Bill closes in on major status

| August 18, 2009

Tom Moore, Lead Meteorologist, The Weather Channel
Aug. 18, 2009 5:19 pm ET

ATLANTIC

Bill became the first hurricane of the season on Monday morning. It continued to strengthen throughout the day and reached category 2 strength Monday evening.

As of 5 p.m. EDT, Bill had sustained winds near 110 miles per hour. Further strengthening is expected and the system could become a major hurricane (category three or higher) soon.

Bill is moving to the west-northwest on the southern periphery of high pressure to its north. Some disturbances are forecast weaken a portion of this high allowing a more northwest motion over time.

This forecast track would keep Bill north of the Lesser Antilles and heading in the general direction of Bermuda, or between Bermuda and the North Carolina Outer Banks, over the weekend. Residents and visitors of Bermuda should pay close attention to the progress of Bill.

Regardless, rough surf is expected along the beaches of the Northern Leeward Islands, Puerto Rico, and Hispaniola by midweek, the Bahamas by late week, and the East Coast of the U.S. by the weekend into early next week. Dangerous rip currents can be expected once swells generated by Bill reach coastal areas.

T.D. Ana degenerated into a tropical wave on Monday. The remnants in combination with an upper low to the west are causing disorganized shower and thunderstorm activity over Cuba and the Bahamas.

This moisture will move into South Florida overnight into Wednesday enhancing rainfall in the Sunshine State.

There are no signs of any regeneration at this time.

CENTRAL PACIFIC

Tropical Storm Guillermo continues to weaken, top sustained winds are 45 mph.

It is located 560 miles NNE of Hilo, Hawaii, while continuing to move northwest.

The tropical storm is forecast to pass well north of Hawaii. Rough surf is expected along Hawaii's north facing beaches for the next few days.
 

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