Thursday, 16 August, 2018

Beryl upgraded to category 1 hurricane, continues moving west in the Atlantic

Subtropical Storm Alberto came ashore on the Florida Panhandle in late May. Despite this early season activity some forecasters are expecting the rest of the season to be below average New predictions for hurricanes, storms in the Caribbean this season
Sandra Phillips | 07 July, 2018, 23:00

The National Hurricane Center is tracking a tropical depression that has formed in the Atlantic Ocean. Beryl is now a Category 1 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 80 miles per hour.

A number of Caribbean islands issued tropical storm and hurricane watches Friday afternoon ahead of Category 1 Hurricane Beryl, which the National Hurricane Center described as a "miniature" and unpredictable.

The Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from June 1 to November 30, spared Bermuda previous year, but battered the Caribbean as well as the United States.

Subtropical Storm Alberto formed in late May and made landfall in Laguna Beach, near Panama City, just before the official June 1 start of hurricane season.

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NHC forecasters say that a faster westward to west-northwestward motion is expected through the weekend. Tropical storm or hurricane conditions are possible within the watch areas by late Sunday or Monday. Dry Saharan air and dust combined with strong wind shear over the Caribbean will knock Beryl down to a tropical storm as it heads deeper into the Caribbean. Some development of this system is possible during the next day or two while it moves westward at 10 to 15 miles per hour over the tropical Atlantic Ocean. These shearing winds should weaken this system as it is reaching the Lesser Antilles.

The National Hurricane Center describes Beryl as a "very compact hurricane", with hurricane-force winds extending 10 miles from the center, and tropical-storm force winds seen up to 35 miles from the center. However in recent weeks, warming waters in the Pacific have hinted that an El NiƱo weather pattern may form, which would produce upper atmospheric winds that could help tamp down the ferocity of storms in the Atlantic.

Storms named Beryl have made landfall in the United States three different times over the years, in 1988, 1994 and 2012.

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