Hurricane Season Reaches Peak – So Far So Good
Dave Baker of KATC TV 3 would call this "Louisiana Primetime", it's the peak of the Atlantic Hurricane season and for Dave and all of us in Acadiana the season has been exactly what forecasters thought it would be. The season has produced 4 named systems. Three of those systems were hurricanes and one, Dolly was a tropical storm.
Hurricane Arthur caused minimal damage as it skirted the Outer Banks of North Carolina in July. Hurricane Bertha was a prodigious rainmaker in the islands but did not affect the United States mainland with a direct hit. Hurricane Cristobal followed a similar path as Hurricane Bertha splitting the area of open ocean between Bermuda and the U.S. East Coast. Tropical Storm Dolly formed in the Bay of Campeche and then pushed into the coastline of Mexico well south of the U.S. border.
The current tropical situation in the Atlantic does show reason to be cautious as there are two different weather systems that have at least some potential of developing into tropical cyclones. One of those systems just west of the Cape Verde Islands does show a significant chance of development. The Hurricane Center currently has the probability of this area of disturbed weather becoming a tropical cyclone at 70% over the next 5 days.
Another area of convection located just off the southeast coast of the United States is being watched for development as well. This area of thunderstorms is currently given a 20% chance of developing into a tropical cyclone over the next 5 days. Interest along the Eastern Seaboard might want to keep a watchful eye on this system as it does sit over the warm waters of the Gulf Stream.
Since we are into September it is now more likely that cold fronts and associated low pressure systems will push through Acadiana bringing us cooler temperatures. It is not uncommon for these systems to stall in the Gulf just offshore. With the warm waters and the energy available quite often a fall cold front is the perfect catalyst for a late season tropical storm. We don't see that in the future but it's something to be mindful off until we get those first really cool days of Autumn and start cooling the water south of Vermilion Bay.