Two weather systems have a high likelihood of forming into tropical cyclones within 48 hours, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The tropical weather outlook from Monday morning points out two areas of low pressure: one over the Yucatan Peninsula in the southern Gulf of Mexico and another several hundred miles southeast of the Windward Islands in the Caribbean.
While slightly disorganized and slow moving toward the southern and central Gulf of Mexico, the first system has an 80 percent chance of forming into a tropical cyclone, a general phrase used to define a group of rotating clouds and thunderstorms in the Atlantic before it becomes a hurricane, according to the National Ocean Service. Heavy rains are expected to persist for a few days over some of Central American, the Yucatan Peninsula, the Cayman Islands and western Cuba.
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The second system, named Potential Tropical Cyclone Two, is moving westwartd at 23 mph, according to the center. Its maximum sustained winds are at 40 mph, which is in the range of a tropical storm. Warnings for a tropical storm have been issued for the Windward Islands and Trinidad and Tobago, as stronger conditions are expected Monday night.
An Air Force One Hurricane Hunter aircraft will investigate Potential Tropical Cyclone Two Monday afternoon, and an aircraft will investigate the Yucatan system if needed.
The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season is expected to be “above normal,” the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted. One storm, Arlene, has already been named in April. Anywhere between 11 and 17 named storms could sprout in the Atlantic this year.