Tropical Depression Isaac drenches Puerto Rico, Sparks Outages

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Tropical Storm Isaac made its closest approach to St. Croix Thursday night, passing nearly 200 miles to the south and having no apparent impact on the territory as it made its leisurely way across the Caribbean.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's student paper, The Daily Tar Heel, reported that class has been canceled and students have been encouraged to leave the Chapel Hill area before the storm hits.

Subtropical Storm Joyce is located 945 miles west-southwest of the Azores and is moving to the southwest at 6 mph (9 km/h). Tropical storm watches are in effect for Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, Antigua, and Saba and St. Eustatius.

"This storm is going to continue its violent grind across our state for days", North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said. Winds are expected to first reach tropical storm strength on Thursday, making outside preparations hard or risky.

The public is encouraged to continue monitoring the Met Office via its social media accounts and website at www.metoffice.gov.tt for updates. The system has now weakened into a Tropical Depression and convection associated with Isaac diminished considerably.

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Hurricane Isaac, we hardly knew ye. Tonight we will see partly cloudy skies with scattered rain and storms still lingering around.

Residents especially those in flood and landslide prone areas are to be vigilant; and small craft operators and sea bathers are advised to exercise caution due to locally rough seas.

"Gradual weakening is forecast while Florence moves farther inland during the next couple of days, and it is expected to weaken to a tropical depression" by Saturday night, the center said in a bulletin. A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area. Rainfall of 0.5 to 1.5 inches with isolated amounts to 3 inches are forecast across Puerto Rico and the southern United States Virgin Islands, with up to an inch anticipated across the remaining Windward and Leeward Islands.

Less rain is predicted for St. Thomas, St. John and Water Island.

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