The unusual track of Jimena could spell another round of flooding downpours across the Hawaiian Islands later this week.
Tropical Storm Jimena has been tracking to the northwest, seemingly on a path that would bypass Hawaii this week. However, a turn to the west may put the islands at risk for flooding downpours.
"Jimena will track west or even southwest this week toward Hawaii," stated AccuWeather Meteorologist Andy Mussoline. "A high pressure system to the north will steer Jimena in this direction."
The track of Jimena is already unusual due to how far north it has pushed as a hurricane/tropical storm, albeit weakening. Typically, the high that Mussoline discussed is located farther to the south and prevents tropical systems from coming as far north as Jimena's current location.
In addition, water temperatures northeast of Hawaii are normally too cool to support tropical systems.
Latest indications point toward Jimena maintaining a more westward than southwestward heading later next week, causing it to not take direct aim on Hawaii. However, AccuWeather meteorologists will be closely monitoring Jimena for any potential shifts in its forecast track.
As it tracks north of the islands, disruptive wind shear will continue to force Jimena to weaken through the upcoming week.
"Though Jimena will weaken, it will still threaten to bring locally heavy rain to the Hawaiian toward the middle and latter part of the week," stated Mussoline.
Through the first part of this week, surf will also remain rough with Jimena to the northeast, especially at the north- and east-facing beaches.
Much like what has been occurring recently with once-Hurricane Ignacio, tropical moisture being drawn up into Jimena will increase showers across Hawaii later in the week. That is especially true once Jimena moves west of a given location.
With enough moisture present, the downpours could be heavy enough to trigger flash flooding and mudslides in the mountains.
If Jimena takes a more southwestward track toward Hawaii, the flood danger will be increased. The risk may also last into the upcoming weekend if Jimena then turns to the north after bypassing Hawaii.
Residents and visitors to Hawaii are urged to continue to monitor the track of Jimena and the upcoming flood risk.
The 2015 hurricane season has been very active in the central Pacific and is likely to continue through the month and into October, due in a large part to El Niño.