Aug 1, 2014 6:10 PM by Rob Perillo
Tropical Storm Bertha is expected to remain a tropical storm as it traverses through the Eastern Caribbean Friday night and the Northeastern to North Central Caribbean including the Southeastern Bahama Islands this weekend.
The storm was near Martinique late Friday afternoon and was moving smartly to the west-northwest at 24mph. Maximum sustained winds were near 50mph.
Interaction with land masses, upper level shear and some dry air combined with the lack of convective organization will all conspire to keep Bertha near the same intensity through the weekend.
Early next week, Bertha is expect to turn northward and stay east of the U.S. East Coast but there will be some opportunity for the system to intensify as upper level winds perhaps become more favorable while staying over the warm northern Caribbean waters.
Current National Hurricane Center forecast track curves Bertha between Bermuda and the East Coast mid next week with the storm moving into the open Atlantic Ocean thereafter.