Hurricane Cristobal gaining stength, will pass by Island today
By Owain Johnston-Barnes and Jonathan Bell
Category One storm Hurricane Cristobal should blow past some 260 miles to Bermuda’s northwest around sunrise today, delivering rough seas and possibly heavy showers.
Cristobal’s closest point of approach will be around 7am, according to forecasts at press time last night.
Although yesterday gave a surprise respite from recent downpours, the system’s extra rains could potentially make this the wettest August on record.
Already this month, 12.6 inches of rain have been recorded by the Bermuda Weather Service (BWS) — just shy of the 13 inch record.
The US-based National Hurricane Centre was reporting yesterday afternoon that the storm boasted sustained winds of 80mph (130kph), with Tropical Storm force winds extending around 205 miles from the centre.
Despite the expected distance between the Island and the storm, Bermuda is likely to experience strong winds and showers as the Cristobal passes, weakening over the course of the day.
Meanwhile, waves outside the reefs are expected to reach nine to 15 feet.
BWS forecast the strongest winds and “dangerously high seas” to the north of the Island.
Last night a Tropical Storm Watch remained in effect, along with small craft warning imposed until Friday, as the storm travels northeast.
While Cristobal is expected to have a minimal impact overall on the Island, the threat of inclement weather yesterday forced the cancellation of Harbour Nights.
The storm also caused the Norwegian Breakaway and Celebrity Summit cruise ships to cancel scheduled trips to the Island.
And ferry service to and from St George’s has been suspended due to a combination of the weather conditions and the lack of cruise ships.
Overseas, Cristobal has proven more dangerous: the storm has been blamed for the death of four people in Haiti, the Dominican Republic and the Turks and Caicos Islands.
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