Quote from: HurricaneTrack.com You never like to see this with any hurricane, much less one tucked in to the NW Caribbean Sea in late October: "GIVEN THE EXTREMELY LARGE SPREAD IN THE GUIDANCE...AND THE POOR RUN TO RUN CONSISTENCY...THERE IS MUCH LOWER THAN NORMAL CONFIDENCE IN THE LONG-RANGE TRACK FORECAST OF RINA."
Early Monday morning, forecasters said they anticipated slow strengthening, with Rina becoming a hurricane by Friday. But by 2 p.m. Monday, Rina had spun up with maximum sustained winds of 75 miles an hour – enough to reach hurricane status. Rina now is projected to become a major hurricane, with maximum sustained winds in excess of 110 miles an hour, within the next 48 hours.
The center of Rina currently is located some 207 miles east northeast of Trujillo, Honduras. Current track projections – with large uncertainties at the end of the five-day forecast period – have the center of the storm skirting the northern Yucatán Peninsula on Thursday and Friday before hooking eastward toward the western tip of Cuba.
Two key factors in Rina's spin-up: very warm sea-surface temperatures and a general wind environment that changes little in speed or direction with rising altitude. Such changes, dubbed wind shear, appear to have weakened since early Monday morning, according to forecast discussions. Strong shear tends to stifle hurricane development.
"Rita is in a very good environment" for strengthening, says Dennis Feltgen, a spokesman for the National Hurricane Center in Miami.
An animation of NOAA's GOES-13 satellite observations shows the development of Hurricane Rina from the low pressure area called System 96L (bottom, center) in the western Caribbean Sea. GOES-13 cloud images are overlaid on a true-color NASA/MODIS map. The observations date from October 22 at 8:45 a.m. EDT through Oct. 24 at 7:45 a.m. EDT; Rina formally became a Tropical Storm at 10 p.m. EDT on Oct. 23, and a hurricane later on Oct. 24.
An approach to the Yucatan at low-end hurricane strength could bring lots of rain and gusty winds to places like Belize and Cancun. A substantial northward move thereafter toward the southern Gulf of Mexico appears, at this point, unlikely.
The official National Hurricane Center track for Rina over the next five days (National Hurricane Center) The models largely agree that Rina will not make it out of the Caribbean, and instead turn around and move back to the south beyond the 5-day forecast period. In the unlikely event it were to get pulled northward, the odds are that it would be coupled with a mid-latitude weather system strong enough to seriously damage its tropical characteristics.
At 3:00am the center of Hurricane Rina was located near 17.1 N, Latitude and 83.1 W, Longitude or about 350 miles east-southeast of Belize. Hurricane Rina is heading northwest at 5 mph with maximum sustained winds of 75 mph.
The NEMO National Executive Committee met and the following public advisory for the Country will be placed into action:
NEMO declares Phase II-Red 1, Hurricane watch from Belize City Northward to the Belize Mexican Border.
Water Taxi operations may be suspended for tomorrow due to the possible evacuation of San Pedro and Caye Caulker. The public is to take note that this will affect their travel plans tomorrow.
School will be closed for San Pedro and Caye Caulker tomorrow. The UB Gymnasium will be used as shelter for San Pedro and UB Scarlet Macaw for Caye Caulker. The Coast Guard will coordinate Caye Caulker evacuation.
Some of the public transportation in the North of the country will be disrupted to assist with coastal to inland evacuation. The public is to take note that this will affect their travel plans tomorrow.
People in Belize City who feel unsafe are being advise to seek shelter inland.
NEMO remains on full alert as it continues to monitor Hurricane Rina. Please continue listen to your local radio and television for further advisories from NEMO and the National Met Service.
The San Pedro branch of the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) was mobilized this afternoon and held an emergency meeting in conjunction with the San Pedro Town Council. Public Servants along with other volunteers were at the meeting where plans for the island were discussed.
The meeting was called at 5pm about two hours after NEMO National Office issued its first advisory. The San Pedro Sun caught up with Mayor Elsa Paz after the meeting. The Mayor stated, “We are advising the public that Hurricane Rina is approximately 350 miles southeast of Belize City. The movement is going west north-west at 3 mph. We are advising the public that evacuation will be starting as early as 6am tomorrow morning.
The evacuation is not mandatory. However the general public is advised that this storm is very serious and are all necessary precautions must be taken. Fuel for the evacuation will be provided by the GOB and according to the Mayor, the price for moving/evacuating should be lowered. The SPTC along with NEMO volunteers will be hitting the streets early tomorrow morning. Their main objective in the morning is to get people residing in the lower areas of San Pedro off the island first. Residents of San Mateo, San Pedrito and DFC area are advised to take the initiative and prepare to leave the island.
Flights are not being suspended at the moment. Evacuees are advised to take only personal belongings to make the process as easy as possible. A second meeting of the NEMO committee in San Pedro is scheduled for Tuesday morning at 8am.
NEMO stated that water taxi service is cancelled coming to the cayes for tomorrow but water taxis are leaving the island and fare is free to Belize City for those wishing to evacuate. UB campus in Belmopan is the shelter for AC and CC. Bus service is cancelled for the north runs in the country to move evacuees from the cayes to Belmopan. A mandatory evacuation has NOT been announced at this time.
NEMO declares Phase II-Red 1, Hurricane watch from Belize City Northward to the Belize Mexican Border. Hurricane watch is issued 48 hours in advance of the anticipated onset of tropical-storm-force winds.
Evacuations start at 6am tomorrow and will end Wednesday evening or when it is no longer safe to so.