Image courtesy NOAA NWS National Hurricane Center

Tropical Storm Elsa has been upgraded to a hurricane, as of this morning, with hurricane conditions spreading through the Windward Islands.

As such, Hurricane Warnings have been issued for Barbados, St. Lucia, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and a Tropical Storm Watch has been activated for Jamaica, by their respective Meteorological Services.

The Meteorological Service of Barbados reported a sustained wind of 74 mph and a gust to 86 mph. 

A release from the National Hurricane Centre (NOAA/NHC) in Miami, issued at 8:30 am, states:

“Surface observations from Barbados indicate that Elsa’s maximum sustained winds have increased to near 75 mph, and the cyclone is now a hurricane.”

NOAA/NHC also reports that Else currently is moving west-northwest or 285 degrees at 28 mph (44 km/hr), with maximum sustained winds at 75 mph (120 km/hr).

SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT:

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for…

* Barbados

* St. Lucia

* St. Vincent and the Grenadines

A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area, in this case in the next few hours.  Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for…

* Martinique

* The southern coast of Dominican Republic from Cabo Engano to the border with Haiti

* Entire coast of Haiti

A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area.

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for…

* Southern portion of Haiti from Port Au Prince to the southern border with the Dominican Republic

A Hurricane Watch means that hurricane conditions are possible within the watch area.  A watch is typically issued 48 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical-storm-force winds, conditions that make outside preparations difficult or dangerous.

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for…

* Grenada and its dependencies

* Saba and Sint Eustatius

* Jamaica

* Dominica

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area.