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Hurricane Season

USVI Braces for Impact: Tropical Storm Lee Nears Hurricane Status; Preparations in High Gear



The US Virgin Islands are on high alert as Tropical Storm Lee gears up, potentially escalating into a formidable hurricane by this weekend. This information is derived from the 5:00 a.m. report on Wednesday released by the National Hurricane Center.

The current advisory pinpoints the storm about 1,265 miles ESE of the Northern Leeward Islands, moving at a pace of 14 mph towards the west-northwest direction. Lee’s maximum sustained winds have been clocked at nearly 65 mph, with its central pressure registering at 997 mb (29.44 inches).

Although there are no coastal advisories, warnings, or watches as of now, stakeholders and residents of the Leeward Islands are strongly urged to stay updated on the storm’s trajectory. The V.I. Territorial Emergency Management Agency (VITEMA) is gearing up, with plans to offer sandbags and substantial quantities of sand to the local households, given that the situation escalates to a “credible threat”, as mentioned by the agency’s head, Daryl Jaschen.

Updated Forecast Details

By 5:00 AM AST, the location of Tropical Storm Lee was confirmed at latitude 13.7 North and longitude 44.6 West. Maintaining its west-northwest trajectory, the storm’s route is likely to remain the same for the upcoming days. The winds, currently at 65 mph, are anticipated to intensify, and Lee might achieve hurricane status today, eventually advancing into a major hurricane in a few days.

USVI’s Proactive Measures

Under the guidance of Mr. Jaschen, all associated bodies are getting ready to mitigate potential impacts. The agency has been funded recently to procure new sandbags and substantial quantities of sand. “Should the conditions deteriorate, we are looking at sandbag distribution between Thursday and Friday,” states Jaschen. Households interested in these sandbags are required to fill them personally using their shovels. Each household can claim up to six sandbags.

Distribution centers will be set up across various islands. Notable locations include the V.I. Department of Public Works stations and fire departments on St. Croix, St. Thomas, and St. John.

Anticipated Surf Conditions for Lesser Antilles

The swells arising from Tropical Storm Lee pose a significant risk, potentially leading to perilous surf and rip current situations across parts of the Lesser Antilles by Friday.

Heed the Warnings, Leeward Islands

Although forecasts predict Lee to steer north of the Northern Leeward Islands over the weekend, locals should be prepared for deviations in the storm’s path. To put things into perspective, the average discrepancies in the NHC’s forecasted tracks are approximately 125 and 175 nautical miles on the 4th and 5th days, respectively.

Given the storm’s impending strength, residents in potential target zones are strongly recommended to keep a vigilant eye on updates and get their preparations underway.

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Hurricane Season

Potential Tropical Development on the Horizon: Caribbean Braces for Impact, with a Tropical Depression Anticipated Soon



As the eyes of many remain on the National Hurricane Center (NHC) for its continuous updates on Tropical Storm Nigel, a growing concern emerges for a tropical wave predicted to originate from the west coast of Africa. With the forecast showing a robust 70% probability of evolving over the coming week, the system might bring repercussions to the Caribbean, journeying westward across the expansive eastern and central tropical Atlantic.

The NHC, with its vigilant surveillance, is currently assessing multiple meteorological patterns spanning the North Atlantic, Caribbean Sea, and the Gulf of Mexico. Although Tropical Storm Nigel is on the radar, its location over the central subtropical Atlantic indicates no pressing threats to either the U.S. mainland or the neighboring Caribbean territories.

Early indicators suggest that the tropical wave, predicted to roll off the African coast by midweek, carries a strong potential for development. Anticipated environmental conditions appear favorable for its gradual evolution, steering the wave towards metamorphosing into a tropical depression by the week’s end or soon after. Preliminary estimates by the NHC postulate a near-negligible chance of formation in the immediate 48-hour frame but elevate that probability to a noteworthy 70% in the week ahead. Given its current trajectory, Caribbean territories should maintain heightened alertness for any ensuing impacts.

Parallel to this, the NHC’s gaze is fixed on an anticipated non-tropical low-pressure zone, set to appear near the U.S. southeastern coastline within the week. There’s a potential for this system to adopt some subtropical traits over the weekend, contingent on its offshore activities. Presently, the odds for its formation remain modest: almost nil for the upcoming 48 hours but rising to a 30% chance within the week.

