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UPDATE: Jamaica now under Tropical Storm Warning

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hurricane-matthew-today.pngA Tropical Storm Warning is now in effect for Jamaica as hurricane conditions are no longer expected. The latest update from Jamaica's National Meteorological Service was issued in Bulletin Number 24, released at 5:00 p.m. on Monday.

See below:

The Meteorological Service has downgraded the Hurricane Warning for Jamaica, replacing it with a TROPICAL STORM WARNING, as the island is now expected to be outside of the range of hurricane-force winds associated with Hurricane Matthew but likely to experience tropical storm conditions.

This means that tropical storm conditions, including possible sustained wind speeds of 63-118 km/h (39-73 mph), are expected to affect Jamaica* in 36 hours or less.

At 4:00 p.m. the centre of Hurricane Matthew was located near Latitude 16.3 degrees North, Longitude 74.7 degrees West. This is about 305 kilometres (190 miles) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica or 360 kilometres (225 miles) southwest of Port au Prince, Haiti.

Matthew is moving toward the north near 11 km/h (7 mph) and this general motion is expected to continue through Tuesday night, with a turn toward the north-northwest forecast for Wednesday. On this track, the centre of Matthew will approach southwestern Haiti tonight and move near eastern Cuba late Tuesday.

Maximum sustained winds remain near 220 km/h (140 mph), with higher gusts, and Matthew remains a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Some fluctuations in intensity are possible during the next couple of days, but Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Wednesday.

On the projected path Jamaica should be outside the range of the hurricane-force winds as Matthew moves close to southwestern Haiti tonight or early Tuesday. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 65 km (40 miles) from the centre and tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 295 km (185 miles). This means that storm-force winds are likely to spread over eastern parishes, including St. Mary, Portland, St. Thomas, Kingston, St. Andrew and St. Catherine, while gusty winds reaching near tropical storm force should also be expected over central parishes.

Doppler radar confirms that light to moderate showers have already begun to affect mainly northeastern and central sections of the island; however, an extensive area of rainfall currently offshore is positioned to move over the country during this evening and tonight. Rainfall amounts of 5-10 inches are predicted over eastern parishes as Hurricane Matthew passes close to the island tonight and tomorrow.

Coastal areas of eastern parishes should also expect storm surges of 2-4 feet through Monday night. Small craft operators are reminded to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions return to normal.

The Meteorological Service continues to monitor the progress of this system and all interests are reminded to pay special attention to further Releases.

The next Bulletin on Hurricane Matthew will be issued at 8:00 p.m. today.





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Hurricane Matthew was moving more slowly than originally projected on Monday, causing some anxiety about its ultimate impact on Jamaica. Evan Thompson, Director of the National Met Service, speaking at a press conference in Kingston, says the system remains a powerful Category Four hurricane and still constitutes a significant threat to the island.

He declared that if the system were to continue along its current northern trajectory, "a lot of that would be moving across the island of Jamaica, especially over eastern and central parishes."Accordingly, he said, the island would remain on Hurricane Warning, because the conditions that are associated with a hurricane, which include life-threatening flash flooding, landslides, storm surges, strong winds..."

There had been a slight realignment of the hurricane forecast track to the east, he noted, but served notice that "with a very slow moving system, if it really does get into the territorial waters of Jamaica, it will be remaining there for a very long period of time... We could be seeing it producing that rain for in excess of 24 hours over the island, and that could mean significant devastation for much of the island."

Notwithstanding that dire scenario, he said it was still possible for some shifts in the movement and direction of the weather system, which would determine whether there would be any change in the Met Office's forecasts.





Head of the Jamaica Meteorological Service Evan Thompson is advising Jamaicans that a hurricane warning is still in effect for the island, despite the fair weather conditions at the moment.

"The system is still over the Central Caribbean. I know many of you are experiencing anticipation, disappointment, relief, but we are still under a hurricane watch. It is still a very powerful category 4 hurricane that is moving northwards closer to Jamaica and packing winds that have not decreased.

"The system is moving so slow and it is large. If it continues moving northwards it will pass over Jamaica, so we are still on a hurricane watch," he said.

Thompson added that there is a possibility of life-threatening flash flooding, strong winds and mud slides.





matthew-hurricane-warning.pngJamaica's National Meteorological Service has now issued a Hurricane Warning for the island, in an upgrade from the Hurricane Watch it had been maintaining during the early approach of Hurricane Matthew. The latest status was issued in Bulletin Number 10, released at 5.00 p.m on Saturday

See below:

A HURRICANE WARNING is now in effect for Jamaica as dangerous Hurricane Matthew continues to move across the central Caribbean and is projected to move towards Jamaica within the next 24-36 hours. The following dangerous effects of a hurricane are expected to affect Jamaica by Monday:

  • Dangerously high water or a combination of dangerously high water and exceptionally high waves, even though winds expected may be less than hurricane force;
  • Average winds 118 kilometres per hour or higher;

At 4:00 p.m. the eye of Hurricane Matthew was located near Latitude 13.5 degrees North, Longitude 73.4 degrees West. This is about 620 kilometres (385 miles) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica or 580 kilometres (360 miles) south-southwest of Port au Prince, Haiti.

Matthew is currently drifting toward the northwest near 6km/h (3mph), and a slow northwestward motion is expected to continue through tonight. A turn toward the north-northwest with an increase in forward speed are expected Sunday, followed by a turn toward the north on Monday. On the forecast track, the centre of Matthew will approach Jamaica and southwestern Haiti on Monday.

Data from a Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicate that maximum sustained winds are near 240 km/h (150 mph) with higher gusts. Matthew is still a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Some fluctuations in intensity are possible during the next couple of days, but Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Monday. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 km (25 miles) from the centre and tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 335 km (205 miles).

All small craft operators including fishers from the cays and banks should by now have completed all the necessary safety precautions and are advised to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.

The Meteorological Service continues to monitor the progress of this system and all interests are reminded to pay special attention to further Releases.

The next Bulletin on Hurricane Matthew will be issued at 8:00 p.m. today.





matthew-hurricane-2.png(AP):One of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes in recent history is on a course for Jamaica, Haiti and Cuba.Matthew briefly reached the top hurricane classification, Category 5, and was the strongest Atlantic hurricane since Felix in 2007.

The US National Hurricane Center in Miami said Matthew's winds had slipped slightly from a peak of 160 mph (260 kph) to a still-potentially devastating 150 mph (240 kph) and it was expected to near eastern Jamaica and southwestern Haiti on Monday.

The forecast track would carry it across Cuba and into the Bahamas, with an outside chance of a brush with Florida, though that would be several days away.

"It's too early to rule out what impacts, if any, would occur in the United States and Florida," said Dennis Feltgen, a spokesman at the Hurricane Center.

As Matthew skimmed past the northern tip of South America there were reports of at least one death - the second attributed to the storm.

In Jamaica, high surf began pounding the coast and flooding temporarily closed the road linking the capital to its airport. Carl Ferguson, head of the marine police, said people were starting to heed calls to relocate from small islands and areas near rural waterways. Jamaicans, crowded supermarkets to buy bottled water, canned food and batteries, and there was already flooding in the coastal town of Port Royal, where officials are urging residents to seek refuge in government shelters once they open up on Sunday. Many Jamaicans also began stocking up for the emergency.

"I left work to pick up a few items, candles, tin stuff, bread," 41-year-old Angella Wage said at a crowded store in the Half-Way Tree area of Kingston. "We can never be too careful."

