Tropical Storm Ernesto 5-day forecast track. NHC/NOAA graphic
By Caribbean News Now contributor
MIAMI, USA -- At 5:00 pm EDT on Sunday, the centre of Tropical Storm Ernesto was located about 220 miles south-southwest of Kingston, Jamaica, and about 305 miles east of Cabo Gracias a Dios on the Nicaragua/Honduras border, moving toward the west near 20 mph.
According to the National Hurricane Center in Miami, a gradual turn toward the west-northwest with a further decrease in forward speed is expected during the next 48 hours. On the forecast track, the centre of Ernesto is expected to pass to the south of the Cayman Islands on Sunday night and early Monday and move north of the northeastern coast of Honduras late Monday and Monday night.
Maximum sustained winds are near 50 mph, with higher gusts. Some strengthening is forecast as Ernesto moves over the western Caribbean Sea on Monday and Tuesday. Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 125 miles from the centre.
A tropical storm warning is in effect for Jamaica and a tropical storm watch is in effect for Grand Cayman and the coast of Honduras from the Honduras/Nicaragua border westward to Punta Castilla.
Tropical storm conditions are expected in Jamaica through Sunday evening. Tropical storm conditions are possible in Grand Cayman Sunday night and early Monday and in the watch area along the coast of Honduras by late Monday. Rainfall accumulations of 2 to 4 inches, with isolated higher amounts, can be expected in Jamaica as Ernesto moves by the island.
Interests in Belize and the Yucatan peninsula of Mexico should monitor the progress of Ernesto.
Meanwhile, further out in the Atlantic, about 845 miles west of the Cape Verde Islands, Tropical Storm Florence was weakening on Sunday.
Florence is moving toward the west near 14 mph and this general motion is expected to continue for the next couple of days with some increase in forward speed. Maximum sustained winds have decreased to near 50 mph, with higher gusts. Slow weakening is forecast for the next couple of days. No immediate threat to land is forecast.