Tropical storm Fred warnings have been raised for Florida, as the currently still tropical depression status Fred approaches and is expected to strengthen. After Fred, another disturbance in the Atlantic is likely to be named tropical storm Grace in the next day, which could also threaten Florida next week.
Tropical storm Fred weakened as it interacted with Hispaniola over the last day or so and has been tracking along the east coast of Cuba.
But as Fred moves away from Cuba it is expected to intensify somewhat, with models suggesting a mid-strength tropical storm as it approaches thee Florida Peninsula.
Most of the models believe that shear will continue to play a role in hindering strengthening for tropical storm Fred, so right now a hurricane Fred seems less likely, but it can’t be discounted as we have seen unexpected intensification as storm’s move over warmer waters nearer to the US coast.
Fred still doesn’t look like too much of a threat to insurance, reinsurance or insurance-linked securities (ILS) markets, given the forecasts don’t give it much chance of strengthening rapidly.
You can see some modelled intensity guidance in the graphic below from Tropical Tidbits, which shows most of the models expect a strengthening storm as it passes Cuba and heads for Florida or the Gulf.
Also below are some additional forecast model images, again from Tropical Tidbits, which show that tropical storm Fred could skirt Florida and come ashore on the Gulf Coast, while intensity continues to be the less certain aspect of the forecast right now.
However, while there remains some uncertainty over tropical storm Fred’s chances of strengthening and posing a bigger threat to Florida or the Gulf Coast, it is still a storm worth watching over the next couple of days.
After Fred comes another disturbance in the Atlantic, currently named potential tropical cyclone 7, or 07L.
Seven has now been named tropical storm Grace early on Saturday and is given a better chance of making it to hurricane status as it sets a course that also has Florida in the cone right now.
Tropical storm Grace could present a more significant threat to the insurance, reinsurance and insurance-linked securities (ILS) market than Fred, as conditions are deemed more conducive to strengthening and a number of models expect a hurricane Grace to track towards Florida by the second-half of next week.
However, some models show Grace curving north into the Atlantic, while others show a weaker outcome, so there’s a lot of uncertainty still it seems.
You can see some modelled intensity guidance for what will become storm Grace in the graphic below from Tropical Tidbits.
Also below are some additional forecast model images, again from Tropical Tidbits, which show the uncertainty in the forecast cone.
Right now, it looks like storm Grace will present more of a threat than Fred, given it is suggested to have a better chance of intensification. But still, Fred could track up the side of the Florida Peninsula and later make landfall, so if that storm can strengthen some, it could still be very disruptive and to a wide area.
The Atlantic tropics appear to be getting more active, which is typical of this time of the year.
There is still almost a month until the accepted peak of the hurricane season though and in recent years the latter half has been particularly impactful, so it’s important to remain alert and not get complacent after a number of less damaging storms.
Insurance, reinsurance and ILS market interests can keep track of it over on our 2021 Atlantic hurricane season page and we’ll update you should a more significant threat develop.