Tropical Storm Kirk forms south of the Cabo Verde islands

The tropics are heating up again

Don Ames
September 22, 2018 - 1:38 pm
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Low pressure along a strong tropical wave 450 miles south of the southern most Cabo Verde Islands has become Tropical Storm Kirk with maximum sustained winds of 40 mph. Kirk is moving to the west at 14 mph and will not be a threat to land during the next few days but could threaten parts of the Windward Islands Thursday or Friday of this coming week with strong perhaps damaging winds and heavy rainfall. 

Kirk is moving through an environment of warm water and within an area of relatively low shear. These two factors should allow Kirk to intensify. However, the air mass this storm will track through is drier than normal and this could limit intensification.

"It's worth watching," says WWL-TV meteorologist Chris Franklin. "But by the time this would even reach the western Caribbean or Gulf, we should have had our first strong cold front blocking any tropical systems." 

Tropical Depression 11 is located 485 miles east of the Windward Islands. This weak tropical cyclone is forecast to dissipate within the next couple of days as it moves slowly to the west and northwest. Depression 11 should dissipate prior to reaching the Lesser Antilles early next week as it reaches a region of stronger wind shear today and tomorrow. 

Elsewhere, the Atlantic basin remains quiet at this time. However, there are several areas with a good chance that tropical development will take place across the basin by early next week.

An area of low pressure centered about 200 miles south of Bermuda is moving south-southwest and will eventually end up southwest of those islands by Sunday. This system has the potential to acquire some tropical characteristics next week as it tracks over warm water and turns more westerly then northwesterly. All residents and interests along the southeastern coast of the United States should monitor this system.

Also, computer forecasts continue to show an area of low pressure forming about halfway between Bermuda and the Azores this weekend. This system might acquire some tropical characteristics and become a subtropical or tropical storm during next week.

"We're closing in on the part of the season when we can breathe that sigh of relief...but not quite yet." says Franklin.

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