Monday, August 25, 2008

Late PM Update: Gustav Nearly a Hurricane

Tropical Storm Gustav has strengthened through this evening; it now has maximum winds of 70 mph. Hurricane warnings have been extended in Haiti and a Tropical Storm Watch is now in effect for Jamaica. The National Hurricane Center (NHC) notes that Gustav now has a "well-defined eye." NHC expects that the next aircraft reconnaissance at 2 am will find that the storm has become a hurricane.

The track still remains somewhat uncertain, but the official forecasts have been moving more westerly than northerly, giving the storm more time over water. This would imply a greater strengthening. Two major models, in fact, are keeping Gustav away from most of Cuba and increasing it to major hurricane force within 5 days.

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