31st August 2010 – At 2:00 pm the center of Tropical Storm Fiona was located near Latitude 16.3 North/Longitude 56.8 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 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.
Fiona is not well organized at this time, it is moving rapidly and there is some uncertainty in its forecast. There is a possibility that Fiona could remain a weak tropical storm with the center passing north of the Virgin Islands. The closest approach to the VI would bring winds of between 20 – 25 mph in squalls. An Air Force reconnaissance aircraft is scheduled to investigate the storm this afternoon. A more definitive forecast would be made later this evening.
A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for St. Martin and St. Barthelemy.
A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for the British Virgin Islands, 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.