TUE 8/25/15 - Much Uncertainty With TS Erika

Note: This section is updated every afternoon with our analysis. For real time info, visit Erika's page under "Current Storms". Thanks.

We have been closely monitoring our 5th named storm of the season, Tropical Storm Erika. Erika is still a minimal tropical storm with winds near 45 mph. The storm has remained fairly disorganized today as its forward speed of 20 knots appears to be hindering development at the moment. However, as of this update Erika was developing some strong thunderstorms near the center. The NHC forecasts a slow, gradual strengthening over the next few days as Erika takes a similar path as Danny towards the Lesser Antilles where TS watches have been hoisted. Receive our detailed discussions via email as soon as they are published, please tap here

Track: Confidence is low on the eventual path that TS Erika will take. If the storm does not intensify and stays weak, then it's more likely to move more towards the west and have more interaction with the Caribbean Islands which would inhibit further strengthening. If Erika develops more over the next couple of days, then it will track more WNW possibly scraping the Lesser Antilles with ts force winds. For days 3-5, the NHC forecasts Erika to track wnw through the Bahamas as an 80 mph hurricane.

Intensity: Confidence in the intensity forecast is very low. Two of our best models (GFS/EURO) actually agree on Erika dissipating into an open wave within the next 48 hours, and this is a very real possibility just as we saw with Danny. Most models do not show Erika getting stronger over the next few days. However, if Erika survives in the short term and reaches the Bahamas, some of the models are developing Erika into a strong hurricane underneath favorable conditions and very warm sea surface temperatures.

Will Erika effect the US? The door is still open for Erika to potentially impact the SE US sometime late this weekend. A lot depends on how Erika does in the short term and if she can remain a tropical cyclone as it battles with wind shear. Some of the more reliable guidance is depicting a very strong ridge of high pressure developing in the west Atlantic that may prevent Erika from recurving. Much uncertainty exists and hopefully the future path & intensity will become more clear over the next 2-3 days. Please see our latest Long Range Impact Chances Map below to see what the % chance is of Erika affecting any one given area. As of this writing, the chances of Erika affecting the US as a tropical cyclone is around 20-30%.

Alert Levels: We have issued Alert Levels for portions of the region in anticipation of possible effects from Erika this week. Please review the image below to see what your alert level should be at this time.

Please stay tuned here at the Hurricane Tracker App for frequent updates on TS Erika this week.

We highly recommend following our Twitter (hurrtrackerapp) for real time coverage as the systems track westward.

Latest Hurricane Tracker Video Update: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WWdC-VBiR_0&feature=youtu.be

A new post will be issue sometime on Tuesday. Please check the Real Time Feed for Erika on the storm page for frequent posts from us as the data changes.

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