Friday, May 27, 11 AM cst
The probability of this disturbance turning into a tropical storm has been upgraded to 90%, and this transformation is expected to happen some time this evening or on Saturday.
Once that happens, the NWS will probably start issuing maps and probability information for where the storm will go and how strong it will be. For now, the NWS is indicating that “all interests along the southeast coast from Georgia through North Carolina should monitor the progress of this low.”
There is not much to look at yet, but here is a moving GIF of the area. The low pressure system is centered to the east of Florida and north of the Lesser Antilles.
The chance if a tropical storm forming by by Saturday evrning is now 80% according to NWS.
The storm is still likely headed gor the US East coast.
Thursday, May 26, mid day:
Last year’s Atlantic Hurricane season was a bit odd, and produced a storm that happened days after the technical end of that year’s season. So, they put it in this year’s season. That was Hurricane Alex.
Yesterday, the first important looking disturbance in the 2016 Hurricane season, which technically starts on June 1st, showed up. And, it is possible that this disturbance will turn into something that will hit the US East Coast in time for Memorial day.
The storm is not yet organized enough to be named. It is located between Bermuda and the Bahamas, and is becoming better defined and strengthening. According to the Hurricane Prediction Center of the National Weather Service:
Environmental conditions are expected to become more conducive for tropical or subtropical cyclone formation on Friday while the system moves west-northwestward or northwestward toward the southeastern United States coast. With the Memorial Day weekend approaching, all interests along the southeast coast from Georgia through North Carolina should monitor the progress of this low.
There is an even chance that this disturbance will form up into a tropical storm by mid day Saturday, and a very high chance, about 70%, that it will do so some time between now and Tuesday.
Paul Douglas informs me that there is an increasing chance that this storm will brush the coast of South Carolina with the next three or four days, with moderate winds and some storm surge flooding, with minor to moderate flash flooding between late Saturday and early Monday. This may affect the Outer Banks.
He also notes that if the storm does develop sufficient strength to require an evacuation on the barrier islands, this would get complicated with extra large numbers of people visiting due to the holiday weekends.
You will recall that the forecasts for this year’s Atlantic Hurricane season suggest that while this will not be a record breaking year, it may be more active (more storms, bigger storms) than average. Since the last couple of years were below average, this will make this year’s season seem above-above average.
If this storm is named, it will be Bonnie.
Most likely, this storm will mainly be a bunch of rain that falls on the US southeastern plain, but if you are in the region, keep an eye on it. Consider having a backup plan for Memorial Day that involves a roof.