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Hurricane Nana makes landfall while the tropics hit pause for a few days

Sept. 3 satellite image of the tropics.
Sept. 3 satellite image of the tropics. (CIRA/RAMMB)

Nana made landfall as a 75-mph hurricane early this morning in southern Belize. The storm intensified to hurricane strength in the last few hours before reaching the coast as predicted by National Hurricane Center forecasters. The slightly hostile upper winds let up and gave the tiny storm a short window to intensify.

Nana is now winding down over the high terrain of Central America.

Tropical Storm Nana: 8 a.m. Thursday advisory. (www.HurricaneIntel.com)

Omar has weakened to a tropical depression well off the East Coast. It will dissipate in the next day or so in the North Atlantic.

In the far eastern Atlantic, there’s a complex weather pattern involving two tropical disturbances. Dry Saharan air is sticking around just north of the tropical-development belt. It usually fades out by the middle of August, but the pattern this year is keeping it going. That, combined with a large upper-level low-pressure system that’s forecast to affect both systems over the weekend, is temporarily creating a fairly hostile atmospheric environment between Africa and the Caribbean.

Tropical Disturbance #1 is a small system drifting around aimlessly midway between Africa and the Caribbean islands. It’s fighting the dry air and hostile upper winds, but hanging together. It has a fair chance of eventually becoming a tropical depression.

Tropical Disturbance #2 is a large system just offshore of Africa. Over the next few days, it will slowly make a move to the west and has a good chance of organizing into a tropical depression or tropical storm.

How the two disturbances will interact is an open question. It depends on whether Disturbance #1 can pull itself together and establish a circulation. If both are decently organized, and Disturbance #2 tries to overtake #1, the systems will rotate around each other with Disturbance #2 deflected a bit to the north. But, it’s all speculation at this point.

There’s a third disturbance out of sight over Africa that is forecast to move over the ocean in the next few days.

Even with all of that, nothing threatening is expected to develop over the Labor Day weekend that threatens land.

Next week, however, the big upper low is forecast to move out of the area, which should leave a more conducive environment for systems to develop. The eastern Atlantic could get quite busy.


About the Author:

Bryan Norcross is currently a hurricane specialist at Local 10 News, the station where he began his stretch on television in Miami in 1983.