Tropical Storm Watch for Barbados as Dorian approaches
The fourth tropical storm of the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season formed Saturday afternoon. At 8 a.m., Tropical Storm Dorian is 830 kilometres east-southeast of Barbados, clocking maximum sustained winds between 40 and 55 kph.
As some people in the region say, the business portion of the traditional Atlantic Hurricane Season is knocking at the door, with September the time when most of the tropical cyclones in the region occur.
This year, 2019, seems to be no exception, with Tropical Storm Dorian churning in the Atlantic Ocean, days after leaving the coast of Africa.
The fourth named storm of the season, which up until less than 36 hours ago was Tropical Depression #5, prompted the Government of Barbados at 5 a.m. this morning, to issue a Tropical storm watch for the island.
A Watch means tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area, generally within 48 hours.
At 8 a.m. Tropical Storm “Dorian” was centred near 11.1°N 52.1°W or about 830 km east-southeast of Barbados. Maximum sustained winds are near 65km/h, with tropical-storm-force winds extending outward up to kilometres from the centre. The minimum central pressure is 1008mb.
The system continues to move towards the west at 20 km/h and on this track, the centre of Dorian is expected to pass over or near Barbados late Monday/early Tuesday. Sustained surface winds between 40 to 55 km/h with gusts to storm force are expected to spread across Barbados Monday afternoon and persist into Tuesday.
Also, pockets of moderate to heavy showers, periods of rain and scattered thunderstorms are expected. Rainfall accumulations of at least 2 to 4 inches are possible late Monday into Tuesday with isolated higher amounts.
As a result, some flash-flooding is likely in low-lying areas thus, residents are urged to be on the alert and take all necessary precautions. Large easterly to south-easterly swells of 2.5 to 3.5m are also forecast to accompany the system. Low-lying coastlines around the island will be particularly vulnerable at times of high tide.
Large waves and dangerous rip-tides can be expected. These will create unsafe conditions for small-craft operators and fishermen. Sea-bathers and other users of the sea are also advised to stay out of the water. Thus, a High-Surf Advisory and Small-Craft Warning will be in effect from noon Monday 26th August 2019 until 6:00 a.m. Tuesday, 27th August 2019.
A small-craft Warning means in this case that wind-speeds of 47 to 62 km/h and/or seas equal to or greater than 3m will be affecting the marine area.
A High-Surf Advisory is issued when breaking wave action poses a threat to life and property within the surf zone.
On the forecast track, Dorian is expected to be near the central Lesser Antilles late Monday or early Tuesday; passing about 64 kilometres to the north of Barbados early Tuesday morning as a strong tropical storm. Further strengthening is forecast as the system moves into the Eastern Caribbean Sea on Tuesday afternoon.
Pockets of moderate to heavy showers, thunderstorms and occasional gusty winds are expected to move across Barbados Monday night into Tuesday.