This is your Friday evening tropical weather discussion for tonight and it is a real complicated situation.
Let’s start off by saying that both Tropical Storm Laura and Tropical Storm Marco are both very complicated systems and that both of them are in the very early stages of development. This is that point during their lifecycle that these storms become very difficult to predict, and these are proving no exception to that rule.
Just moments ago, the National Hurricane Center began issuing advisories on Tropical Storm Marco. It has officially formed over the Western Caribbean and is forecast to move near the Yucatán on Saturday. We will talk more about that later.
The Hurricane Hunters have been flying into the area over the past few days and they have been providing us with some really good data, as they always do. What we don’t have is lower level data that really zone in on those steering currents. We expect those flights to start tomorrow and we should end up with a pretty well balanced forecast by the time we talk in-depth on Saturday evening. But there is an interesting factor here.
One anomaly that we are seeing here is that there is most likely going to be two tropical systems in the Gulf at the same time. The last time it happened was in June of 1959, and check it out, that was 3 years before before weather satellites were positioned in low-earth orbit! Look how far we have come! Here is the funny part about that, we as researchers and observers have never had the chance to two hurricanes in the Gulf at once, and if that does end up happening, truthfully, nobody knows for sure don’t know for sure how they will play with each other and how they will respond. This could get very interesting from a scientific standpoint.
Right now on Friday evening, the current data tells us that Laura could become the stronger of the two storms, and computer model tracks for Laura, you will see a significant shift westward shift westward Louisiana just as we talked about last night.
Here is what we need to do: remain vigilant and informed through the weekend. As Matt and I have discussed over the past few days, the general thought process here is a landfall for Tropical Storm Marco early next week between the Matagorda Ship Channel and Cameron, Louisiana. For now, we feel comfortable sticking with that, but then again that could change depending on what we see tomorrow and how TD 14 interacts with land and surface variations over the weekend.
The National Hurricane Center has just upgraded TD 14 into Tropical Storm Marco. The forecast track has shifted further south and west than previously discussed and the official forecast has Marco making landfall as a Tropical Storm around 4pm on Tuesday near Freeport, if that does not shift again, which it likely will as it interacts with effects from Laura to it’s east. I’d expect watches to begin being issued sometime late on Sunday.
As of right now we imagine that this will all change again because it is still very early in the game. At the very least, this means that we will see rain chances increase early next week and see increased chances for coastal flooding. Again, this is the time to watch and prepare for what could lie ahead. Only time will tell as this thing works its way out.
The city of Corpus Christi said on Friday that they have begun to fill sand bags that will be made available at two locations should they be needed.
Matt Pierce and Doug Mason contributed to this report.
Disclaimer: All of the information contained herein is the opinion of The Southside Light Staff and consultants. Always consult with the National Hurricane Center and the local National Weather Service office in Corpus Christi, Texas when making decisions.