The Antigua Met Service has issued a Tropical Storm Warning for the Virgin Islands. Disturbance 58 is has been upgraded to Tropical Storm Rafael in the Eastern Caribbean Sea. It is about 220 miles south-southeast of St. Croix. The center of Tropical Storm Rafael was located near latitude 15.0 north longitude 63.1 west. Rafael is moving toward the north-northwest near 12 mph and this general motion is expected to continue tonight. A turn toward the north is expected on Saturday. On the forecast track the center of Rafael will move through the eastern Caribbean tonight and then move near or over the Virgin Islands Saturday or Saturday
Reports from an air force reserve hurricane hunter aircraft indicate that maximum sustained winds are near 40 mph with higher gusts. Little change in strength is expected tonight with slow strengthening possible Saturday through Sunday.
Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 150 miles mainly to the southeast of the center.
Estimated minimum central pressure is 1006 mb.
Hazards affecting land
Wind-Tropical storm conditions are expected across the Lesser Antilles and the Virgin Islands in the tropical storm warning area tonight and Saturday. Tropical storm conditions are possible over Puerto Rico Saturday night and Sunday.
Rainfal-Rafael is expected to produce total rainfall amounts of 3 to 5 inches with isolated maximum amounts of 10 inches over the Lesser Antilles and the Virgin Islands. These rains could cause life-threatening flash-floods and mudslides especially in
Surf – Dangerous surf conditions are possible in the Lesser Antilles and the Virgin Islands tonight through Sunday
Seas-Very rough, swells 2.8-3.7m or 9-12ft. A firm warning remains in place for small craft operators and sea bathers against dangerous sea conditions. Small crafts should stay in port while sea bathers should avoid these waters.
The Department of Disaster Management (DDM) is currently monitoring the system and will provide updates accordingly. Please visit the DDM’s website at www.bviddm.com and subscribe for future updates.
Disclaimer: The Department of Disaster Management (DDM) is not an official Meteorological Office. The Information disseminated by the Department is gathered from a number of professional sources used or contracted by the DDM to provide such information. This information is to be used as a guide by anyone who has interest in local weather conditions. By no means can the DDM or the BVI Government be held accountable by anyone who uses this information appropriately for legal evidence or in justification of any decision which may result in the loss of finances, property or life.