Hurricane Ophelia could slam into Europe early next week

Randolph Lopez
October 12, 2017

Forecasters say Ophelia is beginning to look like a hurricane on satellite images but hasn't quite reached hurricane status yet.

The hurricane center expects Ophelia to top out as a Category 1 hurricane with 80 miles per hour winds before becoming a post-tropical or extra-tropical system toward the end of the 5-day forecast period. The core of Ophelia is located about 1,220 kilometres southwest of the Azores and the storm is moving east at 3 6 km/h.

At 5 pm Wednesday afternoon, Ophelia was upgraded to a category 1 hurricane.

Ophelia is racing across the Atlantic at 6mph and is forecast to reach hurricane strength tomorrow.

Well off in the Atlantic Ocean, Ophelia poses no threat to the United States.

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The 2017 hurricane season was forecast by NOAA, and many other forecast products to be the busiest we have seen since 2010.

The active 2017 hurricane season has another addition for the record books. Ophelia will then run into an approaching deep-layer trough that will make the hurricane accelerate toward the northeast.

Center officials said the hurricane is forecast to drift northeastward over the next 24 hours.

Ophelia would become only the third tropical cyclone to hit the west coast of Portugal or Spain since records began, following a storm in October 1842 and Hurricane Vince (as a tropical depression) in October 2005. Strongest winds are far from the center and higher in the atmosphere.

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