RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Tropical Storm Nana has formed in the Caribbean, the 14th named storm of 2020 in the Atlantic basin.
Nana has winds at 50 mph and its path takes it toward the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico.
Nana is expected to strengthen into a category one hurricane before making landfall in Mexico on Thursday. This system is unlikely to enter into the Gulf of Mexico, which means it is also not expected to threaten the U.S.
The first few weeks of September are typically the peak of hurricane season based on historical records, and there will likely be an additional storm or two developing in the next few days.
Tropical Depression 15 has formed close to the coastline of the southeast U.S., but thankfully the steering currents in the atmosphere will take this storm away from land and into the Northern Atlantic. No direct impacts to the U.S. are expected, though there may be higher surf than usual and a rip current risk at the coast.
One area we frequently watch for potential tropical development in September is off the coast of Africa near the Cape Verde islands. Tropical waves (areas of thunderstorms in the tropics) move off the coast of Africa late in the summer and can sometimes develop into a tropical storm or hurricane.
There is a 40% chance for development with a couple of tropical waves moving off the African coast in the next few days. This system is unlikely to threaten land anytime soon.
None of the reliable forecast model guidance (such as the GFS and European forecast models, for example) show these storms threatening the U.S.
HOWEVER just because there’s no threat to the U.S. in the next 10 days, does not mean we can let our guard down. Hurricane season will likely remain active through much of the month of October.
There’s a chance the National Hurricane Center (NHC) will exhaust the list of named storms for 2020. As of August 31, there are 7 named storms to go until the end of the list of names for this year.
If we have more than 7 named storms in the remainder of 2020, the NHC will use the Greek alphabet to name storms, starting with Alpha. That has only happened once before, in the 2005 Atlantic Hurricane season, the same season that produced Katrina and Rita.
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