Saturday, July 2nd 2022, 10:28 am - As Bonnie completes an unusual trip across the Atlantic Ocean into Pacific waters, Tropical Storm Colin will soak the Carolinas after coming to life early Saturday along the southeastern U.S. coast.
The Atlantic hurricane season is picking up in activity, with two tropical storms set to impact nearby land with heavy rain and strong winds. One of the storms has actually crossed into the Pacific Ocean, thanks to its erratic track and odd development so far south in the Atlantic. For the latest on Bonnie and Colin, read below.
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BONNIE'S BIZARRE JOURNEY CROSSING FROM ATLANTIC TO PACIFIC OCEAN
Tropical Storm Bonnie formed in the southern Caribbean Sea on Friday as the Atlantic's second named storm of the season. Bonnie has moved offshore of Nicaragua and emerged over the Pacific Ocean.
As of Saturday evening, Bonnie is 257 km southwest of Nicaragua, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC).
The agency expects the storm to produce heavy rainfall along its path. Heavy tropical rains in Central America are exacerbated by the region’s mountainous terrain, which make flash flooding and mudslides a significant threat in any landfalling system.
A tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Limon, Costa Rica, northward to Sandy Bay Sirpi, Nicaragua, and Cabo Blanco, Costa Rica, northward to the border of Nicaragua and Honduras.
Through Tuesday, more than 100 mm of rain could fall across portions of Nicaragua and Costa Rica through the weekend, which could lead to life-threatening flash flooding for communities in the affected areas.
It’s unusual for a tropical storm to form this far south in the Caribbean Sea. Most storms track farther north, closer to the Antilles. This storm, and the disturbance from which it formed, hugged South America as it traversed the Caribbean this week.
But what’s even more unusual is that the NHC expects Tropical Storm Bonnie to survive its encounter with Nicaragua and emerge over the eastern Pacific Ocean. The mountains of Central America typically tear a storm apart, but Bonnie is moving fast enough that its centre of circulation should survive the short trip over land.
"Bonnie will continue to move off the coast of northern Central America through Sunday, then strengthen to a hurricane Sunday night as it moves to the south of the Gulf of Tehuantepec," states the NHC.
Conditions here are favourable for Bonnie to gradually strengthen into a hurricane early next week. Residents and visitors to coastal towns on Mexico’s west coast will have to closely monitor the track of the storm in the coming days.
COLIN TO SOAK THE CAROLINAS
Meanwhile, farther east in the Atlantic basin, Colin came to life early Saturday morning off the southeastern U.S. coast, near South Carolina. It is the Atlantic's third named storm in 2022.
As of Saturday morning, Colin is 40 km west-southwest of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, according to NHC. The heaviest rains and strongest winds are along and off the Carolina coast.
On the forecast track, the centre of Colin is expected to move northeastward along or just inland of the South and North Carolina coasts through Sunday, and then emerge over the western Atlantic Ocean late Sunday.
A tropical storm warning is in effect for South Santee River, S.C., to Duck, N.C., as well as Pamlico Sound.
Maximum sustained winds are near 65 km/h with higher gusts. Little change in strength is forecast during the next couple of days. Colin is expected to dissipate over the western Atlantic on Monday.
Colin will continue to produce locally heavy rainfall across portions of coastal South and North Carolina through Sunday morning. An additional 25-50 mm, with isolated amounts up to 100 mm, is expected. This rainfall may result in localized areas of flash flooding.
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Stay tuned to The Weather Network for the latest updates on the tropics.