Feltgen said storm force winds and rain will arrive well before the center of the storm. Jamaicans "basically have daylight today, they have tonight and they have daylight tomorrow to take care of what needs to be done," he said.

Jamaicans are accustomed to intense storms, but Hurricane Matthew looked particularly threatening. At its peak, it was more powerful than Hurricane Gilbert, which made landfall on the island in September 1988 and was the most destructive storm in the country's modern history.

The US Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is also potentially in the path of the storm. A mandatory evacuation of non-essential personnel, including family members of military personnel was underway and everyone remaining behind was being told to take shelter, said Julie Ann Ripley, a spokeswoman. There are about 5,500 people living on the base, including 61 men held at the detention center.

Forecasters said rainfall totals could reach 10 to 15 inches (25 to 38 centimeters) with isolated maximum amounts of 25 inches (63 centimeters) in Jamaica and southwestern Haiti. On Saturday afternoon, authorities issued a hurricane warning for much of Haiti and said it could bring life-threatening rainfall to portions of the impoverished Caribbean country.





hurricane-matthew.pngHurricane Matthew remains a dangerous category four system as it moves closer to Jamaica. Maximum winds are now near 240 kilometres per hour (150 mph) up from 230 kp/h with higher gusts.

The Meteorological Service says although there could be further fluctuations over the weekend, Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Monday when it should hit Jamaica. The eye of the system is now about 620 kilometres (385 miles) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica or 580 kilometres (360 miles) south-southwest of Port au Prince, Haiti.

It has started a slow turn towards the northwest is is expected to make further turn to the north-north westward which will bring it close to the eastern parishes of Portland and St Thomas over the next 24 to 36 hours. The entire island remains under a Hurricane Watch. At 4 p.m. the eye of Hurricane Matthew was located near Latitude 13.5 degrees North, Longitude 73.4 degrees West. Matthew is currently drifting toward the northwest near 6km/h (3mph).

Some fluctuations in intensity are possible during the next couple of days, but Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Monday. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 km (25 miles) from the centre and tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 335 km (205 miles).

All small craft operators including fishers from the cays and banks should by now have completed all the necessary safety precautions and are advised to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.





hurricane-matthew.jpgHurricane Matthew has weakened slightly and is now at category four as it heads towards Jamaica. With winds now near 255 kilometres per hour, this is still a very powerful storm. ?

Tropical storm conditions are possible by late Sunday and by Monday, there could be hurricane conditions. Expect 1?0 to 15 inches of rainfall and up to 25 inches in some places, ?life-threatening flash flooding and mud slides?. ?

The Meteorological Service says at 4:00 a.m. the eye of Hurricane Matthew was located near Latitude 13.3 degrees North, Longitude 72.8 degrees West. This is about 675 kilometres (420 miles) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica or 590 kilometres (365 miles) south of Port au Prince, Haiti.

Matthew is moving toward the west near 11 km/h (7 mph). A turn toward the west-northwest is forecast later today, followed by a turn toward the north-northwest on Sunday. On the forecast track the centre of Matthew will move away from the Guajira Peninsula, Columbia this morning, move across the central Caribbean Sea today, and will be approaching Jamaica on Sunday.

Maximum sustained winds are now near 250 km/h (155 mph), with higher gusts.

Some fluctuations in intensity are possible this weekend, but Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Sunday.Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 75 km (45 miles) from the centre and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 335 km (205 miles).

All small craft operators including fishers from the cays and banks should by now have completed all the necessary safety precautions and are advised to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.





hurricane-matthew-cat-5.jpg

MIAMI (AP) - Forecasters say Matthew has become a Category 5 hurricane, the strongest in the Atlantic since Hurricane Felix in 2007.

The US National Hurricane Center in Miami says Matthew is packing top sustained winds of 160 mph (260 kph) after gaining new strength Friday. The storm is about 80 miles (125 kilometres) northwest of Punta Gallinas, Colombia, and about 440 miles (710 kilometers) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica.

The centre says that as of 11:00 pm Friday, the storm is moving west at 7 mph (11 kph).

Forecasters say they expect Matthew to remain a powerful hurricane through Sunday, when it is on track to approach Jamaica. Tropical storm conditions are possible there late Sunday and hurricane conditions possible Monday.





Irene now a Category One Hurricane

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The official National Hurricane Center track of Hurricane Irene as of early Monday morning, (Photo:myfoxphilly.com).
All eyes remain on Hurricane Irene, which could possibly influence weather conditions over Jamaica between Tuesday, August 23 and Wednesday, August 24.
At 4:00 a.m. on Monday, August 22, the centre of Hurricane Irene was located near Latitude 18.4 degrees north and Longitude 66.4 degrees west or about 40 kilometres west of San Juan, Puerto Rico or 200 kilometres east of Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic.
Irene is moving towards the west northwest near 19 kilometres per hour and this motion is expected to continue for the next couple of days.
On the forecast track, the centre of Irene will move off the north coast of Puerto Rico Monday morning and move near or over the northern coastal regions of the Dominican Republic Monday afternoon and Monday night.
Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 120 kilometres per hour, with higher gust.
Irene is a category one Hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane wind scale.
Some strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours.
The Meteorological Service says it will continue to monitor the progress of this system and has advised fishers on the cays and banks to start preparations with a view to evacuate, should it become necessary.                
It says all other interests should pay special attention to subsequent releases as it continues to monitor the progress of Hurricane Irene.




More rain for western parishes

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A large extratropical low-pressure system swir...

Image via Wikipedia

Jamaicans will have to brace themselves for more rains as the Meteorological
Service has extended the flash flood warning for low-lying and flood-prone areas
of Trelawny, St. James, Hanover, Westmoreland and St. Elizabeth until 5 p.m.
today.

A flash flood watch remains in effect for other parishes.
Motorists and pedestrians should not attempt to cross flooded roadways or other
low-lying areas as strong currents are likely. Residents in low-lying areas
should be on the alert for rising waters and be ready to move quickly to higher
ground.

The area of low pressure across the western Caribbean remains disorganised and
continues to drift slowly northward, away from Jamaica.

However, unstable weather conditions associated with this system continues to
linger mostly across western parishes. Satellite and RADAR reports indicate that
light to moderate showers, affected western parishes with cloudy conditions
across eastern and central parishes.

The forecast is for periods of showers and thunderstorms to continue across the
island, today, with the heaviest showers and thunderstorms expected across
northern and southwestern parishes. Thereafter, a gradual improvement in the
weather is expected.

Fishers and other marine interests are advised to exercise caution, as strong
winds and rough sea conditions are expected in the vicinity of showers and
thunderstorms.
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Flash flood warning remains for Jamaica

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This photograph, acquired in February 1984 by ...


Meteorological Service has continued the Flash Flood Warning for low-lying and
flood-prone areas of Jamaica until 5 p.m. today.

Motorists and pedestrians are advised not to attempt or cross flooded roadways
or other low-lying areas as strong currents are likely. Residents in low-lying
areas should be on the alert for rising waters and be ready to move quickly to
higher ground.

Satellite imagery and Radar reports indicate that light to moderate showers with
isolated thunderstorm affected most parishes last night.

The MET service said unstable condition persists across Jamaica, while the
stationary area of low pressure is becoming weaker across the western Caribbean
and remains disorganised.

It said we expect gradual improvement across the island during the next 12 to 24
hours. However, cloudy conditions will continue with showers and isolated
thunderstorm mostly during the afternoon especially across northern parishes, as
the situation return to normal.

