Days after Irma devastated the Leeward Islands, another hurricane is set to make a close pass to the islands.
Jose, which formed into a hurricane Wednesday afternoon, is set to track to the northwest toward the northern Leeward Islands through this weekend. Short-term conditions will favor further intensification of Jose.
"The hurricane will remain within a very favorable environment for intensification and Jose should become a Category 3 and major hurricane," AccuWeather Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski said.
Jose will make a close pass to the northern Leeward Islands Friday night through Saturday, likely as a Category 2 or 3 hurricane. Depending on how close Jose passes, will determine the severity of the impacts.
“Jose is relatively small and is not expected to become a large hurricane in size,” Kottlowski said.
The size of Jose could keep the worst impacts away from the northern Leeward Islands.
If Jose is able to track close enough to the Leeward Islands, another round of heavy rain, gusty winds, swells and storm surge for the northern Leeward Islands would be in store.
The islands most likely to be impacted include Barbuda, Antigua, Anguilla, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis.
These are the same islands that were devastated by Category 5 Hurricane Irma just days ago.
The prime minister of Antigua and Barbuda described Barbuda as "barely habitable" on Wednesday afternoon due to the catastrophic damage left behind by Irma.
Another round of heavy rain would make any ongoing flooding worse and could cause additional flooding.
Strong winds would also lead to additional damage to structures and blow debris around, especially if the center of Jose tracks close enough to the islands. An uptick in surf and surge would occur and cause flooding.
Regardless of how close Jose tracks to the Leeward Islands, an uptick in drenching showers, wind and rough surf can still be expected.
Any type of impacts from a tropical system will only further endanger lives on these islands, following the devastation from Irma.
Beyond the Leeward Islands, Jose will likely get caught up in a lack of steering flow, causing the hurricane to decrease its speed.
"It's possible Jose might slow down and stall just south of Bermuda early next week as steering flow around the system drops off considerably," Kottlowski said.
During this time, Jose will only bring disruptions to shipping interests in the region. However, rough surf and rip currents will batter Bermuda.