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Tropical Depression 20, is expected to strengthen in the next few days and reach hurricane status within four to five days, the National Hurricane Center reported Sunday evening.
While tropical storms Paulette and Rene turn north toward the central Atlantic, the National Hurricane Center gave a system that is expected to move off the coast of Africa on Thursday afternoon a high chance of tropical development and suggested it might blow more directly westward, toward the Caribbean.
A tropical depression is likely to develop from a low-pressure system designated Invest 99-L crossing the eastern Caribbean, the National Hurricane Center reported Sunday.
In an update on the movement of Tropical Depression 13, V.I. Territorial Emergency Management Agency Director Daryl Jaschen said the system is moving west-northwest at 21 miles per hour, which will put it near or north of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands Friday night into Saturday.
The U.S. Coast Guard declared Port Condition Yankee for the U.S.Virgin islands and Puerto Rico Thursday afternoon, and expects to declare Port Condition Zulu at 8 a.m. Friday, closing the port in anticipation of a near pass by Tropical Depression 13.
The University of the Virgin Islands and the V.I. Territorial Emergency Management Agency are continuing their annual effort to update the territory’s “Hazard Mitigation Plan,” a requirement for FEMA emergency assistance.
Speaking about the loss of two family members to COVID-19, Assistant Health Commissioner Nicole Syms pleaded with residents to draw on their sense of “empathy and compassion” by wearing masks and social distancing to control the spread of the virus.
Atmospheric and oceanic conditions are primed to fuel storm development in the Atlantic, leading to what could be an “extremely active” season, according to forecasters with NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center.
There were no active tropical weather systems of concern to the V.I. in the Atlantic basin Wednesday, but the tropical weather team at Colorado State University issued an updated forecast, saying they now expect the hurricane season to be "extremely active."
Residents of the Caribbean dodged a bullet Saturday when Tropical Storm Gonzalo passed through the region before fizzling out, but they don't have a lot of time to relax as another system churns relentlessly across the Atlantic.
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