New storm forms over Atlantic; no threat to Jamaica


So far, the Atlantic hurricane season has been relatively inactive in terms of major storms and hurricanes.

Subtropical Depression Five has strengthened and has become Subtropical Storm Ernesto in the north Atlantic Ocean on Wednesday morning.

Often upper-level troughs prevent hurricanes due to hostile shear but can contribute enough energy to the system to overcome cool surface water in higher latitudes. Eventually, the track of Ernesto will take it near Ireland and Scotland this weekend.

Like a tropical storm is has a closed low at the surface but like non-tropical systems it has a low aloft as well. Dvorak estimates range from 30 to 40 kt, and with the increased organization since the last advisory, the initial wind speed is set to 35 kt.

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Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles (280 km) to the southeast of the center.

So why is it considered subtropical and why are these types of storms given names? Airborne Saharan dust, which has been recorded as far away as Texas this season, is also keeping the atmosphere dry and unfavorable for tropical weather to form.

So, you're feeling pretty good about all this - we're approaching the peak of hurricane season and you haven't had to think about those shutters or emergency supplies yet.