Forecasters Keeping A Close Eye On Tropical Storm Michelle - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

COULD SOON BECOME A HURRICANE

Forecasters Keeping A Close Eye On Tropical Storm Michelle

(Undated-AP) -- Forecasters are getting more concerned about Tropical Storm Michelle, saying it shows the potential of "being near major hurricane status in two days.''

The current longer-range forecast puts Michelle over the western tip of Cuba as a hurricane in 72 hours. They also look for the system to be farther to the east by then than first thought, increasing the threat to Florida.

For now, Michelle is centered about 330 miles south-southwest of the western tip of Cuba. Movement is to the north-northwest at about seven miles-per-hour. Watches or warnings might be posted in the northwest Caribbean later in the day.

Top sustained winds are now near 70 miles-per-hour. The National Hurricane Center says there could be "rapid strengthening'' under current conditions. Hurricane status is expected by Thursday night.

Forecasters say they are not sure what Michelle is going to do toward the end of the longer-range forecast period, by the end of the weekend.

Michelle centered at latitude 17.2 north, longitude 83.9 west.

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