Tropical Storm Gordon made landfall last night near the Alabama – Mississippi border and now poses a flood threat for the Midwest and Ohio River Valley this weekend, Florence becomes the first major hurricane of the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane Season and is beginning to show signs of making a possible run at the eastern seaboard next week, and the Atlantic Basin as a whole continues to heat up with several additional tropical troubles to watch over the next 1-2 weeks.
Welcome to the Wednesday edition of your WeatherOptics morning briefing, where we’ll give you a rundown on everything weather-related that you need to know for the rest of this week and beyond.
Tropical Storm Gordon Becomes Midwest Flood Threat:
Last night Tropical Storm Gordon made landfall just to the west of the Alabama – Mississippi border with wind speeds just below hurricane force at around 70 mph. Light damage and flooding has been reported, stretching from the western Florida Panhandle to coastal Mississippi, but overall impacts seem to be manageable. As the system moves further inland now as a post-tropical entity, the next concern from Gordon will be potential flooding.
- Tropical Storm Gordon made landfall last night as a strong tropical storm, but never maxed out its potential due to strong wind shear over the eastern Gulf of Mexico.
- As Gordon moves inland it will bring gusty winds and heavy rains to a large portion of the Midwest and Ohio River Valley region and eventually the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast. A general 2-4 inches of rain can be expected, with isolated spots seeing 4-6 inches. This will mean flooding potential for a large area from Arkansas to Illinois to Maryland over the next few days.
- The WPC has highlighted several spots under a moderate risk for excessive rainfall and flash flooding.
Read more about Tropical Depression Gordon here: http://bit.ly/2LUstDf
All Eyes Turn to Major Hurricane Florence:
After becoming a hurricane just 24 hours ago, Florence has now strengthened rapidly into the first major hurricane of the 2018 season with wind speeds up to 120 mph and pressure down to almost 960 mb. While some weakening is expected over the next few days due to increased wind shear, our meteorology team is becoming increasingly concerned about Florence and its potential impacts.
- Hurricane Florence becomes the first major hurricane of the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane Season with winds of 120 mph and pressure dropping down to near 960 mb.
- Guidance has taken quite the shift overnight with Florence, showing stronger ridging over the top of the storm, and the potential for a track further west towards the US east coast. This storm is still hundreds of miles from any land and days away from any potential impacts, so there’s no reason to fret just yet. With that said, this shift in guidance towards the east coast is certainly a reason to keep a very close eye on how Florence develops next week.
- Regardless of the exact track, guidance is very consistent on showing Florence briefly weakening before another potential period of rapid intensification as it moves towards the eastern seaboard. Again, this is reason for heightened concerns.
Read more about major Hurricane Florence here: http://bit.ly/2LPSuDL
The Atlantic Basin Continues to Grow Hot With Storms:
After an extremely quiet start to the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane Season, September is taking off like a rocket with tropical activity across the Atlantic Basin. In less than a week we’ve seen both Gordon and Florence develop, and now we’re watching several potential tropical systems coming off the coast of Africa.
- The “African Wave Parade” is alive and well as we head towards the peak of hurricane season (September 10th). It’s possible within the next 4-7 days we see two more named systems develop in the eastern Atlantic Basin.
- With unusually warm temperatures and large ridging developing over the eastern US and Canada, a system that moves underneath the above normal heights could potentially pose a threat to the US east coast.
- As of 8 AM this morning, the NHC has designated an invest off the coast of Africa as having a 90% chance of becoming a tropical depression or tropical storm over the next 5 days. The next name in line is tropical storm Helene. Issac looks like it won’t be far behind.
Read more about the 2018 Atlantic Hurricane Season heating up: http://bit.ly/2LPSuDL
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Also remember to lookout for The Sunday Storm this upcoming Sunday evening as well as Five Things to Watch This Week on Monday.