Potential Tropical Cyclone 18 forms off Honduras

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The government of the Bahamas has issued a Tropical Storm Warning for the northwestern Bahamas, including the Abacos, Andros Island, Berry Islands, Bimini, Eleuthera, Grand Bahama Island, and New Providence. In the next 48 hours, it has a 30 percent chance of development. The next named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season is Philippe.

A broad area of low pressure over the western Caribbean is being watched closely by the National Hurricane Center.

No warnings are issued now for the United States, but South Florida should monitor the storm, the NHC release said.

Sunday is expected to be mostly sunny with a high near 74.

The disturbance in the Western Caribbean has continued to slowly organize over the last day or so, with an increased chance of development highlighted by the National Hurricane Center. It's just rain for us with a breeze or two.

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The window of opportunity for this cluster of storms to get its act together is narrow - it can't be too close to land like it is now, and it has to beat the approaching cold front and associated strong vertical wind shear.

The disturbance in the southwestern Gulf is now Potential Tropical Cyclone #18, meaning it will likely become Tropical Depression 18 or a Tropical Storm.

"In areas from Central America to Cuba, heavy rain will be the main issue and not so much the wind".

Officials said the rains could spread into portions of south Florida and the Keys on Saturday and then over the northwestern Bahamas Saturday evening into Sunday. The Cayman Islands National Weather Service advised that flooding may occur in low-lying areas.

Data from an Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft said that maximum sustained winds are near 40 miles per hour with higher gusts.

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