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12 October 2017, 12:43 | Pamela Mathis
NOAATropical storm Ophelia will become a hurricane by the end of this week
But the storm seems to be heading east towards the coast of Spain instead of crossing the Atlantic towards the hurricane-ravaged Caribbean. He says a combination of slightly warmer than normal water and weak upper level winds helped make that hurricane streak. The National Hurricane Center predicts the storm to maintain hurricane strength for the next few days and could even gain a little strength.
This would tie the record for the most consecutive Atlantic named storms to reach hurricane strength.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center said in an advisory Wednesday afternoon that Ophelia gained hurricane status as its top sustained winds reached 120 km/h. The other years with ten consecutive hurricanes are 1878, 1886 and 1893.
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As of 5 a.m. EDT, Ophelia, which isn't now a threat to any land, was centered about 785 miles (1,265 kilometers) southwest of the Azores and moving southeast near 6 mph (9 kph).
Tropical Storm Ophelia is expected to strengthen to a hurricane as it spins far out over the Atlantic.
Beyond that, after passing off the Iberian Peninsula, the post-tropical cyclone is expected to curl northward and remain an intense storm somewhere near or off the coast of Ireland Monday or Monday night. It is now forecast to stay west of Portugal before bringing gusty winds and rain to Ireland early next week. Only 15 known hurricanes have passed within 200 nautical miles of the Azores since 1851. Strongest winds are far from the center and higher in the atmosphere.
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