ORLANDO, Fla. - A tropical wave that emerged off the coast of Africa could develop into a tropical depression this week, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The disturbance continues to produce a large area of disorganized cloudiness and thunderstorms over the eastern tropical Atlantic a few hundred miles south-southwest of the Cabo Verde Islands. Forecasters give it a 30-percent chance of developing over the next five days.
"Gradual development of this system is possible and a tropical depression could form around the middle to latter portion of the week before environmental conditions become less favorable by this weekend," the NHC says. "This system is expected to move westward to west-northwestward at 15 to 20 mph across the tropical Atlantic during the next several days."
FOX 35 Storm Team Chief Meteorologist Jayme King says the wave could fall apart in the coming days as environmental factors weigh in. Download the FOX 35 Storm Team weather app to not only track the tropics, but also the afternoon/ evening showers and storms.
There has been no major hurricane to form this season, just three tropical storms: Alex, Bonnie, and Colin, and even though this is less active than past seasons, it is on schedule for an average season.
The experts at Colorado State University and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration decreased the forecast number of named storms from what they initially predicted in earlier outlooks, but they say you should still prepare for an active season.
CSU is still expecting an above-average season with 18 named storms, eight of which could become hurricanes with winds of at least 74 mph. Experts say out of the hurricanes, four of them could be major (Category 3 or higher) with winds of at least 115 mph.
NOAA expects a similar outcome to the Atlantic hurricane season, predicting 14 to 20 named storms, six to 10 hurricanes and three to five major hurricanes, which is a slight decrease from its initial outlook in May.