Will Tropical Storm Bonnie form? What forecasters expect from fast-moving system

·2 min read

The Atlantic basin is no longer forecast to see its first hurricane of the season this week, but forecasters have upped the chances that a system near Texas might develop into a tropical depression.

And a third system is still lurking in the south Atlantic, but forecasters said it’s not likely to strengthen much anytime soon.

Where is PTC2?

The National Hurricane Center is tracking Potential Tropical Cyclone Two off the coast of Colombia. The system has maintained 40 mph sustained winds for several days, but it hasn’t managed to pull together a clearly defined center swirl that would allow forecasters to classify it as Tropical Storm Bonnie.

That could be partially due to the storm’s breakneck pace. As of the 8 a.m. Thursday update, it was still moving west at 20 mph, a significant slowdown from Wednesday and potentially a sign of imminent strengthening.

The hurricane center’s forecast still calls for PTC2 to develop into Bonnie sometime Thursday as it scrapes along Venezuela’s coast, and it upped the storm’s chances of doing so to 90%. It no longer predicts that the storm will strengthen into a hurricane before making landfall in Nicaragua on Friday, but it could become a Category 1 after it emerges in the Pacific Ocean on Saturday.

Potential Tropical Cyclone Two still hasn’t strengthened into Tropical Storm Bonnie.
Potential Tropical Cyclone Two still hasn’t strengthened into Tropical Storm Bonnie.

Two other systems

Forecasters have upped the chances to 40% that the system near the Texas coast could briefly become a tropical depression before it comes ashore Wednesday, according to the update at 8 a.m. Thursday.

Whether it develops or not, the system is expected to dump heavy rain on drought-parched Texas as it moves inland on Thursday. An Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter investigated the disturbance Wednesday afternoon.

The third system, in the central tropical Atlantic, is inching west-northwest. The hurricane center predicts it could strengthen a little as it moves over the Windward Islands late Friday or early Saturday, but said unfriendly storm conditions could cut off that growth by the time it gets to the eastern Caribbean Sea this weekend.

The system had a 10% chance of formation in the next 48 hours and a 20% chance of formation through the next five days.

The two other disturbances in the Atlantic basin have low to medium chances of strengthening into a tropical depression by the end of the week.
The two other disturbances in the Atlantic basin have low to medium chances of strengthening into a tropical depression by the end of the week.
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