Hurricane Josephine was the tenth named storm and fifth hurricane of the 1990 Atlantic hurricane season. Josephine developed as a Cape Verde hurricane on September 21 west of the Cape Verde Islands. Josephine did not attain hurricane status until October 4. It took the cyclone a total of 13¾ days to attain hurricane status, which is the second longest period for an Atlantic tropical cyclone to go from tropical depression status to hurricane status, behind only Hurricane Arlene of 1987, which in itself took 14.5 days.
Josephine caused no damage and no deaths.
|Formation||September 21, 1990|
|Dissipation||October 6, 1990|
|Highest winds||85 mph|
|Lowest pressure||980 mbar|
|Part of the||1990 Atlantic hurricane season|
Josephine can be traced back to wave a tropical wave which left the coast of Africa on September 16. As the wave traveled westward across the tropical Atlantic, it was accompanied by vigorous convection, and the first Dvorak classifications began on the wave on September 20. By 1000 UTC September 21, the wave had organized enough to be designated a tropical depression to the west of the Cape Verde Islands. After forming, the tropical cyclone moved northwest toward a weakness in the subtropical ridge caused by an upper-level low to the west of Gibraltar that had reached the surface by September 21. The low subsequently weakened over the next few days, and by September 24, the surface low weakened. Consequently, a ridge built in to the north of the cyclone, and it almost immediately moved westward in response, strengthening into a tropical storm as it did so. A strong upper-level trough to the northwest of Josephine created strong vertical wind shear over the cyclone, and consequently Josephine weakened to a tropical depression at 0600 UTC September 26. By September 28, a broad and weak trough over the northwest Atlantic Ocean steered the cyclone to the northwest. Josephine continued in that direction until September 30, when it moved north and northeastward as the trough moved eastward. The trough was apparently too weak to pick up Josephine, and by October 2, it became evident that a ridge to the north would prevent Josephine from continuing northeastward. Consequently, Josephine executed a clockwise loop over a three day period, regaining tropical storm status during this period. By 0000 UTC October 4, a potent trough had moved from the northeastern United States and into the north central Atlantic Ocean. At this point, Josephine was located between an upper trough to the west and an upper ridge to the east, and this provided a favorable environment for intensification. Josephine attained hurricane status as it began to move northeast in advance of the approaching upper trough.
By 0000 UTC October 5, a frontal wave began to develop within the trough just to the north of the hurricane. Josephine tracked along the eastern periphery of the developing mid-latitude system on October 5. By 1800 UTC October 6, Josephine became an extratropical cyclone.
Lack of Retirement
Because it did not affect land, the name Josephine was not retired in the Spring of 1991 by the World Meteorological Organization. It is on the list of names to be used for the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season.