It is August and the tropics are busy. There is quite a lot to talk about so let’s begin with the Atlantic._The NHC mentions a weak low pressure area currently located over north-central Florida on their latest outlook. The low is over land but it is producing a large area of disorganized convective activity (thunderstorms) that persist over parts of Florida and adjacent Gulf waters.
The low and the stalled frontal boundary that has been draped across Florida for the past few days has produced excessive rainfall in some locations around the Tampa Bay region. Flooding along small streams, creeks and even some major river systems is occurring and will be a problem for the next day or two.
Forecast models show the low pressure area moving northeast along the coastal waters from Georgia up through the Carolinas early this week, eventually moving on out to sea with little additional development. However, periods of heavy rain are possible as the low slowly tracks along the coast – keep this in mind if you’re headed out to the beach over the next few days.
In the far eastern Atlantic, there is a chance that we will see development later this week as a strong tropical wave emerges from the coast of Africa. The GFS model in particular is quite enthusiastic with this scenario and if it comes to pass, we could see the next Atlantic named storm form before the week is out. Other models are not nearly as bullish on development and if something were to get going that far east, it would likely suffer substantial weakening as it moved west in to the extremely hostile environment of the tropical Atlantic.
Meanwhile, in the central Pacific, Guillermo is barely hanging on as a hurricane and will continue to weaken as a result of stronger upper level winds pushing the deep thunderstorms away from the low level center. This shear, as it is called, will continue and Guillermo is expected to weaken to a tropical storm later today.
Interests in Hawaii should be prepared for rougher than normal surf conditions, heavy rain and some gusty winds as Guillermo closes in later in the week. Fortunately, it is not forecast to be anywhere near hurricane intensity due to the strong upper level wind pattern around Hawaii. The impacts from the storm will be minimal on the whole but some localized areas of heavier rain could cause flooding issues which are impossible to pinpoint this far out.
Elsewhere in the east Pacific, invest area 92E is on course to become a hurricane far from land. It will likely track west-northwest away from Mexico and shouldn’t be an issue for Hawaii either.
Last but not least is super-typhoon Soudelor in the western Pacific. Top winds are likely over 160 miles per hour now as it travels westward over the open Pacific. It will take a few days, but it looks like a direct impact on Taiwan and then mainland China is in store as the typhoon churns westward. This will likely be a big news maker and I will be following it closely.
M. Sudduth 9:00 AM ET Aug 3