Tropical Storm Fernand formed over the western Gulf of Mexico and powerful Hurricane Dorian edged slowly away from the Northwestern Bahamas on Tuesday afternoon. At 2:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Tropical Storm Fernand was located at latitude 23.5°N and longitude 95.3°W which put it about 160 miles (260 km) east of La Pesca, Mexico. Fernand was moving toward the west at 7 m.p.h. (11 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 1004 mb.
The government of Mexico issued a Tropical Storm Warning that was in effect for the portion of the coast from Barra del Tordo to the mouth of the Rio Grande River.
The circulation around an area of low pressure over the western Gulf of Mexico exhibited greater organization on Tuesday afternoon and the National Hurricane Center designated the system as Tropical Storm Fernand. The circulation around Fernand consisted of a broad area of lower pressure. One rainband wrapped around the northern periphery of the circulation and a second rainband wrapped around the western periphery of the circulation. Bands in other parts of the circulation consisted primarily of showers and low clouds. Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 105 miles (170 km) from the center of the circulation on the western side of Fernand.
Tropical Storm Fernand will move through an environment favorable for intensification during the next 24 hours. Fernand will move over water where the Sea Surface Temperature is near 30°C. It will move through a region where the upper level winds are weak and there will be little vertical wind shear. Fernand is likely to strengthen during the next 24 hours. However, the broad circulation will limit how fast the tropical storm can intensify.
Tropical Storm Fernand will move south of an ridge of high pressure over the southern U.S. The ridge will Fernand toward the west-northwest during the next day or two. On its anticipated track Tropical Storm Fernand is expected to make landfall on the coast of Mexico between La Pesca and Mezquital on Wednesday. Fernand will bring gusty winds and locally heavy rain. The rain could cause flash floods where Tropical Storm Fernand moves inland over northeastern Mexico. Fernand could also cause a storm surge of 6 feet (2 meters) along the coast.
Elsewhere over the Atlantic Ocean, powerful Hurricane Dorian began to edge slowly away from the Northwestern Bahamas. At 2:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday the center of Hurricane Dorian was located at latitude 27.5°N and longitude 78.7°W which put it about 105 miles (170 km) east of Ft. Pierce, Florida. Dorian was moving toward the northwest at 5 m.p.h. (8 km/h). The maximum sustained wind speed was 110 m.p.h. (175 km/h) and there were wind gusts to 130 m.p.h. (215 km/h). The minimum surface pressure was 959 mb.
Hurricane Warnings were in effect for the portions of the coast from Jupiter Inlet to Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida and from Edisto Beach to South Santee River, South Carolina. Hurricane Watches were in effect for the portions of the coast from Ponte Vedra Beach to Edisto Beach and from South Santee River to Duck, North Carolina including Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds. Tropical Storm Warnings were in effect for the portions of the coast from Deerfield Beach to Jupiter Inlet, Florida and from Ponte Vedra Beach to Edisto Beach. The Hurricane Warnings for the Northwestern Bahamas including the Abacos and Grand Bahama Island had been changed to Tropical Storm Warnings, since Dorian was moving away from those locations.
Hurricane Dorian finally started to move around the western end of a subtropical high pressure system over the Atlantic Ocean on Tuesday. An upper level trough over the U.S. will turn Dorian toward the northeast on Wednesday. On its anticipated track the center of Hurricane Dorian will stay offshore and move parallel to east coast of Florida. A small deviation to the west could bring the core of Dorian close to the coast. The center of Hurricane Dorian could move very close to the coast of South Carolina and North Carolina on Thursday. The circulation around Hurricane Dorian increased in size on Tuesday. Winds to hurricane force extended out about 60 miles (95 km) from the center of circulation. Winds to tropical storm force extended out about 170 miles (275 km) from the center.