Providing an update on Tropical Storm Isaias that is presently in the tropics, Orson Nixon, Chief Meteorologist, Department of Meteorology, at the Freeport Office, shared with the media on Thursday, July 30, that the Northwest Bahamas was under a Tropical Storm Watch.
Under a Tropical Storm Watch, an area could experience tropical storm conditions generally within 48 hours.
“As of 11:00 a.m. this morning, Tropical Storm Isaias was located at 18.1 degrees North and 68.9 degrees West. This is about 165 miles Southeast of Puerto Rico.
“As Isaias is moving towards the Northwest, near 20 miles per hour, there is expected to be an increase in the forward speed over the next few hours and a couple of days. With this being said, Isaias is expected to move across Hispaniola, and as it moves across that island, some weakening is expected in the intensity of the system.
“Once it moves on off the coast of Hispaniola, we are expecting some degree of strengthening of the system. With the re-strengthening of the system and the slowing down of the forward speed, we expect a shift of the track to be a little more towards the East. This will push it more towards our area. In that case, we have issued a (Tropical Storm) Watch, for the Northwest Bahamas, this is including Grand Bahama, Abaco and Bimini.
“Residents, you are asked to make the preparations for this system as if this system will directly impact and go straight across the center of the country,” advised the Chief Meteorologist.
He pointed out the need to be mindful of debris left behind by Hurricane Dorian.
“Isaias is expected to move over our area, the extreme Northwest Bahamas, looking at Saturday, over the weekend. We have a few days to make those necessary preparations. I was asked earlier, in terms of battening of homes and businesses. With the debris, still on the island as a result of Dorian, it will be a good idea for residents to make those necessary preparations.
In terms of the amount of precipitation expected on the island he informed: “It is a little far away from our area at the moment but, we do expect anywhere between two to four inches, and in some instances up to eight inches, in isolated areas, but that can change as time goes on.”
On Wednesday, July 29, prior to the disturbance being a named storm, Nixon also shared with the media that residents should not take the system lightly noting that systems are extremely unpredictable at times.
“As always during the Hurricane Season we always advise residents to always be prepared. You never know with these systems, they can always switch, slow down, strengthen; there is always a possibility. And so, always remain prepared, be sure to make your necessary preparations now, just in the event that we do have the system strengthened, although there is a low chance but, still prepare,” stated Nixon.