Hurricane conditions begin affecting Eastern Caribbean islands Friday morning
Barbados, Saint Lucia and St Vincent and the Grenadines were placed on a Hurricane Warning on Friday morning, as Tropical Storm Elsa strengthened into a hurricane on its approach to the islands.
The governments of the three islands ordered national shut-downs as they braced for Elsa’s impact from early Friday morning.
Reports from Barbados early Friday morning indicate a period of sustained winds of 74 miles (119 km) per hour and a wind gust of 86 miles (138 km) per hour.
At 8:30 a.m. AST, the centre of Hurricane Elsa was located at 13.1 North and 60.1 West and it was moving towards the West-North-West at about 28 miles per hour. On this track Elsa is expected to pass over portions of the Windward Islands or the southern Leeward Islands this morning. Tropical Storm watches are in effect for Dominica and Grenada.
By Saturday, Elsa is expected to move near the southern coast of Haiti and on Sunday, near Jamaica and eastern Cuba. Portions of Haiti have been placed under a Hurricane Watch and Jamaica is under a Tropical Storm Watch.
Weather officials in Trinidad and Tobago are also reporting flooding in several areas as outer feeder bands from Elsa affect the country.
Photo Credit – Trinidad and Tobago Weather Centre
A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area, in this case in the next few hours. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion. A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area. A Hurricane Watch means that hurricane conditions are possible within the watch area. A watch is typically issued 48 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical-storm-force winds, conditions that make outside preparations difficult or dangerous. A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area.