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The meteorologists of the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and Atmosphere (IPMA) and the National Hurricane Center (US) continue to follow with concern the evolution of hurricane ‘Leslie’ moving in the North Atlantic, at a time when probability that the depression will reach the archipelago of Madeira in the form of a tropical storm, starting on Saturday.

According to the Diario, on Thursday afternoon, the IPMA is preparing a statement to inform the population about the situation of the tropical storm ‘Leslie’, however, it awaits more precise data in order to calculate the probabilities with another degree of certain weather warnings according to rain, wind and sea-wave forecasts.

A few days ago, the IPMA and National Hurricane Center (US) meteorologists have been following with concern the evolution of the tropical cyclone, analyzing it based on the deterministic models and looking for the trajectory that Leslie will adopt as it evolves in the ocean in the Madeira route. “It’s been a while, the trajectory is approaching Madeira, so it’s a situation that leaves us worried and attentive to surveillance,” said Paula Leitão, IPMA meteorologist, in the balance sheet made to Diario on the afternoon of last Tuesday. 

It is recalled that the tropical storm remained stationary in the Atlantic Ocean, about 150 kms south-west of the Azores archipelago but on Wednesday began to move in the ocean, increasing strength, passing the level 1 hurricane. 

The following meteorological charts first indicated that the cyclone passed north of the archipelago, then suggested a dissipation of the storm before reaching the region of Madeira and, later, an inflection towards the South closer to the archipelago of the Canaries.

However, according to the Diario, with the IPMA, the latest NHC updates that were shared today put the hurricane on the Madeira route with the epicenter to make a very localised trajectory in the islands of Madeira and Porto Santo, giving as well as strong odds that the depression will hit the archipelago already as a tropical storm, confirming the forecasts drawn on Tuesday.

According to the National Hurricane Center’s weather forecast, the most critical time should be in the time interval between Saturday morning and Sunday morning, as you can see in the image. During this period, strong winds and heavy rains are expected within a few hours. The intensity and volume of precipitation can only be calculated with degree of precision and certainty in the next hours.