Good Wednesday afternoon, we are reaching a secondary peak in the hurricane season here in the Atlantic basin in October and our newest tropical system has formed today in the Southwest Caribbean.
Tropical Depression #16 was classified late this morning by the National Hurricane Center, it is located near the coastline of Nicaragua moving slowly to the northwest. As you can see on the visible satellite image that TD-16 has a nice concentration of convection along with a solid outflow presentation. The one thing keeping it from organizing any quicker is the fairly proximity to land. That will be a big key in TD 16’s strength over the next 24-48 hours, just how close to land does it stay in its movement.
As you can see on the image posted the water temperatures in the Western Carribean and into the Gulf of Mexico are quite warm and conducive for intensification over the next few days. If this system becomes a tropical storm it will be named Nate…that could happen soon.
The official National Hurricane Center forecast track has TD 16 moving northwest and northward over the next 3-5 days making it a threat to the Yucatan Peninsula, the Gulf Coast Region and ultimately parts of the Southeast US.
The model spread for this system at this point is not all that wide. There seems to be a good consensus on the next 24-36 hours, then it begins to spread out as you can see here on this plot of the hurricane models. Anyone from Louisiana to the Florida Panhandle should begin to take those first steps for an impact by a Hurricane late this weekend.
The global models that we look at daily also generally fall within this spread. For example the GFS (American) model falls in the western edge of this spread indicating a threat more to Louisiana while the European is further east along the Florida Panhandle. These forecast tracks will change as the storm becomes more defined at the surface.
So, what could be the impacts of future Nate to our area?...
Well, we are becoming fairly confident that the Southeast will see an increase of moisture as a trough in the middle of the country will help scoop up the moisture from this system. The details in regards to amounts are way too early to predict but we should begin to see our first bout of rain in over three weeks come late this weekend. This could be a very beneficial rainfall but as can be the case with tropical weather events the rainfall can also be a bit more than bargained for.
As we get closer to the weekend, our weather team will have much on the impacts and the extent of them across the region. Keep an eye here at our website and on social media for additional updates