Atlantic production line in full flow

Friday 11th August 2017

As FRANKLIN, our first hurricane of the season, rides off into the sunset over southern Mexico, now is as good a time as any to report on some changes to the long term forecast. Respected storm meteorologist Philip Klotzbach at Colorado State along with some other trusted sources are upping their storm numbers for the season. NOAA for example, has increased their projection to 19 named storms and 5 major hurricanes. Their argument is based on a reduced chance of a storm-killing El Niño and higher than expected sea water temperatures across the reporting region. I won't change mine as they were pure guesswork and am not sure I agree anyway. Just a hunch.

Today then, from west to east -

Disturbance Twenty Eight is fairly weak, loafing about near Cape Canaveral. This will drift north-west over the next few days without developing but will produce some heavy rainfall across the area over the next couple of days.

Disturbance Twenty Nine is bimbling along quietly across the far southern Caribbean moving west at 18 knots. This passed north of Lake Maracaibo a few hours ago and will do little more than produce heavy rain and the odd thunderstorm as it passes northern Colombia today and heads into Central America over the weekend.

Disturbance Twenty Six is now 350 miles northeast of San Juan, headed north-west at 12 knots. This will pass north of Puerto Rico then and north-east of the Bahamas over the weekend before curving seaward. Environmental conditions are favourable for development but all markers have this headed to sea.

Disturbance Twenty Seven is now about mid way between the African coast and the Caribbean, westbound at 12 knots. This is still drawing on seaborne Saharan air which prevents surface organisation and will keep development in check. At the most, this will produce enhanced shower and thunderstorm activity across the Lesser Antilles early next week.

Finally, a new disturbance - designated Thirty - is leaving the African coast now and is set to cross the Atlantic in the time-honoured fashion. Welcome to the production line.

Stand easy.