LIVE UPDATES: Tropical Storm Isaías is officially named, Bahamas under a tropical storm watch, better news for Florida

5pm update: Track shifts east, PTC9 to make landfall in the DR Thursday

11 p.m. update:

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The tropical disturbance south of Puerto Rico has been officially named Isaías on the 11 p.m. advisory from the National Hurricane Center. The center has been placed a bit more south, which brings a shift to the track a bit more east, bordering the east coast of Florida.

With the better-defined center of circulation meteorological models will get a better grasp on what this system could head to in the coming days. According to the latest track, the system’s center will be just to the of Florida which means we will have to monitor the system closely, as any small change could bring significant changes. Central Florida could still receive heavy rain activity, strong damaging gusts, storm surge, and isolated tornadoes.

Maximum sustained winds are near 50 mph with higher gusts. Some weakening is likely when the center moves over Hispaniola due to very high terrain over the Central area of the Dominican Republic. Strengthening expected by Friday once the system emerges over the Atlantic just north of Cuba. Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 345 miles mainly to the northeast of the center.

If it continues on this trajectory, Isaías is expected to be southeast of South Florida on Friday night. Once it takes a northerly turn it will begin to increase in speed. Under this forecast, the storm should either be parallel to or near Jacksonville on Saturday night.

A tropical storm watch has been issued for the northern Bahamas. This means tropical storm conditions are likely within the next 48 hours. We can expect these watches to continue to propagate. We will continue to monitor closely.

8p.m. update:

Tropical disturbance, labeled Potential Tropical Cyclone 9, is battling with dry air and some wind shear. Under those conditions and with such a wide system the center has been difficult to find by hurricane hunters.

5 p.m. update:

The tropical disturbance is showing better signs of the organization but still lacks a well-defined center of circulation at the surface. Deeper convection has become more noticeable on satellite. The Bermuda High continues strong and will continue to guide this system to the west-northwest during the next couple of days. So far, the system is set on crossing the Dominican Republic, through mountainous terrain on Thursday to then emerge over the Atlantic.

An upper-level low pressure will weaken the high pressure and could give this system a northerly turn.

The good news is that major global meteorological models are showing more signs of an easterly shift, over to the east of Florida, which means Central Florida will have fewer impacts.

We continue to monitor this system closely.

On Wednesday morning there are signs that the system will decrease forward speed in the coming days.

11 a.m update:

The National Hurricane Center has placed the new center of the Tropical Disturbance about 100 miles to the west from where it was at the 8 a.m. advisory. This change has shifted the track more west, taking it south of Puerto Rico and right over the Central part of the Dominican Republic, which will also make it battle the highest peak in the Caribbean, Pico Duarte (read below, the 8 a.m. advisory update for more about this). Some increase in strength is forecast through tonight, with weakening likely on Thursday due to land interaction. Some restrengthening is possible by this weekend as it goes back over warms waters just north of Cuba.

The 11 a.m. track now places a tropical storm west of the Florida Peninsula, which would place us on the right side of the storm. This means we would be affected by torrential rain bands and high wind gusts. We will continue to monitor the evolution. Again, without a well-defined center, the track can still shift.

Hurricane hunters are investigating the system again. If they find a center, this system could be named in the next few hours. The next name on the list is Isaías, and could bring mayor updates on the next full advisory at 5 p.m. if it is shifted.

9 a.m. update

The 8 a.m. advisory depicts a center that has entered the Caribbean, just west of Dominica. The forecast track continues to shift as the center continues to fluctuate and not really be found by hurricane hunters. The current forecast track places the system near or over Puerto Rico tonight, near or over Hispaniola on Thursday, and near or over the southeastern Bahamas on Friday. In Florida, we still have to monitor the system, but without a well-defined center, the long term path is the great unknown.

Under the current track, this system will be passing over some very rough terrain. Pico Duarte in the Dominican Republic is a the peak of a mountain over 10,000 feet high, this could really disrupt this system. Nonetheless, we should still monitor this system closely, without panicking, since the initial status is not known and there will be lots of changes in the coming days.

7:15 a.m. update

The system seems to be getting more organized and could be named soon, according to Channel 9 meteorologist Brian Shields.

The track’s long-term effects still remain unknown.

4:30 a.m. update

The two major American and European models both gradually have the track moving west over the next two days, before it falls apart. Both models place the track in South Florida or south of Florida as a whole.

On its current track, the system could bring extra rain & breezy conditions to Central Florida on Sunday.