ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The calendar may read December but when an area of low pressure finds the right conditions in the Atlantic Ocean, a tropical or subtropical system can certainly try to develop.
The National Hurricane Center continues to monitor an area of low pressure in the Atlantic Ocean. The large area of low pressure located over the central subtropical Atlantic about 800 miles northeast of the northern Leeward Islands continues to produce disorganized showers and thunderstorms.
This area of low pressure will be in an environment where conditions appear conducive for development and it could begin to acquire some subtropical characteristics while it drifts northeastward during the next few days.
By Thursday or Friday, however, the system is expected to begin to move over cooler water, which would end its chances of becoming a subtropical depression or storm.
At this point, the chance for development is at 50% over the next five days. Even though the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season technically ended on Nov. 30, a subtropical or tropical storm that develops after this date through the end of the year will still be named using the list of names for 2022.
If the system does become a subtropical storm, it will be named Owen.
Tropical and subtropical systems can develop during all months of the year, but they are a little rare going into the winter months when water temperatures are at their coolest or at least cooling.
The tropical or subtropical cyclone to develop in December in the Atlantic was an unnamed subtropical storm in 2013. Before that, Tropical Storm Olga developed in December 2007. In fact, since 1970 only 15 tropical or subtropical cyclones have developed in December.
Of those, only four become hurricanes.