PINE BELT (WDAM) - The National Hurricane Center identified an area of possible development near the Yucatan in the Caribbean this morning. The meteorologists on staff determined the area has a 20-percent change of developing into a Tropical Depression.
"A broad area of low pressure is expected to form over the northwestern Caribbean Sea and adjacent land areas by the weekend," The NHC said in a statement. "Some gradual development of this system is possible thereafter while it moves slowly northwestward."
This is the same area that we have been talking about on the air for the last four or five days.
Most models suggest slight development before the center of the system moves into Mexico. We mention that, because there will be multiple outlets that will likely try to spin this into something it is not yet. Posts on social media accounts have already featured headlines regarding a "large hurricane" and "major hurricane" developing and slamming into the Gulf Coast states.
These are false. There is nothing in the reliable computer modeling that would suggest such an outcome. Some unreliable models have suggested a Tropical Storm may develop. But those are, again to reiterate, unreliable models.
Some may say, "But it is still a possibility!"
That is fine. But, if an unreliable auto mechanic told you squeaking brakes were fine, you'd likely seek a second - more reliable - opinion.
Our promise at WDAM is to give you the latest forecast without the hype.
We will continue to monitor this area closely in concert with the National Hurricane Center and local National Weather Service offices. We will pass along updates as they are available, update the forecast with every new round of model data, and let you know when this - or any system - truly becomes a threat to South Mississippi.