By PDC’s Senior Weather
Specialist Glenn James
CURRENT TROPICAL CYCLONES:
Tropical Cyclone 07L (Fiona)…is located about 75 miles south of St. Croix
HURRICANE WARNING ISSUED FOR A PORTION OF THE COAST OF THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC…LIFE-THREATENING FLOODING AND MUDSLIDES POSSIBLE ACROSS PUERTO RICO FROM FIONA DURING THE NEXT SEVERAL DAYS
Fiona is moving somewhat erratically toward the west-northwest near 8 mph (13 km/h), and this motion is expected to continue through tonight. A northwestward motion is forecast to begin on Sunday and continue through Tuesday.
On the forecast track, the center of Fiona will move south of the U.S. Virgin Islands and approach Puerto Rico tonight, and move near or over Puerto Rico Sunday afternoon or Sunday evening. Fiona will then move near the northern coast of the Dominican Republic Sunday night and Monday, and near or to the east of the Turks and Caicos Islands Tuesday.
Reports from an Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft and Doppler radar data indicate that maximum sustained winds are near 60 mph (95 km/h) with higher gusts. Strengthening is forecast, and Fiona is expected to become a hurricane before reaching the southern or southwestern coast of Puerto Rico on Sunday. Additional strengthening is expected on Monday and Tuesday while Fiona moves over the southwestern Atlantic.
Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 140 miles (220 km) from the center. A station at Teagues Bay, St. Croix, recently reported a wind gust of 49 mph (79 km/h).
HAZARDS AFFECTING LAND
WIND: Hurricane conditions are expected on Puerto Rico Sunday and Sunday night and are possible in the U.S. Virgin Islands tonight. Hurricane conditions are possible within the hurricane watch area in the Dominican Republic Sunday night and Monday.
Tropical storm conditions will continue across portions of the Leeward Islands within the warning area through this afternoon. Tropical storm conditions will reach the U.S. and British Virgin Islands this afternoon, spread westward across Puerto Rico tonight, and reach portions of the Dominican Republic Sunday night. Tropical storm conditions are possible across the watch area in the Dominican Republic Sunday night.
RAINFALL: Fiona is expected to produce the following rainfall:
Leeward Islands and Northern Windward Islands: 2 to 4 inches.
British and U.S. Virgin Islands: 4 to 6 inches, with local maximum of 10 inches possible.
Puerto Rico: 4 to 8 inches with maximum totals of 12 inches, particularly across eastern and southern Puerto Rico.
Dominican Republic: 12 to 16 inches with maximum totals of 20 inches…particularly across eastern and southern Puerto Rico
Haiti: 1 to 3 inches with isolated maximum totals of 4 inches.
Turks and Caicos: 4 to 6 inches
These rains may produce flash and urban flooding, along with mudslides in areas of higher terrain, particularly southern and eastern Puerto Rico and the eastern Dominican Republic.
STORM SURGE: The combination of storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline. The water could reach the following heights above ground somewhere in the indicated areas in areas of onshore winds if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide…
Southern coast of Puerto Rico…1 to 3 ft
Vieques and Culebra…1 to 3 ft
U.S. Virgin Islands…1 to 2 ft
Localized coastal flooding is also possible elsewhere in Puerto Rico.
Storm surge will raise water levels by as much as 1 to 3 feet above normal tide levels along the immediate coast in areas of onshore winds in the Dominican Republic.
SURF: Swells generated by Fiona are affecting the Leeward Islands, the northern Windward Islands, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, the northern coast of the Dominican Republic, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and the southeastern Bahamas. These conditions could cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions.
Disorganized showers and thunderstorms over the central subtropical Atlantic are associated with a trough of low pressure.
Some slow development of this system is possible during the early or middle part of next week while it moves generally northward at about 10
* Formation chance through 48 hours…low…near 0 percent
* Formation chance through 5 days…low…20 percent