Seventh named storm forms in the Atlantic


Tropical Storm Gonzalo is now the seventh named storm of the 2020 hurricane season. This is the earliest a seventh named storm has formed in the Atlantic basin, breaking the record back in 2005 with Tropical Storm Gert named on July 24th. Right now, this storm poses no threat to us here, but it will need to be watched closely once it enters the Caribbean, possibly by the weekend.

Here is the latest discussion from the National Hurricane Center:

The cyclone has become a little better organized this morning with indications of it developing convective banding features. Intensity estimates based on Dvorak classifications from TAFB and SAB are 30 kt and 35 kt respectively. I prefer to wait for consensus 35-kt estimates before naming the system, but it seems very likely that we will have Gonzalo over the tropical Atlantic very soon. The intensity forecast for this system is subject to more than the usual degree of uncertainty. Although the cyclone is likely to remain in an environment of fairly low shear, the influences of dry air and large-scale subsidence could inhibit strengthening in a few days. The NHC intensity forecast is similar to the previous one, and calls for some strengthening during the next couple of days followed by a leveling off thereafter. This is below the model consensus, but above the global model predictions which eventually dissipate the cyclone. It should also be noted that the small size of this system makes it susceptible to significant fluctuations in intensity, both upward and downward.

The motion continues a little north of due west as a well-defined subtropical ridge is forecast to remain in place to the north of the tropical cyclone during the forecast period. The official forecast, like the previous one, is for a generally westward motion at a fast forward speed over the forecast periods. This is in close agreement with the latest dynamical model consensus.

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