As the annual hurricane season unfolds in all its might, it’s imperative for dwellers of the Caribbean and those residing along the southeastern coast of the U.S. to stay abreast of meteorological updates. Establishing emergency preparedness kits is a prudent move. The NHC assures consistent monitoring of these meteorological patterns and pledges timely updates as fresh data surfaces.

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Hurricane Season

Impacts of Hurricane Lee Reverberate on USVI and PR’s Coastal Regions Until Mid-Week



While the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico are spared the direct wrath of Hurricane Lee, the storm’s indirect repercussions are anticipated to challenge both marine and coastal conditions until at least the week’s midpoint. Presently, Hurricane Lee is pinpointed at a latitude of 22.1 N and longitude 61.7 W.

In light of the impending conditions, authorities have rolled out Small Craft Advisories encompassing the Atlantic Waters, the Anegada Passage, as well as the proximate waters off the northern stretch of the Virgin Islands. With the prevailing circumstances, seafarers are encouraged to tread cautiously across these waters, with tumultuous conditions slated to continue.

Those who cherish beach outings and the general populace dwelling in these zones should stay acutely aware of the escalated risk tied to rip currents. Not to mention, high surf warnings are in force, particularly targeting the beaches facing the northern and eastern directions. Waves surging to heights ranging from 10 to 15 feet are predicted for these specific locales, thereby amplifying risks tied to aquatic endeavors like swimming and boating.

Beyond the towering waves, there is a distinct alert regarding rip currents propelled by waves that reach between 6 and 9 feet in height. Such circumstances spell peril especially for those unaccustomed to swimming, and even seasoned swimmers might find themselves in challenging spots if caught unprepared.

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Hurricane Season

USVI and Leeward Islands Brace for Dangerous Surf as Cat 5 Hurricane Lee Tracks North



In the midst of the Atlantic, the fierce Category 5 Hurricane Lee is generating winds of almost 165 mph, prompting urgent advisories regarding life-endangering surf and rip currents expected to hit the northern Leeward Islands by this evening.

The menace of these hazardous conditions is forecasted to reach the U.S. Virgin Islands, and subsequently spread to regions including Puerto Rico, Hispaniola, the Turks and Caicos, the Bahamas, and even as far as Bermuda during the weekend. The East Coast of the U.S. is also on high alert for potential treacherous surf conditions by Sunday.

Although predictions indicate that Hurricane Lee’s core will bypass the Leeward Islands from a distance to the north, the surge it produces cannot be underestimated. Forecasts suggest sea levels could escalate by 8 to 12 feet, especially in the Atlantic side and eastern pockets of these islands. As the hurricane intensifies and edges closer to the northeastern Caribbean region, even more formidable sea surges are on the horizon. The byproducts of these swells, which include dangerous rip currents and towering surf, are predicted to predominantly affect the northern and eastern coastlines of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The situation could also escalate to coastal flooding and increased erosion from Sunday evening into the early hours of Monday.

There is still some ambiguity regarding potential rainfall and any associated wind damage. But there’s consensus in predictions that Lee will predominantly venture north-northeast, away from the island territories. Island residents are strongly advised to stay abreast with the latest updates on this evolving situation.

Recent insights from the Air Force Reserve’s Hurricane Hunter aircraft unveiled that Lee has achieved a category 5 rating on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, with prospects of further intensification in the coming hours. The hurricane’s current coordinates place it near latitude 17.8 North and longitude 53.5 West, as it journeys west-northwest at a pace of roughly 14 mph. This path is predicted to maintain its course into the forthcoming week, though with a notable reduction in its speed.

In terms of wind outreach, Hurricane Lee’s potent force extends about 45 miles from its nucleus, while its tropical storm winds have a radius of around 140 miles. The recorded minimum central atmospheric pressure stands at 926 mb (27.35 inches).

As for its potential threat to the U.S. East Coast, Atlantic Canada, or Bermuda in the upcoming week, authorities maintain that it’s premature for conclusive forecasts. The hurricane’s anticipated deceleration over the southwestern Atlantic complicates predictions. Nonetheless, coastal residents and administrative bodies on the U.S. East Coast are encouraged to remain vigilant and frequently check updates concerning Hurricane Lee’s progress.

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