Friday, 20 October, 2017

Ophelia becomes 10th hurricane of the season

Tropical storm Ophelia path track NOAATropical storm Ophelia will become a hurricane by the end of this week
Clarence Duncan | 12 October, 2017, 00:45

The active 2017 hurricane season has another addition for the record books.

Ophelia is now located across the north-central Atlantic Ocean, roughly 2400 miles from the Grand Strand. That ties the record for most consecutive hurricane-strength storms in the Atlantic Basin.

As of the 5am update from the National Hurricane Center Tropical Storm Ophelia is spinning away in the north Atlantic as the 15th named storm of this hurricane season.

Wind shear - which could disrupt the storm's development - is light, and it is passing over sea surface temperatures much warmer than normal, which should help it sustain hurricane strength through at least Friday.

The storm is moving east at 3 miles per hour, the National Hurricane Center said in an update Wednesday afternoon. The other years with ten consecutive hurricanes are 1878, 1886 and 1893. Ophelia will then run into an approaching deep-layer trough that will make the hurricane accelerate toward the northeast.

Center officials said the hurricane is forecast to drift northeastward over the next 24 hours. That's a bit of an unusual track for Atlantic storms.

The non-tropical phase of Ophelia may feature a larger, more intense storm that could bring a range of hazards to Ireland and the United Kingdom, from damaging winds to punishing waves.

Tropical Storm Ophelia is the latest weather system to whip up winds and rain in the Atlantic.

Beyond that, after passing off the Iberian Peninsula, the post-tropical cyclone is expected to curl northward and remain an intense storm somewhere near or off the coast of Ireland Monday or Monday night. Strongest winds are far from the center and higher in the atmosphere.

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