Tropical Storm Fran was the sixth named storm of the 1990 Atlantic hurricane season. Fran was a weak tropical storm that developed in the central Atlantic Ocean at low latitudes well east of the southern Windward Islands on August 11. Fran moved rapidly westward, degenerated into an open tropical wave, and then ultimately reformed and attained minimal tropical storm status before dissipating near the northeastern coast of Venezuela on August 14.
Fran caused no damage and no deaths.
|Formation||August 11, 1990|
|Dissipation||August 14, 1990|
|Highest winds||40 mph|
|Lowest pressure||1007 mbar|
|Areas affected||Trinidad, Venezuela|
|Part of the||1990 Atlantic hurricane season|
Fran was associated with a low-latitude tropical wave that moved off the coast of Africa on August 9. The wave almost immediately showed signs of organization, with a low-level center becoming evident in METEOSAT satellite imagery on August 10 while located about 200 miles south of the Cape Verde Islands. On August 11, the wave had developed sufficiently to be designated a tropical depression. The cyclone was embedded within a deep easterly steering flow along the south side of a well-established subtropical ridge to the north. The cyclone was moving very rapidly, at 25 to 30 mph, and remained below 10°N latitude. By 0600 UTC August 12, the depression was nearing tropical storm strength, as confirmed by Dvorak estimates. However, later in the day, the cyclone began to lose its low-level circulation center and associated deep convection. It became too weak to classify via the Dvorak technique, and the tropical depression degenerated into an open tropical wave. Around 24 hours later, the wave began to become better organized. At 1700 UTC August 13, a ship reported southeasterly winds of nearly 40 mph while located 45 miles north of the circulation center. Based on this, the depression was upgraded to Tropical Storm Fran at 2200 UTC August 22. Fran continued westward, passing over the extreme southern Windward Islands on the morning of August 14, and because half the circulation was over Venezuela, Fran dissipated that same day.
Tropical Storm Warnings were issued in Trinidad 14 hours prior to when the island received sustained winds of 40 mph.
Lack of Retirement
Because it caused no known damage, the name Fran was not retired in the Spring of 1991 by the World Meteorological Organization. Fran was used again during the 1996 season, and retired following that season. It was replaced with Fay for the 2002 season.