What you need to know ahead of the next tropical system

What you need to know ahead of the next tropical system
(Photo source: WDAM First Alert Weather Team)

PINE BELT (WDAM) - There is a new tropical system— currently identified as Invest 90L, right now—forecast to develop in the Caribbean. If so, it would be known as Tropical Storm / Hurricane Nate. You're likely going to hear a lot about this in the coming days, so here is what we know so far.

What to expect:

Starting on Saturday we only have a 20 percent chance of seeing a shower or thunderstorm with highs in the mid 80s and lows in the upper the mid 60s. Sunday and Monday, the rain chance increases to 40 percent.with highs in the mid 80s and lows in the upper 60s.

We are still too far out to talk about specifics with forecast track, wind speeds, rainfall totals and other impacts. If anyone offers a specific forecast, please know that it is likely - very likely - going to change during the next 72 hours.


Have your NOAA Weather Radio programmed with fully-charged batteries available for it. If you must travel, make sure to check the weather conditions, watches, warnings and advisories before venturing out the door. Review your Hurricane / Severe Weather Plan and know what you would do if a severe storm or tornado was near you. If you don't feel comfortable riding out a storm where you live, make a plan regarding when you would leave your home and where you would go. Also, download the WDAM Weather App so, if the power goes out, you still have access to live, streaming coverage of any updates about the weather.

What we know right now:

After a brief 24 hours of inactivity, the tropics are active again. Invest 90L has been given a 40- to 60-percent chance for development during the next two to five days as it moves north from the Caribbean to the Gulf of Mexico.

Once in the Gulf of Mexico, it is unclear which direction it will go. Some models move it north toward Louisiana and Mississippi while others move it northeast toward Florida.


Depending on the forecast track, it could vary from breezy wind and heavy rain, to flooding rains, damaging wind and possible tornadoes. Unfortunately, it is still too early to tell for certain.


If and when Invest 90L develops into Nate will determine how fast it gets here. Generally, though, we won't see any impacts before Saturday night. And any adverse weather associated with the storm would be out of here by Tuesday morning.


Just like with Hurricane Irma, there are a lot of variables at play with the forecast track for Invest 90L. We will be watching a Cold Front, a large ridge of high pressure and localized wind shear during the next few days to figure out where it is going, and how strong it will be when it gets there.

Extra Forecast Details:

You can always find extra forecast details and a more in-depth look at the time line on Nick's Blog. If you want to know why this time is different than last time or you are curious about what goes into a severe weather forecast, that is the place to go. There is a lot of extra details and meteorological information to learn about on his blog.

The WDAM First Alert Weather App: 

Take the same tools the WDAM First Alert Weather team uses with you anywhere you go. Download the WDAM First Alert Weather app today for real-time interactive radar, location-based severe weather alerts and a constantly updated forecast for wherever you are.

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Here are some more features of the WDAM First Alert Weather app:

  • Tropical Update: Get the latest on the tropics right in your hand
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Apple users can download the app here. Android users can download the app here.

If your home or community is damaged in the storms, contact your county's Emergency Management Agency here.