Tropical Depression Nine formed from the system in the southeastern Caribbean on Friday and forecast models show the system turning north, passing over Cuba, heading into the Gulf of Mexico and reaching Florida as a major hurricane Ian in the middle of next week.
According to the latest forecast models, South Florida is in a potential Category 3 storm cone.
“It looks like it’s going to end up becoming a major hurricane,” said Will Redman, a spokesperson for the National Weather Service in Miami.
Warm waters in the Caribbean and Gulf could help turn a storm into a hurricane. Meteorologists expect it to turn into a hurricane Monday morning, according to the center’s latest advisory.
At that time, forecasts show that the storm is approaching Florida and that the effects will be visible on Monday.
“Significant impacts, if any, likely won’t start from the storm until Monday night, and are likely to start on Tuesday,” the Miami Meteorological Service said in its 5 p.m. update.
Governor Ron DeSantis declared a state of emergency in 24 counties on Friday, including southern Florida, Monroe County, as far north as Brevard County and several counties on the West Coast. The emergency order says the Florida National Guard will be activated and ready to respond as needed.
“Current forecasts show the possibility of a hurricane, or even a major hurricane at some point as it approaches Florida,” Robert Garcia, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Miami said Friday afternoon.
Encourage South Florida residents to stay vigil over the weekend.
“It’s time to start making those hurricane plans, making sure everyone has all the things they need in their kits, water, and knowing where their insurance papers are,” Garcia said. “Stay tuned for what happens with the outlook. Things will likely progress over the weekend and into early next week as that attention will be needed.”
The Miami Met Office wrote in its Friday morning report that “all tropical threats are in play” in South Florida, including damaging winds, storm surge, flooding and hurricanes.
“There is still a fair amount of uncertainty in the forecast path in the 4-5 day time frame,” said Philip Papin, a specialist with the National Hurricane Center.
Tropical Storm Hermine formed at 5 p.m. Friday from a tropical depression several hundred miles east of the African coast, according to the center’s latest advisory. Hermine is moving north-northwest at 10 mph with maximum winds of 40 mph.
In its 5 p.m. update, the National Health Service said Hermine could boost its strength through Saturday, but is expected to weaken from Sunday and fade early next week. Its current trajectory does not appear to reach the ground.
In its 5 p.m. update, the National Hurricane Center said Storm Ian is expected to move from west to northwest at 15 mph. It was 430 miles south of Kingston, Jamaica and 930 miles southeast of Havana, Cuba.
Experts expect it to move further west the next day before turning west to northwest and then northwest over the weekend.
Heavy rain could begin to arrive in southern Florida on Monday, meteorologists said, posing the risk of limited and limited urban flooding, according to the latest warning.
Continuous maximum wind speeds are around 35 mph with higher gusts. Tropical Storm Ian is expected by Saturday, with “significant intensification” on Sunday and Monday, according to an 8 p.m. update.
Continuous maximum wind speeds are around 35 mph with higher gusts. There will be a slow intensification over the weekend expected to turn into Tropical Storm Ian later on Friday.
Hurricane warnings were issued starting at 5 p.m. for the Cayman Islands, while Jamaica was under tropical storm watch. The storm will pass south of Jamaica on Saturday night and Sunday and head toward the Cayman Islands Sunday evening and Monday morning.
The five-day track heads north Tuesday over Cuba and then stops off the southwest coast of Florida as a Category 2 hurricane packing winds of 110 mph and reaching speeds of 130 mph Wednesday morning.
Tropical Depression IX is likely to bring torrential rain, flash floods and possible landslides to Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao, with heavy rains in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands in the coming days.
The Florida Department of Emergency Management issued a press release Friday morning announcing that the state was preparing for a possible landfall and urging Florida residents to prepare their homes for the storm.
“It is critical that Florida residents remain vigilant and prepared — it only takes one storm to cause costly or irreversible damage to your home or business,” FDEM Director Kevin Guthrie said in the statement.
Meanwhile, Hurricane Fiona weakened to a Category 3 storm with 125 mph winds according to a 5 p.m. update.
The storm is located 370 miles southeast of Halifax, Nova Scotia, and is moving northeast “very quickly,” according to advisories from the National Hurricane Center.
Meanwhile, the Bermuda Weather Service raised the tropical storm warning for Bermuda.
Hurricane conditions are expected to begin in Canada Friday night, with the storm’s center approaching Nova Scotia. Several parts of Canada are under hurricane warning as of 5 p.m. Friday, including parts of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. Fiona is the first major hurricane of the 2022 season, i.e. Category 3 and above.
Forecasters also monitor another system in the Atlantic. A wide area of low pressure in the Atlantic Ocean has a 30% chance of developing in the next five days, although Tropical Depression IX is the biggest concern.
“The thing to definitely watch is the system moving into the southeastern Caribbean,” said Eric Blake, a meteorologist with the National Hurricane Center.
Tropical Storm Gaston is expected to weaken gradually over the next few days. Today the storm is expected to move over the Azores, 1,000 miles off the coast of Portugal.
Hurricane season ends on November 30th. The next storm after Ian will be Julia.
Updates at this link: Ian.
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