Hurricane Earl continues to strengthen as it moves across the northern Leeward Islands

The following is the 8am advisory issued by the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida today.

SUMMARY OF 800 AM AST…1200 UTC…INFORMATION

LOCATION…18.4N 62.9W
ABOUT 25 MI…40 KM NNE OF ST. MARTIN
ABOUT 140 MI…220 KM E OF ST. THOMAS
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS…110 MPH…175 KM/HR
PRESENT MOVEMENT…WNW OR 285 DEGREES AT 14 MPH…22 KM/HR
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE…965 MB…28.50 INCHES

WATCHES AND WARNINGS

CHANGES WITH THIS ADVISORY… NONE.
SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT…

A HURRICANE WARNING IS IN EFFECT FOR…
* ANTIGUA…BARBUDA…MONTSERRAT…ST. KITTS…NEVIS…AND ANGUILLA
* SAINT MARTIN AND SAINT BARTHELEMY
* ST. MAARTEN…SABA…AND ST. EUSTATIUS
* BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS
* U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS

A HURRICANE WATCH IS IN EFFECT FOR…
* PUERTO RICO INCLUDING THE ISLANDS OF CULEBRA AND VIEQUES

A TROPICAL STORM WARNING IS IN EFFECT FOR…
* PUERTO RICO INCLUDING THE ISLANDS OF CULEBRA AND VIEQUES

HURRICANE CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED WITHIN THE HURRICANE WARNINGAREA…IN THIS CASE WITHIN THE NEXT 12 HOURS. PREPARATIONS TO PROTECT LIFE AND PROPERTY SHOULD HAVE ALREADY BEEN COMPLETED.

HURRICANE CONDITIONS ARE POSSIBLE WITHIN THE WATCH AREA…IN THISCASE WITHIN THE NEXT 12 TO 24 HOURS.

FOR STORM INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO YOUR AREA IN THE UNITEDSTATES…INCLUDING POSSIBLE INLAND WATCHES AND WARNINGS…PLEASE MONITOR PRODUCTS ISSUED BY YOUR LOCAL NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FORECAST OFFICE. FOR STORM INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO YOUR AREA OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES…PLEASE MONITOR PRODUCTS ISSUED BY YOUR NATIONAL METEOROLOGICAL SERVICE.

DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK

NEAR LATITUDE 18.4 NORTH…LONGITUDE 62.9 WEST. EARL IS MOVING TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST NEAR 14 MPH…22 KM/HR. A TURN TOWARD THE NORTHWEST IS EXPECTED ON TUESDAY. ON THE FORECASTTRACK…THE CENTER OF EARL WILL PASS NEAR OR OVER THE NORTHERN MOST LEEWARD ISLANDS THIS MORNING…AND NEAR THE VIRGIN ISLANDS THIS AFTERNOON AND THIS EVENING.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS HAVE INCREASED TO NEAR 110 MPH…175 KM/HR…WITH HIGHER GUSTS. EARL IS A CATEGORY TWO HURRICANE ON THE SAFFIR-SIMPSON HURRICANE WIND SCALE. ADDITIONAL STRENGTHENING IS FORECAST…AND EARL IS EXPECTED TO BECOME A MAJOR HURRICANE LATER TODAY.

HURRICANE FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 50 MILES…85 KM…FROMTHE CENTER…AND TROPICAL STORM FORCE WINDS EXTEND OUTWARD UP TO 175MILES…280 KM. ST. MAARTEN RECENTLY REPORTED A SUSTAINED WIND OF 41MPH…67 KM/HR WITH A GUST TO 61 MPH…98 KM/HR.

THE LATEST MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE REPORTED FROM A NOAA HURRICANEHUNTER AIRCRAFT IS 965 MB…28.50 INCHES.

HAZARDS AFFECTING LAND

WIND…HURRICANE CONDITIONS ARE NOW SPREADING ACROSS THE NORTHERNLEEWARD ISLANDS…AND WILL SPREAD WESTWARD INTO THE VIRGIN ISLANDS LATER TODAY. TROPICAL STORM CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED TO SPREAD OVER PUERTO RICO TODAY…WITH HURRICANE CONDITIONS POSSIBLE THIS EVENING AND TONIGHT.

STORM SURGE…STORM SURGE WILL RAISE WATER LEVELS BY AS MUCH AS 2 TO4 FEET ABOVE GROUND LEVEL PRIMARILY NEAR THE COAST IN AREAS OF ONSHORE WIND WITHIN THE HURRICANE WARNING AREA…AND 1 TO 3 FEET IN THE TROPICAL STORM WARNING AREA. THE SURGE WILL BE ACCOMPANIED BY LARGE AND DANGEROUS BATTERING WAVES.

RAINFALL…EARL IS EXPECTED TO PRODUCE TOTAL RAINFALL ACCUMULATIONS OF 4 TO 8 INCHES OVER THE LEEWARD ISLANDS…THE VIRGIN ISLANDS AND PUERTO RICO…WITH POSSIBLE ISOLATED MAXIMUM AMOUNTS OF 12 INCHES…ESPECIALLY OVER HIGHER ELEVATIONS. THESE RAINS COULD CAUSE LIFE-THREATENING FLASH FLOODS AND MUDSLIDES.

NEXT ADVISORY

NEXT COMPLETE ADVISORY…1100 AM AST.

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