2017 is quickly turning into one of the most active hurricane seasons in recent memory. With Harvey, Irma, and Maria all having done considerable damage–complete with loss of life–Americans might have to deal with one more latecomer in the hurricane season.
According to AccuWeather, the quickly growing Tropical Storm Nate could hit the states of Florida, Alabama, and Louisiana as a full-fledged hurricane by as early as this weekend.
Formerly known as Tropical Depression 16, the now reclassified Tropical Storm Nate is passing by the coast of Nicaragua at this very moment, and after passing through Honduras and parts of Mexico, it’s poised to hit the southern part of the US with considerable strength.
“Nate will move northward over the central Gulf of Mexico on Saturday and make landfall along the US upper Gulf coast on Sunday,” said AccuWeather Meteorologist Brett Rossio.
Expected to make landfall between Florida and Louisiana, residents of these states will have to wait until after the storm passes through Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula before they will know for certain which areas need to prepare.
Founder, President, and Chairman of AccuWeather, Joel N. Myers, said, “In all likelihood, this storm will impact areas not severely impacted by Harvey or Irma. The extent of the damage will depend, of course, on the precise path and whether the storm intensifies beyond a Category 1 storm.”
However, current conditions are favorable for Tropical Storm Nate to strengthen further, with the only potential factors limiting its growth being its trajectory over Honduras and Nicaragua, which will hinder its growth potential.
However, since the system will be moving over very warm waters, the potential for another powerful hurricane remains a grim reality. A tropical storm that reaches the Category 1 status could quickly escalate into a Category 2 or 3 hurricanes in as little as a few hours.
Including Nate, there have been a total of 14 tropical storms this year, with eight of them escalating into hurricanes. Five of those have been major hurricanes, including the most recent Irma, Harvey, Jose, and Maria. These four natural disasters together have caused almost $200 billion worth of damages, according to Time.
Rapidly intensifying storms such as those four typically occur only twice each hurricane season, yet 2017 has already seen four, with some experts speculating that another storm as dangerous as those four might emerge before the end of the year. Should that indeed be the case, the battered residents of the Caribbean and Southern US still have much to worry over.
Tropical Storm Nate could hit the states of Florida, Alabama, and Louisiana as a full-fledged hurricane by as early as this weekend. Can we handle this?
“The heaviest rain is likely to fall near and east of the center of the storm, until after it begins to move inland over the US,” added Rossio. As a result, people in affected areas can expect flooding, severe thunderstorms, and even tornadoes throughout the weekend.
However, there may be a silver lining to this particular storm, as much needed rain may extend across the interior eastern parts of the US, helping to ease abnormally dry and potential drought conditions in some areas of the country.
For those in the affected areas, please continue to check for weather updates, as well as take the appropriate measures to stay safe.