A new tropical cyclone threat looms in the Atlantic Ocean and forecasters at the National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami, Florida believe a disturbance moving west from the African coast could be the season’s next tropical depression, tropical storm, or perhaps even hurricane. In addition to tracking and issuing advisories on Tropical Storm Peter, located more than 100 miles northeast of Puerto Rico, and on Tropical Storm Rose, located over the eastern tropical Atlantic Ocean, eyes are also on this new area of concern located a few hundred miles southwest of the Cabo Verde Islands.
According to the NHC, a small but concentrated area of showers and thunderstorms is redeveloping along a tropical wave located in the far eastern Atlantic Ocean. The NHC says that environmental conditions are expected to become more conducive for development and a tropical depression is likely to form by Thursday or Friday. The system is moving to the west at about 10-15 mph and that movement is expected to continue for the next several days as it moves across the eastern and central Atlantic Ocean.
The NHC is fairly confident a tropical cyclone will form here; they say odds of formation over the next 48 hours are 60% and the chances rise to 90% over the next five days.
Computer forecast guidance also suggests robust development of this system over time, perhaps becoming a tropical storm or even a hurricane east of the islands of the Caribbean. If this system were to become the next named tropical cyclone of the 2021 Atlantic Hurricane Season, it would be called “Sam.”
With a busy hurricane season underway, the National Hurricane Center may exhaust its list of storm names. After Sam, only Teresa, Victor, and Wanda remain. Unlike in previous years where the NHC would switch over to letters of the Greek alphabet, this year they would pull from an extra list of names in alphabetical order. A decision was made earlier this year to change the naming process when the first batch of names is used up. Should a storm beyond Wanda require a name, the next storm name to be used would be Adria.