HOLT, Fla., July 23, 2020—The eighth system of the 2020 hurricane season formed in the Gulf of Mexico last night.
Surface observations and data from Hurricane Hunter missions indicated the low pressure system organized enough with closed circulation and a well-defined center for the National Hurricane Center to declare it Tropical Depression Eight.
It has a small window to strengthen into a tropical storm just before it makes landfall Saturday, according to the NHC forecast. If it does, it will be named Hanna.
Because of this, a tropical storm watch has been issued along the Texas coast.
Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Gonzalo is moving toward the Windward Islands.
Maximum sustained winds are near 65 mph and the NHC is forecasting it to become a category 1 hurricane today, the first of the 2020 season.
Strengthening is forecast through the next 48 hours; however, due to the storm’s small size, forecast models differ on whether it will weaken and dissipate after going over the islands or remain a weak storm as it moves through the Caribbean Sea.
For now, the NHC is forecasting it to remain a category 1 hurricane sometime Sunday before weakening into a tropical storm.