Tropical Storm Selma Hits El Salvador; New Storm Eyes Cuba

The National Hurricane Center suggests the the eye will move across west-central Cuba this afternoon, across the Straits of Florida tonight, and across the northwestern Bahamas Sunday morning.

As of the 5 p.m. Saturday evening advisory on Philippe, the storm has an area of sustained winds hitting 40 miles per hour, but mainly focused east and southeast of the center of the system.

Tropical storm warnings have been issued for the Cuban provinces of Isla de la Juventud, La Habana, Ciudad de la Habana, Matanzas, Cienfuegos, and Villa Clara as well as the Northwestern Bahamas. The main concern will be flash flooding leading to localized street flooding.

Forecasters are studying the development of a potential tropical storm in the western Caribbean in case it is picked up by the jet stream and carried across the Atlantic towards Britain.

As of 10 a.m. CDT Saturday, Tropical Depression 18 was located about 170 miles south of Havana, Cuba, and was speeding to the north-northeast at 22 mph, the hurricane center said.

It's important to note regardless of Philippe's organization or further intensification in the next day, the impacts to Southwest Florida aren't expected to change.

The reason the storm is moving to the northeast is because a cold front, positioned over the central region of the U.S. Friday afternoon, is moving eastward and will sweep the tropical system toward the Atlantic.

Local residents living in areas under storm watch are recommended to follow the Florida Division of Emergency Management on Twitter for updates pertaining to weather conditions.

  • Jon Douglas