Florida has its eyes turned eastward currently as another storm system approaches. The storm season has already been a busy one off of Florida’s coast but thankfully none that have made landfall have had a significant impact. That could be about to change as the National Hurricane Center (NHC) tracks the current system. A tropical wave is currently speeding its way across the Atlantic and the NHC says it’s one to watch.
The system developed last week off of Africa’s western coast and began its westward journey toward North America. “Environmental conditions appear conducive for additional development, and a tropical depression is likely to form over the next day or two,” the NHC stated. “This system is expected to move westward at 15 to 20 mph across the eastern and central tropical Atlantic through the middle part of the week.”
This system is set to become Tropical Depression 3. Tropical Depression 2 developed earlier in the month and threatened Florida before swinging south toward Cuba after becoming 2023’s first named storm, Tropical Storm Arlene. The first Tropical depression of the year occurred in Florida in January, well outside of the typical time period for cyclonic storms.
With conditions favorable, the storm will likely strengthen and the NHC is not ruling out the possibility of the storm’s wind speeds sustaining 40 mph which would elevate the system to Tropical Storm Bret. The current storm path looks to make impact with the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico in the next few days. Atmospheric conditions suggest the storm will swing northward after that and head in Florida’s direction.
Favorable conditions mean that the atmospheric pressure and water temperatures are right to “nurture the storm” so-to-speak into a stronger cyclonic system. It is expected to continue to gain strength as it swings to the north and makes its way to Florida. According to the Orlando Sentinel, “The NHC gives the system an 80% chance to form into a depression or storm in the next two days, and 90% within the next seven.” So far, the system has not developed into a Tropical Depression but we expect by tomorrow’s update, Tropical Storm Bret will have formed.
This is something to keep in mind if you plan to set sail on Disney Cruise Line or travel to Walt Disney World in the next week. Storms are unpredictable and change quickly, so we won’t advise you to change your plans just yet. Currently what you need to know is that there is a storm that could impact your plans. The storm could gather strength and become a threat or it could fetter out over the Atlantic Ocean. The NHC gives an update daily and we will be monitoring it closely. If there is any change or potential threat to Central Florida, we will be sure to update you at that time.