UPDATE: TS Chris Gains Strength

August 2, 2006

The most recent bulletin from Miami’s National Hurricane Center indicates that Tropical Storm Chris now packs “maximum sustained winds near 60 mph/95 km/hr. with higher gusts.” The NHC said “some strengthening is forecast during the next 24 hours and Chris could become a hurricane later today or early Thursday.”

The bulletin describes the storm as “getting better organized as it skirts the northernmost Leeward Islands.” While some tropical storm warnings have been discontinued, they remain in effect for the islands of Anguilla, St. Barthelemy, St. Martin and St. Maarten Puerto Rico and the U.S. and British Virgin Islands.

Chris’ center was located near latitude 18.8 north longitude 62.6 west or about 60 miles/95 kms. northeast of St. Martin. The storm is “moving toward the west-northwest near 10 mph/17 km/hr. and this general motion is expected to continue during the next 24 hours,” said the bulletin. “On this track the center of Chris will pass north of the northernmost Leeward Islands later this morning and remain north of the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico this afternoon and evening.” The islands may receive a lot of rain, however. Tropical storm force winds now extend outward up to 75 miles/120 kms mainly northeast of the center.

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