Fishers and other marine interests are advised to exercise caution, as strong
winds and rough sea conditions are expected in the vicinity of showers and
thunderstorms, especially offshore the west coast.

The MET service will continue to monitor the progress of this system.
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A Flash Flood Warning for low-lying and flood-prone areas of St. Mary, Portland,
St. Thomas, Kingston and St. Andrew, St. Catherine, Clarendon, Manchester, and
St. Elizabeth remains in effect for the next five hours.
There is also a Flash Flood Watch for all other parishes also until 5 o'clock
Monday afternoon.
A FLASH FLOOD WARNING means flooding has been reported or will occur shortly.
Motorists and pedestrians should not attempt to cross flooded roadways or other
low-lying areas as strong currents are likely.
Residents in low-lying areas should be on the alert for rising waters and be
ready to move quickly to higher ground.
 "The area of low pressure over the Caribbean Sea and Jamaica has remained all
but stationary over the past 24 hours. This large area of disturbed weather is
expected to linger over the central Caribbean until Tuesday and will continue to
influence the weather over the island over this period," said Nickesha Hibbert,
Duty Forecaster at the Met Office.

 "Satellite imagery and radar reports indicate that light to moderate showers
affected sections of most parishes Sunday with moderate to heavy showers and
thunderstorms detected across eastern and southwestern parishes. The forecast is
for periods of showers and thunderstorms which could be heavy at times affecting
most parishes today and Tuesday," she said.
Meanwhile, fishers and other marine interests are advised to exercise extreme
caution, as strong winds and rough sea conditions are expected in the vicinity
of showers and thunderstorms.
The Met Office says the Area of Low Pressure now has a medium chance of
developing into a tropical cyclone during the next 48 hours.
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MIAMI, CMC - The United States' National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
(NOAA) is predicting an above-average hurricane season this year.

NOAA said there is a 70 per cent chance of 12 to 18 named storms, which could
become one of the six to 10 projected hurricanes.

NOAA said three to six of those weather patterns could become major hurricanes,
with sustained winds from 111 miles per hour (mph) or higher.

The six-month Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1 and ends November 30.
NOAA said last year's hurricane season was one of the busiest on record, with 19
named storms, including 12 hurricanes.
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Tropical Storm Warning for Jamaica lifted

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The Tropical Storm Warning for Jamaica has been lifted according to a bulletin from the US based National Hurricane Centre.



Jamaica has been under a Tropical Storm Warning since Thursday after Hurricane Tomas threatened to dump rains on the island and add to the misery of Tropical Storm Nicole which had left many parts of the island flooded.



The National Hurricane Centre said that the centre of Hurricane Tomas was passing between Haiti and Southeastern Cuba.



Yesterday forecasters, including the local Met Service, warned that flash-flooding was possible in areas of mainly eastern parishes.



Above-average wave heights were also reported over coastal areas of north-eastern parishes yesterday.



That caused local disaster preparedness experts to remain on full alert last night with an appeal to Jamaicans not to let down their guard.









Jamaica remains under a tropical Storm Warning even as Tomas, which has been upgraded to a Category One Hurricane, continues to move away from the island.

This means that tropical storm conditions, including possible gusty winds are expected within three to six hours.

In the latest bulletin from the Meteorological Service, issued at 4:00 a.m., Hurricane Tomas was about 150 kilometres or 90 miles south of Morant Point, Jamaica or 280 kilometres or 175 miles west-southwest of Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Tomas is moving towards the northeast near 15 kilometres per hour or 9 miles per hour and this general motion, with a further increase in forward speed, is expected over the next couple of days.

On the forecast track, the centre of Tomas will continue moving away from Jamaica and near southwestern Haiti Friday morning, before passing near extreme eastern Cuba Friday evening.

Maximum sustained winds of near 85 kilometres per hour or 50 miles per hour, with higher gusts are expected to strengthen during the next 48 hours.

Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 130 kilometres per hour or 80 miles per hour, with higher gusts, making Tomas a Category One hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale.

Additional strengthening is possible before Tomas again begins to weaken on Saturday.

Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 30 kilometres or 18 miles from the centre, and tropical storm force winds extend outward as far as 220 kilometres/140 miles.

Jamaica could still, therefore, come under the influence of tropical storm force winds over sections of eastern parishes Friday morning.

Satellite imagery and radar reports indicate that the heavy showers and thunderstorms associated with Tomas continue to skirt the eastern tip of Jamaica; however, scattered showers are being detected over sections of central and western parishes.

These will rapidly decrease as drier air moves into the area behind Hurricane Tomas.

Small craft operators are reminded to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.





Jamaica under Hurricane Watch

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A Hurricane Watch has now been issued for Jamaica as Tropical Storm Tomas continues to gain strength.



A Hurricane Watch means that within the next 48 hours Jamaica should start seeing hurricane conditions.



Tomas is now located near latitude 13.5 north and longitude 74.6 west.



It’s moving toward the west near 14 mph or 22 km/hr.



The National Hurricane Centre says a turn toward the west-northwest and northwest with a decrease in forward speed is expected during the next 48 hours.



Maximum sustained winds are near 40 mph or 65 km/hr with higher gusts and strengthening is forecast and Tomas could regain hurricane strength by Thursday.





Tropical Storm Tomas strengthens

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It could be a rainy weekend for Jamaicans if Tropical Storm Tomas continues on the course it is on. Let us also pray for our sister island Haiti that it weakens and fizzle out.

Storm tracking has show that tomas has started to strengthen over the south-central Caribbean Sea as it continues on its westward track.

At four o'clock Tuesday morning, the centre of Tropical Storm Tomas was located near Latitude 13.5 degrees North, Longitude 72.0 degrees West; about 670 kilometres or 415 miles southeast of Morant Point or 570 kilometres or 355 miles south of Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Tomas is moving towards the west near 19 kilometres per hour or 12 miles per hour and maximum sustained winds have increased to near 85 kilometres per hour or 50 miles per hour, with higher gusts.

Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 185 kilometres or 115 miles from the centre.

Satellite imagery indicates that there has been an increase in heavy rainfall around the centre of Tomas, indicating that conditions are becoming more favourable for the tropical storm’s development.

The current projection is for Tomas to gradually strengthen into a hurricane over the next couple of days while gradually turning towards the west-northwest and then northwest.

The system is then expected to begin moving towards Haiti by Thursday passing over the waters east of Jamaica on Friday.

There is a five to 10% chance that eastern sections of Jamaica could experience hurricane force winds as Tomas passes by.

Bands of heavy showers and thunderstorms could also start affecting the island by Friday morning.

Above-normal wave heights should also be expected over coastal areas of northern and southeastern parishes.





Hurricane Tomas still a threat to Jamaica

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Hurricane Tomas has weakened from a Category Two to a Category One storm.

It was located near latitude 14.4 degrees north and longitude 64.9 degrees west or about 465 kilometres south southeast of San Juan Puerto Rico or about 425 kilometres west of St. Lucia yesterday evening.

It is moving toward the west near 19 kilometres per hour.

This general motion is expected to continue for the next couple of days.

In its latest update, the Met Office said maximum sustained winds have decreased to near 120 kilometres an hour with higher gusts.

The Met Office forecast that Tomas could weaken into a Tropical Storm over the next 24 hours followed by little change in strength Monday night and Tuesday.

However, the Met Office warned that Hurricane Tomas still has the potential to become a significant threat to weather conditions over Jamaica and its territorial waters over the next few days.

At the same time, the Met Office has advised fishers on the cays and banks to complete their preparations and be on alert to evacuate.





