Gert became the second hurricane of the 2017 season at 11 p.m. with winds of 75 mph. It continues to be no threat to land. Florida forecasters, meanwhile, are watching two disturbances in the eastern Atlantic closely. (Credit: NHC)
It was Miami’s turn for the hottest day of the summer on Sunday, with a high of 95. The heat index was 102.
Miami’s high fell short of the hottest day of 2017, however, since a late-spring heat wave drove temperatures up to 98 in the city on May 28.
Sunday highs were a more moderate 91 in Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, and 90 in Naples. The state’s high was in Marianna, northwest of Tallahassee, where the temperature topped out at a torrid 97.
More heat is in store for the coming week, according to the National Weather Service in Miami, as forecasters pointed to the “Same ole synoptic pattern” in their Monday morning forecast discussion.
Moisture from a pair of tropical waves is expected to arrive in South Florida on Thursday and again over the weekend, but rain chances have only been bumped up slightly to around 40 percent.
Inland areas of Central Florida may get a soaking Monday and Tuesday as a stronger West Coast sea breeze drives storms toward the East Coast, according to NWS forecasters in Melbourne.
Meanwhile, meteorologists at the Weather Service, and the National Hurricane Center, are beginning to cast a wary eye on the eastern Atlantic and disturbance 91L, which was given a 60 percent chance of becoming a tropical depression or storm by the end of the week.
The European forecast model (ECMWF) continued to show this storm moving over or near the Greater Antilles toward the end of next week, so naturally Florida forecasters are on alert. While Tropical Storm Gert is on its way out sea, the next system in the queue — a potential Tropical Storm Harvey — could end up taking a more southerly track.
It’s interesting to note that on August 14, 1992 — exactly 25 years ago on Monday — a tropical wave rolled off the coast of Africa that grabbed the attention of forecasters at the NHC. It would eventually become Tropical Storm Andrew and then Hurricane Andrew, making landfall on August 24 south of Miami with winds of 165 mph.
Andrew waxed and waned as it crossed the Atlantic, and was battered by such high wind shear that at one point nearly all of its convection was stripped away and its central pressure rose to 1015 mb. It began strengthening on August 21.
Read the full NOAA report on Hurricane Andrew here. It’s a cautionary tale that warrants a fresh look a quarter-century later.
Forecast tracks for Invest 91L. (Credit: SFWMD)