CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - It’s the first day of Atlantic hurricane season, but the third tropical depression of the year formed Monday in the Gulf of Mexico.
The depression formed from remnants of Tropical Storm Amanda, which formed in the Atlantic near Guatemala and moved across Central America.
At 5 p.m. Monday, it had maximum sustained winds of 30 mph. At maximum sustained winds of 39 mph, it would be reclassified as a tropical storm. If it redevelops into a tropical storm in the Gulf of Mexico, it is likely to be given the name Cristobal, the third name in the 2020 Atlantic list.
The depression is expected to bring heavy rainfall to portions of southern Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, which could see life-threatening flash flooding and mudslides.
The system is forecast to begin moving north across the Gulf of Mexico later this week, but forecasters say it is too soon to specify the timing and location of any impacts along the U.S. Gulf Coast.
The Associated Press reported rains from the former Tropical Storm Amanda left at least 17 dead and seven missing while causing extensive damage across El Salvador and Guatemala.
Hurricane season begins on June 1 and runs through Nov. 30. The first two named storms of the season formed in May.
Tropical Storm Arthur formed on May 16 and brought heavy rain to North Carolina’s coast two days later.
Tropical Storm Bertha formed Wednesday as a tropical disturbance suddenly organized, developed into a tropical storm and made landfall within two hours, but caused few problems.
Bertha was named around 8 a.m. Wednesday and was onshore east of Charleston by 9:30 a.m. The state Department of Natural Resources called it “a sunrise surprise.” Six hours after the tropical storm formed, the National Hurricane Center downgraded it to a depression well inland.