Tropical Storm Elsa intensified into a Category 1 hurricane when it hit the Caribbean early on Friday morning, making it the first hurricane of the 2021 season.
According to the National Hurricane Center, Elsa is located about 95 miles east of St. Vincent and is moving west-northwest at a speed of 28 miles per hour. Hurricane warnings were issued in Barbados, Saint Vincent, the Grenadines and Saint Lucia.
The Barbados Bureau of Meteorology reports a sustained wind speed of 74 mph and a gust of 86 mph.
Heavy rains are expected in the windward and leeward islands on Friday and in Puerto Rico, Hispanola and Jamaica on weekends.
Heavy rainfall is expected, and Cuba, the Turks and Caicos Islands and the Bahamas may also face strong winds and rainfall next week.
According to Phil Klotzbach, a hurricane researcher at Colorado State University, Elsa is the fifth earliest storm on record. He also pointed out that Elsa was “the farthest east of the tropical Atlantic Ocean formed by a hurricane at the beginning of this year” since 1933.
As of 5 a.m., the NHC predicts storm surges, wind and rainfall in parts of the Florida Keys and the Florida Peninsula early next week.
NHC stated: “Florida’s interests should focus on Elsa’s progress and forecast updates.”
Elsa’s trajectory is still uncertain. NHC said it will learn more based on Elsa’s interaction with the Greater Antilles over the weekend.
ABC meteorologist Ginger Zee said on Twitter that we should not “marry” the trajectory predicted by Elsa, because “the models have not come together yet, we still have some time, so the possibility is very high.”
Elsa may cause more problems for local rescue operations Surfside, Florida The staff are still looking for survivors of the collapse of the Champlain Tannan Building among the rubble and debris.
Over the past week, fires, cracked structures and movement in the concrete have suspended efforts.
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.