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HomeNewsArchivesCATEGORY 2 HURRICANE ISABEL BEARS WATCHING

CATEGORY 2 HURRICANE ISABEL BEARS WATCHING

Sept. 8, 2003 — Tropical Storm Isabel became Hurricane Isabel at the 11 a.m. National Weather Service update Sunday. By 5 a.m. Monday Isabel was named a Category 2 hurricane and was centered 1,350 miles east of the Leeward Islands.
Since Isabel won't near the Virgin Islands until next weekend, it's too soon to tell Isabel's exact path.
"It could come closer than Fabian did,"Scott Stripling, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in San Juan, said Sunday.
He said that although some computer models take the storm a bit north of the Virgin Islands, others indicate that it will take a more westward track once it nears the territory. This could put the Virgin Islands right in the hurricane's path.
"I suggest everyone monitor this one. It's not out of the question," he said.
The 5 a.m. advisory reports Isabel is moving west-northwest at 16 mph. The storm is centered at 16.9 degrees north latitude and 41.4 degrees west longitude. Maximum sustained winds are near 105 mph with higher gusts. The estimated minimum central pressure is 970 millibars or 28.64 inches.
Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 miles. Tropical storm-force winds extend outward to 105 miles.
Stripling said Isabel Sunday Isabel was to become a Category 3 by Wednesday.
When winds reach 96 to 110 mph, a hurricane is considered a Category 2. Category 3 hurricanes see winds of 111 to 130 mph. Winds of 131 to 155 constitute a Category 4, and anything over 156 is a Category 5.
Hurricane season runs until Nov. 30.

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