May 29, 2012

Watching the Caribbean in the Wake of Beryl

The same general area of disturbed weather in the Caribbean that seeded Beryl could attempt to produce yet another tropical system this week.

An area of moisture and weak low pressure remains over the western Caribbean.
Indications are that a system will try to drift northward out of the mass of clouds, showers and thunderstorms as the week progresses.

However, steering winds may initially allow this particular feature to drift much farther west, when compared to the early stages of Beryl.

This feature could travel up over the northwestern Caribbean, near the western tip of Cuba and perhaps into the southeastern Gulf of Mexico

The track, organization and strength of this feature will depend largely on the timing of a dip in the jet stream (trough) forecast to roll across the interior United States later this week. A trough is a zone of harsh upper-level winds that can destroy an organized tropical system or prevent its formation.

If the system steadily drifts northward ahead of the trough, it would not only be whisked quickly to the northeast, but it would also experience significant wind shear, limiting strength of the system.

If the system lingers at southern latitudes and misses being picked up by the trough over the U.S., there may be some room for strengthening toward next weekend.

The system appears to be currently experiencing some modest wind shear in the western Caribbean, due to a weak trough near Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula.

The next name on the list of tropical storms in the Atlantic Basin is Chris.

By Alex Sosnowski, Expert Senior Meteorologist -

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