Tropical Storm Rina expected to strengthen

Reuters News
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Posted: Oct 24, 2011 5:23 AM
Tropical Storm Rina expected to strengthen

(Reuters) - Tropical Storm Rina is moving slowly north-northwestward over the northwestern Caribbean Sea and is expected to strengthen, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said on Monday.

Located about 130 miles northeast of Cabo Gracias a Dios, the storm was packing maximum sustained winds of 40 miles per hour (65 km/h) and is moving toward the north-northwest at 7 mph (9 km/h).

Other computer weather models showed Rina may not impact the offshore energy infrastructure in the Gulf of Mexico.

A gradual turn toward the west is expected over the next 48 hours and the center of Rina is expected to pass north of the northeastern coast of Honduras during the next couple of days, the NHC said.

Tropical cyclones become named tropical storms when their winds exceed 39 miles per hour and become hurricanes when their winds reach more than 74 mph.

(Reporting by NR Sethuraman in Bangalore; Editing by Michael Urquhart)