Tropical Depression #18 formed Monday morning in the central Caribbean Sea about 320 miles south-southwest of Kingston, Jamaica. The storm is expected to become Tropical Storm Sandy later today.
The storm is forecast to drift westward today and tonight and then start moving northward toward Jamaica tomorrow. A tropical storm watch was issued for Jamaica Monday morning, but the National Hurricane Center in Miami said a hurricane watch and/or a tropical storm warning could be required later in the day.
On the current forecast track, the Hurricane Center said the center of the cyclone should approach Jamaica Tuesday night or early Wednesday, very near hurricane strength.
Based on current forecast track, the main effect of the storm for Grand Cayman will be scattered rain showers, windy conditions and rough seas that are expected to peak at five to seven feet on Wednesday and Thursday. A small craft advisory will be in effect from today through Thursday for Grand Cayman.
Conditions in Cayman Brac and Little Cayman could be worse since the center of TD #18 is expected to pass closer to those islands. However, both Cayman Brac and Little Cayman are well out of the National Hurricane Center’s three-day forecast cone.