Monday, September 27, 2010

The Atlantic Basin Goes Silent... But Not For Long

After a slow start to a hurricane season that was hyped to be anything but slow, today marks the first full day since the development of Tropical Depression #6 on August 21 (which would later become Hurricane Danielle) that we've gone without a named storm in the Atlantic basin. Although we almost did it between September 5–6 when Hurricane Earl dissipated in the north Atlantic, we were surprised when Tropical Depression #10 (which would later become Tropical Storm Hermine) quickly spun up in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico before making landfall in extreme northeastern Mexico. This marks a total of 36 days having a named storm, the longest such period since the 2002 Atlantic hurricane season, which had remained completely active for 45 days from August 29 through October 12.

We are well into an above-average Atlantic hurricane season with 13 named storms and two unnamed tropical depressions, and there are only eight more names available for use before we'd need to break into Greek alphabet, which has only been done once in history – during the epic 2005 Atlantic hurricane season. With that said, today's break in activity leaves us on edge after yesterday's degeneration of both Lisa and Matthew, wondering where Nicole is... and will Otto follow?

According to the National Hurricane Center (NHC) there is an increasingly likely chance we'll see our next named storm this week as an area of convection continues to flare up in the northwest Caribbean Sea which in the short-term seems to have its eyes on the southeastern Gulf coast. Meanwhile, a very small area of convection flared overnight in the central Atlantic, but development of this system is not likely in the near-term.

There is not yet an official invest on the system in the Caribbean but by day's end I would expect to see 96L pop up! At that time the computer models should have a better handle on what the system might do – where it might go, how fast it might develop and how strong it could become. To that extent I encourage all interests in the northwest Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico to monitor possible development in this region as the break in tropical activity seems to be short-lived!

[UPDATE #1: As of 3:30 p.m. ET 09-27-10, we officially have 96L invest.]
[UPDATE #2: As of 11:00 a.m. ET 09-28-10, we officially have Tropical Depression #16.]

I'll leave you with 2010 Atlantic hurricane season scorecard, courtesy of The Weather Channel:

Named Storms
Major Hurricanes

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