Tropical storm Fiona likely to impact Puerto Rico
More heavy rain expected for Suncoast
SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - Tropical storm Fiona is now located over 700 miles east of Puerto Rico and moving to the west at 15-20 mph toward the Leeward Islands. It lis now classified as the 6th named tropical storm of the 2022 season. It will bring some torrential rain and gusty winds of 50-65 mph to the U.S. and British Virgin Island and Puerto Rico on Friday.
Fiona will have to battle some dry air, westerly shear and the mountainous terrain of Hispaniola to get any stronger than a weak tropical storm. Most of the intensity forecast models keep it as a tropical storm over the next 5 days due to the hostile conditions.
This tropical cyclone will continue to move slightly north of due west over the next 3 to 4 days and then there are two different scenarios that may occur. The two most reliable global forecast models, the EURO and the GFS, show the storm to make a break to the NW after Haiti on Monday and then head to the north early next week staying well to the east away from Florida.
The other possibility is that it stays a weaker system and does not get picked up by the ridge driving it. This would keep it on a more westerly course and continue to move to the west. This would put Florida more at risk of being impacted by this system. It doesn’t appear that whatever is left of Fiona after the Dominican Republic would be too strong. Mainly a big rain maker as it moves close or over Florida.
Right now it is just a wait and see situation as to what may happen here. The odds of our area being impacted by this storm is fairly low at this time. Remember lots of things can happen between now and mid week next week. It is a good reminder however to go over your hurricane plan and supply kit as there is still 2 and 1/2 months to go before the official end to the 2022 hurricane season.
We will see partly cloudy skies on Thursday with a good chance for scattered storms during the late morning and early afternoon along the coast and then most of the storms will move inland later in the day. Some of the storms will then work back toward the Gulf during the evening.
Friday and Saturday we will see a good chance for late day showers and thunderstorms otherwise we will have partly cloudy skies throughout much of the morning hours. Highs will be in the upper 80s to low 90s inland.
The rain chances go down a bit on Sunday to 40% as some slightly drier air slips in.
For boaters look for winds out of the east at 5-10 mph and switching around to the SW late in the day. Seas will be less than 2 feet and a light chop on the inland waters can be expected.
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