Statically we’re entering about peak hurricane time in the Atlantic and we now have two disturbances to talk about. That said, we should clarify that neither of these storms are hurricanes now and neither of the storms are forecast to reach hurricane status.
The first storm, Tropical Storm Dorian is just through the Lesser Antilles and Barbados, now moving toward Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic.
The forecast track does take the storm to a landfall in Puerto Rico, but it should be pointed out that this storm is far from a repeat of Maria in 2017. Maria made landfall as a strong Category 4 storm. This will likely not even make Category 1 status. From there it moves across the Atlantic, through the Bahamas and toward the East Coast of Florida. The forecast is for Dorian to make landfall as a Tropical Storm somewhere along the Space Coast of Florida on Sunday.
The second system is not even named yet. It’s “Tropical Depression Six” and is currently off the coast of the Carolinas. The forecast for this system is for it to track along the Gulf Stream and up the East Coast. The forecast does strengthen the storm into a Tropical Storm (if and when that happens, it will be Erin), but fortunately keeps it out to sea. That said, even through it stays over the Ocean, it will have impacts for us over the second half of the week.
Watch the timeline of images below: We start out dry tomorrow morning, but clouds will thicken and rain will fill in through the afternoon and evening hours. It’s a combination of two weather systems. The first, Tropical Depression Six; the second, a cold front. TD-6 will spread tropical moisture into the atmosphere that will then be squeezed out by the cold front. That cold front will also help deflect TD-6 out over the Ocean. While we do see rain, timing is pretty good, most of it will be Wednesday evening and overnight, and out by Thursday morning.
Because we’re working with tropical air and tropical downpours, rainfall amounts will vary quite a bit from town to town. We’ll likely have two rain maximums in the area. One west of us (the blue) where the cold front is responsible for the rain, and a second closer to the coast where the tropical moisture is setting up. In between could be virtually nothing. On the map below, don’t pay attention to exact numbers or location yet, it just gives a good general picture of what we’re dealing with. Some areas could see an inch to inch-and-a-half, while a few towns over barely enough to wet the pavement.
The other impact will be on the beaches. Despite being offshore, it will be close enough to churn up the waters and give us rough surf and a higher risk of rip currents. Tomorrow will actually be one of the “better” days for rip currents only falling to the moderate category (that doesn’t mean you’re in the clear). But Monday and Tuesday had high risk and I think the high risk is back Thursday as the storm passes by.