the latest advisory, it is not currently forecast to reach hurricane strength.

"It's going to go into an environment where it's going to start losing its strength, so that's good," Feltgen said. "It's going to run into a bunch of wind shear in about four to five days."

In July, there were five tropical storms: Edouard, Fay, Gonzalo, Hanna and Isias. Other named storms this year have included Arthur, Bertha, Cristobal and Dolly. Tropical Storm Arthur formed in mid-May, making this the sixth straight year that a named storm formed before the official start of hurricane season on June 1.

Virtually all estimates for this hurricane season predict an above-average number of storms, due to unusually warm ocean temperatures and global climate factors that are likely to reduce the high-altitude winds that can prevent the formation of hurricanes.

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