NASSAU, The Bahamas – Category 4 Hurricane Joaquin is bringing gale force winds, storm surges and heavy rainfall throughout tonight as it moves through the Central Bahamas.
A Hurricane Warning remains in effect for the northwest, central and parts of the Southeast Bahamas. This includes: the Abacos, the Berry Islands, Eleuthera, Grand Bahamas, New Providence, Long Island, the Exumas, Cat Island, Rum Cay, San Salvador, Acklins, Crooked Island, Long Cay and Mayaguana.
A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are being experienced or expected to occur within in the warning area within 36 hours.
A Tropical Storm Warning remains in effect for the Turks and Caicos and the remainder of the Southeast Bahamas, which includes Ragged Island and Inagua.
A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are being experienced or expected in the warning area within 36 hours.
The Bahamas Ministry Of Tourism’s crisis management team continues to closely monitor the progress of the storm, in liaison with the National Emergency Management Agency, Bahamas Hotel and Tourism Association, Nassau Development Company and other relevant authorities.
Each Bahamas Tourist Office (BTO) throughout the islands is equipped with a satellite phone to keep in touch with the command center in New Providence.
All hotels and resorts throughout The Islands Of The Bahamas have activated their hurricane programs and are taking all necessary precautions to protect visitors and residents, as safety remains the highest priority.
As a result of the Hurricane Warning, at least three cruise lines have rerouted their ships to avoid Hurricane Joaquin. Carnival has altered its Eastern Caribbean itineraries for Pride and Valor, Princess replaced Royal Princess’ call at the line’s private island, and Norwegian has canceled Getaway’s Nassau call scheduled for later this week.
Due to the impending arrival of Hurricane Joaquin, the following Bahamasair flights have been cancelled today into Long Island, Georgetown Exuma, all Eleuthera flights and Providenciales, Turks & Caicos.
Persons travelling to and from these destinations should contact Bahamasair’s reservations department to make alternate reservations. All other domestic flights and flights to Florida will operate as usual. Further advisories will be issued on Bahamasair.com as new information becomes available.
At 5pm EDT the center of Hurricane Joaquin was located near latitude 23.0 degrees north and longitude 74.4 degrees west. This puts the eye of Joaquin 26 miles east-northeast of Samana Cay, 36 miles south-southeast of Acklins, 45 miles east-southeast of Long Island, 215 miles southeast of New Providence and 138 miles west-northwest of Turks and Caicos.
Hurricane Joaquin is moving generally southwestwards at 6 miles per hour with estimated central pressure of 936 mb. A westward or southwestward motion is expected through tonight. A turn toward the north is expected on Friday and a faster motion towards the north is expected Friday night and Saturday.
On its forecast track, the center of Hurricane Joaquin will pass to the east of Long Island, near Rum Cay and between Cat Island and San Salvador. As a result, hurricane force winds would be experienced in Long Island, Rum Cay and San Salvador tonight and tomorrow, while tropical storm force winds could be experienced in Exuma, Cat Island and South Eleuthera tonight and tomorrow.
Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 130 miles per hour with higher gusts. Joaquin is a Category 4 hurricane and some additional strengthening is possible tonight and Friday, with some fluctuations in intensity possible Friday night and Saturday.
Residents in the warning areas should ensure that all preparations have been completed and remain in door once conditions deteriorate.
The Islands Of The Bahamas will be releasing updates on tracking of Hurricane Joaquin, but we encourage everyone to access the National Hurricane Center and The Weather Channel for latest updates. For more information on Hurricane Joaquin and The Islands Of The Bahamas, travel professionals and consumers are advised to access the following:
The National Hurricane Center at nhc.ncoaa.gov
The Weather Channel