Friday, July 18, 2008

Bertha Back to Hurricane Strength

Tropical Storm Bertha strengthened today back to hurricane force, with maximum winds of 75 mph. Hurricane Bertha is now moving more rapidly, at 22 mph to the northeast. This track is expected to continue with increasing speed as Bertha begins to lose tropical characteristics over the weekend. The current forecast path has Bertha approaching Iceland as an extratropical storm early next week.

Meanwhile, a couple other areas are being watched for possible tropical development. The thunderstorm activity off the coast of Georgia/South Carolina has continued to increase, and a reconnaissance flight is tentatively scheduled for tomorrow. The low pressure area now moving westward through the central Caribbean has not become any better organized, but a reconnaissance flight was sent there this afternoon. Both of these areas have the potential to become tropical depressions in the near future.

The Jamaica Meteorological Service issued a statement this afternoon warning of the possibility of flash flooding and gale force winds.

Image: Hurricane Bertha from International Space Station, via NASA.

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