Hurricane Tomas could move toward Haiti
As if they didn't have enough to contend with in Haiti, now Hurricane Tomas is forecast to become a major Cat. 3 storm and could make a turn toward that tortured island nation later this week.
The National Hurricane Center in Miami says Tomas, the 12th hurricane of the 2010 Atlantic season, is about 350 miles south southeast of San Juan, Puerto Rico, moving toward the west northwest at 8 p.m. after pummeling the Windward Islands.
It is packing top sustained winds of 100 mph, making it just 11 mph short of a Cat. 3 storm. Some weakening is predicted as Tomas encounters shearing winds in the next few days. But conditions later this week are expected to enable a restrengthening.
High pressure to the north of the storm will keep it headed west for now. But a turn toward the north is possible perhaps four days from now, forecasters said, as the high breaks down.
There is no mention of Haiti in the morning forecast discussion. But, while confidence is low, the tentative forecast track does move Tomas ominously in that nation's direction by the end of the week. The forecasters say there is a 40 percent probability of tropical-storm force winds in Port au Prince within the next five days.