Tropical Depression Two (TD2) formed in the central Tropical Atlantic this morning. TD2 will track westward through this week into the weekend (see Fig. 1). At this hour, TD2 has maximum sustained winds of 35 mph and moving to the W at 16 mph. TD2 is expected to strengthen into a weak Tropical Storm by Friday morning.
Fig. 1: National Hurricane Center Forecast
Shear is currently high ahead of the storm over the eastern Caribbean (see Fig. 2). As TD2 continues its trek westward, shear values are forecast to remain high in this region (see Fig. 3), which appears to keep TD2 from strengthening any further than a weak Tropical Storm. Right now, it appears TD2 may reach 50 mph intensity. As TD2 (likely as a Tropical Storm) approaches the Lesser Antilles by this weekend, it should feel the influence of the shear and it is possible weakening will occur. Regardless of weakening, an increase in rain chances will occur for the Lesser Antilles followed by an increase in rain chances for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands on Sunday into Monday.
Fig. 2: Current Shear Map (University of Wisconsin)
Fig. 3: Sunday Morning Shear Map (Tropical Tidbits)
This is a fluid situation so please keep checking back for updates from Firsthand Weather!