Igor and Julia stalk the Atlantic
There are two hurricanes blowing their way across the Atlantic Ocean on Tuesday. Neither one looks like it will become a threat to the U.S. mainland, although Igor seems likely to stir up dangerous surf.
The biggest threat to land is likely to be in Bermuda, where Igor (top photo) appears to be headed this weekend. But forecasters say it's still too early to say whether the island will be seriously affected.
The storm early Tuesday was located about 700 miles east of the Northern Leeward Islands, moving to the west northwest at a leisurely 7 mph. Top sustained winds had backed down to 135 mph - still a Cat. 4 hurricane, but somewhat diminished from its 150 mph power on Monday.
Forecasters predict Igor will continue to curve toward the northwest, with a forecast storm track that is beginning to center on Bermuda. It still has a sharply defined, 20-mile-wide eye, and is moving through light shear and warm water. Some intensification is possible in the next 24 hours, forecasters said. But cooling waters and increasing shear beyond that should begin to sap its power.
Farther east in the tropical Atlantic, Julia reached hurricane stature overnight. The storm was located early Tuesday 355 miles west northwest of the Cape Verde Islands, moving to the west northwest at 10 mph. Top sustained winds were estimated at 85 mph.
Julia appears destined to remain an ocean storm, with little chance of striking the U.S. mainland.
A bigger threat to land may come from a new storm (bottom photo) developing in the western Caribbean. This storm is given a 70-percent chance of becoming a tropical storm in the next 48 hours. If so, it will be Tropical Storm Karl.
Now 375 miles east of Chetumal, Mexico, it is moving to the west northwest at 15 mph. The National Hurricane Center is warning:
"INTERESTS IN THE YUCATAN PENINSULA OF MEXICO AND BELIZE SHOULD MONITOR THE PROGRESS OF THIS SYSTEM.
"REGARDLESS OF DEVELOPMENT...LOCALLY HEAVY RAINFALL IS POSSIBLE OVER
PORTIONS OF JAMAICA...CUBA...THE CAYMAN ISLANDS...THE YUCATAN
PENINSULA...AND BELIZE DURING THE NEXT DAY OR TWO. THESE RAINS
COULD CAUSE LIFE-THREATENING FLASH FLOODS AND MUD SLIDES...
ESPECIALLY IN AREAS OF MOUNTAINOUS TERRAIN. AN AIR FORCE RESERVE
HURRICANE HUNTER AIRCRAFT IS SCHEDULED TO INVESTIGATE THIS SYSTEM