Tomas now a Category One Hurricane

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Tropical Storm Tomas is now a Hurricane, and Jamaicans are being urged to heighten their level of alert.

Hurricane Tomas, a Category One Storm, is the 12th system of the 2010 Atlantic Hurricane Season.

Tomas is moving towards the west northwest at about 24 kilometres per hour and is packing maximum sustained winds of 120 kilometres per hour.

The centre of Hurricane Tomas will pass near St. Lucia and St. Vincent Saturday afternoon and enter the eastern Caribbean Sea by Saturday night.

Tomas is forecast to strengthen over the next 24 hours.

Meanwhile, the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) is closely monitoring the movement of Hurricane Tomas.