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.





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Head of the Jamaica Meteorological Service Evan Thompson is advising Jamaicans that a hurricane warning is still in effect for the island, despite the fair weather conditions at the moment.

"The system is still over the Central Caribbean. I know many of you are experiencing anticipation, disappointment, relief, but we are still under a hurricane watch. It is still a very powerful category 4 hurricane that is moving northwards closer to Jamaica and packing winds that have not decreased.

"The system is moving so slow and it is large. If it continues moving northwards it will pass over Jamaica, so we are still on a hurricane watch," he said.

Thompson added that there is a possibility of life-threatening flash flooding, strong winds and mud slides.





matthew-hurricane-warning.pngJamaica's National Meteorological Service has now issued a Hurricane Warning for the island, in an upgrade from the Hurricane Watch it had been maintaining during the early approach of Hurricane Matthew. The latest status was issued in Bulletin Number 10, released at 5.00 p.m on Saturday

See below:

A HURRICANE WARNING is now in effect for Jamaica as dangerous Hurricane Matthew continues to move across the central Caribbean and is projected to move towards Jamaica within the next 24-36 hours. The following dangerous effects of a hurricane are expected to affect Jamaica by Monday:

  • Dangerously high water or a combination of dangerously high water and exceptionally high waves, even though winds expected may be less than hurricane force;
  • Average winds 118 kilometres per hour or higher;

At 4:00 p.m. the eye of Hurricane Matthew was located near Latitude 13.5 degrees North, Longitude 73.4 degrees West. This is about 620 kilometres (385 miles) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica or 580 kilometres (360 miles) south-southwest of Port au Prince, Haiti.

Matthew is currently drifting toward the northwest near 6km/h (3mph), and a slow northwestward motion is expected to continue through tonight. A turn toward the north-northwest with an increase in forward speed are expected Sunday, followed by a turn toward the north on Monday. On the forecast track, the centre of Matthew will approach Jamaica and southwestern Haiti on Monday.

Data from a Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicate that maximum sustained winds are near 240 km/h (150 mph) with higher gusts. Matthew is still a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Some fluctuations in intensity are possible during the next couple of days, but Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Monday. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 km (25 miles) from the centre and tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 335 km (205 miles).

All small craft operators including fishers from the cays and banks should by now have completed all the necessary safety precautions and are advised to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.

The Meteorological Service continues to monitor the progress of this system and all interests are reminded to pay special attention to further Releases.

The next Bulletin on Hurricane Matthew will be issued at 8:00 p.m. today.





matthew-hurricane-2.png(AP):One of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes in recent history is on a course for Jamaica, Haiti and Cuba.Matthew briefly reached the top hurricane classification, Category 5, and was the strongest Atlantic hurricane since Felix in 2007.

The US National Hurricane Center in Miami said Matthew's winds had slipped slightly from a peak of 160 mph (260 kph) to a still-potentially devastating 150 mph (240 kph) and it was expected to near eastern Jamaica and southwestern Haiti on Monday.

The forecast track would carry it across Cuba and into the Bahamas, with an outside chance of a brush with Florida, though that would be several days away.

"It's too early to rule out what impacts, if any, would occur in the United States and Florida," said Dennis Feltgen, a spokesman at the Hurricane Center.

As Matthew skimmed past the northern tip of South America there were reports of at least one death - the second attributed to the storm.

In Jamaica, high surf began pounding the coast and flooding temporarily closed the road linking the capital to its airport. Carl Ferguson, head of the marine police, said people were starting to heed calls to relocate from small islands and areas near rural waterways. Jamaicans, crowded supermarkets to buy bottled water, canned food and batteries, and there was already flooding in the coastal town of Port Royal, where officials are urging residents to seek refuge in government shelters once they open up on Sunday. Many Jamaicans also began stocking up for the emergency.

"I left work to pick up a few items, candles, tin stuff, bread," 41-year-old Angella Wage said at a crowded store in the Half-Way Tree area of Kingston. "We can never be too careful."

Feltgen said storm force winds and rain will arrive well before the center of the storm. Jamaicans "basically have daylight today, they have tonight and they have daylight tomorrow to take care of what needs to be done," he said.

Jamaicans are accustomed to intense storms, but Hurricane Matthew looked particularly threatening. At its peak, it was more powerful than Hurricane Gilbert, which made landfall on the island in September 1988 and was the most destructive storm in the country's modern history.

The US Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is also potentially in the path of the storm. A mandatory evacuation of non-essential personnel, including family members of military personnel was underway and everyone remaining behind was being told to take shelter, said Julie Ann Ripley, a spokeswoman. There are about 5,500 people living on the base, including 61 men held at the detention center.

Forecasters said rainfall totals could reach 10 to 15 inches (25 to 38 centimeters) with isolated maximum amounts of 25 inches (63 centimeters) in Jamaica and southwestern Haiti. On Saturday afternoon, authorities issued a hurricane warning for much of Haiti and said it could bring life-threatening rainfall to portions of the impoverished Caribbean country.





hurricane-matthew.pngHurricane Matthew remains a dangerous category four system as it moves closer to Jamaica. Maximum winds are now near 240 kilometres per hour (150 mph) up from 230 kp/h with higher gusts.

The Meteorological Service says although there could be further fluctuations over the weekend, Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Monday when it should hit Jamaica. The eye of the system is now about 620 kilometres (385 miles) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica or 580 kilometres (360 miles) south-southwest of Port au Prince, Haiti.

It has started a slow turn towards the northwest is is expected to make further turn to the north-north westward which will bring it close to the eastern parishes of Portland and St Thomas over the next 24 to 36 hours. The entire island remains under a Hurricane Watch. At 4 p.m. the eye of Hurricane Matthew was located near Latitude 13.5 degrees North, Longitude 73.4 degrees West. Matthew is currently drifting toward the northwest near 6km/h (3mph).

Some fluctuations in intensity are possible during the next couple of days, but Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Monday. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 km (25 miles) from the centre and tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 335 km (205 miles).

All small craft operators including fishers from the cays and banks should by now have completed all the necessary safety precautions and are advised to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.





hurricane-matthew.jpgHurricane Matthew has weakened slightly and is now at category four as it heads towards Jamaica. With winds now near 255 kilometres per hour, this is still a very powerful storm. ?

Tropical storm conditions are possible by late Sunday and by Monday, there could be hurricane conditions. Expect 1?0 to 15 inches of rainfall and up to 25 inches in some places, ?life-threatening flash flooding and mud slides?. ?

The Meteorological Service says at 4:00 a.m. the eye of Hurricane Matthew was located near Latitude 13.3 degrees North, Longitude 72.8 degrees West. This is about 675 kilometres (420 miles) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica or 590 kilometres (365 miles) south of Port au Prince, Haiti.

Matthew is moving toward the west near 11 km/h (7 mph). A turn toward the west-northwest is forecast later today, followed by a turn toward the north-northwest on Sunday. On the forecast track the centre of Matthew will move away from the Guajira Peninsula, Columbia this morning, move across the central Caribbean Sea today, and will be approaching Jamaica on Sunday.

Maximum sustained winds are now near 250 km/h (155 mph), with higher gusts.

Some fluctuations in intensity are possible this weekend, but Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Sunday.Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 75 km (45 miles) from the centre and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 335 km (205 miles).

All small craft operators including fishers from the cays and banks should by now have completed all the necessary safety precautions and are advised to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.





hurricane-matthew-cat-5.jpg

MIAMI (AP) - Forecasters say Matthew has become a Category 5 hurricane, the strongest in the Atlantic since Hurricane Felix in 2007.

