The season’s eighth named tropical storm was classified by the National Hurricane Center late Friday night. Hurricane hunters then found that the tropical storm had strengthened Saturday morning, and it now has winds up to 50 mph.
At 11 a.m. EDT, an almost stationary Humberto was located 30 miles (45 kilometers) east-northeast of Great Abaco Island, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center. It had maximum sustained winds of 50 mph (85 kph). There was a tropical storm warning in effect for the northwest Bahamas, except for Andros Island, and 2 to 4 inches of rain was expected, with isolated amounts of 6 inches.
Humberto is forecast to become a hurricane by Sunday night but is expected to stay offshore of Florida’s eastern coast as it moves toward open waters. Portions of the coasts of Florida and Georgia will see 1 to 2 inches of rain.
The hurricane center said most of the heavy squalls were occurring north and east of the center of the storm, which was passing just east of Abaco. However, government officials in the Bahamas took no chances and urged people in damaged homes to seek shelter as they announced that aid efforts would be temporarily affected.
“The weather system will slow down logistics,” said Carl Smith, spokesman for the National Emergency Management Agency.
Forecasters expect the storm to stay offshore of Florida’s eastern coast, so a tropical storm watch is no longer in effect for the state.
Tropical Storm Humberto Not a Threat to Florida