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Alex became first January hurricane to occur in Atlantic since 1955

By By Brian Lada, Meteorologist
February 05, 2016, 5:50:00 AM EST

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Alex became a hurricane over the middle of the Atlantic Ocean on Thursday, Jan. 14, and passed near the Azores on Friday morning, local time, before diminishing.

The system will lose tropical characteristics as it moves over colder waters of the Atlantic this weekend.

Alex was the first Atlantic hurricane to form in the month of January since 1938 and is the first Atlantic hurricane to exist during January since Alice in 1955.

The system made the transition from a non-tropical storm to a subtropical storm to a full-featured tropical system during the first part of the week.

“A subtropical storm has both tropical and non-tropical characteristics and has a large wind field,” said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dan Kottlowski.

This was the same system AccuWeather meteorologists were tracking since development near Florida early in the month.

Alex was named in the Atlantic Ocean on Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016, making it one of the earliest tropical systems to form in the Atlantic Hurricane Basin since records began in 1851.

January 2016 tropical storms Alex, Ula and Pali
AccuWeather Hurricane Center
More details on Alex

A small eye formed in the system during early Thursday, local time.


Alex is also the first tropical system to form over the Atlantic Ocean in January since Subtropical Storm One in 1978. The earliest tropical storm to form in January was Storm One on Jan. 3, 1939.

Content contributed by AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski.

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