The US National Hurricane Center in Miami says Matthew is packing top sustained winds of 160 mph (260 kph) after gaining new strength Friday. The storm is about 80 miles (125 kilometres) northwest of Punta Gallinas, Colombia, and about 440 miles (710 kilometers) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica.

The centre says that as of 11:00 pm Friday, the storm is moving west at 7 mph (11 kph).

Forecasters say they expect Matthew to remain a powerful hurricane through Sunday, when it is on track to approach Jamaica. Tropical storm conditions are possible there late Sunday and hurricane conditions possible Monday.





Irene now a Category One Hurricane

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The official National Hurricane Center track of Hurricane Irene as of early Monday morning, (Photo:myfoxphilly.com).
All eyes remain on Hurricane Irene, which could possibly influence weather conditions over Jamaica between Tuesday, August 23 and Wednesday, August 24.
At 4:00 a.m. on Monday, August 22, the centre of Hurricane Irene was located near Latitude 18.4 degrees north and Longitude 66.4 degrees west or about 40 kilometres west of San Juan, Puerto Rico or 200 kilometres east of Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic.
Irene is moving towards the west northwest near 19 kilometres per hour and this motion is expected to continue for the next couple of days.
On the forecast track, the centre of Irene will move off the north coast of Puerto Rico Monday morning and move near or over the northern coastal regions of the Dominican Republic Monday afternoon and Monday night.
Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 120 kilometres per hour, with higher gust.
Irene is a category one Hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane wind scale.
Some strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours.
The Meteorological Service says it will continue to monitor the progress of this system and has advised fishers on the cays and banks to start preparations with a view to evacuate, should it become necessary.                
It says all other interests should pay special attention to subsequent releases as it continues to monitor the progress of Hurricane Irene.




More rain for western parishes

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A large extratropical low-pressure system swir...

Image via Wikipedia

Jamaicans will have to brace themselves for more rains as the Meteorological
Service has extended the flash flood warning for low-lying and flood-prone areas
of Trelawny, St. James, Hanover, Westmoreland and St. Elizabeth until 5 p.m.
today.

A flash flood watch remains in effect for other parishes.
Motorists and pedestrians should not attempt to cross flooded roadways or other
low-lying areas as strong currents are likely. Residents in low-lying areas
should be on the alert for rising waters and be ready to move quickly to higher
ground.

The area of low pressure across the western Caribbean remains disorganised and
continues to drift slowly northward, away from Jamaica.

However, unstable weather conditions associated with this system continues to
linger mostly across western parishes. Satellite and RADAR reports indicate that
light to moderate showers, affected western parishes with cloudy conditions
across eastern and central parishes.

The forecast is for periods of showers and thunderstorms to continue across the
island, today, with the heaviest showers and thunderstorms expected across
northern and southwestern parishes. Thereafter, a gradual improvement in the
weather is expected.

Fishers and other marine interests are advised to exercise caution, as strong
winds and rough sea conditions are expected in the vicinity of showers and
thunderstorms.
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Flash flood warning remains for Jamaica

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This photograph, acquired in February 1984 by ...


Meteorological Service has continued the Flash Flood Warning for low-lying and
flood-prone areas of Jamaica until 5 p.m. today.

Motorists and pedestrians are advised not to attempt or cross flooded roadways
or other low-lying areas as strong currents are likely. Residents in low-lying
areas should be on the alert for rising waters and be ready to move quickly to
higher ground.

Satellite imagery and Radar reports indicate that light to moderate showers with
isolated thunderstorm affected most parishes last night.

The MET service said unstable condition persists across Jamaica, while the
stationary area of low pressure is becoming weaker across the western Caribbean
and remains disorganised.

It said we expect gradual improvement across the island during the next 12 to 24
hours. However, cloudy conditions will continue with showers and isolated
thunderstorm mostly during the afternoon especially across northern parishes, as
the situation return to normal.

Fishers and other marine interests are advised to exercise caution, as strong
winds and rough sea conditions are expected in the vicinity of showers and
thunderstorms, especially offshore the west coast.

The MET service will continue to monitor the progress of this system.
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A Flash Flood Warning for low-lying and flood-prone areas of St. Mary, Portland,
St. Thomas, Kingston and St. Andrew, St. Catherine, Clarendon, Manchester, and
St. Elizabeth remains in effect for the next five hours.
There is also a Flash Flood Watch for all other parishes also until 5 o'clock
Monday afternoon.
A FLASH FLOOD WARNING means flooding has been reported or will occur shortly.
Motorists and pedestrians should not attempt to cross flooded roadways or other
low-lying areas as strong currents are likely.
Residents in low-lying areas should be on the alert for rising waters and be
ready to move quickly to higher ground.
 "The area of low pressure over the Caribbean Sea and Jamaica has remained all
but stationary over the past 24 hours. This large area of disturbed weather is
expected to linger over the central Caribbean until Tuesday and will continue to
influence the weather over the island over this period," said Nickesha Hibbert,
Duty Forecaster at the Met Office.

 "Satellite imagery and radar reports indicate that light to moderate showers
affected sections of most parishes Sunday with moderate to heavy showers and
thunderstorms detected across eastern and southwestern parishes. The forecast is
for periods of showers and thunderstorms which could be heavy at times affecting
most parishes today and Tuesday," she said.
Meanwhile, fishers and other marine interests are advised to exercise extreme
caution, as strong winds and rough sea conditions are expected in the vicinity
of showers and thunderstorms.
The Met Office says the Area of Low Pressure now has a medium chance of
developing into a tropical cyclone during the next 48 hours.
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MIAMI, CMC - The United States' National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
(NOAA) is predicting an above-average hurricane season this year.

NOAA said there is a 70 per cent chance of 12 to 18 named storms, which could
become one of the six to 10 projected hurricanes.

NOAA said three to six of those weather patterns could become major hurricanes,
with sustained winds from 111 miles per hour (mph) or higher.

The six-month Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1 and ends November 30.
NOAA said last year's hurricane season was one of the busiest on record, with 19
named storms, including 12 hurricanes.
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Tropical Storm Warning for Jamaica lifted

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The Tropical Storm Warning for Jamaica has been lifted according to a bulletin from the US based National Hurricane Centre.



Jamaica has been under a Tropical Storm Warning since Thursday after Hurricane Tomas threatened to dump rains on the island and add to the misery of Tropical Storm Nicole which had left many parts of the island flooded.



The National Hurricane Centre said that the centre of Hurricane Tomas was passing between Haiti and Southeastern Cuba.



Yesterday forecasters, including the local Met Service, warned that flash-flooding was possible in areas of mainly eastern parishes.



Above-average wave heights were also reported over coastal areas of north-eastern parishes yesterday.



That caused local disaster preparedness experts to remain on full alert last night with an appeal to Jamaicans not to let down their guard.









Jamaica remains under a tropical Storm Warning even as Tomas, which has been upgraded to a Category One Hurricane, continues to move away from the island.

This means that tropical storm conditions, including possible gusty winds are expected within three to six hours.

In the latest bulletin from the Meteorological Service, issued at 4:00 a.m., Hurricane Tomas was about 150 kilometres or 90 miles south of Morant Point, Jamaica or 280 kilometres or 175 miles west-southwest of Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Tomas is moving towards the northeast near 15 kilometres per hour or 9 miles per hour and this general motion, with a further increase in forward speed, is expected over the next couple of days.

