Severe Weather

Hurricane Danny Is Headed in Our Direction, Though It's Too Early to Say Where It'll Land

It might be time to hit up the Home Depot for some supplies and canned tuna. Or maybe not.

Quick! Deploy the hurricane tracking sharks

The storm once known as Tropical Storm Danny has now become Hurricane Danny, making it the first hurricane to form in the Atlantic this season. And, according to all major projections, it appears that it's headed in our general direction, though it's too early to say exactly where or if it'll even be much of a threat by the time it reaches Puerto Rico and Cuba.

First, some facts. 

As of 11 a.m. Thursday, Danny was milling around about 1,090 miles east of the Windward Islands in the eastern Atlantic with maximum sustained winds of 75 mph, though it had some higher gusts. At the moment, Danny is a relatively small, compact storm, but is forecast to strengthen some as it makes its way westward, according to the National Hurricane Center. Danny is expected to reach the Lesser Antilles early next week. It's during that time that forecasters believe the hurricane will weaken as it hits up the eastern Caribbean Sea.

For now, Danny is still a ways away from being any kind of threat to us. And the National Hurricane Center says its models suggest that Danny won't be making landfall anywhere in the U.S., though that might change.

So far, no model is predicting Danny to reach the mainland U.S. — neither as a hurricane nor as a tropical disturbance of any kind. But again, the National Hurricane Center cautions that this could change.

A look at the early models and tracks show Danny reaching Puerto Rico early Tuesday, and then it's up in the air on where it'll go from there.

At the beginning of Hurricane Season, forecasters at the National Oceanic and Atrmospheric Administration said they expected 2015 to be another slow season thanks in large part to storm-killing El Nino, which wreaks havoc on wind and pressure patterns that ultimately fuel storm formations. El Nino is expected to be even bigger this season, NOAA says, which means slower-than-normal Atlantic waters.

Last season, forecasters predicted nine named storms and three hurricanes. When the 2014 season ended, we had seen only eight named storms form, well below the average of 12 per season. Florida was spared from being hit for the ninth straight season; Wilma was the last hurricane to make landfall in the Sunshine State, back in 2005.
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Chris Joseph
Contact: Chris Joseph