The system could become the Atlantic basin’s next tropical depression or storm over the southwestern Gulf of Mexico by this weekend, according to AccuWeather.
Two factors will help determine whether the system becomes the next named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season: how fast it moves and how much time it spends over water as it moves north.
"Should the system stay over warm waters of the Gulf versus crawling along the coast of Mexico from Friday through Saturday, it could have enough time to organize, strengthen and reach tropical depression or storm status," AccuWeather Meteorologist Matt Benz said.
Regardless of development, the system could bring showers and thunderstorms into South Texas over the weekend, about a week after another system brought 5 to 10 inches of rain to the same area.
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Weather patterns over northern Africa this summer, the birthplace of many tropical systems, has so far inhibited the development of tropical waves. That may soon change.
Conditions over Africa are becoming conducive enough for more robust tropical waves, according to Dan Kottlowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist and hurricane expert.
"It looks like a significant chance for tropical development near the Cabo Verde Islands next week," Kottlowski said, "And, there could be more than one storm that tries to take shape."
The Hurricane Center currently is monitoring two other tropical waves, both in the Atlantic Ocean.
The next named storm of the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season will be Danielle.
When is hurricane season?
The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 through Nov. 30.
When is the peak of hurricane season?
Although the season has gotten off to a quiet start, the peak of the season is Sept. 10, with the most activity happening between mid-August and mid-October, according to the Hurricane Center.
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Here's the latest update from the NHC as of 8 a.m. Aug. 18:
What's out there and where are they?
Caribbean tropical wave: A concentrated area of showers and thunderstorms is associated with a tropical wave near the coast of Belize. This system is forecast to move across Central America and southeastern Mexico over the next day or so before emerging over the Bay of Campeche, where an area of low pressure could form on Friday.
Tropical wave 2: A tropical wave in the eastern Atlantic is located northeast of the Cabo Verde Islands. It's moving west at 13 mph.
Tropical wave 3: A tropical wave in the central Atlantic is located . It's moving west at 17 mph.
How likely are they to strengthen?
Caribbean tropical wave: Some gradual development of this system is possible while it moves northwest over the southwestern Gulf of Mexico through the weekend.
Formation chance through 48 hours: low, 20 percent.
Formation chance through 5 days: low, 30 percent.
Who is likely to be impacted?
Caribbean tropical wave: Even if this system fails to become a tropical depression or storm, showers and thunderstorms are likely to move into parts of South Texas from Sunday to Monday, according to AccuWeather.
"The downpours can bring another boost in terms of drought relief to South Texas, but may also stir more trouble in terms of flooding," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Heather Zehr said.
Beyond Sunday and Monday, long-term forecasts range from the tropical system moving northwest along the Rio Grande River to a more northly route over Texas early next week. These possibilities depend on if the system is able to gain enough strength and then maintain some organization days after moving inland, according to AccuWeather forecasters.
The system currently is bringing numerous showers and thunderstorms to Belize and the southwestern Gulf of Honduras.
Tropical waves: It's too early at this time to determine if there will be any impact to the U.S. from the other tropical waves out there.
Forecasters urge all residents to continue monitoring the tropics and to always be prepared during what's expected to be an active hurricane season.
Weather watches and warnings issued for your area
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What can we expect over the next five days?
See the National Hurricane Center's five-day graphical tropical weather outlook below.
Excessive rainfall forecast
What's out there?
Systems currently being monitored by the National Hurricane Center.
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This article originally appeared on Naples Daily News: Tropical wave in Caribbean showing more potential for development