It appears Tropical Storm Franklin is forming east of the Yucatan Peninsula; the National Hurricane Center started issuing advisories on the system at 5pm. Known now simply as Potential Tropical Cyclone Seven, the system is forecast by the National Hurricane Center (NHC) to become a tropical storm before reaching the cost of the Yucatan Peninsula late tomorrow.
For now, the system is showing mixed signs of development. The scatterometer pass and NOAA data buoy observations indicate that the maximum winds are near 30 kt. The disturbance has been experiencing westerly vertical shear due to a nearby upper-level low and this has been inhibiting development. Global model predictions show that this low will soon dissipate and an upper-level anticyclone will become established over the area. Because of this, the NHC believes strengthening is likely with the main impediment being interaction with land. The NHC also cautions that the system could become a hurricane between 72 and 96 hours, prior to reaching the Gulf coast of Mexico. When this tropical cyclone becomes a tropical storm, it will be named Franklin.
With the threat of a landfalling tropical cyclone, the government of Mexico has issued a Tropical Storm Warning from Chetumal northward and around the Yucatan Peninsula to Campeche. The government of Belize has issued a Tropical Storm Watch from Belize City north to the Mexican border. A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area over the next 24-36 hours. A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area within 24 to 36 hours.
Experts believe this Atlantic Hurricane Season, which runs through to the end of November, will be a busy one. Dr. Phil Klotzbach and the experts at Colorado State University updated their seasonal outlook again on July 5, showing a much more active than normal season expected. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) also released their own forecast which shows this hurricane season to be likely more active than others.