Tropical Storm Karen: Puerto Rico and US Virgin Islands brace for heavy rains and flash floods

Tropical storm warnings in effect as forecasters say Karen may become a hurricane

Chris Riotta
New York
Monday 23 September 2019 19:15
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Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands have issued heavy rain and flash flooding warnings as Tropical Storm Karen churned slowly across the southeastern Caribbean Sea towards the region.

The National Hurricane Centre described the storm as “disorganised” as it sustained winds of 40 mph (64 kph) while around 180 miles (290 kilometres) west of St Vincent. The storm was moving northwest at 8 mph (13 kph), according to the centre.

A tropical storm watch was also in effect for the British Virgin Islands.

Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Jerry is 355 miles (570 kilometres) away from Bermuda with top sustained winds of 65 mph (105 kph). It’s moving at 9 mph, according to the National Hurricane Centre.

The centre also said that tropical storm-force winds are possible in Bermuda, where it was expected to pass late on Tuesday night.

Tropical Storm Karen was forecast to approach Puerto Rico and the US and British Virgin Islands on Tuesday, though it remains unclear how much damage those islands could face.

The storm was buffeting parts of the southern Windward Islands with high winds and heavy rain over the weekend, spreading blustery winds and flooding rains.

Karen formed on Sunday, becoming the 11th named storm of the current Atlantic hurricane season.

On Sunday afternoon, the storm’s centre was located just 60 miles (95 kilometres) north of Grenada, where tropical storm warnings were in effect throughout the weekend.

The hurricane centre says it expects the storm to change little in strength over the coming days.

A tropical storm warning was also in effect for Trinidad and Tobago, St Vincent and the Grenadines.

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Forecasters said the tropical storm could eventually turn into a hurricane after passing over Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands and possibly stalling over the western Atlantic mid-week.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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