Watch for TS Elsa Remains in Place for Now

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Now a Tropical Storm

Published 3rd July 2021, 4:23pm

TS Elsa Details

Max Wind Speed: 70 mph (Strong Tropical Storm)

Location: East of Jamaica near western tip of Hispaniola.

Forward Movement: WNW at 28 mph

A weakened Tropical Storm Elsa remains a potential threat for the Sister Islands. At 4 pm, Director General of the Cayman Islands National Weather Service, John Tibbetts said he is not ready to lift the Watch.

The Storm Watch is for the Sister Islands of Little Cayman and Cayman Brac only, and has now remained in place for over 24 hours. Mr. Tibbetts said he recently spoke to his peers at the National Hurricane Center and based on those conversations, and a recent jog in the track potentially bringing the storm closer, and the outer edge of the storm force wind field nearer, he is not able to recommend lifting the watch for the Sister Islands at this time.

Elsa has already caused considerable damage in Barbados, threatened parts of an already challenged St. Vincent (reeling from a major volcanic eruption) and now it is setting it's sight on the south western Peninsula of Haiti before continuing on to parts of Cuba and then eventually Florida or some other US landfall. In between these locations are Jamaica and the Cayman Islands and we now watch and wait..

For Cayman, the Cayman Islands National Weather Service (CINWS) says rain could commence in Little Cayman and Cayman Brac tomorrow morning. At times the rain could come down hard. Additionally, rain could start impacting Grand Cayman probably in the afternoon, but the likelihood of flooding and standing water is less than in the Sister Is. according to CINWS.

The strength of the winds really depends if we get clipped by the tropical storm force wind field. The likelihood according to CINWS is low, but has moved from about 20 percent to closer for 30 percent. "We have to remain alert."

The forecast for the seas is 'rough' to 'very rough'.

The weather service is moving towards impact based forecasting and they expect to give a timing for when the George Town Port and lee shore of Grand Cayman will be exposed to waves (and more specifics on wave heights and the lengths of the swells) when Elsa moves closer.

Regardless, all boats should now be secured as best as possible (for more details about securing your boat in a storm please contact HMCI).