Hurricane MATTHEW set to intensify to category five

Saturday 1st October 2016

Category four hurricane MATTHEW is now centred around 380 miles southeast of Kingston, Jamaica and headed due west at 5 knots. Aerial reconnaissance reports indicate a slight weakening in eye wall cycling but this is not significant and it is very likely that MATTHEW will reach category five at its peak before landfall. This storm is forecast to turn to the northwest and north tomorrow and pass near or over eastern Jamaica as a major hurricane on Monday. The exact track is far from certain as there is still a 90 degree alteration of course to starboard ahead. Unfortunately there seems little sign of MATTHEW losing oomph as it crosses Jamaica/Haiti and /or Cuba so it is possible that it may track slowly across the central and western Bahamas late on Tuesday as a large and intense hurricane. It is too early to predict passing distance from Florida and the eastern seaboard but at the very least, a wide windfield will be felt ashore.MATTHEW currently has a hurricane severity rating of 27 out of a possible 50 points (11 size, 16 intensity) and a predicted peak of 37 out of a possible 50 points (15 size, 22 intensity) with a tropical storm force windfield over a staggering 240 miles. This is a very large and nasty storm indeed, and I am lost for words of comfort.

Disturbance thirty nine is over 600 miles east of the Lesser Antilles and moving to the northwest at 12 knots. This disturbance continues to produce squalls, but remains disorganised and is encountering very hostile upper level conditions. In any event, this seems destined to remain away from land.

Disturbance thirty eight is located about 1780 miles to the east of the Lesser Antilles and is moving to the west at 17 knots. There is little convection with this disturbance, thankfully.

Stand by for hurricane force winds across Jamaica, Haiti and Cuba, thereafter the Bahamas with a cautious weather watch for southern Florida.