Tropical Storm Rene has now moved west of the Cabo Verde/Cape Verde Islands, into the open Eastern Atlantic Ocean.
According to local reports, Rene brought isolated flooding, beneficial rainfall to dams and fallen trees across the islands. There were some rockfalls and mudslides which temporarily made some roads impassible.
Rene moved across the islands with sustained winds of 65 KM/H and gusts to 85 KM/H. One roof was blown off a house but no injuries were reported. At the São Pedro Airport, sustained winds up to 46 KM/H and gusts to 50 KM/H were recorded while at the Amílcar Cabral International Airport, peak sustained winds were near 52 KM/H.
This is the eighteenth tropical cyclone of the 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season and it the earliest 17th named storm in Atlantic history. The previous record was Rita on September 18th, 2005. Rene is forecast to also become a hurricane later this week, as it moves out to sea.
This tropical cyclone is not forecast to directly impact Trinidad, Tobago or the Lesser Antilles.
At 5:00 PM AST, the center of Tropical Storm Rene was located near latitude 16.8 North, longitude 27.9 West. Rene is moving toward the west near 16 mph (26 km/h), and a motion toward the west or west-northwest is expected over the next couple of days, followed by a turn to the northwest.
Maximum sustained winds are near 40 mph (65 km/h) with higher gusts. Gradual strengthening is forecast, and Rene is expected to become a hurricane in a couple of days.
Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 45 miles (75 km) from the center. The estimated minimum central pressure is 1001 millibars.
Watches & Warnings
There are no coastal watches or warnings in effect.
Hazards Affecting Land
There are no hazards affecting coastlines at this time.
This system is of no direct threat to the Windward Islands, including Trinidad and Tobago.
Tropical Storm Rene Forecast Discussion
Rene has not changed much throughout the day. The storm is producing deep convection that is loosely organized in bands around the center. The satellite intensity estimates are unchanged from earlier and range from 25 kt to 40 kt. Based on these data and the earlier ASCAT pass, the initial intensity is again held at 35 kt. The eastern-most bands of Rene are now pulling west of the Cabo Verde Islands, and the Tropical Storm Warning for those islands has been discontinued.
Although Rene has struggled to maintain its intensity during the past 24 hours, the models insist that the cyclone will begin to take advantage of the generally conducive conditions of low wind shear, high moisture, and relatively warm waters. Therefore, the NHC intensity forecast continues to show Rene strengthening to a hurricane in a couple of days. Beyond that time, however, Rene will likely be moving into an environment of strong westerly wind shear, which should cause the storm to weaken in the 3-5 day time period. This forecast is largely an update of the previous one and closely follows the IVCN model.
The tropical storm continues to move westward at 14 kt. There has been no significant change to the track forecast reasoning. A mid-level ridge should continue to steer Rene westward to west-northwestward for the next couple of days. After that time, the storm should slow down and gradually turn to the north and then to the northeast as it moves into a weakness in the ridge. There is a little less spread in the guidance this cycle, but there remain
differences in the models concerning where and how sharply Rene recurves. The NHC track forecast is similar to the previous one and lies close to the TVCA and TVCX consensus models.
Forecast Discussion by Forecaster Cangialosi from the NHC.