HAVANA (AP) – Tropical Storm Grace formed in the Atlantic Ocean on Saturday morning, while Fred remained a tropical depression that led to the eastern Gulf of Mexico.
Heavy rain and flooding were expected from both systems. Fred, previously classified as a tropical storm, could regain such strength later in the day or on Sunday, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center.
Grace was about 675 kilometers east of the Leeward Islands and could reach the Lesser Antilles by Saturday evening. It was moving west at 35 km / h with maximum sustained winds of 65 km / h.
A tropical storm warning has been issued for the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. A tropical storm watch was in place for the British Virgin Islands. Weather forecasters said Grace could reach the Dominican Republic by Monday.
Grace has been projected to bring three to four inches of rain to the Leeward Islands, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico by Monday.
Meanwhile, Fred remained a tropical depression with peak winds of 55 km / h. Forecasters said the system appeared “disorganized” and forecast it would pass west of the lower Florida Keys on Saturday afternoon and then advance into the eastern Gulf of Mexico.
A tropical storm warning was issued for the Florida Keys west of the Seven Mile Bridge to the Dry Tortugas. Fred was centered 90 miles south of Key West on Saturday morning, moving at 12 mph from west to northwest.
Fred was once a tropical storm and turned into a depression as it spun over Haiti and the Dominican Republic, where it cut power to around 400,000 customers and caused flooding that forced officials to shut down part of the country’s aqueduct system, which is the water supply interrupted for hundreds by thousands of people. Local officials reported that hundreds of people were evacuated and some buildings were damaged.
Fred should bring 3 to 5 inches (7.5 to 12.5 centimeters) of rain to the Keys and South Florida by Monday.
There are no planned evacuations for tourists or residents in Monroe County, Keys officials said Friday. The county’s emergency management officials advise people at campsites, RVs, caravans, RVs, and RVs to seek shelter in a safe structure during the weather event.
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