Hurricane Watch In Effect For Haiti, US Braces For Isaac

In late August 2012, Tropical Storm Isaac hovered over the Caribbean Sea, projected to follow a path toward the northwest. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured this image around 1:40 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on August 23. In this natural-color image, coastlines and national borders are delineated in black.

At 2:00 p.m. EDT on August 23, shortly after MODIS took this picture, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) reported that Isaac had maximum sustained winds of 40 miles (65 kilometers) per hour. Although Isaac did not appear well organized on August 23, it showed signs of strengthening.

On Aug. 23, 2012 as 1:40 p.m. EDT NASA's Aqua Satellite flew over Tropical Storm Isaac the MODIS instrument captured this visible image of the storm as it continues moving through the eastern Caribbean Sea. Credit: NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response Team

On Friday (Aug. 24), NOAA's National Hurricane Center (NHC) many watches and warnings were in effect as Isaac continued to slowly build up steam. A Hurricane Watch is in effect for Haiti. A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Dominican Republic, Haiti, and the Cuban Provinces of Camaguey, Las Tunas, Granma, Holguin, Santiago De Cuba, and Guantanamo. The Tropical Storm Warning is also in effect for the southeastern Bahamas including the Acklins, Crooked Island, Long Cay, the Inaguas, Mayaguana, and the Ragged Islands, and the Turks and Caicos Islands.

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for the Cuban Provinces of Ciego De Avila, Sancti Spiritus, and Villa Clara, Andros Island and the Central Bahamas including Cat Island, the Exumas, Long Island, Rum Cay, San Salvador and Jamaica.

On Aug. 24 at 8 a.m. EDT (1200 UTC) Tropical Storm Isaac's maximum sustained winds were near 50 mph (80 Kmh) with higher gusts. Additional strengthening is forecast while Isaac's center remains over water, according to NHC forecasters. Issac was about 175 miles (280 km) south-southwest of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, and about 220 miles (355 km) southeast of Port au Prince, Haiti. That puts Isaac's center near latitude 16.0 north and longitude 70.3 west. Isaac is moving toward the west near 15 mph (24 kmh) and the NHC expects Isaac to turn west-northwest, then north. According to NHC forecasters, Isaac's center will move near or over Hispaniola today, Aug. 24 and near or over southeastern Cuba on Saturday, Aug. 25.

The heavy rainfall that the TRMM satellite observed is expected to be problematic for Hispaniola and Cuba. The NHC expects extreme rainfall totals of between 8 and 12 inches, with isolated amounts to 20 inches. The potential for flash-flooding and mudslides is present. Eastern Cuba and Jamaica may receive between 4 and 8 inches with isolated totals of 12 inches, while Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands may get between 2 and 4 inches of rainfall, with isolated totals to 6 inches. Tropical storm-force winds, heavy surf and storm surges are also expected in those areas as Isaac continues on its track.

NASA image courtesy Jeff Schmaltz, LANCE MODIS Rapid Response Team, Goddard Space Flight Center. Caption by Michon Scott. Instrument: Aqua - MODIS


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