Beryl Is 2018’s First Hurricane —and Chris Could Be Brewing Off the East Coast

July 6, 2018, 1:29 PM UTC

The first hurricane of 2018 is headed to the Caribbean.

Hurricane Beryl, a compact storm formed quickly in the mid-Atlantic yesterday. (It wasn’t even classified as a tropical storm 24 hours ago.) Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center say due to its small size, there is greater-than-usual uncertainty about its intensity.

In other words, it could be stronger than the official wind speed readings of 75 mph (making it a Category 1 storm) as of 5 a.m. ET on Friday.

Meanwhile, another atmospheric disturbance, located a few hundred miles southeast of the North Carolina coast, is likely to become a named storm in the next couple of days, say forecasters. That storm, which would be named Chris if it intensifies as expected, is expected to slowly move northwest and stall over the NC coast over the weekend.

Beryl, at present, is unlikely at present to be a major concern for Caribbean island residents. The National Hurricane Center days it will quickly weaken or dissipate before it reaches the Lesser Antilles. However, the remnants should bring some rain and wind.

The year’s first hurricane comes right after forecasters at Colorado State University revised their model for the 2018 hurricane season, lowering the number of expected named tropical storms to 11, four of which they expect to become hurricanes. A previous model released in May, predicted there would be between 14 and 18 named storms on the eastern seaboard, seven of which would be hurricanes.