Tropical Depression Eleven (TD-11) is churning over the Atlantic, eyeing the Caribbean. Container ships will need to steer clear over the next several days.
Showers and thunderstorms swirling around a low pressure system in the eastern tropical Atlantic Ocean on Tuesday afternoon, August 11, intensified as the circulation around the low tightened. This resulted in the tropical wave strengthening into a tropical depression.
As of 5 a.m EDT today, August 12, TD-11 was centered about 1,4000 miles east-southeast of the northern Leeward Islands, a Caribbean island group which includes Anguilla, Saint Martin, Saint Kitts, Antigua, Barbuda, Montserrat and Nevis.
The depression is moving toward the west at around 15 mph, and the National Hurricane Center (NHC) expects this general motion and forward speed to continue today.
TD-11 could make a bit of a northwesterly turn tonight, continuing that motion through the rest of the week while maintaining its forward speed.
Maximum sustained winds are near 35 mph, and the NHC expects winds to pick up. Once they reach 39 mph, TD-11 will become Tropical Storm Josephine, the 10th named storm of the 2020 Atlantic season. This is likely to happen later today.
The NHC has not issued any coastal tropical weather advisories, but this may change.
The latest forecast has potential Tropical Storm Josephine brushing by the northern Leeward Islands this weekend, but not making a direct hit. However, a slight shift southward of the storm’s eventual track would change that.
It’s much too early to tell how strong the storm will become, or if it will reach the mainland United States. For now, it’s mainly an issue for container ship operators that will need to steer clear.
Look for updates over the next several days on the FreightWaves website and social media accounts.