10:00 AM Tropical Weather Outlook: Subtropical Storms Andrea & Jaguar, East Atlantic Tropical Wave.

Tropical Weather Outlook Overview:
— (11:00 AM Update) Andrea, the first tropical cyclone for the 2019 Atlantic Hurricane Season has weakened into a subtropical depression.
Subtropical Storm Jaguar still churning off East Brazil, moving away from land.
— The first “official” tropical wave of the 2019 Atlantic Hurricane Season has moved off the West African Coast. Forecast to move across T&T early next week.

(Updated) Subtropical Depression Andrea

GOES-16 Natural Color Imagery of Subtropical Storm Andrea Southwest of Bermuda on Tuesday Morning. Credit: Tropical Tidbits
GOES-16 Natural Color Imagery of Subtropical Depression Andrea Southwest of Bermuda on Tuesday Morning. Credit: Tropical Tidbits

(11:00 AM Update) As of the 11:00 AM advisory, Subtropical Depression Andrea was located approximately 450 kilometers west-southwest of Bermuda at 30.8N, 69.2W. This system has maximum sustained winds of 55 KM/H and gusts to 65 KM/H, moving to the north at 13 KM/H with a central pressure of 1009 MB. Andrea poses no threat to the Eastern Caribbean, including Trinidad and Tobago.

This system poses NO threat to the Eastern Caribbean, including Trinidad and Tobago.

2019 Atlantic Hurricane Season List of Names
2019 Atlantic Hurricane Season List of Names

Subtropical Storm Jaguar East of Brazil, South Atlantic

Tropical Weather Outlook Overview, with Subtropical Storm Andrea in the North Atlantic, Subtropical Storm Jaguar in the South Atlantic and a Tropical Wave in the East Atlantic.
Tropical Weather Outlook Overview, with Subtropical Storm Andrea in the North Atlantic, Subtropical Storm Jaguar in the South Atlantic and a Tropical Wave in the East Atlantic.

At 11:00 AM Monday 20th May 2019, the Brazilian Navy upgraded a subtropical depression to Subtropical Storm Jaguar. On Tuesday morning, at approximately 10:00 AM, the center of circulation of this system was located at 27 degrees south, 33 degrees west, moving south to southwest at 15 knots. Gusty winds, up to 74 KM/H and very rough seas with waves up to 5.0 meters possible in the immediate vicinity of heavy convection. This system is forecast to move out to sea with little direct land impacts beyond increased surf and swells.

Note that tropical cyclones in the South Atlantic Ocean are uncommon, but we’ve already had one for the year, Tropical Storm Iba at the end of March 2019.

This system poses NO threat to the Eastern Caribbean, including Trinidad and Tobago.

Tropical Weather Outlook Elsewhere Across the Atlantic Basin

No tropical development is forecast elsewhere across the North Atlantic Basin over the next 5 days according to the 2:00 AM Special Tropical Weather Outlook. The first tropical wave has moved off the Western African Coast into the Eastern Atlantic. Presently, as of 10:00 AM Tuesday 21st May 2019, this wave is located at 24 degrees west, between 11 degrees – 2 degrees north, moving west at 10-15 knots.

The National Hurricane Center has determined classical genesis from the African Easterly Jet and convection over North Africa for this feature.

North Atlantic Tropical Weather Outlook Overview, as Saharan Dust dominates the Atlantic Basin.
North Atlantic Tropical Weather Outlook Overview, as Saharan Dust dominates the Atlantic Basin.

Tropical waves typically take 5-7 days to travel across the Atlantic Ocean and move across Trinidad and Tobago. This wave is no different. As of the latest GFS, FV3, and EMCWF in their 12Z runs show the concentrated plume of tropical moisture arriving across Trinidad and Tobago next Monday night through Tuesday 28th May 2019. Note that this is still over a week away so impacts will be clearer closer to the dates mentioned. With tropical waves, locally heavy rainfall, thunderstorms, and gusty winds are generally possible.

The designation is significant to Trinidad and Tobago because the passage of the first Tropical Wave (or the first time the ITCZ modulates across T&T) signals the start of the wet season for the islands. Following the passage of the first true tropical wave, as designated by either the National Hurricane Center or by the discretion of the Trinidad and Tobago Meteorological Service, the wet season is declared. Hence, we’re looking towards early next week for the official start of the 2019 wet season.

May Tropical Cyclone Climatology

Tropical Cyclone Points of Origin for May (1851-2015). Credit: NWS/NOAA/NHC

While the official start to the Atlantic Hurricane Season isn’t until June 1st, early season tropical cyclones are not unheard of. 50 of the 89 out of season tropical cyclones in the Atlantic Basin have formed in the month of May, with the most recent being Tropical Storm Alberto on May 25th 2018. Thankfully, for Trinidad and Tobago, these early season systems tend to form in the Western Caribbean and Southwestern Atlantic, with no impact to the Eastern Caribbean and T&T.

However, it serves as a reminder that the 2019 Hurricane Season is rapidly approaching and it is important to become prepared for both the hurricane season and the rainy season ahead!

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