National Hurricane Center
msnbc.com
updated 8/12/2011 4:45:34 PM ET 2011-08-12T20:45:34

Three systems are brewing in the Atlantic with decent potential for becoming tropical storms over the weekend, the National Hurricane Center said Friday.

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The system closest to North America has the highest chance — 60 percent of turning into a tropical storm within 48 hours — but poses little threat and is likely to be short-lived, the Weather Channel reported.

It was about 200 miles north of Bermuda on Friday afternoon, when it became a tropical depression — one level before tropical storm.

Two systems farther out in the Atlantic have 40 and 50 percent chances, and could impact Caribbean islands by next week.

A fourth system closer to the U.S. East Coast was given a 20 percent chance of turning into a tropical storm within 48 hours.

Private forecaster accuweather.com reported earlier this week that it expected at least three named storms by Aug. 25. The next names to be used for the Atlantic season are Franklin, Gert and Harvey.

The Atlantic season has already provided five named storms but none were very severe.

Accuweather.com expert Paul Pastelok attributed the lack of severity to "disruptive areas of wind shear and pockets of dry air lurking about the Atlantic."

"These two inhibiting factors have minimized the intensity of tropical systems to date this year and may continue to govern the intensity of future storms over the next couple of weeks," accuweather.com stated.

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