There was an area of interest in the southwestern portion of the Gulf of Mexico yesterday that the U.S. National Hurricane Center gave a 40% chance of forming into a tropical system within 48 hours. Well, it took less than 12 for the disturbance to spin up into the Atlantic’s first named storm of the 2011 season: Arelene.
Tropical Storm Arlene‘s vitals as of 9A MDT are:
Center’s location: 21.2N, 95.7W (the western part of the Bay of Campeche)
Moving: W at 8mph
Maximum sustained winds: 50mph
By 7A MDT tomorrow, the storm should make landfall along the Mexican coast. There is a small chance that Arlene will intensify to Hurricane strength prior to landfall. The primary threat of this storm will be heavy rain over areas that are experiencing extreme drought conditions. This will likely result in flash flooding because the ground is extremely dry and plants are dormant and will thus be unable to absorb so much rainfall.