Tropical Storm Daniel Develops Southwest of Baja California

Tropical Storm Daniel developed southwest of Baja California on Sunday after a relatively quiet week in the tropics.  At 11:00 a.m. EDT on Sunday the center of Tropical Storm Daniel was located at latitude 16.0°N and longitude 115.9°W which put it about 615 miles (990 km) southwest of the southern tip of Baja California.  Daniel was moving toward the north at 10 m.p.h. (16 km/h).  The maximum sustained wind speed was 40 m.p.h. (65 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 50 m.p.h. (80 km/h).  The minimum surface pressure was 1006 mb.

Microwave satellite data indicated that a better organized center of circulation was present inside former Tropical Depression Five-E and the National Hurricane Center designated the system as Tropical Storm Daniel on Sunday morning.  A band of showers and thunderstorms wrapped around the south and east sides of a small tight center of circulation.  Several bands of showers and thunderstorms were revolving around the center.  Bands northwest of the center of circulation consisted primarily of showers and lower clouds.  Storms near the center began to generate upper level divergence which pumped mass away from the tropical storm.

Tropical Storm Daniel will move through an environment favorable for intensification for about another 24 hours.  Daniel is moving over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 27°C.  Tropical Storm Daniel will move over cooler water in about a day or so.  There is an upper level low northwest of Daniel.  The low is generating southerly winds which are blowing toward the top of the tropical storm.  Those winds are causing moderate vertical wind shear, but the shear will not be strong enough to prevent intensification.  Tropical Storm Daniel could intensify a little more during the next 24 hours, but Daniel is likely to weaken when it moves over cooler water.

The upper low northwest of Tropical Storm Daniel was steering the tropical storm toward the north.  The upper low is moving toward the west.  Tropical Storm Daniel if forecast to turn more toward the northwest on Monday as it moves around the western side of the upper low.  When Daniel moves over cooler water the clouds will not grow as tall and the tropical storm will be steered by the winds lower in the atmosphere.  The subtropical high over the Pacific Ocean is forecast to steer Daniel more toward the west later next week after the tropical storm weakens.