Ophelia Becomes 10th Atlantic Hurricane of 2017, No Land Threat

Posted October 12, 2017

As of October 11th, we have seen 15 named storms, 10 have been hurricanes, and 5 were major hurricanes.

Some of Ophelia's rain bands are likely to hit the Azores islands over the weekend.

Tropical Storm Ophelia continues to strengthen as it moves to the southeast and its forecast to become a hurricane by late Wednesday or early Thursday. From there, Ophelia has an interesting post-tropical future next week near the Irish Coast. The other years with ten consecutive hurricanes are 1878, 1886 and 1893.

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There are a couple of caveats to this record, however.

The non-tropical phase of Ophelia may feature a larger, more intense storm that could bring a range of hazards to Ireland and the United Kingdom, from damaging winds to punishing waves. Four days later, Lee sprung back to life as a tropical cyclone and eventually strengthened to a Category 3 hurricane on September 27.

The 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season has been very active and devastating.

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Ophalia is presently the only storm the NHC is tracking in the Atlantic or Pacific.

Forecast: Azores Brush, Then Irish Blast?

Forecasters say Ophelia is expected to become a hurricane by Thursday. It is now forecast to stay west of Portugal before bringing gusty winds and rain to Ireland early next week. All of those occurred in August or September, except for Hurricane Fran in October 1973 and Hurricane Alex in January 2016, which made landfall shortly after weakening to a tropical storm. On average through this date, we only have nine named storms - five hurricanes and two major hurricanes. Neither of those was a hurricane.

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Ophelia is forecast to track northeast through Monday. Strongest winds are far from the center and higher in the atmosphere.