Published 19th August 2007, 10:44am
Key Message: A hurricane warning remains in effect for the Cayman Islands today (Sunday, 19 August); Hurricane Dean has maintained its intensity and forward speed overnight and is still projected to pass slightly to the south of Cayman late tonight or early tomorrow. At 10 o'clock this morning (Cayman time) the centre of Hurricane Dean was located near latitude 17.0 north, longitude 75.1 west, or about 130 miles east-southeast of Kingston, Jamaica. Dean is moving west near 18 mph; a motion between west and west-northwest is expected to continue over the next 24 hours. On its present track, the hurricane's outer bands are about to affect Jamaica and the core of the storm will near that island later today. Maximum sustained winds are near 145 mph with higher gusts. Dean remains an extremely dangerous category four hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson hurricane scale. Hurricane force winds extend outward up to 60 miles from the center, and tropical force winds extend outward up to 205 miles. The minimum central pressure is 926 MB, 27.34 inches. Chairman's Comments: Cayman Islands National Hurricane Committee (NHC) Chairman Donovan Ebanks advises that while Dean's latest projected path shows its closest point of approach as being a little further away than yesterday's forecasts, all residents should remain vigilant and prepared. "This is a highly dangerous hurricane; favourable changes in recent forecasts can still be reversed before this hurricane passes the Cayman Islands," he explains. Note: The hurricane warning stage means that the Islands can expect to start experiencing tropical storm or hurricane conditions within 24 hours. Details of Weather System: Latitude: 17.0 north Longitude: 75.1 west Proximity: 130 miles east-southeast of Kingston, Jamaica Maximum sustained wind speed: 145 mph (230 km per hour) with higher gusts Further information: Following the 10:30 a.m. NHC meeting today (Sunday, 19 August).