NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Hurricane Isaias continues to bring heavy rain and strong tropical storm force winds over Long Island, Exuma and other central islands of The Bahamas, with some of the northwestern islands now experiencing adverse weather.
The tropical storm force conditions over Long Island and Exuma were expected to subside at around 10pm.
As of 7.30pm, Long Island administrator Desiree Ferguson confirmed there were 13 people at shelters on the island has storm conditions ebbed with gusty winds.
There were three people in the north at Seymour’s Gospel Chapel, and 10 at the Clarence Town Community Center, she said.
Andros and New Providence, however, are expected to experience tropical storm to hurricane force conditions Saturday morning.
The Department of Meteorology urged residents in the northwest Bahamas and central Bahamas to rush to complete all preparations, and remain indoors.
A hurricane warning has been discontinued for the southeast Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands.
The all clear has been issued for Inagua, Mayaguana, Acklins, Crooked Island, Ragged Island, Long Cay, Samana Cay and Turks and Caicos.
A hurricane warning remains in effect for the remainder of The Bahamas.
A hurricane warning means that hurricane conditions are being experienced or could be experienced in the warning area within 36 hours.
At 6pm, the center of the storm was 50 miles southwest of Clarence Town, Long Island; 60 miles south of Georgetown, Exuma, or 195 miles south-southeast of New Providence.
Isaias was traveling northwest at 15 miles per hour, slowing further since this morning, and presenting conditions allowing the storm to strengthen in the warm waters of The Bahamas.
A further decrease in forward speed is expected for the next day or so followed by a turn toward the north-northwest on Sunday.
On its current forecast track, the center of Isaias is expected to continue to move into the central Bahamas tonight, and over the northwest Bahamas, including North Andros, by Saturday morning.
New Providence is expected to experience “strong tropical storm force winds and severe thunderstorms”.
Isaias has maximum sustained winds of 75 miles per hour with higher gusts.
The storm had maximum sustained winds of 80 miles per hour this morning.
It is expected to strengthen later tonight and early Saturday.
The National Hurricane Center projects the storm could have maximum sustained winds of 90 miles per hour over the next 36 hours.
Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 35 miles from the center, while tropical storm force winds extend up to 175 miles from the center.
It addition to heavy downpour and flooding, storm surges were projected at three to five feet above sea level along coastal areas throughout the country.
A second system in the Atlantic around 950 east of the Lesser Antilles has a 20 percent chance of development over the next five days.
Meanwhile, a third weather system 265 miles east-southeast of Cabo Verde has been upgraded to ‘Tropical Depression 10’.
Maximum sustained winds were 30 miles per hour.
The depression was moving toward the north near nine miles per hour, and is expecred to turn toward the northwest is tonight, followed by a turn to the west-northwest and west on Saturday and Saturday night.
On the forecast track, the center of the depression is expected to pass north of the northernmost Cabo Verde Islands tonight and Saturday
The system had a 20 percent chance of cyclone formation this morning.