On the forecast track, the centre of Tomas will continue moving away from Jamaica and near southwestern Haiti Friday morning, before passing near extreme eastern Cuba Friday evening.

Maximum sustained winds of near 85 kilometres per hour or 50 miles per hour, with higher gusts are expected to strengthen during the next 48 hours.

Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 130 kilometres per hour or 80 miles per hour, with higher gusts, making Tomas a Category One hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale.

Additional strengthening is possible before Tomas again begins to weaken on Saturday.

Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 30 kilometres or 18 miles from the centre, and tropical storm force winds extend outward as far as 220 kilometres/140 miles.

Jamaica could still, therefore, come under the influence of tropical storm force winds over sections of eastern parishes Friday morning.

Satellite imagery and radar reports indicate that the heavy showers and thunderstorms associated with Tomas continue to skirt the eastern tip of Jamaica; however, scattered showers are being detected over sections of central and western parishes.

These will rapidly decrease as drier air moves into the area behind Hurricane Tomas.

Small craft operators are reminded to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.





Jamaica under Hurricane Watch

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A Hurricane Watch has now been issued for Jamaica as Tropical Storm Tomas continues to gain strength.



A Hurricane Watch means that within the next 48 hours Jamaica should start seeing hurricane conditions.



Tomas is now located near latitude 13.5 north and longitude 74.6 west.



It’s moving toward the west near 14 mph or 22 km/hr.



The National Hurricane Centre says a turn toward the west-northwest and northwest with a decrease in forward speed is expected during the next 48 hours.



Maximum sustained winds are near 40 mph or 65 km/hr with higher gusts and strengthening is forecast and Tomas could regain hurricane strength by Thursday.





Tropical Storm Tomas strengthens

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It could be a rainy weekend for Jamaicans if Tropical Storm Tomas continues on the course it is on. Let us also pray for our sister island Haiti that it weakens and fizzle out.

Storm tracking has show that tomas has started to strengthen over the south-central Caribbean Sea as it continues on its westward track.

At four o'clock Tuesday morning, the centre of Tropical Storm Tomas was located near Latitude 13.5 degrees North, Longitude 72.0 degrees West; about 670 kilometres or 415 miles southeast of Morant Point or 570 kilometres or 355 miles south of Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Tomas is moving towards the west near 19 kilometres per hour or 12 miles per hour and maximum sustained winds have increased to near 85 kilometres per hour or 50 miles per hour, with higher gusts.

Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 185 kilometres or 115 miles from the centre.

Satellite imagery indicates that there has been an increase in heavy rainfall around the centre of Tomas, indicating that conditions are becoming more favourable for the tropical storm’s development.

The current projection is for Tomas to gradually strengthen into a hurricane over the next couple of days while gradually turning towards the west-northwest and then northwest.

The system is then expected to begin moving towards Haiti by Thursday passing over the waters east of Jamaica on Friday.

There is a five to 10% chance that eastern sections of Jamaica could experience hurricane force winds as Tomas passes by.

Bands of heavy showers and thunderstorms could also start affecting the island by Friday morning.

Above-normal wave heights should also be expected over coastal areas of northern and southeastern parishes.





Hurricane Tomas still a threat to Jamaica

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Hurricane Tomas has weakened from a Category Two to a Category One storm.

It was located near latitude 14.4 degrees north and longitude 64.9 degrees west or about 465 kilometres south southeast of San Juan Puerto Rico or about 425 kilometres west of St. Lucia yesterday evening.

It is moving toward the west near 19 kilometres per hour.

This general motion is expected to continue for the next couple of days.

In its latest update, the Met Office said maximum sustained winds have decreased to near 120 kilometres an hour with higher gusts.

The Met Office forecast that Tomas could weaken into a Tropical Storm over the next 24 hours followed by little change in strength Monday night and Tuesday.

However, the Met Office warned that Hurricane Tomas still has the potential to become a significant threat to weather conditions over Jamaica and its territorial waters over the next few days.

At the same time, the Met Office has advised fishers on the cays and banks to complete their preparations and be on alert to evacuate.





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.





Reggae Sumfest 2017

matthew-hurricane-warning.pngJamaica's National Meteorological Service has now issued a Hurricane Warning for the island, in an upgrade from the Hurricane Watch it had been maintaining during the early approach of Hurricane Matthew. The latest status was issued in Bulletin Number 10, released at 5.00 p.m on Saturday

See below:

A HURRICANE WARNING is now in effect for Jamaica as dangerous Hurricane Matthew continues to move across the central Caribbean and is projected to move towards Jamaica within the next 24-36 hours. The following dangerous effects of a hurricane are expected to affect Jamaica by Monday:

  • Dangerously high water or a combination of dangerously high water and exceptionally high waves, even though winds expected may be less than hurricane force;
  • Average winds 118 kilometres per hour or higher;

At 4:00 p.m. the eye of Hurricane Matthew was located near Latitude 13.5 degrees North, Longitude 73.4 degrees West. This is about 620 kilometres (385 miles) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica or 580 kilometres (360 miles) south-southwest of Port au Prince, Haiti.

Matthew is currently drifting toward the northwest near 6km/h (3mph), and a slow northwestward motion is expected to continue through tonight. A turn toward the north-northwest with an increase in forward speed are expected Sunday, followed by a turn toward the north on Monday. On the forecast track, the centre of Matthew will approach Jamaica and southwestern Haiti on Monday.

Data from a Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicate that maximum sustained winds are near 240 km/h (150 mph) with higher gusts. Matthew is still a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Some fluctuations in intensity are possible during the next couple of days, but Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Monday. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 km (25 miles) from the centre and tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 335 km (205 miles).

All small craft operators including fishers from the cays and banks should by now have completed all the necessary safety precautions and are advised to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.

The Meteorological Service continues to monitor the progress of this system and all interests are reminded to pay special attention to further Releases.

The next Bulletin on Hurricane Matthew will be issued at 8:00 p.m. today.





matthew-hurricane-2.png(AP):One of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes in recent history is on a course for Jamaica, Haiti and Cuba.Matthew briefly reached the top hurricane classification, Category 5, and was the strongest Atlantic hurricane since Felix in 2007.

The US National Hurricane Center in Miami said Matthew's winds had slipped slightly from a peak of 160 mph (260 kph) to a still-potentially devastating 150 mph (240 kph) and it was expected to near eastern Jamaica and southwestern Haiti on Monday.

The forecast track would carry it across Cuba and into the Bahamas, with an outside chance of a brush with Florida, though that would be several days away.

"It's too early to rule out what impacts, if any, would occur in the United States and Florida," said Dennis Feltgen, a spokesman at the Hurricane Center.

As Matthew skimmed past the northern tip of South America there were reports of at least one death - the second attributed to the storm.

In Jamaica, high surf began pounding the coast and flooding temporarily closed the road linking the capital to its airport. Carl Ferguson, head of the marine police, said people were starting to heed calls to relocate from small islands and areas near rural waterways. Jamaicans, crowded supermarkets to buy bottled water, canned food and batteries, and there was already flooding in the coastal town of Port Royal, where officials are urging residents to seek refuge in government shelters once they open up on Sunday. Many Jamaicans also began stocking up for the emergency.

"I left work to pick up a few items, candles, tin stuff, bread," 41-year-old Angella Wage said at a crowded store in the Half-Way Tree area of Kingston. "We can never be too careful."

Feltgen said storm force winds and rain will arrive well before the center of the storm. Jamaicans "basically have daylight today, they have tonight and they have daylight tomorrow to take care of what needs to be done," he said.

