The Northern Indian Ocean cyclone season is off to a roaring start, as the second tropical storm formed within a day of the first one. NASA's Aqua satellite flew over Tropical Storm 02A today, May 19 and captured infrared, microwave and visible images of the storm.
At 1500 UTC (11 a.m. EDT) on May 19, Tropical Storm 02A had maximum sustained winds near 39 mph, with higher gusts. It was located in the Arabian Sea (part of the Northern Indian Ocean) about 135 miles east-southeast of Cape Guardafui, Somalia. That's near 11.3 North and 53.5 East. It was moving west-northwest near 6 mph (5 knots).
NASA's Aqua satellite captured an image of Tropical Storm 2A at 09:41 UTC (5:41 a.m. EDT) just as the storm was strengthening to tropical storm status. The visible image clearly shows higher thunderstorms around the center, and the western side of the storm over land.
Tropical Storm 02A is currently bringing gusty winds and rain to Bari, Somalia. Bari is an administrative region in northern Somalia where the major cities there are Bosaso, the capital and Qardho. Tropical Storm 02A is expected to track west-northwest and move into the Gulf of Aden, which lies just north of Somalia. Once there it is forecast to track in a westerly direction and bring rains and wind to Yemen, which lies to the north of the Gulf of Aden.
Forecasters at the Joint Typhoon Warning Center note that increased wind shear will not allow the system to strengthen as it moves into the Gulf of Aden. It is expected to dissipate in several days.
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