Aug. 4, 2005 Tropical Depression 9 is the newest storm on the forecaster's radar. It formed Thursday afternoon far out in the Atlantic Ocean.
"It's slowly expected to intensify," National Weather Service meteorologist Brad Diehl said Thursday from San Juan.
If it becomes a named storm, it will be Irene.
Diehl said that the margin of error is large for storms this far away from land so it's hard to predict just what path Tropical Depression 9 will take. He urged residents to continue watching the weather.
Currently, the storm is on a track that will take it northeast of the territory sometime late next week, but anything can happen between now and then.
Diehl said that a subtropical ridge coupled with effects from Tropical Storm Harvey, now located about 175 miles east of Bermuda, should steer Tropical Depression 9 away from the territory.
As of the 5 p.m. update, Tropical Depression 9 is centered at 12.7 degrees north latitude and 34.5 degrees west longitude. It is located about 695 miles west of the southernmost Cape Verde Islands.
The storm has winds of 30 mph with gusts to 40 mph.
It is moving to the west at 11 mph
The barometric pressure stands at 1009 millibars or 29.79 inches.
Hurricane season runs through Nov. 30.
This hurricane season has shaped up to be a humdinger with eight named storms already history. By comparison, 2004's Tropical Depression 9 formed nearly a month later on Sept. 2. It became Hurricane Ivan, which terrorized Grenada, Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, the western tip of Cuba, and the Gulf Coast states of Alabama and Florida. Winds hit 165 mph.
It killed 39 people in Grenada and 20 people in Jamaica. In the United States, it was the third costliest hurricane in history, with a price tag of $13 billion.
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