Jamaicans are accustomed to intense storms, but Hurricane Matthew looked particularly threatening. At its peak, it was more powerful than Hurricane Gilbert, which made landfall on the island in September 1988 and was the most destructive storm in the country's modern history.

The US Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is also potentially in the path of the storm. A mandatory evacuation of non-essential personnel, including family members of military personnel was underway and everyone remaining behind was being told to take shelter, said Julie Ann Ripley, a spokeswoman. There are about 5,500 people living on the base, including 61 men held at the detention center.

Forecasters said rainfall totals could reach 10 to 15 inches (25 to 38 centimeters) with isolated maximum amounts of 25 inches (63 centimeters) in Jamaica and southwestern Haiti. On Saturday afternoon, authorities issued a hurricane warning for much of Haiti and said it could bring life-threatening rainfall to portions of the impoverished Caribbean country.





hurricane-matthew.pngHurricane Matthew remains a dangerous category four system as it moves closer to Jamaica. Maximum winds are now near 240 kilometres per hour (150 mph) up from 230 kp/h with higher gusts.

The Meteorological Service says although there could be further fluctuations over the weekend, Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Monday when it should hit Jamaica. The eye of the system is now about 620 kilometres (385 miles) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica or 580 kilometres (360 miles) south-southwest of Port au Prince, Haiti.

It has started a slow turn towards the northwest is is expected to make further turn to the north-north westward which will bring it close to the eastern parishes of Portland and St Thomas over the next 24 to 36 hours. The entire island remains under a Hurricane Watch. At 4 p.m. the eye of Hurricane Matthew was located near Latitude 13.5 degrees North, Longitude 73.4 degrees West. Matthew is currently drifting toward the northwest near 6km/h (3mph).

Some fluctuations in intensity are possible during the next couple of days, but Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Monday. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 km (25 miles) from the centre and tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 335 km (205 miles).

All small craft operators including fishers from the cays and banks should by now have completed all the necessary safety precautions and are advised to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.





hurricane-matthew.jpgHurricane Matthew has weakened slightly and is now at category four as it heads towards Jamaica. With winds now near 255 kilometres per hour, this is still a very powerful storm. ?

Tropical storm conditions are possible by late Sunday and by Monday, there could be hurricane conditions. Expect 1?0 to 15 inches of rainfall and up to 25 inches in some places, ?life-threatening flash flooding and mud slides?. ?

The Meteorological Service says at 4:00 a.m. the eye of Hurricane Matthew was located near Latitude 13.3 degrees North, Longitude 72.8 degrees West. This is about 675 kilometres (420 miles) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica or 590 kilometres (365 miles) south of Port au Prince, Haiti.

Matthew is moving toward the west near 11 km/h (7 mph). A turn toward the west-northwest is forecast later today, followed by a turn toward the north-northwest on Sunday. On the forecast track the centre of Matthew will move away from the Guajira Peninsula, Columbia this morning, move across the central Caribbean Sea today, and will be approaching Jamaica on Sunday.

Maximum sustained winds are now near 250 km/h (155 mph), with higher gusts.

Some fluctuations in intensity are possible this weekend, but Matthew is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through Sunday.Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 75 km (45 miles) from the centre and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 335 km (205 miles).

All small craft operators including fishers from the cays and banks should by now have completed all the necessary safety precautions and are advised to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.





hurricane-matthew-cat-5.jpg

MIAMI (AP) - Forecasters say Matthew has become a Category 5 hurricane, the strongest in the Atlantic since Hurricane Felix in 2007.

The US National Hurricane Center in Miami says Matthew is packing top sustained winds of 160 mph (260 kph) after gaining new strength Friday. The storm is about 80 miles (125 kilometres) northwest of Punta Gallinas, Colombia, and about 440 miles (710 kilometers) southeast of Kingston, Jamaica.

The centre says that as of 11:00 pm Friday, the storm is moving west at 7 mph (11 kph).

Forecasters say they expect Matthew to remain a powerful hurricane through Sunday, when it is on track to approach Jamaica. Tropical storm conditions are possible there late Sunday and hurricane conditions possible Monday.





Irene now a Category One Hurricane

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The official National Hurricane Center track of Hurricane Irene as of early Monday morning, (Photo:myfoxphilly.com).
All eyes remain on Hurricane Irene, which could possibly influence weather conditions over Jamaica between Tuesday, August 23 and Wednesday, August 24.
At 4:00 a.m. on Monday, August 22, the centre of Hurricane Irene was located near Latitude 18.4 degrees north and Longitude 66.4 degrees west or about 40 kilometres west of San Juan, Puerto Rico or 200 kilometres east of Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic.
Irene is moving towards the west northwest near 19 kilometres per hour and this motion is expected to continue for the next couple of days.
On the forecast track, the centre of Irene will move off the north coast of Puerto Rico Monday morning and move near or over the northern coastal regions of the Dominican Republic Monday afternoon and Monday night.
Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 120 kilometres per hour, with higher gust.
Irene is a category one Hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane wind scale.
Some strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours.
The Meteorological Service says it will continue to monitor the progress of this system and has advised fishers on the cays and banks to start preparations with a view to evacuate, should it become necessary.                
It says all other interests should pay special attention to subsequent releases as it continues to monitor the progress of Hurricane Irene.




More rain for western parishes

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A large extratropical low-pressure system swir...

Image via Wikipedia

Jamaicans will have to brace themselves for more rains as the Meteorological
Service has extended the flash flood warning for low-lying and flood-prone areas
of Trelawny, St. James, Hanover, Westmoreland and St. Elizabeth until 5 p.m.
today.

A flash flood watch remains in effect for other parishes.
Motorists and pedestrians should not attempt to cross flooded roadways or other
low-lying areas as strong currents are likely. Residents in low-lying areas
should be on the alert for rising waters and be ready to move quickly to higher
ground.

The area of low pressure across the western Caribbean remains disorganised and
continues to drift slowly northward, away from Jamaica.

However, unstable weather conditions associated with this system continues to
linger mostly across western parishes. Satellite and RADAR reports indicate that
light to moderate showers, affected western parishes with cloudy conditions
across eastern and central parishes.

The forecast is for periods of showers and thunderstorms to continue across the
island, today, with the heaviest showers and thunderstorms expected across
northern and southwestern parishes. Thereafter, a gradual improvement in the
weather is expected.

Fishers and other marine interests are advised to exercise caution, as strong
winds and rough sea conditions are expected in the vicinity of showers and
thunderstorms.
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Flash flood warning remains for Jamaica

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This photograph, acquired in February 1984 by ...


Meteorological Service has continued the Flash Flood Warning for low-lying and
flood-prone areas of Jamaica until 5 p.m. today.

Motorists and pedestrians are advised not to attempt or cross flooded roadways
or other low-lying areas as strong currents are likely. Residents in low-lying
areas should be on the alert for rising waters and be ready to move quickly to
higher ground.

Satellite imagery and Radar reports indicate that light to moderate showers with
isolated thunderstorm affected most parishes last night.

The MET service said unstable condition persists across Jamaica, while the
stationary area of low pressure is becoming weaker across the western Caribbean
and remains disorganised.

It said we expect gradual improvement across the island during the next 12 to 24
hours. However, cloudy conditions will continue with showers and isolated
thunderstorm mostly during the afternoon especially across northern parishes, as
the situation return to normal.

Fishers and other marine interests are advised to exercise caution, as strong
winds and rough sea conditions are expected in the vicinity of showers and
thunderstorms, especially offshore the west coast.

