Tropical Storm Gustav was the seventh named storm of the 1996 Atlantic hurricane season. The least notable storm of the season, Gustav only managed to reach a peak of 45 mph winds as a minimal tropical storm out in the open Atlantic Ocean, never threatening land. Gustav dissipated because of Hurricane Fran's outflow, then due to wind shear from a cut-off low. Gustav is one of three tropical cyclones that were closely spaced together in the 1996 Atlantic hurricane season, along with hurricanes Edouard and Fran.
Gustav caused no damage, and no fatalities were reported in association with the weak tropical storm.
|Formation||August 26, 1996|
|Dissipation||September 2, 1996|
|Highest winds||45 mph|
|Lowest pressure||1005 mbar|
A disturbed area of weather exited the coast of Africa on August 24 and entered the Atlantic Ocean, accompanied by a low-level cloud circulation. This was the first of three closely spaced tropical cyclones in the Atlantic basin during the 1996 Atlantic hurricane season, a rarity. The area of disturbed weather gradually became more organized, and a tropical depression developed from it on August 26, located south of the Cape Verde Islands. After forming, the depression moved west-southwest at about 12 knots for two days, due to the influence of a steering ridge of high pressure to its north. On the 28th, the depression strengthened into Tropical Storm Gustav. Gustav moved to the northwest in response to a trough in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. The trough eventually became a cut-off low which continued to steer Gustav to the northwest. On September 5, Gustav dissipated, due to strong wind shear from the cut-off low.
Infrared satellite image of three closely spaced tropical cyclones. Edouard (left), Fran (middle), and Gustav (right).
Since Gustav never came close to land, there was no impact from the storm. Aside from maybe some light rain in the Cape Verde Islands, Gustav did nothing on land.
Lack of Retirement
Because it did not affect land, the name Gustav was not retired in the Spring of 1997 by the World Meteorological Organization. It was used in the 2002 Atlantic hurricane season, and is on the list of names to be used in the 2008 Atlantic hurricane season.