Atlantic gains another tropical storm

The Atlantic is full of tropical activity with two storms and one depression. [National Hurricane Center]

The Atlantic gained another tropical storm overnight as a depression upgraded its status to become the second named storm in the ocean.
Tropical depression eight, now Tropical Storm Helene, is lurking southeast of the Cabo Verde Islands with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph. National Weather Service meterologist Dustin Norman said it’s expected to trek west across the Atlantic and curve out over the sea where it will dissipate.

The other Atlantic tropical storm is Florence — which was a hurricane, and is expected to regain that status by Tuesday — is taking aim at the east coast.

The Bay area shouldn’t see any effects from the storms, though, Norman said. Right now, models show North and South Carolina as the biggest targets for Florence. But he warned, the entire eastern seaboard should be on alert.

“There is still some sufficient uncertainty given that it’s five to six days out,” Norman said.

The storm will need close monitoring over the next several days, but Normal said forecasters don’t expect it to move toward Florida.

“This weekend you can expect the weather to be the same old, same old,” he said.

The biggest difference about this weekend? Instead of several sporadic thunderstorms that’s been happening this week, residents can expect a single storm to last a bit longer. Temperatures are expected to be in the 90s.

Monday is considered the peak day of hurricane season (it is also the anniversary of Hurricane Irma making landfall in Florida on Sept. 10, 2017.) This year, Weather Underground director of meteorology Jeff Masters said, that day also happens to coincide with when ocean waters are at its warmest: “It doesn’t happen often but when it does, it can contribute to increased storm activity.”

There is another tropical depression, number nine, that meterologists are beginning to watch as early indicators show that the storm could come up through the Gulf of Mexico — but that’s three weeks away.

In the eastern Pacific, Hurricane Olivia is more than 1,600 miles off the coast of Hawaii and is expected to draw close to Honolulu by Wednesday. And in the western Pacific, tropical depression Mangkhut is approaching Guam and has the potential to strengthen into a typhoon.

It’s been 26 years since three major storms have formed in both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and threatened the United States and its territories in both hemispheres and could all make landfall at about the same time.

Contact McKenna Oxenden at moxenden@tampabay.com. Follow @mack_oxenden

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