29th August 2010 – At 11am, the center of Hurricane Earl was located near Latitude 17.2 North/Longitude 58.4 West or approximately 400 miles east of the Virgin Islands. Earl continues to move toward the west near 17 mph. On the forecast track the center of Earl will pass near or over the northern Leeward Islands tonight and Monday.
Maximum sustained winds are near 75 mph with higher gusts. Earl is a category one hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Strengthening is expected during the next 48 hours and Earl is forecast to become a major hurricane by Tuesday.
Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 30 miles from the center and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 160 miles. The latest minimum central pressure reported by an Air force Hurricane Hunter aircraft is 985 MB.
A Hurricane Watch remains in effect for the British and American Virgin Islands and for the islands of Culebra and Vieques. A Tropical Storm Warning is also in effect for the BVI. A Hurricane Warning remains in effect for St. Martin, St. Barthelemy, Antigua & Barbuda, Montserrat, St. Maarten, Saba, St. Eustatius, St. Kitts & Nevis and Anguilla.
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 hurricane warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area. A warning is typically issued 36 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical-storm-force wind conditions that make outside preparations difficult or dangerous. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.
Earl’s center is expected to pass about 20 miles to the north of Anguilla on Monday morning. By Tuesday, Earl is expected to gradually turn to the northwest and accelerate between the United States and Bermuda. When Earl makes its closest approach to the Leeward Islands on Monday, it is expected to be a strong category 2 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale with winds of 100-110 mph. As early as Monday night, Earl could be a category 3 hurricane with maximum sustained winds near 115 mph.