Bill, the second named storm of 2021, could soon form from a tropical depression located off the coast of North Carolina, forecasters said Monday.
Tropical Storm Bill may form Monday or Monday night, according to the National Hurricane Center.
Radar and satellite data from the weather service showed an uptick of thunderstorm activity within the system. As of 11 a.m. Monday, the tropical depression was moving at 21 mph off Cape Hatteras.
It is forecast to move to the northeast away from the U.S. and then off toward Nova Scotia by midweek. It is not expected to develop further after that, experts said.
Tropical Storm Ana, the first named storm of 2021 developed in late May, several hundred miles from Bermuda.
A second system in the western Gulf of Mexico is also being monitored for potential storm development.
The large trough of low pressure in the Gulf could morph into a tropical depression later this week, forecasters said. It was producing disorganized showers as it remained nestled in the Bay of Campeche off Mexico’s east coast.
Water temperatures in the Gulf are above 80 degrees, which is conducive for storm development. But storm-shredding wind shear is also present.
“The potential exists later on this week for a brief window of relaxed wind shear across the central Gulf of Mexico, possibly providing a narrow time frame conducive for intensification,” according to AccuWeather.
The disturbance has a 60 percent chance of formation in the next five days, according to the hurricane center. It had low odds of developing in the next 48 hours.
Meanwhile, a tropical wave formed Monday off the coast of Africa.
Clouds of Saharan dust routinely drift from north Africa’s vast Saharan Desert over into the Atlantic Ocean. These plumes of dry air can slow the development of storms by starving them of the moisture they need to become hurricanes. A layer of the dust is moving over the southern Caribbean this week, according to AccuWeather.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted a busy hurricane season this year, estimating between 13 and 20 named storms.
Hurricane season runs through Nov. 30.