Hurricane Sandy Makes Landfall In Jamaica
Update: 4:56pm ET - Hurricane Sandy exiting the northeast coast of Jamaica, and remains a 80mph storm. Next landfall expected tonight in southeastern Cuba. Also, Tropical Storm Warnings have been posted for the Florida east coast.
Update: 3:00pm ET - 10/24/12 - Category 1 Hurricane Sandy is now making landfall in southeastern Jamaica per satellite loop imagery as a 80mph cyclone. The eye of Sandy looks to be coming ashore just east of Kingston and producing hurricane conditions. Please be safe to all our friends in Jamaica this afternoon and tonight.
Update: 1:59pm ET - 10/24/12 - Hurricane Sandy continues to organize, but the winds remain at 80 mph with higher gusts at 2pm per NHC. Sandy's eyewall is about to make landfall over southeastern Jamaica not far from Kingston in the next hour or so.
Update: 11:43am ET - Hurricane Sandy's eye approching Kingston, Jamaica as seen on 1km visible satellite imagery late this morning. Strong winds will begin to move into the region soon.
Update: 10:57am ET - Sandy has been upgraded to a category 1 hurricane, with winds of 80mph along with higher gusts. Sandy continues to track closer to Jamaica by the hour, and is expected to make landfall late this afternoon and into the evening hours bringing hurricane conditions.
Update: 9:20am ET - 10/24/12 - Tropical Storm Sandy nearing hurricane strength late this morning, while approaching the southern coast of Jamaica. The weather will begin to deteriorate rapidly throughout the remainder of the day in Jamaica, as Sandy is expectedn to make landfall later near Kingston region of the island.
Tropical Storm Watches were also posted for southeast Florida earlier this morning, and a significant wave event is looking more possible along Florida beaches starting tomorrow through the weekend. More on the Florida tropical storm watches and upconing coverage.
Update: 10:51pm ET - Tropical Storm Sandy a little closer to hurricane strength as of the 11pm advisory from NHC. Sandy now has 60mph winds and the pressure has fallen to 989mb. Movement continues to the north-northeast but a tad faster at 10mph than earlier today. New forecast track brings Sandy to the southern coast of Jamaica by noon tomorrow as a hurricane.
Update: 8:17pm ET - Tropical Storm Sandy continues to get better organized, and recent recon data shows the pressure is slowly continuing to fall. Latest pass inside the center of Sandy recorded a pressure reading of 991mb down from 993mb, and observed a "ragged eye" feature developing. The storm has also increased some in forward motion to the north-northeast near 8mph. Unfortunately, this continues a direct course for a Jamaica strike on Wednesday.
As Florida is concerned, The National Hurricane Center could issue coastal Tropical Storm Watches later tonight for the southeast counties. Possible tropical storm force winds could brush into the area Thursday and Friday, as Sandy passes just to the east over the northwestern Bahamas. Although, at this time, it looks to be mainly a marine weather problem and for beaches into the weekend, with very rough surf and likely beach erosion concerns.
Tropical storm Sandy continues to slowly organize over the Caribbean Sea south of Jamaica this afternoon. Visible satellite presentation shows an improved cloud pattern with more convective banding with each hour. Sandy is now a 50 mph storm, and is forecast to become a hurricane before reaching the beautiful tropical island of Jamaica tomorrow afternoon.
Kingston Jamaica potentially could take a direct hit from a category one hurricane at this time tomorrow, as Sandy now has begun its slow north-northeastward track toward the island. At this time the main concern will be life-threatening flash flooding and mudslides, along with hurricane force winds and storm surge late tomorrow.
There is also the chance that Sandy could become a stronger hurricane before reaching Jamaica if it was to rapidly intensify overnight, which is possible, with warm waters and light windshear expected through the next 24 to 36 hours.
A hurricane warning is now in effect for Jamaica, and everyone should be focusing on last-minute preparations for hurricane conditions starting tomorrow. Later today there will be another reconnaissance mission into Sandy, and we will get a better feel of any intensification that is taking place this afternoon and tonight.
Sandy could bring gusty winds and very rough beach conditions to the east coast of Florida as the tropical system tracks offshore the Sunshine State.
It is too early to know the exact path Sandy will take across Cuba and into the Bahama Islands, and how far offshore Florida it could be to the east on Friday. But nevertheless, expect gusty to windy conditions across Southeast Florida and coastal beaches as Sandy's expected to be a large storm in size, and have a decent size wind-field as the cyclone transitions into a more hybrid storm that tracks offshore up the east coast of United States.