Hurricane Warning for Cayman

A Hurricane Warning has been issued for the Cayman Islands as Category 4 Hurricane Dean makes its way.

The warning means that the Cayman Islands could begin experiencing tropical storm or hurricane conditions within 24 hours from the declaration.

Grand Cayman

Residents and tourists wait in long lines for flights off of Grand Cayman Saturday as Hurricane Dean approached. Photo: Alan Markoff

At 4am the centre of Hurricane Dean was near Latitude 16.6 North, Longitude 73.4 West or about 245 miles southeast of Kingston, Jamaica and about 155 miles south-southwest of Port Au Prince Haiti.

Dean was moving toward the west-northwest near 18mph and that general motion was expected to continue for the next 24 hours. On this track the core of the hurricane should pass south of the southwestern peninsula of Haiti during the next few hours and will be near Jamaica later today.

Maximum sustained winds are near 145mph with higher gusts.

Hurricane force winds extend up to 60 miles from the centre and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 205 miles.

Cayman Islands National Hurricane Committee Chairman Donovan Ebanks has said that while the advisory projects a slightly more favourable path, everyone should continue to be vigilant.

Supermarkets and home repair stores will be open Sunday for people to continue to buy hurricane supplies. It is against the law for retailers to operate in the Cayman Islands on Sundays except during an emergency.

Cayman Islands Leader of Government Business Kurt D. Tibbetts has urged all residents of Grand Cayman to be prepared for a direct hit.

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