Confused air flow across Gulf of Mexico inhibiting development with only one slight chance

General situation at 1400z 5th July

Disturbance ten is now about 425 miles south-sou'west of Galveston, and is drifting north-west at little more than walking pace. Maximum sustained winds remain near 20 knots. The centre has tracked a little more north-west overnight, and now seems set to land a little to the west of Houston on Sunday. Thunderstorms have increased but upper level wind shear is winning the battle and the chances of this impressing anyone are decreasing. A word of caution though - given confused conditions aloft and the possibility of sudden change, there is still a slight chance that an opening for development may appear at short notice.

Disturbance twelve hasn't given up either, and is still pushing bravely to the north at around 10 knots, but is falling foul of confused airflows aloft. The disturbance is still little more than a open wave extending from the Mississippi/Alabama border, across south-eastern Louisiana and into the northern Gulf of Mexico. Despite this not developing, it is producing widespread showers, thunderstorms and some lusty gusts across the deep water and coastal lease blocks south of the Mississippi.

Disturbance fourteen is still following a rather unusual track in the west-central Atlantic, but looks set to disappoint the salivating forecasters, who saw this as a potentially exciting break with traditional storm tracks. This is now moving west at around 5 knots and is set to move across southern Florida and the Florida Straits in four days from now, thereafter veering north when it enters the eastern Gulf of Mexico towards the western Florida panhandle. This will produce more heavy showers and thunderstorms across the southern Florida peninsula and portions of the eastern Gulf, but development chances appear very low as it too battles with frontal activity across the northern Gulf.

A new disturbance - fifteen - has been recognised in the mid-Atlantic by the professionals. We reported this two weeks ago. This has broken free of inhibiting, dry Saharan air and is now moving west at around 10 knots. Some strengthening is possible over the next week, but there is no current sign of any surface circulation or cloud formation to justify this. It could bring enhanced showers and thunderstorms to the Windward Islands around the middle of next week.

Stand easy

(Sharp-eyed readers picked up the Independence Day theme in yesterday's report, each paragraph containing an extract from ‘Star Spangled Banner'. Of the comments received, perhaps the most apt was that I should ‘get out more').