New tropical depression forms and is headed for the northern Gulf Coast

The National Hurricane Center on Friday continued to track a new tropical depression, two tropical…

New tropical depression forms and is headed for the northern Gulf Coast

The National Hurricane Center on Friday continued to track a new tropical depression, two tropical storms and three tropical waves.

The newest addition is Tropical Depression 19, which was just east of South Florida and is expected to move into the Gulf of Mexico on Saturday.

The hurricane center is forecasting it to become a tropical storm and make landfall on the northern Gulf Coast on Tuesday. It’s too early to say exactly where.

The system will pass near or over parts of South Florida first, and a tropical storm watch has been issued for southeastern Florida. A tropical storm watch was added for part of the Florida Panhandle late Friday as well.

As of 10 p.m. CDT Friday, Tropical Depression 19 was located 25 miles east-southeast of Miami and was moving west-northwest at 8 mph.

TD 19 track 10 p.m. Friday

Tropical Depression 19 is expected to cross over South Florida and head northwestward in the Gulf of Mexico. It could make landfall anywhere from southeastern Louisiana to the Florida Panhandle.

The depression had winds of 35 mph. The hurricane center said it could become a tropical storm (possibly Tropical Storm Sally) before moving across South Florida overnight.

But otherwise it could become a tropical storm this weekend and gradually strengthen through Monday.

A tropical storm watch is in effect from south of Jupiter Inlet to north of Ocean Reef on Florida’s Atlantic coast. Another watch was added late Friday for the Florida Panhandle from the Ochlockonee River to the Okaloosa/Walton county line.

Forecasters cautioned that areas from Louisiana to the Florida Panhandle could end up in the path of the new storm: “The uncertainty in the track forecast is much larger than normal after 48 hours, as small changes in the forecast steering flow could result in this system moving over the northern Gulf Coast faster and to the northeast of what is shown here,” forecasters said Friday.

“As a result, the risk of seeing direct impacts from this system extends well outside the cone of uncertainty, even more so than usual in this case.”

There was another tropical wave in the north-central Gulf as of Friday.

The hurricane center said it, too, could slowly develop over the weekend and into early next week as it moves to the west or southwest.

Its development chances rose from 20 percent to 30 percent over the next five days.

Forecasters are also keeping a keen eye to the east, where two tropical waves moving off the coast of Africa continue to develop.

The first has made it into the eastern Atlantic and was a few hundred miles south-southwest of the Cabo Verde Islands on Friday evening.

It could become a tropical depression in the next few days as it heads westward across the eastern Atlantic.

The second wave will move off Africa’s west coast this weekend and it could also become a depression early next week as it too heads westward.

By the way, the next four names on the storm list are Sally, Teddy, Vicky and Wilfred.

The storm name list ends with Wilfred, and forecasters might be forced to go to the Greek alphabet for storm names.

There are two named storms already as of Friday, and one is headed in the direction of Bermuda.

The hurricane center said Tropical Storm Paulette will become a hurricane this weekend and move uncomfortably close to or over Bermuda.

As of 10 p.m. CDT Friday, Paulette was located about 750 miles southeast of Bermuda and was moving northwest at 16 mph.

TS Paulette track

Tropical Storm Paulette could take aim at Bermuda as a hurricane on Monday.

Paulette’s winds climbed to 70 mph late Friday. Hurricane-force winds begin at 74 mph.

A tropical storm watch was issued for Bermuda late Friday.

Forecasters think Paulette will become a hurricane Saturday or Saturday night and move near Bermuda on Sunday night into Monday.

Waves churned up from Paulette will affect the northern Leeward Islands tonight and then spread westward over the weekend to the Greater Antilles, the Bahamas, Bermuda and the southeast U.S. Atlantic coast.

They could cause deadly rip currents, the hurricane center said.

Then there’s Tropical Storm Rene, which was weaker as of Friday and won’t affect land.

As of 10 p.m. CDT Friday, Tropical Storm Rene was located about 1,260 miles west-northwest of the Cabo Verde Islands and was moving west-northwest at 14 mph.

TS Rene track

Tropical Storm Rene had 40 mph winds on Friday and is no longer expected to become a hurricane, although it could get stronger.

Rene had top winds of 40 mph.

Rene is no longer expected to become a hurricane, but it could get stronger over the next few days before weakening again on Sunday, forecasters said.