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Fox News Weather Center

Tropical System May Take Shape Near Bermuda This Weekend

A broad area of disturbed weather in the western Atlantic Ocean, near Bermuda, could allow a tropical system to develop slowly this weekend or early next week.

In order for tropical development to take place, the structure of the disturbed weather will have to change from a cool storm to a warm storm.

According to AccuWeather Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski, "Surface pressures are lowering with the system near Bermuda, and as the system strengthens, it could acquire some tropical characteristics."

The next name on the list of 2015 Atlantic tropical storms and hurricanes is Erika.

Waters in the area are sufficiently warm to support the development of a fully tropical or hybrid (sub-tropical) storm. There are also pockets of dry air in the vicinity which could inhibit development.

Steering winds will remain weak around Bermuda through the weekend. So if a system did form during this time, it would likely not move very much.

Regardless of tropical development or not, the system will bring squalls and occasional rough seas to a several-hundred-mile radius centered near Bermuda through this weekend.

As a result, cruise and shipping interests in the northwest Atlantic should monitor the development of this system. Bathers and boaters around Bermuda should be alert for occasional big waves and strong currents.

The slow-moving nature of the broad area of disturbed weather, even without tropical development, could lead to an uptick in surf and rip currents from the upper mid-Atlantic coast to New England this weekend into early next week.

During next week, steering winds from the south and southwest are forecast to increase along and off the Atlantic coast of North America.

As this happens, the system is likely to be pulled northward then northwestward at increasing speed, following a possible brief jog to the west.

The same strengthening south-southwest winds could result in a short life span of the system and may cause it to weaken and/or fall apart.

Unless the system develops much farther west, it is unlikely to have direct impact on the United States.

There is a chance it could get close enough to Nova Scotia and Newfoundland to bring some rain and gusty winds in addition to rough surf and seas. However, an exact track this far out for a system that has not formed yet cannot be made with certainty.