The tropical disturbance we have been following this week has moved over the Yucatan peninsula of Mexico and Belize without developing any further.
It will continue to move slowly westward and enter the Bay of Campeche in the southern Gulf of Mexico on Friday. Once back over water, there is at least a chance it could develop into a tropical depression or storm.
The National Hurricane Center now gives the system a 50 percent chance of developing Thursday or Friday and a 60 percent chance for developing over the weekend.
The hurricane hunter flights scheduled for Thursday were cancelled but are scheduled if needed for Friday.
We are still facing challenging forecast scenario, however, since the low did not develop over the Caribbean, the more likely path is continued west or west-northwest movement across the southern Gulf toward Mexico.
If no development occurs the next several days, the wave will indeed steadily move west and go onshore the Gulf coast of Mexico late in the weekend or early next week.
If a low develops and gets organized, it could become trapped in the southern Gulf between the big high pressure over the southwest U.S. and northern Mexico and the westward building Atlantic high pressure.
Although the Gulf water is very warm, which would easily support a tropical storm, the environment forecast over the southern Gulf for the weekend does not look all that conducive for development.
In any event, the steering current should keep any Gulf development away from the upper Texas coast through Sunday.
Meanwhile, way out in the Atlantic and 4500 miles from Houston, Tropical Storm Erin formed Thursday morning. It will move steadily west the next five days while staying way away from any land.
Bill Read will have more on the movement in the Gulf tonight on Local 2 News at 4, 5 and 6.