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Hurricane Jose: the storm has weakened and is likely to steer clear of land

Jose is now a tropical storm. There’s a narrow chance it will impact the US.

: NOAA/NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response
Brian Resnick is Vox’s science and health editor, and is the co-creator of Unexplainable, Vox's podcast about unanswered questions in science. Previously, Brian was a reporter at Vox and at National Journal.

After two back-to-back Category 4 hurricanes, Harvey and Irma, hit the US, the National Hurricane Center had an unsettling report this week: Another big storm was lingering in the Atlantic Ocean.

Jose, which formed while Irma was reaching peak intensity last week, has been puttering along in the Atlantic a few hundred miles away from Turks and Caicos. After grazing by the Leeward islands in the Caribbean, it made a 360-degree pirouette in the Atlantic. Now it has broken out of its tailspin and degraded to a tropical storm with 70 mph winds (though the National Hurricane Center says it may strengthen back into a hurricane by the weekend).

Thursday brought good news, though: For now, it seems Jose looks unlikely to impact the United States or any other land mass. Woo-hoo.

Jose’s past storm track and forecast from the National Hurricane Center.

Regardless: This forecast can change. Eric Holthaus, a meteorologist and journalist, writes on Twitter that there’s a 20 percent chance of an impact along the East Coast. So we’ll keep watching.

And new tropical storms and hurricanes can still form in the coming weeks. After all, we’re in peak hurricane season, where the ocean temperatures are as warm as they get for the entire year. It’s not surprising to see so many storms form this time of year. If anything, it’s weird that the US hasn’t more hurricanes in the past 10 years, as the Washington Post explains.

How to follow Jose