Teddy strengthens into Category 4 hurricane, forecast to approach Bermuda this weekend


Tropical Storm "Teddy" formed at 09:00 UTC on September 14, 2020, as the earliest 19th Atlantic named storm on record. The previous record for the 19th named storm was October 4 (2005) — this was initially an unnamed storm, added in post-season reanalysis. Teddy strengthened into a hurricane at 06:10 UTC on September 16 — the 8th hurricane of the 2020 Atlantic season to date. Only 3 Atlantic hurricane seasons on record have had 8 hurricanes by September 16 — 1893, 2005, and 2012.

  • Teddy is expected to approach Bermuda as a hurricane this weekend and make its closest approach to the island late Sunday or Monday, September 21. While the exact details of Teddy's track and intensity near the island are not yet known, the risk of strong winds, storm surge, and heavy rainfall on Bermuda is increasing.
  • Large swells produced by Teddy are expected to affect portions of the Leeward Islands, the Greater Antilles, the Bahamas, Bermuda, and the southeastern United States during the next few days. These swells could cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions.

Teddy became a major hurricane — Category 3 — at 15:00 UTC on September 17, when its center was about 1 865 km (1 155 miles) SE of Bermuda. It was moving NW at 19 km/h (12 mph) and a minimum central pressure of 957 hPa. 

By 21:00 UTC on the same day, Teddy strengthened into a Category 4 hurricane, with additional strengthening forecast into September 18.

At 09:00 UTC on September 18, the center of Category 4 Hurricane "Teddy" was located about 1 510 km (935 miles) SE of Bermuda. It had maximum sustained winds of 215 km/h (130 mph) and a minimum central pressure of 947 hPa.

The cyclone was moving NE at 19 km/h (12 mph) and this general motion is expected to continue for the next couple of days, followed by a turn to the north by early next week.

Hurricane "Teddy" at 10:20 UTC on September 18, 2020. Credit: NOAA/GOES-16, RAMMB/CIRA

Some fluctuations in strength are expected during the next day or so, and Teddy is expected to be a Category 2 or 3 hurricane when it approaches Bermuda on September 20 and 21.

After that, Teddy is expected to race toward the north and make landfall in Nova Scotia early Wednesday, September 23 as a hurricane.

Featured image: Hurricane "Teddy" at 10:20 UTC on September 18, 2020. Credit: NOAA/GOES-16, RAMMB/CIRA


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