Tropical Depression 9 expected to intensify in Tropical Storm Ian with Florida in cone of uncertainty

Tropical Depression 9 is expected to strengthen into Tropical Storm Ian sometime on Friday. The system formed into a tropical depression Friday morning in the eastern Caribbean.

As of the 5 p.m. advisory, Tropical Depression 9 is located more than 400 miles east-southeast of Jamaica. The system is still struggling with a bit of northeast wind, but it will transition to a more regulation-friendly environment this weekend.

LINK: Track the Tropics on MyFOXHurricane.com

As this travels to the west, it reaches an area with enormous tropical heat potential. Very deep warm water will undoubtedly cause strengthening.

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In all likelihood, the system could turn into a hurricane late Sunday or early Monday south of Cuba. It is expected to approach Florida from Tuesday through Wednesday. This is not likely to become a major hurricane during that time.

Although we were able to narrow the storm’s path to a general path toward Florida, it’s important to remember that the cone is still very wide on day five (about 400 miles), said Tyler Eliasen, a meteorologist at FOX 13. The path above the left side of the cone versus the right side means completely different effects for any given location.

While it is still too early to say the exact timing/location of the impacts, residents anywhere along the Florida peninsula should be in the early stages of their preparations.

The afternoon model routing is still a bit split after the next two or three days. The latest EUR hints at a dip in southwest Florida while GFS lies north at Big Bend. Again, these are two completely different outcomes when it comes to effects.

As data collection continues and the storm develops a bit more, the models will align better. So, as we now know a lot more than we did yesterday or the day before, we’ll know a lot more over the weekend.

Most of Florida is currently in a state of uncertainty, although meteorologists warn that much could change over the next several days.

“This is the initial forecast path, and I want to stress the word ‘initial’ because I promise you this is going to change quite a bit,” said DaveOsterberg, a meteorologist for FOX 13. “Will it change to West Bay? No, I don’t think so. But if it were modified a little bit towards the west or modified a little bit to the east, it would make a big difference in the potential impact it could have here.”

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