Aug. 1, 2006 – The National Weather Service in San Juan has revised its earlier forecast that had Tropical Storm Chris passing near the Virgin Islands at 5 p.m. Wednesday to earlier in the day.
Forecaster now think that the storm will pass 60 miles northeast of the Virgin Islands at 8 a.m., with the center passing 50 miles north around noon.
Meteorologist Rachel Gross said at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday that the weather should start going downhill just after midnight.
"With the winds coming a little later," she said.
At the 11 a.m. update, Chris was centered at 17.3 degrees north latitude and 60.3 degrees west longitude. This puts it about 175 miles east of Antigua.
Winds had reached 40 mph, with gusts to 50 mph.
Some strengthening is expected during the next 24 hours.
Tropical storm force winds extend out 35 miles. Gross said the strongest winds are on the northeast side of the storm.
It is moving to the west-northwest at 10 mph.
The barometric pressure stands at 1009 millibars or 29.80 inches.
The U.S. and British Virgin Islands remain under a tropical storm watch.
Gross said Virgin Islands residents should expect the seas to increase as the storm passes.
Harold Baker, who heads V.I. Emergency Management Agency operations, said at 11 a.m. that people should bring in their porch furniture so it doesn't become airborne during the storm.
And he said that materials piled up at construction sites need to be secured.
"They need to start putting it in a safe place," he said.
He urged all residents to be prepared in case the storm gets stronger as it nears the Virgin Islands.
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