The National Hurricane Center said Wednesday afternoon there is a 50% chance a tropical cyclone forms in the southwest Caribbean Sea during the next week, along with a lower chance that a separate tropical cyclone forms near Florida— activity that comes with just two weeks left in hurricane season.
In Wednesday’s 1 p.m. update, the NHC said there is a 40% chance a tropical cyclone forms in the southwestern Caribbean Sea in the next 48 hours and a 50% chance one forms in the next seven days.
Regardless of formation, it warned of heavy rains strong enough to “result in flash flooding and mudslides over” parts of the coast of Central America and the Greater Antilles through the weekend.
If the system does develop into a tropical storm, parts of Cuba, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, Haiti and Puerto Rico could expect to see strong winds and heavy rainfall with potential flooding, according to AccuWeather.
There are no signs of the system directly impacting the U.S. in the near-term.
A November named storm would be somewhat rare: According to the Weather Channel, people can expect one named storm every other year in November, and one November storm that escalates to a hurricane about every three years.
Off the coast of Florida, the NHC is warning of “a non-tropical area of low pressure” that will produce “gusty winds and heavy rains” across southern Florida, the Florida Keys and the Bahamas. However, the NHC said there is only a 10% chance of that forming in a tropical cyclone.
20. That’s how many total storms have formed in theAtlantic basin so far this hurricane season, including an unnamed subtropical storm that briefly formed in January that was only identified in a later analysis. Of those 20, seven have become hurricanes and three have reached major hurricane status—Category 3 or higher. The average hurricane season has 14 named storms, seven hurricanes and three major hurricanes.
If another named storm forms this season, it would be named Vince. It would also leave Whitney as the only name left if another tropical system were to take shape in the Atlantic basin before the end of the year. Hurricane season officially ends Nov. 30, though the 2023 naming list goes until the end of the year in the off chance any storms form after that date.
This year’s Atlantic hurricane season—which started on June 1—has been busier than the average as a typical hurricane season sees just 14 named storms. Last year, there were 14 named storms, and nine escalated to become hurricanes. Experts have suggested that the warming waters in the Atlantic have played a role in the high number of hurricanes. In August, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration increased the likelihood of an above-average Atlantic hurricane season from 30% to 60%, citing warming ocean temperatures and El Niño’s weather pattern. Hotter ocean waters have also likely led to more storms rapidly intensifying, or a sharp increase in the maximum speed of winds over a 24-hour period—both Hurricane Lee in September and Hurricane Idalia in August rapidly intensified.