Tropical Storm Peter forms as Atlantic hurricane season continues its turbulent pace
The 2021 Atlantic hurricane season is showing no signs of taking a breather: Tropical Storm Peter swirled to life Sunday and a tropical depression was on the verge of becoming another named system.
Peter, the 16th named storm of the season, was centered about 435 miles east of the northern Leeward Islands, the National Hurricane Center said. Peter was moving west- northwest at 17 mph with top winds of 45 mph.
The storm was expected to pass well to the north of the northern Leeward Islands on Monday and Tuesday, the center said. But Peter's outer bands could produce rainfall totals of 1 to 3 inches across portions of the islands, including the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico late Sunday into Tuesday.
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Rainfall could lead to areas of urban and small stream flooding, the center warned. As of Sunday, no coastal watches or warnings were in effect.
A strong cold front moving eastward across the U.S. should act as a blockade for the Eastern Seaboard from Peter, pushing the system out to sea, Accuweather said.
Forecasters were also monitoring a tropical depression spinning in the far eastern Atlantic Ocean.
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The system was about 315 miles west-southwest of the southernmost Cabo Verde Islands and had maximum sustained winds of about 35 mph. The depression, moving north-northwest at 14 mph, was expected to become a tropical storm later Sunday or Monday and would be named Rose. There was no immediate threats to land, forecasters said.
This year's season has seemed relentless. Last week the remnants of Hurricane Nicholas slid across the Gulf Coast from the Lone Star State into Louisiana, drenching a region still reeling from Hurricane Ida's wrath less than three weeks ago.
Tropical Depression 17 has formed in eastern tropical Atlantic. Forecast to become a tropical storm later today. Next name on 2021 Atlantic #hurricane season list is #Rose. Only 2 seasons in satellite era (1966 onwards) have had 17+ named storms by 19 September: 2005, 2020. pic.twitter.com/w1gW8r6rgL
— Philip Klotzbach (@philklotzbach) September 19, 2021
Only two other Atlantic hurricane seasons have had 17 named storms by Sept. 19 since the satellite era began in 1966: 2005, 2020, according to Colorado State University hurricane researcher Phil Klotzbach.
So far this year there have been six hurricanes and three major hurricanes (Category 3 or stronger), and more could be on the way, according to Accuweather. One or two more storms may have a direct impact on the U.S., forecasters said.
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In August, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released its updated hurricane season forecast for the year: seven to 10 hurricanes; 15 to 21 named storms.
Contributing: Doyle Rice, John Bacon
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Tropical Storm Peter forms; hurricane season continues its hectic pace