Hurricane Ophelia becomes 10th Atlantic hurricane of 2017 season

Hurricane Ophelia formed in the Atlantic on Oct. 11, 2017. TWITTER / NASA

(CBS) – Ophelia became a hurricane on Wednesday, becoming the 10th hurricane in the Atlantic in 2017. Way out in the middle of the Atlantic, it’s unlikely it will be a threat to U.S., although it could possibly be a threat to Ireland, the National Hurricane Center said.

As of 5:00 a.m. ET, the storm has maximum sustained winds of near 85 mph, and some strengthening could happen over the next 48 hours. There are no coastal watches or warnings in effect.

University of Miami hurricane researcher Brian McNoldy says Ophelia is the 10th straight tropical storm to become a hurricane in an Atlantic season. That has not happened since 1893, according to McNoldy. He says a combination of slightly warmer than normal water and weak upper level winds helped make that hurricane streak.

Additionally, the 2017 hurricane season has been busy – there were two Category 5 storms: Irma and Maria. There were two others, Harvey and Jose, that reached Category 4 strength.

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