ERIN under way in the eastern Atlantic
General overview 1500z15th August 2013
Disturbance thirty three shifted its track unexpectedly to the west overnight and is now bouncing across the Yucatan peninsular, breaking the vertical convection cycle of course. As a consequence, when the disturbance goes seaborne again into the south western Gulf of Mexico tomorrow, it will have weakened and as a result, forecasters are less enthusiastic about this system developing significantly. Once back at sea and convecting over warm water, this disturbance will turn to the north, however predictions vary as to its final landfall across a range between the Mississippi and Houston. Considering the smart money was on this cyclone heading for the Florida panhandle yesterday, the EU model which opted for the Brownsville area seems less far-fetched now. Given that this system now has to do a considerable more development to become a tropical depression or tropical storm, it is not likely to be a particularly strong cyclone. This system will produce up to 6 inches of rain over the Yucatan peninsular over the next 12 hours then squalls from the disturbance are likely to reach the northern Gulf oil leases between Green Canyon and Mississippi Canyon tomorrow evening. Sustained winds are likely to remain below tropical storm force, however gusts between 45 and 55 knots are possible within squalls. Wherever this does land, it will rain heavily.
On the other side of the water, free of inhibiting desert dust, disturbance thirty four ran quickly through the strength rating, briefly designated tropical depression five before being tagged tropical storm ERIN by the National Hurricane Centre a few hours ago. Currently centred 200 miles west-sou'west of the Cape Verde Islands and set on a firm westerly heading at 12 knots, ERIN is producing estimated winds of between 35 and 50 knots. This has already been given a pointlessly early HSI rating of 3 (2 size / 1 intensity) and a predicted maximum of 4 (2 size / 2 intensity), which we believe to be a little conservative. Other than a band of upper level wind shear around the mid-way stage, conditions look fair for ERIN to have a nice, comfortable Atlantic cruise towards the north-east Caribbean ETA next Thursday. It is too early to determine if ERIN will have any significant impact on land.