CHARLOTTE AMALIE, U.S. Virgin Islands — The outer bands of Tropical Storm Rafael drenched the Caribbean’s Northern Leeward Islands on Sunday as its center steadily moved over open ocean on a possible track toward Bermuda.
There were no immediate reports of any significant damage or injuries in the Caribbean islands as the center of the tropical storm churned toward the north-northwest at about 10 mph. By late Sunday afternoon, it was about 185 miles north-northeast of San Juan, Puerto Rico, and was packing winds of roughly 60 mph.
Forecasters at the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said Rafael could strengthen into a hurricane by late Monday as it spins over the open Atlantic.
Rafael could then approach the wealthy British Atlantic territory of Bermuda late today. The Bermuda Weather Service issued a tropical storm watch for the storm-hardened territory of about 70,000 people late Sunday morning.
In the U.S. Virgin Islands, Elton Lewis, the territory’s emergency management director, said authorities “don’t anticipate any significant impact” from the passing storm. There were off-and-on showers during much of the day.
Tropical storm warnings have been discontinued for Caribbean islands. But the possibility of flooding and mudslides are still a concern in some islands, particularly in mountainous terrain, since Rafael has been forecast to dump between 4 to 8 inches of rain over the Lesser Antilles, small islands that include Dominica, Martinique and St. Lucia.
Rain ranging from 1 to 3 inches was expected in the U.S. Virgin Islands and the outlying Puerto Rican islands of Culebra and Vieques.
Swells generated by Rafael were expected to impact eastern-facing beaches of the Bahamas during the next few days. But forecasters said the storm’s center will remain well east of the sprawling archipelago.MORE IN Wire NewsWASHINGTON — Speaker John Boehner left open the possibility Monday that the House might pass... Full Story
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1843, British Naval officer GEORGE LORD PAULET obtains provisional cession of Hawaiian Islands; 1866, miners claim Calaveras skull found found in goldmine is remains of 5 million-year-old Pliocene man.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day 1739, 'Richard Palmer' identified in prison at York Castle as the notorious outlaw DICK TURPIN; IN 1836, Battle of the Alamo begins near San Antonio de Bexar, Texas; 1896, the Tootsie Roll invented by LEO HIRSCHFELD.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1472, Orkney, Shetland islands put up as collateral by Norway to Scotland in lieu of dowry for MARGARET OF DENMARK on her marriage with JAMES III, king of Scotland; 1962, JOHN GLENN first American to orbit Earth.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: City mayoral candidates debate campaign issues; Hartford, Conn., woman still missing; Neal Goswami reports attempts to legislate suicide; local woman loses 100 pounds through TOPS program.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1878, JOHN TUNSTALL murdered near Lincoln, New Mexico, by the outlaw JESSE EVANS; in 1930, ELM FARM OLLIE first cow to fly in aircraft, first to be milked airborne; 1955, nuke test WASP; '79, snow in Sahara.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Rutland Herald News Editor Alan J. Keays and staff writer Gordon Dritschilo discuss stories planned for the February 18, 2015, edition of the newspaper: Winter budgets maxed, legal marijuana, Springfield bank job, USPS slowdown