Miami’s National Hurricane Center warned that Ivan is a “dangerous hurricane,” and is becoming “better organized as it rapidly approaches the Windward Islands,” triggering hurricane warnings.
So far the storm remains far from the U.S. mainland. If it continues on its present track it will pass South of Hispaniola and Cuba. Florida’s storm tossed residents can therefore relax. Unless Ivan radically alters course it will miss the State altogether. It could, however, threaten Texas and the Gulf Coast by next week.
Hurricane warnings are currently in effect for The Barbados, St. Vincent, The Grenadines, Tobago, Grenada and its dependencies. The government of St. Lucia has replaced the hurricane warning with a tropical storm warning, which is also in effect for Trinidad and Martinique.
Hurricane Ivan is currently located near latitude 11.3 north-longitude 57.8 west or about 170 miles (275 km) Southeast of Barbados and approximately 185 miles (300 km) East of Tobago. The storm is “moving toward the west near 21 mph (33 km/hr),” said the latest NHC bulletin. “A gradual turn toward the west-northwest is expected in 12 to 24 hours. Maximum sustained winds are near 105 mph (165 km/hr) with higher gusts. Some strengthening is forecast during the next 24 hours.”
The NHC is waiting for the latest assessment of the storm’s intensity from an Air Force Reserve hurricane hunter aircraft. Indications are that hurricane force winds extend outward up to 70 miles (110 km) from the center, and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 160 miles (260 km).
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