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Extended Forecast Calls for Bad Weather Ahead

Oct. 12, 2008 – Look for a "deluge of bad weather" to stick around until at least to mid-week or maybe even to the end of the week. Or the rainy weather might become a tropical depression, Brian Seeley, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in San Juan, said Sunday.
"It's going to be a very active weather pattern," he said.
The problem is a tropical wave sticking around over the territory. It's moving very slowly north, with a circulation trying to form on the western edge of the wave. If it's successful, that circulation could become a tropical depression.
"Upper level conditions are not perfect, but they're becoming less hostile," Sealey said.
The National Hurricane Center website gives it a medium chance of developing into something stronger.
Some forecast models have the wave heading northwest or north northwest, but swinging back toward Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
"It's a very tricky forecast and it's going to cause me to have more gray hairs," Sealey said.
Even if the system doesn't develop into a tropical depression, the territory is still in for some very wet weather, Sealey said. And depending on how it develops, it could get pretty windy.
This weather system covers the entire Caribbean from just north of the Virgin Islands all the way south to Venezuela.
There might be a "small window" of better weather Monday, but Sealey said by Monday afternoon into Monday night a big area of thunderstorms should hit the Virgin Islands.
Sealey likened this system to one that lingered for about a week in November 2003, causing flooding and mudslides across the territory.
The Virgin Islands is under a flash flood watch until 8 p.m. Sunday, but Sealey expects it to be continued for several more days.
Weather Station Zephyr at Ajax Peak, St. John recorded .17 inches of rain between midnight and 1:30 p.m. Sunday. Wind gusts hit 36 mph at 11:40 a.m. Sunday. Another 36 mph gust hit at 11:50 a.m. Earlier, at 7:10 a.m., Weather Station Zephyr recorded a 32 mph gust. Throughout the morning, the station recorded other gusts between 20 and 30 mph.
Sealey said the Columbus Day holiday on Monday means people won't be paying as close attention to the weather as they might during a normal start to the work week.
"This is a developing system. People need to watch," he said.
At the 5 p.m. update, Tropical Storm Nana formed far out in the Atlantic, but currently poses no threat to the Virgin Islands.
The storm is moving west northwest at 7 mph. Its current track will take it northeast of the territory. It has winds of 40 mph with gusts to 50. Tropical storm force winds extend outward 85 miles.
It's located at 16.4 degrees north latitude and 37.9 degrees west latitude. This puts it 925 miles west of the Cape Verde islands.
The barometric pressure stands at 1005 millibars or 29.67 inches.
Forecasters expect the storm to weaken and become a depression later Sunday or Monday.

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