Tropical Storm Bertha, which formed in the far-eastern Atlantic off the coast of Africa on July 3, is still meandering through the Atlantic, 15 days later, making it the longest-lived storm ever recorded during July in the Atlantic.
In fact, it's already beaten the record by more than two days. The previous record-holder was a 1916 storm that lasted 12 days and change, according to Bloomberg.
The second named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season has proved surprising and perplexing as it slowly moves through warm Atlantic waters.
It reached hurricane strength July 7, then quickly grew into a Category 3 storm, a rare occurrence for July. The tropical storm season typically peaks in mid-September, and hurricanes, let alone major hurricanes, are infrequent earlier than about mid-August.
Bertha lost hurricane strength just before brushing by Bermuda July 14, bought she still brought strong winds and rain to the island, and strong surf as far away as the U.S. East Coast
Bertha's strength and long life may not bode well for the rest of the tropical storm season.
National Hurricane Center
Forecasters have predicted an above-average hurricane season for the Atlantic, where the storms most damaging to the U.S. form, could spawn 12 to 16 named storms, including six to nine hurricanes and as many as five major hurricanes.
The first tropical storm of the Atlantic season, Arthur, brought punishing rains to parts of Central America June 1, right in time for the official start of the hurricane season.
Hurricane Bertha's formation followed an active period in the eastern Pacific Ocean, where three tropical storms and the first hurricane of the eastern Pacific season, Hurricane Boris, formed within days of each other last week. Hurricane Elida, the third hurricane of the season and second in the eastern Pacific, lost strength and was downgraded to a tropical storm Friday, but forecasters said Tropical Storm Fausto was likely to become the eastern Pacific basin's third hurricane later today.
Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center have predicted that conditions will spawn a below-average storm season in the eastern Pacific, with 11-16 named storms, including five to eight hurricanes, as many as three of them major (Category 3 or greater) storms.
Tropical Storm Arthur formed quickly on May 31 off Belize, lost tropical storm strength in fewer than 24 hours, and brought punishing rains of 10-15 inches to parts of the Yucatán Peninsula, including Mexico and Guatemala.
Hurricane Bertha formed as a tropical storm July 3 in the far eastern Atlantic, then debuted as the Atlantic's first hurricane July 7 and quickly grew to major hurricane status. By the time it affected land, July 14 in Bermuda, it was a strong tropical storm, causing rough surf and threatening 3-5 inches of rain, and it had already broken the record for longest-lived July storm by July 18, when forecasters expected it still had a day or two's worth of life in it.
Tropical Storm Alma brought heavy rains and winds to the Central American nations of Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala after forming May 29.
Hurricane Boris formed near Baja California and headed west into the Pacific, before reaching hurricane strength July 1.
Tropical Storm Cristina formed near Hawaii June 29 but dissipated before making landfall.
Tropical Storm Douglas formed July 2 and threatened to dump heavy rains on portions of southwest Mexico.
Hurricane Elida formed July 12 as a tropical storm and became the season's second Pacific hurricane July 14 when it became a weak Category 1 storm tracking westward from Mexico.
Tropical Storm Fausto formed July 16 off the coast of Mexico and could grow into a hurricane.
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