Tropical Storm Julia formed Friday near the coast of Colombia, and AccuWeather meteorologists warned that it could rapidly strengthen into a hurricane over the Caribbean Sea prior to slamming the coast of Nicaragua with life-threatening impacts this weekend.
The disturbance AccuWeather has been tracking for over a week and dubbed a tropical rainstorm on Tuesday was upgraded by the National Hurricane Center (NHC) to Tropical Depression 13 on Thursday night. At midday on Friday, the NHC said the depression had strengthened into the 10th tropical storm of the 2022 season.
As of 8 p.m. EDT, Julia was moving toward the west at 18 mph (24 km/h) with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph on Friday. Julia was located 415 miles (680 km) to the east of Isla de Providencia, Colombia, and about 140 miles (225 km) north-northeast of Barranquilla, Colombia.
The National Hurricane Center said hurricane watches and warnings were in effect for parts of Nicaragua and the offshore islands of Colombia. This includes a hurricane warning that extends from Nicaragua’s northeastern coastal city of Puerto Cabezas that extends southward to Pearl Lagoon, as well as one in effect for Colombia’s San Andrés, Providencia and Santa Catalina Islands.
The only deterrent to the storm’s development much of this week has been the proximity to the coast of South America. The system moved steadily westward all week and was responsible for torrential rain and flooding early on in the Windward Islands of Trinidad and Tobago. Torrential downpours spread westward through the northern coast of Venezuela and the ABC Islands during the middle days of this week.
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SOURCE: AccuWeather, Alex Sosnowski