IRMA developing with enthusiasm

Friday 1st September 2017

From west to east –

It is four weeks to the day that Disturbance Thirty left the African coast before passing the Windward islands a week later, again on a Friday, on the storm's first day as HARVEY. This Friday is the first HARVEY free day, at least from maritime interest.

Disturbance Thirty Four is a weak disturbance, close to the coast of Belize, moving west at 13 knots. This was the instigator of much interest yesterday as a possible new development in the Bay of Campeche and Gulf of Mexico. Environmental conditions are less favourable now, which will be a relief to all. Nonetheless, this is likely to spin off a low pressure wave into the Bay of Campeche on Sunday. There is still some residual moisture which has storm enthusiasts salivating, but a cold front is heading south which should keep this away from the flood-ravaged Texas coast and force it to the east. Worth keeping a weather eye on though.

Hurricane IRMA has enthusiastically taken to storm development like a dog with a bag of chips, going from a tropical disturbance to a category three hurricane in under 36 hours. Despite some way to go, all pointers indicate a close pass to the northernmost Windward Islands by next Wednesday as a powerful hurricane. Thereafter, there is divided opinion. High pressure over Bermuda and a low pressure system over the mid-west, which is radiating frontal activity, both have a say and both pressure systems are currently undergoing change. As things stand, this will turn early and dodge the eastern seaboard altogether or run west a little further then track along the eastern seaboard or into the eastern Gulf of Mexico.

Disturbance Thirty Seven is around a day west of the Cape Verde Islands moving west at 18 knots. A track to the west-nor'west is expected next week although by no means certain and it is not inconceivable that this could interact with IRMA later. Early days.

Early warning to stand by for major hurricane conditions in the north west Caribbean next week.