1. Matthew will not come back to haunt Florida.
2. Nicole is a concern for Bermuda, not the U.S.
3. Gulf and Caribbean common areas to watch in late October.
We fielded a number of questions, some with a tone of fear, about the return of Hurricane Matthew to Florida. For a few days, the National Hurricane Center forecast, along with several model plots, suggested the former Category 5 storm would make a loop out in the Atlantic and once again head for Florida. We can confidently say that will not happen.
As of Monday morning, Matthew had become "post-tropical" and was expected to continue weakening as it accelerated to to the east across the North Atlantic It is forecast to be absorbed by a trough of low pressure and dissipate entirely by midweek. In the wake of Matthew, a much drier and cooler air mass is sweeping south to dominate the weather across much of The Sunshine State through the upcoming work week.
Once mildly joked about by many meteorologists as being the forgotten sister of Matthew, Tropical Storm Nicole is now a real threat to Bermuda. The storm has been tugged at by many different steering currents during it's now 12-day live span. As of Sunday evening, it had stalled about 575 miles south of Bermuda.
The same trough of low pressure that is causing Matthew to dissipate is likely to aid in steering Nicole on a more northerly track in the coming days, which could bring it very close to Bermuda. Conditions are also marginally favorable for Nicole to reach hurricane strength when it passes near the island Wednesday Night.
The 2016 Hurricane Season is certainly not over. Thankfully though, no new threats to Florida are expected in the next five days. After nearly eleven years without a hurricane hitting Florida, two have hit in less than two months. Hermine made landfall as a Category 1 storm on September 2, and Major Hurricane Matthew came close enough to produce significant damage from Fort Pierce to Fernandina Beach (north of Jacksonville).
Forecast models suggests that several tropical waves will move across the Atlantic in the week ahead, but none of these disturbances are expected to develop. Long range data suggests that the western Caribbean might also see an uptick in convection and pressures could lower in about 6 to 10 days from now, but at the present time there are no signs for tropical cyclone formation. It is not uncommon for a tropical storm to form in the Gulf of Mexico or Caribbean this time of year. On forms in this part of the world, on average, between October 15 and 31 every two years. We will certainly be watching these areas closely in the coming days.