The National Hurricane Center on Wednesday declared Irma the season’s ninth named storm. The NHC is projecting that the storm could intensify to hurricane status by Friday morning, though it’s still too soon to know whether it’ll pose a threat to anyone in the Caribbean or the US. The big question is where Irma will go. It’s in the eastern Atlantic, moving west at 10 to 15 mph. When it reaches the Antilles in the eastern Caribbean next week, researchers will be watching its path. If Irma passes over the islands or goes south of them, as some models predict, it could become a threat for locations in the Caribbean, Mexico, or the US.
We’ll know more about Irma by the middle of next week. Meanwhile, another potential tropical disturbance could form in the Gulf of Mexico next Tuesday or Wednesday. If that happens, that storm could be headed for the already drenched Texas and Louisiana coasts.
In other news, a soggy weekend is in store for parts of the state. Excessive moisture being drawn in from the Atlantic and the remnants from Hurricane Harvey can potentially bring rainfall totals of 1-4 inches. Isolated showers should be expected as well as some thunderstorms for the lower half of Pennsylvania. We will continue to update on both topics as we get closer to the weekend.