The tormenta tropical Earlpreviously monitored as Invest 91L, could leave this Saturday on Puerto Rico accumulations of rain between two to four inches, although in other localized areas the accumulations may be greater, estimated the National Weather Service (SNM) not San Juan.
However, the accumulations amount to up to six inches, particularly in the eastern third, if the rain activity that can be generated both today and tomorrow, Sunday, is considered.
The agency ruled out that the system represents a direct impact threat to the island.
Although it will not pass over Puerto Rico, the reason such amounts of precipitation can accumulate is that the winds are blowing lightly between six to 15 knots (6.9 to 17.3 miles per hour), said the meteorologist. Cecille Villanueva.
“Any downpours that do occur could make local rain accumulations higher, but one way or another the entire island could experience rain during this period. (The rain) will not be continuous, because there are going to be pulses of activity and calmer periods, because it is a tropical storm, but it is still disorganized”, detailed the expert to The new day.
In his most recent full bulletin, issued at 5:00 am, the National Hurricane Center (NHC, in English) reported that Earl was at latitude 18.7 degrees North and longitude 61.4 degrees West, moving west-northwest at a rate of 13 miles per hour. The barometric pressure of the system was 1005 millibars (mb).
The tropical storm's maximum sustained winds, which extend about 175 miles from its center of circulation, are 40 miles per hour.
In its weather hazard outlook, the SNM placed the entire Big Island, as well as Vieques and Culebra, at moderate risk for urban and small stream flooding.
Nevertheless, the areas most likely to experience moderate to heavy showers with thunderstorms are the eastern third (which includes the metropolitan area) the north and the interior of the island.
Even these areas could suffer landslides, especially the interior of Puerto Rico, because they are regions that received rains last week and the soils are already saturated.
“The most important thing is that, as we have mentioned in the last few days, regardless of the strength and development of this system, we are not going to have a direct impact. So the potential impacts that we have been mentioning will continue to be in force, so they would be: moderate to heavy rains during the weekend,” Villanueva stressed.
The strongest thunderstorms, too, can generate gusting winds of 30 to 40 miles per hour.
“Not only today, but also between dawn and tomorrow morning, Sunday, we expect there to be rain activity. But we emphasize that it is a disorganized system and we have to see how the system behaves as it passes close to us”he added.
The most active part of Earl, including its maximum sustained winds, is expected to remain northeast of Puerto Rico. However, the meteorologist recalled that there could be fluctuations that cause a readjustment in the path of the storm, for which she urged the population to remain vigilant.
If there were a change further south in its trajectory, Earl would not impact Puerto Rico, but it would disrupt conditions offshore the Atlantic.
The SNM forecasts that the waves in Atlantic waters fluctuate between six to eight feet high, although occasionally they can be higher. In fact, the weather agency issued a warning for operators of small boats in offshore waters of the Atlantic.
“We now have a moderate risk of rip currents for most of the northern beaches, but by tomorrow we expect some beaches to experience a high risk. It is a long weekend and it is important for people to know that the northern and eastern beaches can be dangerous,” Villanueva pointed out.
As the tropical storm moves further north, it will shift wind direction more from the south-southeast, so moisture in the Caribbean region being pulled in by Earl could bring rain through early next week.
The SNM urged the population to remain vigilant and follow only the forecasts and information from official sources and not from any non-validated page on social networks, to avoid misinformation.