Tropical Storm Paula weakens to remnant low

Friday, October 15, 2010

A view of Hurricane Paula from a NASA MODIS satellite.
Image: NASA/ GSFC, MODIS Rapid Response System.

Tropical Storm Paula, the eighteenth tropical cyclone of this year's Atlantic hurricane season, has weakened into a remnant low near the northern coast of Cuba, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) says. It had earlier made landfall in western Cuba.

The NHC, the warning center appointed by the World Meteorological Organisation to forecast and track tropical cyclones in the Atlantic Ocean, reported at 9 am UTC (5 am local time) that "Paula has continued to weaken during the past several hours." Six hours later, the center issued its last warnings on the one-time Category Two hurricane, noting that "the center (of Paula) is no longer well-defined". According to the NHC, at 3 pm UTC (11 am EDT), the remnant low of Paula was located around 20 miles north of Caibarién, in Villa Clara, Cuba.

One to two inches of rain is still expected to fall today through Saturday over central Cuba and the central Bahamas, the NHC added. NHC forecaster Lixion Avila said in the center's last warning that Paula's remnants will "continue to move east-southeastward until dissipation in about 12 to 24 hours".

Paula had earlier affected Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula and Honduras, where up to eight inches of rain fell and 19 homes were damaged.

Paula was the sixteenth named tropical storm of the year. Earlier this year, Colorado State University hurricane expert Dr. Phil Klotzbach told Wikinews that he expected "this year will have 15 named storms, 8 hurricanes and 4 major hurricanes."