Hurricane Danny's Project Path Changes
MIAMI, Florida -- As of 5 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time on Saturday, August 22, 2015, NOAA's National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida has issued a public advisory due to the presence of Hurricane Danny that weakened last night from a Category 3 to a Category 2 Hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.
Hurricane Danny is located 740 miles east of the Leeward Islands and is moving to the west-northwest at 10 miles per hour. Danny now has maximum sustained winds of 100 miles per hour, with higher gusts.
According to the National Hurricane Center, Danny's projected path is forecast to make a turn to the west and increase in forward speed later today. Hurricane Danny is forecast to become Tropical Storm Danny on Sunday and weaken further into a tropical depression by Thursday because the storm is now interacting with a dry air mass.
Data from a U.S. Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicates that Danny remains a tiny tropical cyclone. Hurricane-force winds only extend outward up to 15 miles (30 km) from the center and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 70 miles (110 km). NHC forecasters note that small hurricanes tend to have higher fluctuations in strength. Another Hurricane Hunter flight is scheduled for this afternoon.
Spaghetti models are in general agreement that Hurricane Danny will continue on a west-northwesterly track towards the northern Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic coastlines through Tuesday. Most models forecast that Danny will pass over the southern Bahamas by Friday.
The spaghetti plots for Hurricane Danny have shifted more to the north each day during the last four days. If Hurricane Danny's projected path continues more to the north, and the tropical cyclone actually misses the interaction with land masses in the eastern Caribbean, that could suddenly change both future storm track predictions and intensity models.