Tropical Storm Isaac continues to move west Wednesday morning, and is expected to reach hurricane strength, the US National Hurricane Center reported in their 5 am advisory Wednesday.
Isaac, the ninth named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season, was about 280 miles east of Guadeloupe and moving west at 18 miles per hour, according to the report.
The system contained maximum sustained winds of 45 mph, below the minimum 74 mph speed of a Category 1 hurricane.
According to NBC News, some NHC computer models track Isaac moving west into the Caribbean while others predict the storm will veer northward towards Florida, posing a potential threat to the GOP convention in Tampa next week.
“The spaghetti plots show agreement of a turn to the northwest,” Bay News 9 Meteorologist Juli Marques explained. “It’s something we will continue to watch over the next few days.”
Fox News notes it’s been 90 years since a major hurricane made a direct hit on Tampa and seven years since the last category 3 or greater storm hit the sunshine state.
As it stands, a hurricane watch is in effect for Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and the Dominican Republic, which means hurricane conditions are possible within 48 hours.
Additionally, tropical storm warnings have been issued for Martinique Guadeloupe and the surrounding islands: St. Martin, St. Kitts, Nevis, Antigua, Barbuda, Montserrat, Anguilla Saba, St. Eustatius, St. Maarten, the British Virgin Islands, and parts of Puerto Rico, Vieques, Culebra, and the Virgin Islands.
NBC has more on Tropical Storm Isaac and its projected path in the video below: