BLOG: An Eye On The Tropics
By Kate Bilo
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Well, you couldn’t really ask for a nicer start to October in the Philadelphia area, with temperatures reaching the 80 degree mark and lots of sunshine. The nice streak of weather will continue through the weekend, but next week, we could finally see some rain move back into the area. The culprit could be a blend of weather factors – a strong front arriving from the west, especially, but it’s the moisture that front drives northward that we’re focusing on here.
There is currently an area of disturbed weather in the Caribbean being monitored by the National Hurricane Center. This type of monitored disturbance is known as an Invest, and this particular one is labeled Invest 97L. This system has a 30-50% chance of becoming tropical, and it would be named Karen. It has brought almost 3 inches of rain already to portions of Jamaica and will move into the still-warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico by the end of the week, which should help strengthen the system.
As of right now, a number of tropical and ensemble computer models are indicating a potential landfall of the system, likely at tropical storm strength, along the Gulf Coast this weekend (anywhere from Louisiana to the Florida Panhandle, as the image shows). Then the advancing trough would pick up the system and shunt it northward, where its remnant rainfall could impact the Philadelphia area by the early part of next week, likely Tuesday.
Keep in mind that the system hasn’t yet developed and thus, confidence remains low. There is still a chance that if the storm moves far enough inland over the Yucatan, it could weaken and that could inhibit further development. But it’s definitely something we’ll keep close tabs on and continue to update throughout the week.