NASSAU, The Bahamas – Officials at the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) continue to closely monitor the track of Hurricane Ian which is presently located in the Caribbean Sea.
According to the most recent NEWS ITEM on Hurricane IAN issued by The Bahamas Department of Meteorology’s Forecast Office Section at 12noon today, Hurricane Ian is forecast to continue rapidly strengthening with rain bands from the hurricane expected to affect The Bahamas tonight.
At 11:00 AM EDT, the centre of Ian was located near Latitude 19.1 ° NORTH AND LONGITUDE 82.7 ° WEST or about 100 miles west of Grand Cayman and 240 miles southeast of the western tip of Cuba.
IAN is moving towards the NORTHWEST at 13 miles per hour. On its forecasted track, IAN will emerge over the south-eastern Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday and approach the west coast of Florida on Wednesday.
Maximum sustained winds are near 80 miles per hour with higher gusts. Rapid strengthening is expected during the next day or so and Ian is forecasted to become a Major Hurricane (Category 3 or higher) tonight or early Tuesday.
Forecasters at The Bahamas Department of Meteorology predict that on its current track, Hurricane Ian will pass some distance away from The Bahamas, but because of its expansive nature, the north-western Bahamas could encounter rainbands that could produce significant rainfall, gusty winds, thunderstorm activity and potential tornadic activity.
(The north-western Bahamas consists of the islands of Abaco, Andros, Bimini, the Berry Islands, Eleuthera, the northern Exumas and New Providence.)
The National Emergency Management Agency advises residents in the north-western Bahamas, and those across The Bahamas, to continue to pay close attention to all of the NEWS ITEMS released by the Bahamas Department of Meteorology.