World and Nation

In Irene’s Wake, Katia Strengthens

Just days after Hurricane Irene killed at least 54 people and caused widespread flooding in the northeast United States, another tropical cyclone is brewing in the tropical Atlantic Ocean. Tropical Storm Katia, which last night was downgraded from hurricane status, is expected to reattain that status today, and is forecast to intensify in the next few days as it moves westward toward the North American continent. In fact, Katia could become a major hurricane by early next week. Whether or Katia will threaten the U.S. will depend on the strength of the subtropical ridge several days out, which will dictate whether the storm turns to the north, or continues westward toward land. Still, Katia will not begin to near land for more than a week.