Hawaii News

Tropical weather update: Tropical Storm Fernanda now churning in Eastern Pacific

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Updated at 7:50 p.m. Aug. 12: One of the three low pressure systems in the Eastern Pacific that has kept the attention of forecasters for the past several days has become a tropical cyclone.

As of 5 p.m. Saturday, Tropical Storm Fernanda was about 610 miles south-southwest of the southern tip of Baja California, moving at 10 mph to the west-northwest with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph and higher gusts.

It’s too early to tell whether Fernanda or any of the systems being tracked will impact the Hawaiian Islands.

According to the National Weather Service in Miami, Fla., Fernanda is expected to continue on a west-northwest track through the next few days at a slightly slower forward speed. Steady to rapid strengthening is also forecast through the next day or two, with the storm expected to become a hurricane by Monday.

Tropical storm-force winds currently extend up to 60 miles from the storm’s center.

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Original story: Forecasters in the Central Pacific are watching a broad area of low pressure associated with a tropical wave south and east of the Big Island that has a chance to become a tropical cyclone.

It’s too early to tell, however, if it or two other developing systems in the Eastern Pacific will impact the Hawaiian Islands.

As of 8 a.m. Aug. 12, the Central Pacific Hurricane Center in Honolulu said the low pressure system was located about 1,400 miles east-southeast of Hilo and was producing a large area of disorganized showers and thunderstorms.

Conditions appear conducive for further development of this system, with a tropical depression likely to form during the next few days while it moves toward the west or west-northwest at about 10 mph. The system is still in the Eastern Pacific, but expected to cross into the Central Pacific late Sunday.

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Right now, it has a 60% chance of becoming a tropical cyclone in the next 48 hours and an 80% chance during the next seven days.

Showers and thunderstorms also continue to become better organized in another low pressure system located several hundred miles south-southwest of the southern tip of the Baja California peninsula in the central East Pacific.

It appears a tropical depression or tropical storm could be forming, with a 90% chance of formation in the next two days and 90% chance during the next week.

The low pressure system is expected to move west to west-northwest at about 10 mph across the central portion of the East Pacific during the next few days. If a tropical depression or storm develops, it could cross into the Central Pacific next Thursday or Friday.

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According to the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Fla., a third low pressure system is forecast to form off the west coast of southern Mexico in the Eastern Pacific during the next couple of days. It is associated with a tropical wave moving across the southern portion of Central America.

Environmental conditions are expected to be conducive for further development, and a tropical depression is likely to form during the early or middle part of next week while the system moves generally west-northwest, roughly parallel to the coast of southern and southwestern Mexico.

The chances of the low pressure system becoming a tropical cyclone in the next 48 hours is at just 10%, but it increases to 80% in the seven-day outlook.

There are no other tropical cyclones expected elsewhere during the next week.

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