BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (CMC) — Two regional airlines have cancelled several flights as residents in the Lesser Antilles monitored the passage of Tropical Storm Dorian that is expected to strengthen to hurricane status later during the day.
The Trinidad-based Caribbean Airlines (CAL) said it had cancelled several flights including one from Barbados to Jamaica, while the Antigua-based LIAT said it too had cancelled several flights between St Lucia, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada and St Vincent and the Grenadines.
Prime Minister Mia Mottley closed schools and government offices across Barbados as she warned people to remain indoors.
“When you’re dead, you’re dead,” she said in a televised address late Sunday. “Stay inside and get some rest.”
The US National Hurricane Center issued a tropical storm warning for Barbados, St Lucia and St Vincent and the Grenadines. It also issued a tropical storm watch for Dominica, Martinique, Grenada, Saba and St Eustatius.
The storm was expected to dump between 2 to 4 inches (5 to 10 centimetres) of rain in Barbados and nearby islands, with isolated amounts of 6 inches (15 centimetres).
As of 8:00 am EDT Monday, the fourth tropical storm of the Atlantic hurricane season was centred about 205 miles (330 kilometres) east-southeast of Barbados and moving west at 14 mph (23 kph).
Maximum sustained winds were at 60 mph (85 kph). Forecasters said it could brush past southwest Puerto Rico late Wednesday as a Category 1 hurricane and then strike the southeast corner of the Dominican Republic early Thursday.