Puerto Rico

Erika Winds Affecting Virgin Islands, South Florida Still in Cone

South Florida remained in the cone of concern for Tropical Storm Erika Thursday.

As of the 11 p.m. advisory from the National Hurricane Center, Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt; mso-para-margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;} Erika's maximum sustained winds remained at 45 mph and it was moving west at 17 mph.

NHC said tropical storm force winds were affecting the U.S. Virgin Islands and approaching Puerto Rico.

Erika produced very heavy rains over portions of the Leeward Islands Thursday, and was expected to pass north of the north coast of the Dominican Republic on Friday.

Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 140 miles, mainly to the east of the center.

Erika is expected to produce total rain accumulations of 3 to 5 inches with maximum amounts of 8 inches across portions of the Leeward Islands, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, the Turk and Caicos Islands and the southeast Bahamas through Saturday.

The storm remained poorly organized Thursday, and little change in strength was forecast for the next 48 hours.

A tropical storm warning remained in effect for Puerto Rico, Vieques, Culebra, the U.S. Virgin Islands and British Virgin Islands, and the Dominican Republic from the northern border with Haiti eastward and southward to Isla Saona, the Turks and Caicos Islands, St. Martin and St. Barthelemy.

The tropical storm warnings were discontinued for Antigua and Barbuda, Anguilla, St. Kitts, Nevis, and Montserrat, Saba and St. Eustatius and St. Maarten.

A tropical storm watch was in effect for the central Bahamas and the Dominican Republic from Isla Saona to Punta Palenque.

Meanwhile, on the island of Dominica in the Caribbean, at least four people were reported to have died in severe flooding and mudslides caused by Erika.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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