Tropics ramp up in August

Tropical Systems By Month
Tropical Systems By Month

MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – As we move from July into August, things begin to change in the tropics.

Gulf & Caribbean Tropical Formation Zones

The biggest thing that changes is where storms can form. Obviously, the Gulf of Mexico is wide open for tropical formation during August. Also, the northern part of the Caribbean as well and those storms can move from the Caribbean into the Gulf.

Far Atlantic Opens Up to Formation
Far Atlantic Opens Up to Formation

But what really changes in August is how much farther out tropical storms can form in the tropical Atlantic. It really opens the door wide for storms to come from deep in the tropics.

Tropical Systems By Month
Tropical Systems By Month

We’ve had one named storm so far this year. That’s not unusual. Only 6 percent of named storms occur in June, and 8 percent in July.

However,  as we move into August more than a quarter of storms form during this month alone. It is the second busiest month after September for tropical systems.

Katrina's Track
Katrina’s Track

Katrina is our most notorious August storm. Katrina developed from a tropical wave in the Bahamas on August 23, 2005. It quickly moved west and made its first landfall in South Florida on August 25. After that, Katrina moved into the Gulf and grew into a monster before slamming into the Gulf Coast on August 29.

Katrina shows why it’s so important to track the tropics as we move into August.

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