Category 5 Hurricane Beryl Barrels Toward Jamaica

Hurricane warnings are up for Jamaica as the monstrous and potentially deadly Category 5 Hurricane Beryl heads toward it.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami issued its 5am advisory on Beryl:

At 500 AM AST (0900 UTC), the eye of Hurricane Beryl was located near latitude 14.6 North, longitude 66.9 West. Beryl is moving toward the west-northwest near 22 mph (35 km/h) and is forecast to
continue moving rapidly west-northwestward during the next couple of days and turn westward by Thursday. On the forecast track, the center of Beryl will move quickly across the southeastern and
central Caribbean Sea today and is forecast to pass near Jamaica on Wednesday and the Cayman Islands on Thursday.
Maximum sustained winds remain near 165 mph (270 km/h) with higher gusts. Beryl is a category 5 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Weakening should begin later today, but Beryl is still expected to be near major hurricane intensity as its moves into the central Caribbean and passes near Jamaica on Wednesday and the Cayman Islands on Thursday. Additional weakening is expected thereafter, though Beryl is forecast to remain a hurricane in the northwestern Caribbean.
Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 40 miles (65 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 125 miles (205 km).
The estimated minimum central pressure is 935 mb (27.61 inches).

Weather Channel meteorologist Ray Stagich notes some "firsts" for Beryl:

  • 1st Category 4 on record for June
  • Earliest Category 5 & Category 4 on record, 3rd earliest Atlantic major hurricane
    • Previous earliest was Hurricane Emily on July 17, 2005
      • Note: These are now the only two Cat 5’s to occur before August
  • Farthest east a June hurricane has formed in the tropical Atlantic
  • Farthest south Category 4 hurricane
  • Earliest Rapid Intensification from TD to Major Hurricane
    • Previous earliest was September 1st
  • Peak winds = 160 mph
    • Strongest eastern Caribbean hurricane since Maria in 2017
    • Strongest an Atlantic hurricane has been this early in the calendar year on record 
      • Previous was Emily on July 17, 2005 at 160 mph
    • Tied for farthest south hurricane of this intensity with Hurricane Matthew in 2016

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