The 9th named storm Igor has organized into the 4th Atlantic Basin hurricane of the season and will likely grow into the third major hurricane over the next few days, according to the National Hurricane Center.
Data and satellite imagery showed intense thunderstorm activity increasingly wrapping around the center of the storm with an intermittent eye-like feature appearing, supporting the upgrade to a category 1 hurricane Saturday evening.
Hurricane Igor was located over 1,230 miles west of the Cape Verde Islands and was moving to the west at 17 mph with winds up to 75 mph.
Hurricane force winds extended 15 miles out from the center of the storm with tropical storm force winds extending outward 115 miles.
Igor is expected to continue to intensify as it moves in a general westerly direction, steered over the next 2 to 3 days by a subtropical ridge, positioned to its north.
Igor’s path will take it over increasingly warmer waters with temperatures nearing 85 degrees, which will help Igor grow into the 3rd major hurricane by late Monday with winds in excess of 110 mph.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s hurricane season outlook, a total of 8 to 12 hurricanes are expected with 4 to 6 becoming major by the end of the season.
Hurricane Igor is not expected to pose a direct threat to the United States, likely taking a similar recurving path to Hurricane Danielle, north of the Leeward Islands with a turn to the northwest and north around the western edge of the subtropical ridge, well east of the U.S. East Coast.
Historically, 90 percent of tropical systems that form east of 35 degrees longitude, typically recurve out to sea or never make it far enough to the west to directly impact the United States coastline, as was the case with Hurricanes Earl and Danielle. Igor initially formed at 23.5 degrees west longitude.
Besides Igor, the National Hurricane Center is monitoring 2 other areas that have high chances of developing into the 10th and 11th named storms over the next few days. One was located in the east central Caribbean and the other was located in the far eastern Atlantic near the Cape Verde Islands.
While the peak of the hurricane season has passed, we remain in the most active weeks for tropical activity in the Atlantic Basin historically and all coastal residents should continue to monitor the latest weather information as it becomes available.
Igor updated information (Click scrolling red links for more details)