Right now, Dorian is five or six days from the Caribbean Islands and forecasters will have a much better idea which way it will turn in the next couple of days.
Fred Schmude is a senior meteorologist and hurricane forecaster at Houston-based Impact Weather. He says an area of high pressure is key to which way Dorian goes.
“That area of high pressure right now is to the north of Dorian and if that area of high pressure weakens a little bit faster, particularly as the storm approaches the Caribbean, it could veer quickly off towards the northwest and then the north and miss the Gulf of Mexico to the east and mainly be a threat to the Atlantic or the Eastern Seaboard.”
Schmude says prime time for hurricanes in the Gulf is usually August and September, so a storm like Dorian is a bit unusual this early.
“Dorian actually is forming a little bit earlier than expected. The last week of July, it’s kind of on the low probability side. But this season, there’s a lot of conditions in the Atlantic, there’s lower than normal wind shear, water temperatures are a little bit warmer than normal, so it looks like the season is getting off to a little bit faster of a start.”
He says he’s concerned that early models are indicating the possibility of even more activity in the first two weeks of August.