By Caribbean News Now contributor
MIAMI, USA — Tropical Storm Erin, located about 625 miles west-northwest of the Cape Verde Islands, was downgraded to a tropical depression on Friday.
According to the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Erin was moving toward the west-northwest near 17 mph and this general motion is expected to continue with a gradual decrease in forward speed during the next day or so. Maximum sustained winds remain near 35 mph, with higher gusts. Little change in strength is forecast during the next 48 hours.
Meanwhile, an area of low pressure was located over the southwestern Gulf of Mexico about 120 miles north-northwest of Campeche, Mexico. Shower and thunderstorm activity increased a little on Friday but was still located well to the east and northeast of the low centre. Environmental conditions could become more favourable for development if the low moves toward the west or west-northwest over the next couple of days.
This system has a medium chance — 50 percent — of becoming a tropical cyclone during the next 48 hours, and a high chance — 60 percent — of becoming a tropical cyclone during the next five days.