Forecasters tracking a weather disturbance in the Gulf of Mexico said Friday evening the system had a 60% chance of becoming a tropical depression or tropical storm.
Regardless of development, the National Hurricane Center said it expected the disturbance to deliver heavy rain to southwest Louisiana and southeast Texas through Saturday.
If it becomes a tropical storm, it would be named Ana or Bill, depending on what happens with another system that forecasters were tracking in the Atlantic Ocean near Bermuda. That one’s not a threat to Louisiana, but it had a high chance of becoming a named storm within 48 hours.
The update came 11 days before the official start of the Atlantic Basin hurricane season on June 1.
Here’s what to know about the tropics as of 7 p.m.:
Disturbance in the Gulf
Satellite data suggested a low-pressure system in the Gulf had winds of 30 mph to 35 mph near and east of its center, forecasters said.
The system’s thunderstorm activity was minimal, but the hurricane center said any increase in storms could result in a “short-lived” tropical depression before the system moves inland near the Louisiana-Texas border.
It was forecast to drop heavy rainfall on parts of both states for the next few days, meteorologists said, which could lead to flash, street and river flooding.
The shaded area on the graphic at the top of this story is not a forecast track but where a storm could develop. The National Hurricane Center releases a track when a tropical depression forms or is about to form.
In the Atlantic
The weather system had a 90% chance of developing into a tropical depression or tropical storm within 48 hours, according to the 7 p.m. update.
The non-tropical low pressure area is centered about 300 miles northeast of Bermuda. The showers and thunderstorms associated had diminished since Friday morning, and forecasters said the disturbance still did not have subtropical storm characteristics.
They said, however, that if trends continued, they would initiate advisories for the storm, possibly by Friday night.
The system was moving west west-southwest. It was expected to move into a more hostile environment by Saturday night or Sunday, forecasters said.
Carlie Kollath Wells contributed to this report.