UPDATE 10/12 (AP) 4:45 p.m. — Hurricane Ophelia has strengthened to a Category 2 storm, swirling far from land in the eastern Atlantic.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center says Ophelia is barely moving and is continuing to strengthening, now boasting top sustained winds of 100 mph (kph).
On Thursday afternoon, Ophelia’s core was located about 715 miles southwest of the Azores, where it was virtually stationary.
The Miami-based hurricane center says Ophelia should lose a little strength in the next 48 hours but is expected to remain a hurricane for the next couple of days.
The hurricane center’s five-day forecast, which can change, has Ophelia heading close to the British Isles by Monday afternoon. That’s a bit of an unusual track for Atlantic storms. Currently, there are no coastal watches or warnings in effect.
Hurricane Ophelia formed from what was Tropical Depression 17, west of the Azores days ago. It is the 15th named storm of the year, and the 10th hurricane of the year.
It is no threat to the US. It’s moving toward the east. The track will keep it west of Portugal but it may reach the United Kingdom by Monday as a storm system that may not be classified as a hurricane but one that brings hurricane-force gusts.
Follow the track on the wkrg.com interactive tracker or on your free News 5 weather app.
Hurricane season runs through the end of November.