Hurricane forecasters are watching a tropical wave off the coast of Africa that has a moderate chance of getting more organized and strengthening by the end of the week.
The National Hurricane Center in its 2 p.m. advisory Monday said the large area of showers and thunderstorms was over the far eastern tropical Atlantic south of the Cabo Verde islands.
Forecasters said it appeared conditions were conducive for gradual development while the system moved west to west-northwest at 15 to 20 mph across the eastern and central tropical Atlantic. A tropical depression could form around the middle to latter part of this week, the advisory states, though conditions get less favorable for development over the weekend.
Forecasters give the system only a 20 percent chance of formation by Wednesday afternoon but give it a 40 percent chance of happening by Saturday afternoon.
The 2022 hurricane season has been off to a slow start, but forecasters still expect a busy season, with a 60 percent chance that there will be more tropical activity than normal.
About 90 percent of hurricane season activity occurs from August to October.
In all, government forecasters are predicting 14 to 20 named storms. Six to 10 of those could become hurricanes, and three to five of those could be major hurricanes.
So far, there have been three named tropical systems in 2022 -- Alex, Bonnie and Colin.
Alex caused flooding in Cuba and South Florida in early June; Bonnie was the rare storm to pass over from the Atlantic to the Pacific in July; and Colin formed off South Carolina in early July.
The next named system will be called Danielle.
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