The MET service will continue to monitor the progress of this system.
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A Flash Flood Warning for low-lying and flood-prone areas of St. Mary, Portland,
St. Thomas, Kingston and St. Andrew, St. Catherine, Clarendon, Manchester, and
St. Elizabeth remains in effect for the next five hours.
There is also a Flash Flood Watch for all other parishes also until 5 o'clock
Monday afternoon.
A FLASH FLOOD WARNING means flooding has been reported or will occur shortly.
Motorists and pedestrians should not attempt to cross flooded roadways or other
low-lying areas as strong currents are likely.
Residents in low-lying areas should be on the alert for rising waters and be
ready to move quickly to higher ground.
 "The area of low pressure over the Caribbean Sea and Jamaica has remained all
but stationary over the past 24 hours. This large area of disturbed weather is
expected to linger over the central Caribbean until Tuesday and will continue to
influence the weather over the island over this period," said Nickesha Hibbert,
Duty Forecaster at the Met Office.

 "Satellite imagery and radar reports indicate that light to moderate showers
affected sections of most parishes Sunday with moderate to heavy showers and
thunderstorms detected across eastern and southwestern parishes. The forecast is
for periods of showers and thunderstorms which could be heavy at times affecting
most parishes today and Tuesday," she said.
Meanwhile, fishers and other marine interests are advised to exercise extreme
caution, as strong winds and rough sea conditions are expected in the vicinity
of showers and thunderstorms.
The Met Office says the Area of Low Pressure now has a medium chance of
developing into a tropical cyclone during the next 48 hours.
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MIAMI, CMC - The United States' National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
(NOAA) is predicting an above-average hurricane season this year.

NOAA said there is a 70 per cent chance of 12 to 18 named storms, which could
become one of the six to 10 projected hurricanes.

NOAA said three to six of those weather patterns could become major hurricanes,
with sustained winds from 111 miles per hour (mph) or higher.

The six-month Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1 and ends November 30.
NOAA said last year's hurricane season was one of the busiest on record, with 19
named storms, including 12 hurricanes.
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Tropical Storm Warning for Jamaica lifted

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The Tropical Storm Warning for Jamaica has been lifted according to a bulletin from the US based National Hurricane Centre.



Jamaica has been under a Tropical Storm Warning since Thursday after Hurricane Tomas threatened to dump rains on the island and add to the misery of Tropical Storm Nicole which had left many parts of the island flooded.



The National Hurricane Centre said that the centre of Hurricane Tomas was passing between Haiti and Southeastern Cuba.



Yesterday forecasters, including the local Met Service, warned that flash-flooding was possible in areas of mainly eastern parishes.



Above-average wave heights were also reported over coastal areas of north-eastern parishes yesterday.



That caused local disaster preparedness experts to remain on full alert last night with an appeal to Jamaicans not to let down their guard.









Jamaica remains under a tropical Storm Warning even as Tomas, which has been upgraded to a Category One Hurricane, continues to move away from the island.

This means that tropical storm conditions, including possible gusty winds are expected within three to six hours.

In the latest bulletin from the Meteorological Service, issued at 4:00 a.m., Hurricane Tomas was about 150 kilometres or 90 miles south of Morant Point, Jamaica or 280 kilometres or 175 miles west-southwest of Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Tomas is moving towards the northeast near 15 kilometres per hour or 9 miles per hour and this general motion, with a further increase in forward speed, is expected over the next couple of days.

On the forecast track, the centre of Tomas will continue moving away from Jamaica and near southwestern Haiti Friday morning, before passing near extreme eastern Cuba Friday evening.

Maximum sustained winds of near 85 kilometres per hour or 50 miles per hour, with higher gusts are expected to strengthen during the next 48 hours.

Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 130 kilometres per hour or 80 miles per hour, with higher gusts, making Tomas a Category One hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale.

Additional strengthening is possible before Tomas again begins to weaken on Saturday.

Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 30 kilometres or 18 miles from the centre, and tropical storm force winds extend outward as far as 220 kilometres/140 miles.

Jamaica could still, therefore, come under the influence of tropical storm force winds over sections of eastern parishes Friday morning.

Satellite imagery and radar reports indicate that the heavy showers and thunderstorms associated with Tomas continue to skirt the eastern tip of Jamaica; however, scattered showers are being detected over sections of central and western parishes.

These will rapidly decrease as drier air moves into the area behind Hurricane Tomas.

Small craft operators are reminded to remain in safe harbour until all warning messages have been lifted and wind and sea conditions have returned to normal.





Jamaica under Hurricane Watch

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A Hurricane Watch has now been issued for Jamaica as Tropical Storm Tomas continues to gain strength.



A Hurricane Watch means that within the next 48 hours Jamaica should start seeing hurricane conditions.



Tomas is now located near latitude 13.5 north and longitude 74.6 west.



It’s moving toward the west near 14 mph or 22 km/hr.



The National Hurricane Centre says a turn toward the west-northwest and northwest with a decrease in forward speed is expected during the next 48 hours.



Maximum sustained winds are near 40 mph or 65 km/hr with higher gusts and strengthening is forecast and Tomas could regain hurricane strength by Thursday.





Tropical Storm Tomas strengthens

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It could be a rainy weekend for Jamaicans if Tropical Storm Tomas continues on the course it is on. Let us also pray for our sister island Haiti that it weakens and fizzle out.

Storm tracking has show that tomas has started to strengthen over the south-central Caribbean Sea as it continues on its westward track.

At four o'clock Tuesday morning, the centre of Tropical Storm Tomas was located near Latitude 13.5 degrees North, Longitude 72.0 degrees West; about 670 kilometres or 415 miles southeast of Morant Point or 570 kilometres or 355 miles south of Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Tomas is moving towards the west near 19 kilometres per hour or 12 miles per hour and maximum sustained winds have increased to near 85 kilometres per hour or 50 miles per hour, with higher gusts.

Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 185 kilometres or 115 miles from the centre.

Satellite imagery indicates that there has been an increase in heavy rainfall around the centre of Tomas, indicating that conditions are becoming more favourable for the tropical storm’s development.

The current projection is for Tomas to gradually strengthen into a hurricane over the next couple of days while gradually turning towards the west-northwest and then northwest.

The system is then expected to begin moving towards Haiti by Thursday passing over the waters east of Jamaica on Friday.

There is a five to 10% chance that eastern sections of Jamaica could experience hurricane force winds as Tomas passes by.

Bands of heavy showers and thunderstorms could also start affecting the island by Friday morning.

Above-normal wave heights should also be expected over coastal areas of northern and southeastern parishes.





Hurricane Tomas still a threat to Jamaica

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Hurricane Tomas has weakened from a Category Two to a Category One storm.

It was located near latitude 14.4 degrees north and longitude 64.9 degrees west or about 465 kilometres south southeast of San Juan Puerto Rico or about 425 kilometres west of St. Lucia yesterday evening.

It is moving toward the west near 19 kilometres per hour.

This general motion is expected to continue for the next couple of days.

In its latest update, the Met Office said maximum sustained winds have decreased to near 120 kilometres an hour with higher gusts.

The Met Office forecast that Tomas could weaken into a Tropical Storm over the next 24 hours followed by little change in strength Monday night and Tuesday.

However, the Met Office warned that Hurricane Tomas still has the potential to become a significant threat to weather conditions over Jamaica and its territorial waters over the next few days.

At the same time, the Met Office has advised fishers on the cays and banks to complete their preparations and be on alert to evacuate.





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.