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September 14, 2010

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 Igor NWSforecasters 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.

Here is the latest advisory on Igor. Here is the predicted storm track. And here is the view from orbit.

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. 

Here is the latest advisory on Julia. Here is the forecast storm track. And here is the view from orbit.

A bigger threat to land may come from a new storm (bottom photo) developing in the westernCaribbean storm NWS 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
THIS AFTERNOON."

Posted by Frank Roylance at 11:27 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: Hurricanes
        

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About Frank Roylance
This site is the Maryland Weather archive. The current Maryland Weather blog can be found here.
Frank Roylance is a reporter for The Baltimore Sun. He came to Baltimore from New Bedford, Mass. in 1980 to join the old Evening Sun. He moved to the morning Sun when the papers merged in 1992, and has spent most of his time since covering science, including astronomy and the weather. One of The Baltimore Sun's first online Web logs, the Weather Blog debuted in October 2004. In June 2006 Frank also began writing comments on local weather and stargazing for The Baltimore Sun's print Weather Page. Frank also answers readers’ weather queries for the newspaper and the blog. Frank Roylance retired in October 2011. Maryland Weather is now being updated by members of The Baltimore Sun staff
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