TS Gonzalo prompts tropical storm warning for several eastern Caribbean islands

Barbados, St Lucia, Grenada, Tobago, as well as St Vincent and the Grenadines have been put on alert ahead of the passage of Tropical Storm Gonzalo this weekend. The system is still being expected to develop into a hurricane later today. (Photo: The Weather Channel)

While it may have weakened slightly, the threat of Gonzalo looms widely over many sections of the eastern Caribbean as tropical storm watches and warnings have been activated on Friday (July 24).

Now, tropical storm warnings are in effect for St Vincent and the Grenadines, St Lucia and Barbados, while a tropical storm watch remains in place for Tobago and Grenada.

According to the latest advisory from the National Hurricane Center, as at 7:00 am Eastern Standard Time (EST), satellite data indicated that the centre of Tropical Storm Gonzalo was located near latitude 10.0 North, longitude 52.8 West—930 kilometres east of the southern Windward Islands.

Gonzalo is moving toward the west at around 24 kilometres/hour. At its current strength, the system has maximum sustained winds near 95 kilometres/hour, with higher gusts.

The US-based NHC still sees a high possibility of Gonzalo developing into a hurricane before arriving to the Caribbean later today.

“On the forecast track, the center of Gonzalo will approach the southern Windward Islands tonight and then move across the islands on Saturday and over the eastern Caribbean Sea on Sunday,” the NHC advised.

“Some strengthening is forecast during the next day or two, and there is still a chance that Gonzalo could become a hurricane before reaching the Windward Islands,” the weather watchdog added.

Tropical Storm Gonzalo is expected to further weaken heading into the Caribbean Sea, with meteorologists forecasting the cyclone’s dissipation by the middle of next week.