Tropical Storm Rina forms; Tropical Storm Philippe drifts northwest

Shira Moolten, South Florida Sun Sentinel on

Published in Weather News

Tropical Storm Rina formed in the central tropical Atlantic Thursday morning, just southeast of Tropical Storm Philippe.

Meanwhile, Philippe is expected to drift for the next few days as it nears the Caribbean, though it may curve and skirt that boundary.

Rina was located about 1,190 miles east of the northern Leeward Islands, moving north-northwest near 10 mph, as of the National Hurricane Center’s 11 a.m. advisory, expected to turn more westward later Thursday and Friday. The storm should gradually strengthen over the next few days.

However, “persistent shear, in addition to the close proximity and uncertain interaction with Tropical Storm Philippe, should limit intensification during the forecast period,” the latest advisory said.

The National Hurricane Center expects some slight fluctuations in intensity as Philippe moves west-northwest or west. It’s unclear at this point if the storm will maintain its tropical cyclone status if it reaches the northern Leeward Islands, or if it will weaken. In general, forecasters anticipate an overall slow weakening trend this weekend as the storm continues to encounter storm-shredding wind shear and dry air.

Tropical-storm-force winds from Philippe, which extend outward up to 175 miles from its center, could begin arriving in northern Caribbean islands as early as Friday, including Anguilla and the U.S. and British Virgin Islands, according to the National Hurricane Center.

From Friday to Monday, Philippe could produce 2 to 4 inches of rain across the islands of the northeastern Caribbean, the Virgin Islands and eastern Puerto Rico. Western Puerto Rico could see 1 to 2 inches of rain. Areas hardest hit by rainfall could see isolated urban and small stream flooding.


As of 11 a.m. Thursday, Philippe was located about 560 miles east of the northern Leeward Islands, moving west-northwest at 2 mph. Its maximum sustained winds are holding steady at 50 mph.

So far this season in the Atlantic, there have been 16 named storms, six of which were hurricanes. Of those, three were major hurricanes, meaning Category 3 or above.

Those were Hurricane Lee, a rare Category 5; Hurricane Franklin, a Category 4; and Hurricane Idalia, which made landfall on Florida’s Big Bend region at Category 3 strength on Aug. 30.

The next named storm will be Sean.

Hurricane season officially runs through Nov. 30.

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