Bill now a category 3 hurricane

| August 20, 2009

Wayne Verno, and M. Ressler, Lead Meteorologists, The Weather Channel
Aug. 20, 2009 11:15 am ET

Hurricane Bill has weakened slightly, with maximum sustained winds near the center now at 120 mph. This makes Bill a category 3 hurricane.

Bill will continue moving over warm waters, and therefore could return to category 4 status.

Hurricane Bill is located 695 miles south-southeast of Bermuda, while continuing to move quickly off to the northwest. Bill should begin turning in a more northerly direction by later Friday.

Based on all available forecast data at this time, it appears that Bill will track west of Bermuda and east of the Eastern U.S. Coast over the next few days.

A vigorous upper-level trough now moving into the Plains and Upper Midwest, will continue to push east this weekend. This will help to deflect Bill from any U.S. landfall. The upper level high farther out in the Atlantic should cause the hurricane to pass west of Bermuda. However, regardless of a direct landfall, some impacts will be felt along the Eastern U.S. and Bermuda coasts.

Waves will become elevated today from North Carolina to central Florida as swells produced by Bill begin to reach the East Coast. Into the weekend, waves will spread northward into New England and increase in size.

For Bermuda, waves will rise through today and peak late Friday into early Saturday.

Although a direct impact to the U.S. and Bermuda is not expected at this time, this hurricane still needs to be monitored closely. Any slight deviation to the right or left of the current forecast track could greatly alter the forecasts for the Island of Bermuda or southeastern New England.

As a precaution, a hurricane watch has been issued for Bermuda.

Elsewhere in the Atlantic, the tropics are mostly quiet.

With the final advisory now written on Guillermo, both the eastern and central Pacific is quiet as well.

In the western Pacific, Typhoon Vamco is a Category 3 storm, but will remain well east of Japan.


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