Tropical Storm Jerry to Strengthen Into A Hurricane Later Today

As of 8:00 AM Thursday AST, the National Hurricane Center continues to issue advisories on Tropical Storm Jerry, 845 kilometers east of the Leeward Islands.

The center of Tropical Storm Jerry was located near latitude 16.4 North, longitude 53.9 West. Jerry is moving toward the west-northwest near 26 KM/H. A west-northwest motion at a slightly faster forward speed is expected over the next few days. On the forecast track, the center of Jerry will be near or north of the northern Leeward Islands Friday and pass north of Puerto Rico on Saturday.

Maximum sustained winds remain near 110 KM/H with higher gusts. Jerry is forecast to become a hurricane later today, with little change in strength anticipated on Friday or Saturday.

Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 75 kilometers from the center. The estimated minimum central pressure is 995 millibars.

Tropical Storm Jerry Forecast Cone as of 8:00 AM Thursday 19th September 2019. Credit: National Hurricane Center
Tropical Storm Jerry Forecast Cone as of 8:00 AM Thursday 19th September 2019. Credit: National Hurricane Center

Watches & Warnings

Credit: National Hurricane Center
Tropical Storm Jerry Watches and Warnings as of 8:00 AM Thursday 19th September 2019. Credit: National Hurricane Center

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for:

  • Barbuda
  • Anguilla
  • St. Maarten
  • St. Martin
  • St. Barthelemy
  • Saba and St. Eustatius

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are
possible within the watch area, generally within 48 hours.

Interests elsewhere in the northern Leeward Islands should monitor the progress of Jerry. Additional watches could be issued later today.

Hazards Affecting Land

Tropical Storm Jerry East of the Leeward Islands. Credit: Weathernerds
Tropical Storm Jerry East of the Leeward Islands. Credit: Weathernerds

Wind: Tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch areas by early Friday.

Rainfall: Jerry is expected to produce total rainfall accumulations of 1 to 2 inches with maximum amounts of 3 inches across the northern Leeward Islands, the Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico.

These rainfall totals may produce flash floods.

Seas: Swells generated by Jerry are forecast to affect portions of the northern Leeward Islands by later today. These swells are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions. Please consult products from your local weather office.

This system is of no threat to the Windward Islands, including Trinidad and Tobago.

Tropical Storm Jerry Discussion

A fortuitous 0531 UTC AMSR2 microwave overpass indicated that Jerry’s inner core has significantly become better organized this morning. The image revealed a nearly enclosed banding eye feature with the curved band wrapping around the eastern portion of the cyclone. Based on the much-improved cloud pattern and a blend of the subjective and objective satellite intensity estimates, the initial intensity is increased to 60 kt for this advisory.

Jerry is expected to strengthen further in the short term and become a hurricane later today. Afterward, the statistical-dynamical intensity models show some moderate northwesterly shear impinging on the northern half of the cyclone, which should arrest the early period intensification. Beyond the 48 hour period, a majority of the large-scale models indicate increasing westerly vertical shear as Jerry moves northwest of an upper anti-cyclone situated to the north of Hispaniola. Therefore, a weakening trend is expected through the remaining portion of the forecast. The NHC forecast is slightly below the previous advisory after the 48 hour period, but above the HFIP HCCA and IVCN consensus models, and as well as the HWRF.

The initial motion is estimated to be west-northwestward, or 290/14 kt. There are no significant changes to the forecast track philosophy. The cyclone is forecast to be steered by the southeasterly flow generated by a subtropical ridge to the northeast of Jerry through the 48 hour period. Around day 3, Jerry is likely to turn northwest to north-northwest, in response to a growing weakness in the aforementioned mid-tropospheric ridge along 70-75W longitude. The official track forecast is based on a blend of the various consensus aids.

Key Messages:

  1. Jerry is expected to become a hurricane before it moves close to the northern Leeward Islands Friday. Although the core of Jerry is currently expected to pass north of the islands, tropical-storm-force winds and locally heavy rainfall are possible, and tropical storm watches have been issued for a portion of this area.

Forecast Discussion by Forecaster Roberts from the NHC.

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