WRUF Weather

Possible tropical development close to Southeast US this weekend

An area of disturbed weather along the tail end of a front could evolve into an area of low pressure this weekend just off the coast of the Carolina’s.  The National Hurricane Center is giving it a “low chance” of tropical development during the Sunday to Tuesday time frame.  Forecast data suggests that whatever does form, tropical or not, would drift slowly southwestward and potentially impact portions of Florida early next week.  Forecast specifics are obviously inconclusive at this early stage, but residents all along the Atlantic beaches are urged to stay informed of the latest forecast in the coming days.

Tropical Storm Debby as it came ashore near Cedar Key in June 2012, flooding many streets and businesses. Photo credit: Jeff Huffman

Storms that develop close to home and move in quirky directions are not that uncommon this time of year. It was only two years ago to the week that Tropical Storm Debby came ashore on Florida’s Nature Coast, resulting in an estimated $250 million in damage and 10 fatalities in the United States.  Debby baffled some meteorologists because just two days before landfall, the official forecast was for landfall in Texas or Louisiana. Just three weeks prior, Tropical Storm Beryl blitzed Florida’s First Coast before the official hurricane season even began. Beryl’s journey included a near 180-degree turn to the southwest off the coast of the Carolina’s.  Both storms, in addition to subtropical storm Chris forming between the two, originated within 500 miles of Florida’s coastline.  And all three formed along the tail end of a front or trough of low pressure.

While it is certainly a bit too soon to project the fate of our “area of interest” this weekend, history certainly doesn’t deny that something tropical could form and approach Florida from the northeast.  At the very least, unsettled conditions including heavy rain and choppy seas should be expected close to wherever this disturbance moves early next week.

Stay tuned to WRUF-TV for Tropical Weather Updates at 20 minutes past the hour, or follow along on Twitter @WRUFWeather.

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