Tropical Storm Ernesto and Florence 8/5/2012 7:30 am

Colleagues, Much the same forecast for most of the week FORECAST: Tropical Storm Ernesto is 175 miles SE of Jamaica moving westward at 21 mph and with msw (maximum sustained winds) of 50 mph (a little weakening). Ernesto should regain some strength probably becoming a weak hurricane by Wednesday when it should make landfall in the Yucatan Peninsula, which will reduce it to a tropical storm again. Thursday Ernesto will be regaining strength in the warm waters of the Bay of Campeche and turn to the north some. Landfall still looks like next weekend, most probably in northern Mexico, and possibly south Texas as a weak hurricane. If it goes to Texas, you can add a day before landfall.

Tropical Storm Florence is in the Eastern Atlantic with winds of 60 mph moving west at 12 mph. It will be 5 degrees (350) miles north of Ernesto at the same point. Forecast is for weakening and slow turn to the north over the next week. Will not enter the Caribbean sea, but go north of all islands.

DISCUSSION: For Ernesto the ridge is showing signs of weakening on the western edge and the trough now in Texas extends to the SW and slowly is moving eastward. Not clear how much influence it will have but by mid week there should be a turn to the NW. By mid day Wednesday all the cards will be on the table, face up. The unknown quantity is the strength of the trough mid to late next week and how far south it will extend.

NEXT FORECAST: Tomorrow morning, Monday August 6.

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