BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Development chances now up to 70% both for the southern Gulf of Mexico and the system in the Atlantic by the National Hurricane Center for tropical development over the next 5 days.
The system in the Central Atlantic is expected to be in a somewhat favorable environment for development for the next few days. But the future environment as it nears the Caribbean Sea does not look as favorable. So the feeling is that this system has a small window to organize before it will begin to struggle to hold together as it approaches the Caribbean in about 4-5 days.
The system that is headed for the Gulf of Mexico has a ton of uncertainty with it at this time. A very broad area of low pressure is forming right now in the NW Caribbean Sea. The environment in the Gulf of Mexico does look favorable for tropical development. The biggest question is whether the system will be able to tighten up and become less broad. The other question is where (location) does the tightening occur. That is why the hatched red circle is so large at this time.
The latest mid and long range weather model runs are split into two different camps. Half move the system more west over the Yucatan Peninsula and eventually into the Northern Mexico or Southern Texas coast.
These models generally keep the system weak and broad. The other models form a low in the Central Gulf of Mexico and move the system NNE towards the Alabama and Florida Coast. This path seems to show the greatest potential for development into a tropical system (likely a tropical storm). Both projections have "landfalls" around Wednesday of next week.
The bottom line is that at this time Louisiana falls in the middle of these two very different projections. That does not mean that we are in the clear. Things could easily change based on where the low forms and also how the steering mechanisms play out in the coming day. For now this is a wait and see kind of situation. Of course the entire WAFB storm team will stay on top of it.