Western Caribbean Disturbance 93L Needs Watching

October 24, 2017, 1:18 PM EDT

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Above: GOES-16 visible satellite view of Invest 93L taken at 8:45 am EDT, October 24, 2017. Image credit: NOAA/RAMMB. GOES-16 data is considered preliminary and non-operational.

An area of low pressure with the potential to develop into a tropical depression formed in the Western Caribbean near the northeast coast of Nicaragua on Monday evening, and was designated Invest 93L by NHC. The system will move slowly northward, bringing heavy rains to Cuba by the weekend. The system may also bring heavy rains to South Florida and the Bahamas by Sunday, but due to the uncertain nature of the formation location and track of the storm, it is not clear which region might be at most risk.

Satellite loops on Tuesday morning showed 93L had a modest amount of heavy thunderstorm activity that was disorganized. Conditions were quite favorable for development over the Caribbean waters off the coast of Nicaragua, with moderate wind shear of 10 – 20 knots, ocean temperatures a very warm 30.5°C (87°F), and high moisture at mid-levels of the atmosphere. Proximity to land and lack of spin are the main impediments to development at this time.

Forecast for 93L

Though the current model predictions for 93L are not especially concerning, the Western Caribbean is a notorious breeding ground for violent late-season hurricanes, and we should watch 93L with vigilance. The 0Z and 6Z Tuesday runs of our top three models for predicting tropical cyclone genesis--the European, UKMET and GFS models--had one of them, the UKMET model, predict development of 93L into a tropical storm by Friday. The European and GFS models were predicting that 93L’s close proximity to land would interfere with development, and only about 20% of the 70 members of the 0Z Tuesday GFS and European model ensemble forecasts showed development. In their 8 am Tuesday Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave 93L 2-day and 5-day odds of development of 10% and 50%, respectively. The next name on the list of Atlantic storms is Philippe.

We'll have a post later today about the heat wave in Los Angeles. Monday's high in the city was 102°F, which was their hottest temperature ever measured so late in the year. Will Tuesday be the hottest World Series game in history?

The Weather Company’s primary journalistic mission is to report on breaking weather news, the environment and the importance of science to our lives. This story does not necessarily represent the position of our parent company, IBM.

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Dr. Jeff Masters

Dr. Jeff Masters co-founded Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. in air pollution meteorology at the University of Michigan. He worked for the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990 as a flight meteorologist.


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