Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Tropical Storm Chantal Heading Our Way

Tropical Storm Chantal, the third named Atlantic storm of the 2014 season, formed in the tropical Atlantic Ocean late Sunday night and has made its way into the Caribbean. The system bypassed the usual tropical depression phase to become a tropical storm right away by developing as a strong tropical wave with tropical storm force winds and finally developing a closed circulation late Sunday.

Tropical storm conditions were experienced in the Windward Islands Tuesday and may be felt in Puerto Rico into early Wednesday. Additionally, Chantal is expected to affect portions of the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Cuba.

Tropical storm warnings are in effect for Puerto Rico and parts of the Dominican Republic, along with a number of islands in the Lesser Antilles, including Barbados, Dominica, Saint Lucia, Martinique, and Guadeloupe. Other areas, including Haiti and the U.S. Virgin Islands, are under tropical storm watches.

Residents in the southern United States, particularly Florida, should pay attention and be prepared. Current forecasts place the center of TS Chantal over the Bahamas Friday into early Saturday, but portions of Florida could feel its affects at the end of the week.

Will TS Chantal scramble cruise ships in the Bahamas and Caribbean? We'll keep you posted.

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