NHC shows possible tropical development in western Caribbean this week

Western Caribbean Could Get Active This Week

(Updated at 1:30p.m. 6/13/14 to reflect increased risk) According to Harris County Meteorologist Jeff Lindner, a tropical system may form over the western Caribbean Sea this week. The National Hurricane Center has increased the probability of formation from 20% to 30% to 40% so far today.

NHC gives the yellow area a 30% chance of formation as of 8am EDT on 6/13/22.
Upgraded to 40% chance of formation as of 1PM Houston time, 6/13/22.

Converging Systems

Currently, a trough of low pressure extends from the eastern Pacific Ocean (south of Mexico) across central America into the far western Caribbean Sea. It is producing numerous clusters of showers and thunderstorms. Additionally, a westward moving tropical wave is starting to interact with the eastern part of that trough. See below.

Satellite image of Atlantic Basin as of 9:50 Houston time on 6/13/22. Note the area starting to curve around Central America and the westward moving storm off the cost of South America.

Thunderstorm clusters over the eastern Pacific are in the formative stages of tropical development. Meanwhile, showers and thunderstorms over the western Caribbean remain disorganized and in an environment generally of strong upper level westerly wind shear.

Global forecast models show varying degrees of development over the western Caribbean Sea east of Honduras by mid week.

Jeff Lindner, Harris County Meteorologist

Most models indicate development very near the eastern coast of central America. And it is possible that no development happens due to the close proximity to land and/or wind shear.

Should this surface low actually develop, the sprawling ridge of high pressure over the southern plains responsible for our current heat wave will affect forecasts.

Without any sort of defined center for the Caribbean system, confidence is low on where anything may form and eventually move. However, the majority of the global models keeps this disturbed area close to central America and then potentially in the Bay of Campeche.

National Hurricane Center Forecast

The National Hurricane Center agrees. It currently gives the feature a 40% chance of formation over the next 5 days. That’s up from 20% yesterday and 30% this morning.

At a minimum, the NHC predicts that an area of low pressure will develop by the middle part of this week over the southwestern Caribbean Sea. Forecasters add: “Some slow development of this system is possible thereafter while it drifts generally northwestward off the coasts of Nicaragua and Honduras.”

 Check National Hurricane Center Daily During Season

This should serve as a reminder that we are in hurricane season. And it is a good idea to check the tropical weather outlook at least once per day.

The best place to do that is the National Hurricane Center website. While the statistical peak of hurricane season is still three months away (September 11), life threatening tropical systems do strike in early in the season. Here’s an interesting article about devastating June storms.

Many people in the Houston area will remember Tropical Storm Allison in 2001. It killed 22 people and dumped almost as much rain as Harvey. It caused all the flood maps to be revised at the time.

Posted by Bob Rehak on 6/13/2022

1749 Days since Hurricane Harvey