Fox News Weather Center

Will new Atlantic development follow former Tropical Depression 4?


On the heels of former Tropical Depression Four, another tropical wave has emerged off Africa. However, obstacles lie in its path to becoming the Atlantic’s next tropical depression.

Tropical Depression Four weakened to a batch of disorganized showers and thunderstorms in the central Atlantic Ocean on Friday.

“The former depression is not expected to recover from the dry air and wind shear it has and will continue to battle into next week,” AccuWeather Meteorologist Steve Travis said.

Wind shear is the changing of speed and direction of winds at different layers of the atmosphere. Strong wind shear can prevent tropical development or shred apart mature tropical storms or hurricanes.

Tropical July 9


The remains of the depression will continue to track to the west-northwest into next week.

“It will bring a slight uptick in shower activity to the northern Leeward Islands this weekend, and then the Bahamas and Florida around Tuesday and Wednesday,” Travis said.

Boaters and swimmers should also use caution as seas may become choppy for a time.

AccuWeather meteorologists are also keeping a close eye on a tropical wave that has emerged from the coast of Africa. However, this system has obstacles in its path that it must overcome in order to develop.

“Currently, there is plenty of dry air in place across the eastern and central Atlantic,” Travis said.

Dry air can prevent thunderstorms from forming around a tropical disturbance, which is a key part to the developing stages of a tropical system. It was dry air that led to the demise of Tropical Depression Four.

There is a low chance that enough dry air can be eroded ahead of the system for the next depression in the Atlantic Basin to take shape.

This system will be monitored for development as it heads westward through the Atlantic Ocean, farther to the south than Tropical Depression Four tracked.

A new road block in development may await the system as it reaches the Caribbean later next week.

“If the system can survive to the Caribbean Sea, the dry air will be gone, but stronger wind shear may be present and could rip it apart,” Travis said.

Regardless of development, increased showers and rough seas may plague residents and visitors of the Lesser Antilles later next week.