Sandy strengthens moving faster toward Jamaica

Tuesday, October 23, 2012 | 11:40 PM    

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KINGSTON, Jamaica - The Meteorological Service has continued the Hurricane Warning for Jamaica as Tropical Storm Sandy begins to strengthen and move faster towards the island.

The Met Servicer warned that dangerous effects of a hurricane are therefore expected to affect Jamaica in under 24 hours.

Expect dangerously high water or a combination of dangerously high water and exceptionally high waves, even though winds expected may be less than hurricane force, Met Service said.

At 10:00 pm Tuesday the centre of Sandy was located near Latitude 15.2 degrees North, Longitude 77.2 degrees West, or about 315 kilometres (195 miles) south-southwest of Kingston, or 185 kilometres (115 miles) south of the Pedro Cays.

Sandy is moving north-northeast near 17 km/h (10 mph) and a turn toward the north at a faster forward speed is expected Wednesday.

The centre of Sandy is now forecast to reach Jamaica’s southern coast (in the vicinity of Kingston) shortly after midday Wednesday, then cross over the island to the northern coast (in St. Mary) and head towards eastern Cuba by Wednesday evening.

Maximum sustained winds are now near 95 km/h (60 mph) and Sandy is expected to reach hurricane strength by tomorrow morning before reaching Jamaica.

Tropical storm force winds are forecast extend up to 220 kilometres (140 miles) from the centre.

Rainfall, associated with Sandy is forecast to increase tomorrow morning producing rainfall amounts in excess of 150 millimetres (six inches) hence, flash flooding is expected.

Hurricane-force winds will gradually develop during Wednesday morning and could generate storm surge of one to two metres (3-7 feet) along Jamaica’s southeastern coastline. Periods of heavy rainfall and gusty winds are likely to persist through Thursday.

The Met Service says that the next Bulletin on Tropical Storm Sandy will be issued at 5:00am.Wednesday.






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