Karen fizzles while heading toward populated areas

By Alex Sosnowski
The remnants of Tropical Storm Karen are moving toward the northeast. Photo courtesy of NOAA
The remnants of Tropical Storm Karen are moving toward the northeast. Photo courtesy of NOAA

Sept. 25 (UPI) -- Amid a flurry of Atlantic tropical activity during the middle of September, meteorologists began watching an area that would become Karen.

Tropical Storm Karen brewed in the eastern Caribbean last Sunday, joining Jerry and budding Lorenzo, before taking aim at Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands with excessive rainfall on Tuesday.


Since then, Karen has been meandering to the north of Puerto Rico and it is now past its peak, no longer posing a significant threat to land and interests in the Bahamas, the United States and Cuba.

Karen was downgraded to a tropical depression at 11 a.m. EDT Friday, with maximum sustained winds dropping to 35 mph. The tropical depression was losing its circulation and was barely noticeable on satellite images as it sat about 400 miles southeast of Bermuda on Friday morning.

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By 5 p.m. EDT Friday, Karen had fizzled out, becoming just a disorganized area of showers and thunderstorms.

The showers and thunderstorms that remain from once-Tropical Storm Karen is forecast to stall and begin to drift westward this weekend.

"While wind shear has played a role in dismantling Karen, that shear should ease up on Saturday," according to AccuWeather Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski.


"However, wind shear is forecast to strengthen from a different direction this weekend and is really likely to cause what is left of Karen to break up over the weekend," Kottlowski said.

Only a low-level swirl of clouds may remain and drift westward next week.

"Later next week, this swirl will either keep moving west, fall apart or get drawn northward by an approaching cool front," Kottlowski said.

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"At any rate, what is left of Karen should not produce any substantial weather," he added.

What is likely to be a factor for the Atlantic coast of Florida are King Tides into early next week.

With the new moon this weekend and the overall alignment of the sun, moon and the Earth, the highest astronomical tides of the year are likely, when combined with weather conditions along the Florida east coast.

Expect coastal flooding at times of high tide; this coastal area includes the city of Miami.

Aside from mighty Hurricane Lorenzo over the middle of the Atlantic, conditions are relatively quiet for the moment across the basin.

However, an ongoing broad area of disturbed weather bears watching into October near Central America.

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