NHC now gives system 50% chance of forming

Posted at 5:25 PM, May 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-25 11:39:59-04

What we're watching:

The National Hurricane Center is watching a small festering of thunderstorms just north of the Turks and Caicos which could spin into something tropical by Memorial Day weekend.

At 8:15 a.m. the NHC released a Special Tropical Weather Outlook that says the area has a 50 percent chance of formation in the next five days.

815 AM EDT WED MAY 25 2016

For the North Atlantic...Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico:

An area of cloudiness and showers over the western Atlantic Ocean
northeast of the Bahamas is associated with the interaction of an
upper-level trough and a weakening front. While development is not
anticipated for the next couple of days, environmental conditions
are expected to become more conducive for tropical or subtropical
development on Friday. This area of disturbed weather is forecast to
move slowly west-northwestward or northwestward and gradually
approach the southeastern United States over the weekend. The next
Special Tropical Weather Outlook will be issued by 8 PM EDT tonight.
* Formation chance through 48 hours...low...10 percent
* Formation chance through 5 days...medium...50 percent

We had Alex, a rare January storm, form already this season, and now everyone is wondering if Bonnie will form this week.

Let me just go ahead tell you -- the likelihood of a named storm forming isn't very high at this time, but a depression is certainly possible.



Which models show it:

Early in the season, some models tend to be a bit bullish with tropical activity. This causes forecasters to take these certain models with a grain of salt when it starts printing something tropical in May and June.

However, when multiple models start to come into agreement with one another...we start to pay a little more attention.

The GFS, European, and UKMET are all showing a small batch of storms moving towards the Bahamas in the next few days.

It'll likely be a wave when it reaches the Bahamas, and that could help enhance our rain on Friday. It then moves north of the Bahamas by Saturday, and that's when it starts trying to wrap up into a depression and heads toward the Carolinas.

This could be great for our local Memorial Day weekend forecast because we'd then be on the drier, subsident side of the system.

We're going solely off the models right now; the thing hasn't even developed yet. It has a long road ahead of it, too. Strong wind shear will make it tough for it to get organized quickly.

How rare are May storms?

May storms actually aren't all that rare. It happens, in fact we had a named storm last May.

Overall, there have been 21 named storms, 4 hurricanes, and 0 landfalling hurricanes for the month.



Beware of hype:

Now that hurricane season is fast approaching, and models will inevitably be drawing something tropical on almost every run, your social media pages and TV screens will be full of hype.

Beware of the alarmist that consistently say, "it's coming here!" And the people that try making these systems more than it is. You can tell when people are doing it.

If there's ever anything you should legitimately be concerned about, we here at WPTV will let you know.