POSTED: Wednesday, August 1, 2012 - 6:10pm
UPDATED: Thursday, August 2, 2012 - 10:06am
BATON ROUGE, La. (NBC33) — Tropical Depression Five formed in the Atlantic Basin on Wednesday afternoon. As of the 4:00 p.m. update, the National Hurricane Center says the newly-formed cyclone is located about 810 miles east of the Windward Islands with maximum sustained winds around 35 mph. They predict further strengthening is possible over the next few days. Meaning, the depression could become Tropical Storm Ernesto tonight or on Thursday.
It is too early to know if this system will move into the Gulf of Mexico, but the National Hurricane Center's cone-of-uncertainty takes the potential "Ernesto" into the western Caribbean as a Category One hurricane. We'll need to closely monitor the forecast path over the weekend.
A Tropical Storm Watch has been issued for Barbados, St. Vincent and Grenadines, Dominica, St. Lucia, Martinique and Guadelupe because tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area on Friday.