Tropical Storm Irene formed in the Atlantic Ocean Saturday, and is forecast to become a Category 1 hurricane by Monday. Tropical Storm Warnings have been issued for Puerto Rico, and Hurricane Warnings issued for portions of the Dominican Republic.
WHERE IS IT HEADED?
It's still very early, but the official forecast track from the National Hurricane Center has Irene passing over the Dominican Republic as a Hurricane late Monday night, then the eastern edge of Cuba by Wednesday.
A few models have the storm interacting with a ridge of high pressure keeping Irene in the Caribbean, while others bring it east of Florida. The official track will compensate, placing it between the two models.
Thursday, the storm is forecast to make a turn toward the southern tip of Florida as a Tropical Storm.
Irene is starting out on a similar path as Tropical Storm Emily did in late July. As Emily moved over Hispaniola, she lost steam, and her storm status. She then reformed and continued to move away from the U.S. mainland.
IMPACT ON VIRGINIA
A lot can happen in a week. Irene's forecast is in the beginning stages, but is certainly promising for rain in drought-stricken areas if the models hold true.