FIRST ALERT: Julia will strengthen into a hurricane today
MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Tropical storm Julia is expected to become Hurricane Julia today.
At 8 AM, the center of Tropical Storm Julia was located by an Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft near latitude 12.8 North, longitude 79.0 West. Julia is moving toward the west near 21 mph. This general motion should continue through tonight, followed by a westward or west-northwestward motion at a slower forward speed on Sunday and Sunday night.
On the forecast track, the center of Julia is expected to pass near or over San Andres and Providencia Islands this evening and then reach the coast of Nicaragua on Sunday morning. Julia or its remnants will then turn west-northwestward near the Pacific coast of Central America by Monday.
Maximum sustained winds are near 60 mph with higher gusts. Steady to rapid strengthening is forecast while Julia moves across the southwestern Caribbean Sea today and tonight, and the system is expected to become a hurricane later today. Rapid weakening is forecast after Julia moves inland on Sunday, and it is likely to become a remnant low on Monday. Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 115 miles from the center. Data from the Air Force Reserve reconnaissance aircraft indicate that the minimum central pressure is 994 mb.
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