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WEATHER SYSTEM NOT SEEN AS A THREAT LOCALLY

Sept. 25, 2003 – The formation of Tropical Depression 16 late Thursday in the Atlantic Ocean proved that even though the peak of hurricane season is past, there's still a ways to go until the official end on Nov. 30.
Forecasters think the storm will pass well to the northeast of the Virgin Islands sometime in the coming week. However, Brian Seeley, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in San Juan, noted, "It's still early in the game."
As of 5 p.m. Thursday, Tropical Depression 16 was centered at 11.7 degrees north latitude and 38.3 degrees west longitude, or about 1,450 miles east of the Lesser Antilles. It was moving west-northwest at 13 mph. Sustained winds reached 35 mph with gusts up to 45 mph. The barometric pressure stood at 1008 millibars or 29.76 inches.
Seeley said the depression is expected to become Tropical Storm Kate in the next 12 to 24 hours, and that it is projected to have sustained winds of 60 mph by midday Sunday.
"The conditions seem pretty favorable" for that strengthening of the weather system, he said.
Tropical Storm Juan also formed on Thursday, but it poses no threat to the territory. It was located about 200 miles east-southeast of Bermuda and moving north-northwest.
Seeley said that a tropical wave approaching the area should cause increased cloudiness, thunderstorms and gusty winds in the Virgin Islands on Friday and continuing into Saturday. He said sustained winds could reach 10 to 15 mph on Friday and 15 mph on Saturday, with gusts of 20 to 22 mph.

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