Tropical storm near Puerto Rico

(Jamaica Gleaner) The Meteorological Service is reporting that Tropical Storm Gabrielle, the seventh named system this Atlantic hurricane season, has formed near Puerto Rico.

At 10:00 p.m. the centre of Tropical Storm Gabrielle, was located near latitude 17.0 degrees north and longitude 66.6 degrees west or about 110 kilometres south of Ponce, Puerto Rico.

The Met Service says Tropical Storm Gabrielle is moving towards the northwest near 13 kilometres per hour and this motion is expected to continue through Thursday night.

A turn toward the north-northwest is expected on Friday with a slight decrease in forward speed.

At present, Tropical Storm Gabrielle is not a threat to Jamaica, but a trough associated with this system is expected to affect the central Caribbean including Jamaica Thursday through Sunday.

It is predicted that there will be outbreaks of showers and thunderstorms, which could be heavy at times over sections of most parishes.

Meanwhile, on the forecast track, the centre of Gabrielle should pass near or just west of Puerto Rico tonight into early Thursday, the pass near or just east of the Dominican Republic into Thursday evening, and move east of the Turks and Caicos Islands on Friday.

Maximum sustained winds have increased near 65 kilometres per hour with higher gusts.

Some additional strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours.

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