Storm KIRK boldly going where plenty have gone before

Saturday 22nd September 2018

From west to east,

Disturbance Thirty Eight is landing now over western Nicaragua moving west at 18 knots. Done and dusted.

Disturbance Forty One is still milling about  aimlessly some 200 miles south of Bermuda. This has an uncertain outlook but is expected to pass to the southwest of Bermuda today or tomorrow then turn east at some time. Development is not expected.

Disturbance Forty dug in a little overnight and has earned an upgrade to Tropical Depression Eleven. Centred 450 miles east of the Leeward Islands, westbound at little more than walking pace, this is battling upper level wind shear which will put the brakes on development and hopefully weaken to nothing before reaching the Lesser Antilles.

Disturbance Forty Three has piped up 900 miles west of the Azores and has a twinkle in its eye. This is also looking as if will meander aimlessly and unlikely to impact any land areas as things stand.

Yesterday, I described Disturbance Forty Two leaving the African coast as having a mean look about it. Last night, I was rather embarassed to realise that the only two such voices were mine and that of the Canadian Guy, the ‘Blind Sniper'.

Today the rest have joined the fray, and rising to the occasion, the cyclone has deepened and become Tropical Storm KIRK. Currently one day west of the Cape Verde Islands and headed west at 20 knots, this faces a conflicting set of development conditions. Arguments against are the current excessive ground speed and belts of upper level shear. Conversely, rising air and warm water closer to the West Indies are arguments for, which means and uncertain forecast. The Canadian guy has this down for a strong tropical storm hitting the Lesser Antilles on Thursday while the rest of the world is a little more upbeat - yes, a track due west seems most likely - and no one is discussing eastern seaboard or Gulf of Mexico - but without any significant intensity beyond its current strength. The current hurricane severity index rating is 2 out of a possible 50 points (1 for size and 1 for intensity) and the general consensus would seem to be that also being peak rating.

Weather watch on KIRK otherwise stand easy.