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Tropical Storm Irma Forecast as Harvey Equal by Weekend

Image: Tropical Storm Irma Forecast as Harvey Equal by Weekend

(NOAA)

By    |   Friday, 01 September 2017 07:33 AM

Tropical Storm Irma is forecast to become the fourth hurricane of the 2017 season as it gains strength in the eastern Atlantic Ocean, but The Weather Channel said it’s not a threat to land – yet.

One meteorologist predicted Irma could become a Category 5 hurricane, much stronger than Harvey.

The storm's center was 590 miles west of the Cabo Verde Islands, moving west at 10 to 15 miles per hour, The Weather Channel said. Forecasters expect Irma, which earlier packed winds of up to 60 miles per hour, to move an area in the Atlantic that contains upper-level winds, helping it to intensify.

The National Hurricane Center said on its Facebook page Thursday morning that Irma's winds have increased to near 70 mph and could become a full-fledged hurricane this weekend. The storm is expected to continue moving westward, the center noted.

WeatherBell meteorologist Ryan Maue told USA Today that Irma will likely become as powerful or even stronger that Hurricane Harvey, developing into a Category 4 or 5 storm near the Leeward Islands of the Caribbean.

The Texas and Louisiana gulf coast is still feeling the effects of Harvey, which landed near Corpus Christi as a Category 4 and has continued to dump water through Houston and surrounding areas. The result has meant record flooding throughout Southeast Texas.

The Weather Channel said Irma remains too far out to know if it will become a threat to the United States or more likely the eastern Caribbean's Lesser Antilles.

Early predictions by forecasters on social media varied greatly.

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Tropical Storm Irma is forecast to become the fourth hurricane of the 2017 season as it gains strength in the eastern Atlantic Ocean, but The Weather Channel said it’s not a threat to land – yet.
tropical storm, irma, harvey
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2017-33-01
Friday, 01 September 2017 07:33 AM
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