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No immediate threat to Acadiana, but tropics picking up

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Posted at 8:13 AM, Jul 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-20 09:53:49-04

It's quietly been a very active tropical season already, remember we had two named storms before the season had even officially started, and a slow parade of tropical storms have already taken us through the "F" name.

This time of year is typically when the tropics really begin to ramp up and taking a look at the global pattern it looks like the season is about to switch on with a few different waves that are currently being monitored.

The first one worth talking about is a tropical wave that is currently sitting just off the Cuban coast and will move into the Gulf of Mexico over the next several days.

Currently the NHC (National Hurricane Center) is giving this system a 20% chance of development over the next five days, and there doesn't seem to be much model support for development.

While there's nothing imminent the wave should be monitored as it gets into the Gulf of Mexico as conditions could allow for some further development and we may see a tropical depression close to Houston by the weekend.

Notice right at the end of the above loop there's a small bit of magenta just off the Galveston Bay, that may be the first indication of a little center which could mean models are picking up on a low end tropical depression.

That's still a lot of speculation though and there's not much consistency to build off of which would make confidence fairly low, hence the 20% chance as opposed to a higher number.

Regardless of development this system will bring some showers, at times heavy showers, to Acadiana by the end of the week and into the weekend.

Further in the Atlantic Basin is another wave that has caught the eye of the NHC, about 900 miles off the Cabo Verde Islands is another loose collection of thunderstorms that may organize over the next few days.

This, once again, has a fairly low chance to develop and the chances that ever has any impact to communities along the Gulf of Mexico is slim to none; but that's not what makes this wave noteworthy.

The reason why this one is worth talking about is simply once these waves get going in the Atlantic Basin it's a blinking signal that the Atlantic tropical season is about to hit it's stride.

We got a lot of help from plumes of African dust choking off the tropics, but with more and more moisture moving through the Atlantic Basin that dust has been settled and the conditions are ripe for development.

That's what makes these early waves important, it's not necessarily their development but each one will make conditions more favorable for the next one that comes behind it.

In fact looking at some of the long range models you can see more and more waves coming off the African Coast bringing more and more moisture across the Basin and eventually we'll see these systems starting to develop.

When it comes to a normal year we'd be right on the upswing, which is what we're seeing now, unfortunately though so far it hasn't been a normal year and the predictions for the rest of the season also are hinting this won't be an average season.

So while there's nothing imminent now, and we may get lucky and avoid another season without a major storm, we do need to be reviewing our plans of action now and getting prepared for the peak of the season.

Because right now the indications are there, that the peak may be right around the corner.