SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) -
Satellite images and surface observations indicate that the broad area of low pressure located just west of Grand Cayman Island continues to show signs of organization. Environmental conditions appear conducive for further development due to warm Caribbean and Gulf waters, and a tropical depression will likely form during the next day or two while the low drifts toward the northwest. If this becomes a tropical storm this would be named Zeta. As of now, it is to early to tell exactly what will happen with this area of low pressure, and models are subject to change as new data becomes available.
This disturbance shouldn’t impact any plans this weekend, but it will likely bring a plume of moisture our way ahead of a front late next week.
The system could move near western Cuba by Sunday and move slowly across the southeastern Gulf of Mexico by early next week. Interests in western Cuba, the Florida Keys, and southern Florida should monitor the progress of this disturbance. Regardless of development, locally heavy rainfall will be possible over portions of the Cayman Islands, Jamaica, Cuba, southern Florida, the Florida Keys, and the northwestern Bahamas through the weekend.
Meanwhile Hurricane Epsilon is expected to maintain it’s hurricane strength for the next couple of days as it moves over a warm eddy in the Gulf Stream, assuming the current secondary eyewall consolidates. Vertical wind shear is also expected to remain low over the next two days and intensity changes will likely be influenced by inner core fluctuations. Epsilon will eventually undergo extratropical transition on Monday as it moves east-northeast and into the northern Atlantic.