Storm expected to become Hurricane Ophelia, possibly by tonight

Tropical Storm Ophelia to Become Record-Tying 10th Straight Atlantic Hurricane Soon, Then an Intense Post-Tropical

As of 5 a.m. EDT, Ophelia, which isn't now a threat to any land, was centered about 785 miles (1,265 kilometers) southwest of the Azores and moving southeast near 6 mph (9 kph).

Enter Ophelia, the 10th hurricane of the hyperactive 2017 Atlantic season, which could be headed toward Ireland in about five days. Through today, October 11, we've had 15 named storms - 10 of which have been hurricanes, and 5 of those 10 became major hurricanes (Category 3 or higher).

The U.S. National Hurricane Center said in an advisory Wednesday afternoon that Ophelia gained hurricane status as its top sustained winds reached 120 km/h.

Tropical Storm Ophelia has strengthened a little far out in the eastern Atlantic, still forecast to become a hurricane later in the week. It is possible that this has happened since 1893, but we didn't have the technology to see it.


Hurricane season runs through the end of November in the Atlantic Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean Sea.

Forecasters say Ophelia is expected to become a hurricane by Thursday. Ophelia will then run into an approaching deep-layer trough that will make the hurricane accelerate toward the northeast.

By the time Ophelia reaches northern Europe, it may no longer be a tropical system, instead possibly transitioning into a powerful extratropical low pressure area. That's a bit of an unusual track for Atlantic storms.

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