As Hurricane Harvey winds down and rescue efforts continue throughout south Texas, a new, potentially disastrous hurricane named Irma is forming over the Atlantic Ocean. According to WWLTV, Irma has been rated a Category 2 with sustained winds of up to 100 miles an hour. Eric Blake, a forecaster with the National Hurricane Center, wrote in an advisory Thursday that “Irma is forecast to become a major hurricane by tonight and is expected to be an extremely dangerous hurricane for the next several days.” Irma could also reach as high as Category 4—for comparison, Harvey made landfall as a 4 last week.
As of Thursday, Irma is swirling just over 1,800 miles east of the Leeward Islands in the Caribbean. It poses no immediate threat to any land, but it is difficult to predict where Irma is headed, as the hurricane remains far away at sea.
AccuWeather predicts that it will take about a week for Irma to make its journey across the Atlantic; it could wreak havoc on the areas from Leeward Island all the way to Bermuda.
Long range (15 day ensemble) is foreboding for potential major hurricane landfall impacts. We need Irma to recurve away. Too early but ... pic.twitter.com/W8LZWfp7tF— Ryan Maue (@RyanMaue) August 31, 2017
At the same time, the National Hurricane Center is keeping watch on another patch of extreme weather in the western Gulf of Mexico. Experts believe this could develop into a tropical depression or storm in the next week or so, and the effects could be disastrous for areas already dealing with the aftermath of Harvey.
"Development, if any, of this system is expected to be slow to occur as the low moves slowly northward," the hurricane center reported. "If this system does develop, it could bring additional rainfall to portions of the Texas and Louisiana coasts."