New storm could become Hurricane Paloma
Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center are watching a new tropical depression that formed today in the western Caribbean. It is strengthening, and was expected to become Tropical Storm Paloma by morning. It is forecast to become a hurricane - the season's 8th - later this week, and may pose a threat to the Cayman Islands, Jamaica and storm-battered Cuba.
Tropical storm watches have been posted for portions of Nicaragua and Honduras. Tops sustained winds in the storm are blowing at 35 mph. Here's more from the hurricane center.
The 2008 Atlantic hurricane season, with 3 1/2 weeks to go, is already the second-most destructive on record (after 2005), with $52 billion in damage. Estimates vary. By some, more than 880 people have been killed. The worst was Hurricane Ike, which killed 126 people and caused $31 billion in damage - the third costliest in U.S. history. More than 200 people remain missing in its wake.