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Tropical Storm warnings issued for Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands and northern Leeward Islands

Alex Harris and Michelle Marchante, Miami Herald on

Published in Weather News

MIAMI -- Puerto Rico and the eastern Caribbean could see Tropical Storm Isaias as soon as Wednesday, the National Hurricane Center said.

Tropical storm warnings were issued Tuesday for Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Islands, Antigua, Barbuda, Montserrat, St. Kitts, Nevis, Guadeloupe, Martinique, St. Martin, Saba, St. Eustatius, St. Maartin Anguilla and St. Barthelemy, which called for a disturbance east of the Antilles to strengthen into Tropical Storm Isaias.

The Dominican Republic was under a tropical storm watch from Cabo Engano to the northern border with Haiti, as of 2 p.m. Eastern time.

The disturbance's potential path takes it over the Bahamas on Saturday and Florida on Sunday as a Tropical Storm with winds around 60 mph.

The system still does not have a well-defined center, and forecasters said the storm could be unpredictable over the next few days.

"It cannot be stressed enough that since the system is still in the formative stage, greater than average uncertainty exists regarding both the short-term and longer-term track and intensity forecasts," they wrote.

Tuesday afternoon, an Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft found the storm was headed west at 23 mph with 40 mph max winds. It's expected to strengthen into Isaias later Tuesday evening.

The storm could bring 50 to 60 mph winds, heavy rains and potentially life-threatening flash flooding and mudslides to the northern Leeward Islands, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. The Windward Islands could see 2 to 4 inches of rain.

 

The National Hurricane Center also issued its final advisory Monday morning for what was formerly known as Hurricane Hanna, the first hurricane of the 2020 Atlantic season. Hanna made landfall along the coast of Texas Saturday as a Category 1 hurricane and eventually weakened into a tropical depression as it traveled inland.

As for Tropical Storm Gonzalo, it weakened into a depression and dissipated at early Saturday evening while traveling through the Caribbean Sea.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has predicted this will be an active hurricane season, with 13 to 19 named storms.

If Isaias forms, it would be the ninth named storm of the season. There have been eight named storms so far this season, a record reached earlier in the season than ever before, according to Colorado State University Meteorologist Philip Klotzbach.

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