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Tropical Depression Five forms in the tropical Atlantic

Tropical Storm Elsa expected to form Thursday before reaching the Lesser Antilles
Published: Jun. 30, 2021 at 4:07 PM CDT|Updated: Jun. 30, 2021 at 10:35 PM CDT
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MIAMI, Florida (KBTX) - The National Hurricane Center officially named Tropical Depression Five in the Atlantic late Wednesday evening. As this system moves quickly west-northwest, it is expected to strengthen enough to become Tropical Storm Elsa as early as early Thursday.

Due to that relatively quick movement to the west-northwest, the depression is still a bit elongated and not quite above to gain the extra 4 mph wind needed to be classified as a tropical storm.

Tropical Storm Warnings have been issued for Barbados, St. Lucia, and Martinique.

Below are the 10pm coordinates for this potential tropical system:

LocationMovementMaximum Wind SpeedMinimum Central Pressure
1020mi east-southeast of the Windward IslandsW at 23mph35mph1008mb

The latest forecast from the Hurricane Center follows early runs of tropical forecast models that are in generally good agreement to swing the center of this system p[ast Hispaniola this weekend, followed by a move, near, or through Cuba by the end of the weekend to early part of next week. General consensus is to place the system -- potentially as a strong tropical storm -- in or near Florida by the middle part of the first week of July. While forecast models are in general agreement for this motion around the west side of the Bermuda High, there is still some uncertainty involved considering this is a tropical system in its early stages. Those with interests along the Gulf Coast should monitor future forecasts from the National Hurricane Center into the upcoming week.

According to the National Hurricane Center, “the disturbance is currently in a favorable upper-level wind pattern. However, most Atlantic systems in this area moving near 20 [mph] have trouble strengthening, and there are indications that the fast forward sped may produce [unfavorable upper-level wind].” They also note the uncertainty in the forecast by the weekend due to possible land interaction and differences in forecast model’s understanding of the upper-level winds.

Next update from the National Hurricane Center is expected by 1am Thursday. The next full forecast cone update is expected by 4am Thursday.

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