Katia to Recurve, Maria to Impact the Leeward Islands, Nate Soon!!!
Hurricane Katia is currently located southwest of Bermuda moving to the northwest at 9 MPH. Katia is a Category 1 hurricane on the Saffir Simpson Wind Scale with maximum sustained winds of 85 MPH. Katia is currently slowing down to make her northward turn between the Outer Banks of North Carolina and the island of Bermuda. Bermuda as well as the eastern seaboard could experience gusty winds, large swells, and rip currents. Other than this the impacts to any land areas should be minimal.
Newly named Tropical Storm Maria is located in the central Atlantic and is moving westward at a fast clip of 23 MPH. Maria has maximum sustained winds of 50 MPH. Maria looks rather disorganized on satellite but should strengthen slowly over the next few days. Maria is forecast to move to the west or west-northwest around the periphery of the Azores High moving toward the Leeward Islands and Puerto Rico this weekend. Those two areas could see hurricane force conditions later this weekend as Maria makes her approach. There is a possibility that Maria stays weak and enters the Caribbean as the Euro model has stubbornly depicted. Time will tell!!
Finally, there is an area of disturbed weather located in the Bay of Campeche dubbed 96L west of the Yucatan Peninsula that is slowly becoming better organized. None of the reliable models show significant development; however slow development is possible over the next few days. The main hindrance to development of 96L is dry air in the Gulf of Mexico. If development occurs models differ on track from taking 96L into central Mexico, to moving it northward toward the Louisiana coastline. This area will have to be watched carefully over the next several days as the Gulf of Mexico's water temperatures are bath water warm and shear is forecast to be moderate to light. The NHC has tasked a Hurricane Hunter aircraft to investigate the system this afternoon.
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