Although vertical shear is still the primary reason Claudette is not a hurricane, it is decreasing and she has historically been very quick to respond to subtle changes in the environment (because of her small size and modest intensity). For the first time in a couple days, there are convective features on the west semicircle of her circulation. The steering flow in the central Gulf is nearly non-existent right recently, so her track has looked more like a child's drawing of a camel than that of a gently curving line. However, a more westward heading should commence shortly. At 18Z today, TS Claudette was located at 27.3N 92.8W and drifting NNW at 5kts. This will take her further north than previous track forecasts predicted. Intensity is 55kts and 989mb (traditionally, this pressure is borderline hurricane). Since the shear is expected to lessen even more, the forecast is for her to become a hurricane later today or early tomorrow just prior to landfall. A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for extreme western LA coast and extreme eastern TX coast; a Hurricane Watch is in effect from Brownsville to Baffin bay; and a Hurricane Warning is in effect from Baffin Bay to San Luis Pass. Landfall is predicted near Port O'Connor sometime Tuesday evening. Should she become a hurricane, it would be the first July hurricane since Bill '97.
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