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Tropical Depression 24 forms in the Caribbean

For the past few days we have been monitoring an area of low pressure across the Caribbean. Today the convection is more centralized and NHC has upgraded the system to a tropical depression. While there is no strong core yet, development is likely.

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The system is expected to steadilly strengthen as it moves westward across the Caribbean and possibly turn northward towards Cuba. When this system reaches tropical storm force, it will be named Wilma, the last name on the list and tie to record for named storms in a single year.

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The models are showing two distinct schools of thought on this system. One set, which NHC favors, turns the storm northward toward Cuba and Florida, while the other favors a more southerly track towards Central America.

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Even looking at the GFS ensemble runs, there is no clear agreement. This is very worrisome for the track forecast, because when a single model changes course so drastically with just slightly different parameterization, the forecast is very uncertain.

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Every model except for the GFS is currently calling for steady intensification. As NHC said:

ALL INDICATIONS ARE THAT THERE COULD BE A DANGEROUS HURRICANE IN THE NORTHWESTERN CARIBBEAN SEA IN THE NEXT 3 TO 5 DAYS.

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Posted by Bryan Woods | Permalink