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Subtropical Jumpstart? Swirling Low Gathers in Open Atlantic

Atlantic disturbance satellite image (04/18/2017)
Posted at 4:30 PM, Apr 18, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-18 12:54:46-04

MIDWAY, Fla. (WTXL) -- A circular area of scattered clouds between Bermuda and the Azores in the Atlantic Ocean has a limited chance to be classified as something more than just a disturbance.

The low-pressure circulation is broad, covering hundreds of miles in circumference.  However, rain and storm buildup is scattered, with many clearer breaks in the cloud deck.

A considerable amount of colder air is entrenched in the circulation, with fast upper-level winds also influencing its swirling motion.  The National Hurricane Center report gustier lower-level winds occurring on the western side of the low-pressure system.

A relatively low chance exists for the disturbance to further organize and become only the second named subtropical system on record in the month of April for the Atlantic basin. 

The only named April storm, Ana, formed in 2003.  (An April subtropical storm in 1992 was never assigned a name.)  If this low were to gain subtropical storm status, it will take the first name of the 2017 hurricane season name list, Arlene.

Regardless of development, the low is forecast to stay far off the Atlantic coast, moving gradually north, where some impacts near the Canadian Maritimes are possible late this week.