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Fred Weakens to Tropical Depression in Caribbean

This satellite image provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) shows a Tropical Storm Fred in the Caribbean as it passes south of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic at 8am EST, Aug. 11, 2021.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Thursday that Fred has weakened to a tropical depression but is still expected to bring heavy rain to Cuba, the Bahamas and southern Florida over the next day or two.

Forecasters said the storm weakened overnight as expected as it passed over the higher elevations on the island of Hispaniola. It is currently moving over water 65 kilometers west-southwest of Great Inagua island in the Bahamas and about 175 km northeast of Guantanamo, Cuba. Its maximum sustained winds have been recorded at about 55 km/ph.

Despite its weakened and disorganized status, forecasters say tropical storm conditions are possible Thursday for parts of Haiti and the Bahamas, as well as Cuba later in the day, with wind gusts and heavy rainfall expected.

Fred is expected to move across the Bahamas and Cuba over the course of the day Thursday and Friday and be near the Florida Keys and south Florida by Saturday. Forecasters say some strengthening is expected Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Heavy rainfall associated with Fred is anticipated, with as much 12 to 20 centimeters falling across the keys and the southern Florida Peninsula. Some flooding is possible