Tropical storm Julia, formed this Friday off the Colombian peninsula of La Guajira, is expected to strengthen as it moves towards the southwestern Caribbean and the islands of San Andrés, Providencia and Santa Catalina (Colombia), which are under a hurricane alert. .
The US National Hurricane Center (NHC), based in Miami, reported in its bulletin at 2:00 p.m. local time (18:00 GMT) that the system was at the time of issuing the part 150 miles (240 km ) north-northeast of the city of Barranquilla (Colombia) and 505 miles (815 km) east of the island of Providencia.
The system is advancing with maximum sustained winds of 40 miles per hour (65 km/h).
The Government of Colombia suspended the tropical storm warning from Riohacha to the border between Colombia and Venezuela.
There is a hurricane alert for the Colombian islands of San Andrés, Providencia and Santa Catalina and a hurricane watch is in effect in Nicaragua from Bluefields, the main municipality of the autonomous region of the Caribbean coast, to the border between Nicaragua and Honduras.
A tropical storm watch is in effect for Honduras from the Nicaragua-Honduras border to Punta Patuca.
Julia is moving toward the west near 18 miles per hour (30 km/h), a speed that is expected to slow through Sunday.
On the forecast track, the center of Julia is expected to move across the southwestern Caribbean Sea over the next few days, passing near the islands of San Andres and Providencia on Saturday night to reach the coast of Nicaragua on Sunday morning. morning.
The winds are expected to strengthen and Julia will become a hurricane on Saturday night before reaching the islands of San Andrés and Providencia and the coast of Nicaragua.
Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 80 miles (130 km) from the center of the system.
Julia is expected to produce rain accumulations through Monday in the Guajira Peninsula, San Andrés and Providencia.
Heavy rains can cause flash flooding and landslides over the weekend.