AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Atlantic basin was relatively quiet in August, normally a busy month. It has become more active in September, especially the last two weeks. Hurricane Fiona had our attention, especially on Wednesday when it reached Category 4 status as winds reached 130 miles per hour.
But another system in the Western Tropical Atlantic has our attention now, because of its location and where it could be headed. An area of low pressure is forecast to develop into a tropical depression shortly with a 70% chance of development in the next 48 hours and 90% in the next five days.
While it’s too early to accurately assess where this storm is headed, there are several forecast models that take this storm into the Gulf of Mexico. It’s not the first time a storm named Hermine has developed in the Gulf.
The last time was 2016. The National Hurricane Center started tracking an area of low pressure on Aug. 18, 2016. Original forecasts tracked this storm to the east coast of Florida. But the storm kept moving to the west, changing the forecasts frequently. A track into the Gulf became more favorable.
Hermine became a hurricane in the Gulf on Sept. 1, 2016. It was the first hurricane to develop in the Gulf since Hurricane Ingrid in 2013. Its journey through the eastern Gulf would carry it to the Florida Panhandle to the east of St. Marks where landfall was made at 1:30 a.m. on Sept. 2, 2016.
Though its lifecycle as a hurricane was brief, it was still strong enough to cause $550 million in damages to that portion of Florida in 2016.
Might this future storm Hermine take the same course? Only time will tell as this storm has several days to travel before a more definite course is determined. The First Warning Weather team will be tracking this storm to keep you informed.