Tropical Storm Joaquin strengthens after forming off Bahamas

joaquin tues amFLORIDA, United States, Tuesday September 29, 2015 – Tropical Storm Joaquin formed off the Bahamas last night, as forecasters predicted, but it is uncertain which direction it will head or whether it will make landfall.

Joaquin, carrying maximum sustained winds of 45 miles per hour, is about 425 miles east northeast of the northwestern Bahamas and is gradually strengthening as it drifts westward at five miles per hour.

But there is some uncertainty about the storm’s future track, due to the presence of several other disturbances near the East Coast and their interaction with blocking high pressure over the north Atlantic Ocean later this week.

Forecaster say it is entirely possible that Joaquin may never make landfall at all.

at201511_sat_anim

“Joaquin is currently in a relatively weak steering pattern, but a building shortwave ridge in the northwestern Atlantic should allow the cyclone to drift west and then west-southwestward. This pushes the storm in the direction of the Bahamas, but the deterministic and ensemble model consensus still shows a good likelihood that Joaquin will stop fairly well short of the Bahamas, and then begin accelerating to either the north or northeast,” the National Hurricane Centre said.

An Air Force plane will investigate Joaquin later today.

Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)