The tropics aren't completely quiet just yet. A disturbance about 350 miles to the east of the northern Leeward Islands has a 50% chance of tropical or subtropical organization in the next 2 days. Fortunately, this disturbance is not expected to impact land. 

Area to Watch

We took a look back to see how common late season tropical activity is. Tropical systems do briefly develop in late November, but hurricanes late in the season are not very common. Hurricane Otto in 2016 was the last time a hurricane developed in late November. Otto became a major hurricane with winds of 115 mph at peak intensity and made landfall in Central America. Otto was especially unique for crossing from the Caribbean Sea into the Pacific Ocean and surviving for a few more days as a Pacific storm. 

The risk for tropical activity goes down significantly in December. December has a history of "hybrid" tropical systems that start off in the tropics, but become winter weather events off the coast, but tropical impacts on land in December are very rare. Only 8 hurricanes have ever been recorded in December since records began in 1850. The last December hurricane was Epsilon during the record breaking 2005 Atlantic Hurricane Season. The last storm in the 2005 hurricane season was Zeta which formed the day before New Years Eve and survived into the first week of 2006. 

December Hurricanes

Vacation plans for the holidays in the tropics often go uninterrupted by weather in southern latitudes. Tropical systems are rare from late autumn through spring and much of the tropics enjoys their dry season this time of the year.