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article imageHurricane Matthew continues to track west for next few days

By Karen Graham     Sep 29, 2016 in Science
Matthew is now a Category 1 hurricane, according to the National Hurricane Center's 2:00 p.m. advisory on Thursday. Matthew is the 13th named hurricane of the 2016 Atlantic Hurricane season.
While it is still unclear if Hurricane Matthew will aim toward Florida next week or continue on a westerly course, the NHC's five-day forecast is calling for the storm to travel west and into the central Caribbean Sea before turning on a track that would take it in a north-easterly direction near Jamaica.
Hurricane Matthew is then expected to pass over eastern Cuba and move on toward the Bahamas. At 2:00 p.m., a Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for Bonaire, Curacao and Aruba. Conditions in the Caribbean Sea are favorable for the storm to strengthen because of the warm water and low wind shear.
2:00 p.m. advisory from the NHC
2:00 p.m. advisory from the NHC
NOAA/NHC
At 2:00 p.m., Matthew was located 190 miles (300 kilometers) northeast of Curacao and moving toward the west at about 17 mph (28 km/h), but some decrease in the storm's forward speed is expected over the next two days.
Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 75 mph (110km/h) at the center with hurricane-force winds extending up to 70 miles (110 km) from the center. The minimum central pressure has dropped to 993 mb (29.32 inches). Gradual strengthening is expected over the next 48 hours.
This graphic map shows the temperature of the waters in the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico. The wa...
This graphic map shows the temperature of the waters in the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico. The warm waters are conducive to the storm strengthening.
NOAA/NHC
It is too early to make a firm forecast on what Hurricane Matthew will do over the next week. International forecast models are in disagreement on "where the turn would occur and how fast Matthew will move northward," according to a quote in the Sun-Sentinel this afternoon.
Regardless of the uncertainty, AccuWeather meteorologist Steve Travis says that people in a wide stretch of the southern U.S. should be monitoring the storm. The next advisory will be reported after 8:00 p.m. this evening.
More about 13th of the season, Hurricane matthew, Caribbean sea, turn north, category 1
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