Tropical Storm Ian is expected to strengthen and become a hurricane on Monday

ORLANDO, Florida. – Tropical Storm Ian continues to move through the Caribbean and is expected to develop into a hurricane by early Monday.

As of Sunday’s 11pm update, Ian had maximum sustained wind speeds of 65mph gusting up to 75mph with a drop in pressure ripe for rapid intensification on Monday.

The current track has it approaching western Cuba as a Category 2 or 3 and intensifying into a Category 4 as it crosses the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday morning.

The government of Cuba upgraded the hurricane watch to a hurricane warning for the Cuban provinces of Isla de Juventud, Pinar del Rio and Artemisa, and upgraded the tropical storm watch to a tropical storm warning for the Cuban provinces of La Habana, Mayabeque and Matanzas.

The Cayman Islands government has issued a tropical storm watch for Little Cayman and Cayman Brac.

Tropical storm force winds extend up to 60 miles from the center.

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Central Florida residents are preparing for any possibility of a storm that could hit Florida in the coming days.

A northwesterly turn is expected Sunday evening, followed by a north-northwestward movement on Monday and a northward movement on Tuesday with a slightly slower forward speed.

On the forecast track, Ian’s center is expected to pass well southwest of Jamaica Sunday evening, and pass near or west of the Cayman Islands early Monday. Ian will then move near or over western Cuba Monday evening and early Tuesday and emerge over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday.

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Ian is expected to become a hurricane early Monday and reach major hurricane strength late Monday or early Tuesday before reaching western Cuba.

The current five-day cone forecast indicates the storm will affect Florida as a major hurricane next week, but the track is expected to continue to change over the next few days.

Ian should produce the following precipitation:

  • Jamaica and Cayman Islands: 3 to 6 inches, with local highs up to 8 inches.

  • West Cuba: 4 to 8 inches, with local highs up to 12 inches.

  • Florida Keys to southern and western Florida Peninsula: 2 to 4 inches, with local highs up to 6 inches through Wednesday morning.

  • Heavy rain could affect North Florida, the Florida panhandle and the southeastern United States Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

[RELATED: 2022 storm names | Plan & Prepare: Hurricane season | TRENDING: Become News 6 Insider (free!)]

Central Floridians hit grocery stores to prepare for a possible hurricane.

The following named storm will be called Julia.

Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Hermine officially became a post-tropical remnant depression.

At 5 a.m. Sunday, Hermine was 580 miles north-northeast of the Cape Verde Islands. The storm had maximum sustained wind speeds of 30 mph and was moving north at 7 mph. Hermine is expected to make a slow northwesterly turn early Monday and a west-northwesterly turn Monday evening.

Elsewhere, officially Hurricane Fiona is now a post-tropical storm that brought hurricane-force winds to Canada. As of 5 p.m. Saturday, hurricane and tropical storm warnings issued by the Canadian Hurricane Center for Fiona in Atlantic Canada had been discontinued as the cyclone – located 80 miles northwest of Port Aux Basques Newfoundland – is heading northeast at 8 mph. Tropical storm-force winds extend up to 550 miles from the center of Fiona, although a gradual weakening is expected over the next two days.

Hurricane season extends through November.

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