ORLANDO, Fla. – Friday morning, what was known as Invest 97L became Tropical Depression 15 over the open Atlantic. It’s expected to become Tropical Storm Nigel sometime on Saturday.
Invest 97L was showing signs of organization and clocked sustained winds of 35 mph, upgrading it to a tropical depression.
By definition, a tropical depression is a tropical cyclone that has maximum sustained winds of less than 39 mph. Once a tropical depression forms, the National Hurricane Center designates a number based on its order of formation during the season.
The Saturday morning advisory from the National Hurricane Center has Tropical Depression 15 with maximum sustained winds of 35 mph moving to the north-northwest at 14 mph. The center of the system is a little over 1,000 miles northeast of the Leeward Islands.
The atmospheric conditions are favorable for further strengthening this weekend. When winds reach 39 mph or higher, it’ll be upgraded to a tropical storm and get the next name on the list, Nigel.
The latest forecast projects that it could become the next hurricane of the season as early as Monday.
But where is it going? The latest projections from computer models suggests that it’ll stay out to sea, not directly impacting land. It’ll continue to move into the western Atlantic in the coming days and eventually curve to the north around mid-week.
Areas along the Eastern Seaboard once again could be burdened by strong waves and dangerous rip currents through the week due to soon-to-be Nigel.
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