Subtropical Storm Melissa forms southeast of New England

National Hurricane Center watching 3 systems

By Cheryl McCloud, Florida Today

Subtropical Storm Melissa has formed southeast of New England, according to the National Hurricane Center at 11:50 a.m.

Melissa evolved quickly Friday morning from a low-pressure system with a 30 percent chance for development at 8 a.m. to a storm with a 60 percent chance for development at 8:30 a.m. to a subtropical storm at 11:50 a.m., News 6 partner Florida Today said. 

It's not the only system being monitored by the National Hurricane Center. Two other systems have popped up in the Atlantic basin, according to the 8 a.m. advisory from the National Hurricane Center.

One formed in the Caribbean while the third is expected to move off the coast of Africa. Both have a 20 percent chance for development over the next five days.

At 11 a.m., the center of Subtropical Storm Melissa was located 190 miles south of Nantucket, Massachusetts.

  • Location: 190 miles south of Nantucket, Massachusetts
  • Maximum sustained winds: 65 mph
  • Movement: south-southwest at 3 mph

Melissa is moving toward the south-southwest near 3 mph, but little net motion is expected Friday.

A turn toward the east-northeast with an increase in forward speed is forecast for Friday night and that motion will continue through the weekend.

On the forecast track, the center of Melissa will move away from the east coast of the United States.

Maximum sustained winds are near 65 mph, with higher gusts. Gradual weakening is expected over the next couple of days, and Melissa is forecast to lose its subtropical characteristics by Saturday night.

Winds of 40 mph extend outward up to 345 miles from the center, primarily over waters.

The estimated minimum central pressure is 995 mb.

Hazards affecting land include:

Wind: Wind gusts to 50 mph are likely to continue over portions of Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket through much of Friday.

Coastal flooding: Coastal flooding will continue Friday along portions of the U.S. east coast from the mid-Atlantic states to southeastern New England.

Surf:  Swells generated by Melissa are affecting much of the U.S. East Coast, portions of the Bahamas, Bermuda and Atlantic Canada. These swells will result in life-threatening surf and rip current conditions.

A broad area of low pressure is expected to form over the western Caribbean Sea during the weekend.

This system is forecast to move westward toward Central America early next week, and some development is possible if the low remains over water while moving near the coasts of Honduras, Guatemala and Belize.

  • Formation chance through 48 hours, low, near zero percent.
  • Formation chance through five days, low, 20 percent.

A tropical wave, accompanied by a broad area of low pressure, is expected to move off the west coast of Africa on Sunday.

Although the far eastern Atlantic is not climatologically favorable for tropical cyclone formation this late in the hurricane season, some development of this system appears possible early next week while it moves generally northwest near or over the Cabo Verde Islands.

  • Formation chance through 48 hours, low, near zero percent.
  • Formation chance through 5 days, low, 20 percent.

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