New ‘Potential Tropical Cyclone 6’ churning in the Atlantic


KANSAS CITY, Mo.– While we’ve been dealing with typical summertime heat, humidity, and storms here in Kansas City, it’s been abnormally quiet in the tropical Atlantic.

No named storms have formed in that part of the world since Elsa dissipated on July 9 over the Northeastern United States. That kind of quiet stretch this time of year hasn’t happened since the 2009 season.

NOAA issued their updated 2021 Atlantic hurricane season forecast, saying that the tropics will wake up again, and this may be one of several more storms as we push through the peak of hurricane season.

It’s likely that we’ll see the next named storm in the Atlantic as early as tonight.

View of the Atlantic Ocean as of this afternoon. The “area to watch” is circled in yellow. Credit: COD Meteorology

An area of low pressure continues to gather itself as it drifts to the north and west, closing in on Barbados. This may have an impact on several land masses in the Caribbean and, eventually, the Gulf of Mexico.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC), as of 1 p.m. today, has given this “area to watch” an 80% chance of formation in the next 48 hours, indicating that a new tropical storm may form as early as tonight. The next named storm (which would be called “Fred”) may be soon to come.

And a couple of hours later, the NHC went ahead and named this “area to watch” Potential Tropical Cyclone 6 (PTC 6), which is one step closer to tropical storm status.

As was the case with Elsa in July, the possible naming of “Fred” will be way ahead of the average schedule:

Forecasted path of PTC 6 issued by NHC this afternoon

PTC 6 expected to maintain that north-northwest course. Folks in the Lesser Antilles, U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, and Haiti will really have to watch for tropical storm conditions as the preparation time will be shorter than normal.

If that path continues, impacts to Florida or other Gulf Coast states are possible.

We’ll continue to update you on the progress of this developing storm as it makes its way through the Caribbean and closer to the United States.

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