TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The National Hurricane Center is continuing to watch Tropical Storm Philippe and a disturbance, which is expected to become the next named storm.
The NHC said it is watching an area of showers and thunderstorms that continue to show signs of organization.
The system is located about halfway between the Cabo Verde Islands and the Lesser Antilles.
It could become a tropical depression or a tropical storm in the next day or so while it moves west-northwest across the central tropical Atlantic.
The system has a 90 percent chance of development over the next two days. If the storm forms, it will become Rina, the 17th named storm of the season.
Meteorologists said if the system forms, it will likely stay out to sea.
“Those forecast models all in really good consensus that it is going to stay a fish storm,” Max Defender 8 Meteorologist Amanda Holly said. “This will likely become Rina, but not impacting land.”
The NHC is also tracking Tropical Storm Philippe. Philippe has maximum sustained winds near 45 mph and is expected to weaken over the next few days.
“We are seeing the storm being affected by a little bit of wind shear, so that’s why we’re not seeing it get incredibly strong,” Holly said. “Doesn’t look like this storm is going to hold together as we go through the middle portion of next week.”
The system is located about 685 miles east of the Northern Leeward Islands.
The storm’s latest track shows it could reach Puerto Rico on either Sunday night or early Monday as a tropical depression.
“Neither of these storms, at the moment at least, pose a threat to the United States,” Holly added.
So far, the NHC has identified a total of 17 named tropical storms as predicted in the August forecast.
“But we still have a couple of months to go,” Holly said. “We have all of October and all of November to go of activity. We could still see activity through October and November as well.”
Holly said her main concern heading into the coming months was the amount of energy in the form of warm water surrounding the United States and the Caribbean.
“We have a lot of energy there for tropical systems to develop off of so we will be watching,” she said.