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Hurricane Sam is heading north while twin disturbances start to organize in the Atlantic

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Hurricane Sam went through a weakening spell yesterday when an internal process collapsed the storm’s eyewall and a new larger one formed. Now the new one is contracting, Sam is re-strengthening and the overall system has grown in size. It’s a normal process in strong hurricanes. In fact, it was a little surprising it hadn’t happened earlier.

Now Sam is forecast to maintain Category 3 or 4 strength as it heads in the general direction of Bermuda. Most of the computer forecast models predict the storm will pass Bermuda just to the east, but it’s too early to be 100% sure. Since the worst weather in the hurricane is generally on the right side – the side away from the island – hopefully they’ll get by with a brush. But a good wobble to the left could make a significant difference.

Strong swells from the hurricane will reach the U.S. East Coast around the weekend, which will make the surf dangerous.

In the Atlantic between the Caribbean islands and Africa, two disturbances are getting better organized. Both have the potential to become tropical storms. If they do, the names will be Victor and Wanda.

The situation is complicated because the systems are so close together. While both systems are weak, they probably won’t influence each other very much. But if one gets significantly stronger, it will likely affect the track and strength of the other.

If they both organize and strengthen more or less in sync, Disturbance #2 would likely be deflected north, and Disturbance #1 would be held south.

There is no consistent consensus among the computer forecast models how this is going to play out, though today’s versions of the models forecast Disturbance #2 to organize first. We’ll see.

For now, none of the computer forecast models show a significant threat to land, and nothing is going to happen quickly.

So far, the Caribbean is staying quiet. We’ll see how long that lasts.


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.