Hurricane

A new tropical storm is born in the Atlantic. Jerry could become a hurricane this weekend

The veritable assembly line of tropical systems in the Atlantic spat out something new for South Florida to watch this week — Tropical Storm Jerry.

Jerry strengthened from a depression into a tropical storm Wednesday morning. It’s still more than 950 miles east of the Leeward Islands. It could be a hurricane as soon as Thursday night.

As of Wednesday’s 5 a.m. advisory, the track showed the potential tropical storm headed west-northwest through the week before crossing north of the Leeward Islands, Puerto Rico and Hispaniola over the weekend. Forecasters said the system was “getting better organized.”

The spread of models shows the storm could possibly curve out into the Atlantic, like Hurricanes Dorian and Humberto, but it was too soon to tell what threat it might pose for the Bahamas, Florida or other states.

Tropical Storm Jerry, the 10 named storm of the season, is headed west-northwest at around 13 mph, with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph.

Meanwhile, another system developed off the coast of Texas. That system, named Imelda, is predicted to drench parts of Texas, some of which are under a tropical storm warning, with up to a foot of rain.

Hurricane Humberto is still kicking around near Bermuda, but the Category 3 hurricane is expected to stay out at sea before weakening to a tropical storm on Saturday. Bermuda is under a hurricane warning and could see up to 3 feet of storm surge when the storm hits on Wednesday evening.

Tuesday afternoon, the hurricane center also identified a new disturbance right behind tropical depression 10. It probably won’t develop anytime soon. Forecasters estimated it had just a 20 percent chance of strengthening in the next five days.

There are three other tropical storms in the Pacific basin as well, prompting Eric Blake, an NHC forecaster, to tweet “Anyone want a tropical storm? They are forming like roaches out there!”

He said the activity is believed to tie a modern NHC record.

Correction: An earlier version of this story had the incorrect name of the next named storm.

Miami Herald staff writer Carli Teproff contributed to this report.

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Alex Harris covers climate change for the Miami Herald, including how South Florida communities are adapting to the warming world. She attended the University of Florida.
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