Jamaica has been bracing for tropical storm conditions since last night as Tropical Depression Grace wound its way around the northern Caribbean.

Jamaica Observer –  In its final bulletin yesterday evening, Jamaica’s Meteorological Service said that Grace was some 300 miles east of Morant Point and 70 miles east of Port-au-Prince, and was expected to continue in that general direction over the next few days as it strengthens and regains tropical storm force by today.

The Met Service said that on the forecast track the centre of Grace was scheduled pass over or near the Tiburon Peninsula of south-western Haiti yesterday afternoon and last night, and then pass between Jamaica and Cuba today as a tropical storm.

It said that widespread showers and thunderstorms associated with Grace would affect Jamaica, starting last night and continuing through today. Rainfall could amount to 4-6 inches, generating flash floods and possible landslides across the island.

“Strong, gusty winds will also be experienced, primarily over the northern parishes on Tuesday. Sea conditions will gradually deteriorate over the next 24 to 36 hours, especially east and north of the island, and maritime interests are urged to exercise extreme caution. Small craft operators should remain in port,” the Met Service said.

The storm could not have come at a worse time for Haitians, who were still trying to recover from Saturday’s magnitude 7.2 earthquake that has taken over 1,400 lives so far.

Information available from US weather information sources warned of potential flash, urban and small stream flooding, with the potential for mudslides, mainly in Haiti and the Dominican Republic which share the island of Hispaniola.

 

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