At 5:00 pm the center of Tropical Storm Fiona was located near Latitude 16.7 North/Longitude 57.7 West. Fiona is moving toward the west-northwest near 24 mph. This rapid forward speed should begin to slow dramatically over the next 12 hours. On this forecast track the center of Fiona is expected to pass near or northeast of the northern Leeward Islands late tonight or early Wednesday at which time the outermost rainbands of Fiona could pass over the northern Lesser Antilles bringing squall like conditions. Maximum sustained winds are near 40 mph with higher gusts. Some gradual strengthening is forecast during the next 24 hours. Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 140 miles from the center. Estimated minimum central pressure is 1006MB.
An Air Force reconnaissance aircraft went to investigate the storm this afternoon. Thunderstorm activity has recently developed near the center of Fiona, however the convection shows little banding. Fiona is forecast to turn northwestward over the next 6 hours and to decelerate rapidly as it approaches our region. Models dissipate the storm in 2-3 days as the smaller circulation of Fiona becomes an open trough. Fiona’s squalls are becoming stretched out toward the northwest due to the influence of Hurricane Earl to its west. This is a sign that Fiona is not becoming any better organized. The outermost rainbands of Fiona will pass over the northern Lesser Antilles beginning tomorrow morning, bringing squally conditions to the area.
A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for St. Martin and St. Barthelemy.
A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for Antigua, Barbuda, Montserrat, St. Kitts, Nevis and Anguilla, St. Maarten, Saba, and St. Eustatius.
A tropical storm warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area within 36 hours.
A tropical storm watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area in this case within 36 hours.
The DDM remains on high alert, monitoring the progress of Tropical Storm Fiona and will continue to provide weather releases. Please visit the Department of Disaster Management’s website at www.bviddm.com for continuously updated information.