Tropical storm Tammy is expected to hit the Caribbean with heavy rain over the weekend.
Forecasters say that the tropical storm currently in the northern part of the Atlantic Ocean is expected to move westward, intensifying as it approaches a number of Caribbean islands in the coming days.
According to the morning update from the National Hurricane Center (NHC), the storm currently has wind speeds of 60 miles per hour and is rapidly moving westward towards the Lesser Antilles.
Tammy is expected to affect several small island nations in the eastern Caribbean basin, and on Friday and Saturday, the storm's center is forecast to pass over the Leeward Islands. Rainfall of up to 10 inches could lead to flash floods and landslides, and storm surge could raise water levels by up to 3 feet.
According to NOAA's forecast, this year's hurricane season in the Atlantic is expected to be "above-normal." CLIMATE NOAA's forecast suggests that this year's Atlantic hurricane season will be "above-normal." Tropical storm watches are in effect for Barbados, Dominica, Martinique, Guadeloupe, Antigua, Barbuda, Montserrat, St. Kitts, Nevis, Anguilla, St. Barts, St. Martin, Saba, and St. Eustatius. Meteorologists say that additional watches or warnings are likely on Thursday and Friday.
Heavy rainfall of up to 4 inches is expected to spread to the United States, the British Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico by the weekend. By Monday, the storm is expected to move away from land and no longer pose a threat.
How does Tammy differ from other storms we've seen this season? This year, the NHC has recorded 18 hurricanes and tropical storms, according to the latest update published on October 1st. Only about a third of them have made landfall, including Ida, which left homes and businesses underwater when it struck the Florida coast.
CLIMATE The director of the National Hurricane Center reflects on what he's seen during his 15-year tenure. Early storm activity this year prompted forecasters to update their 2023 season forecast, changing their "near-normal" prediction made in May to an "above-normal" forecast in August. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicted between 14 to 21 named storms, with about half of them becoming hurricanes.
The main reason scientists expected higher hurricane activity is that ocean waters in the Atlantic region are anomalously warm this year, part of a global trend of rising ocean temperatures.
Federal officials have warned people in hurricane-prone regions not to focus solely on the total number of hurricanes, as just one hurricane can cause significant damage.
Some island nations in the path of Tammy are still recovering from Hurricane Maria, a Category 5 storm that nearly devastated places like Dominica when it struck six years ago.
What's happening with Hurricane Norma? Meteorologists are also tracking a second storm system, Hurricane Norma, heading toward Baja California, Mexico. Hurricane watches are in place for the peninsula stretching from Todos Santos to Los Barriles.
Norma, a Category 3 hurricane, is expected to weaken as it approaches land on Saturday, but it could still bring 15 inches of rainfall over the weekend.