JACKSONVILLE, Fla -- Tropical Depression #5 became Tropical Storm Erin at 8 a.m. Thursday west-southwest of the southern Cape Verde Islands.
Tropical Storm Erin is located off the coast of Africa and will continue to move to the west over the next 5 days. As it travels across the Atlantic it is forecast to eventually run in to some shearing winds which could weaken the storm and perhaps even tear it apart by the time it gets close to the Lesser Antilles. We will continue to monitor the storm’s progress over the next several days.
We are also watching a storm with the potential for development near the Yucatan Peninsula.
At 8 a.m., the center of Tropical Storm Erin was located near latitude 14.5 north, longitude 25.6 west. Erin is moving toward the west-northwest near 16 mph. This general motion is expected to continue with some decrease in forward speed during the next couple of days. On the forecast track, the center of Erin will be moving away from the Cape Verde Islands later today.
Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 40 mph with higher gusts. Some additional strengthening is forecast during the next couple of days.
Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 35 miles from the center.
The estimated minimum central pressure is 1006 mb, 29.71 inches.