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Hurricane watch issued as Tropical Storm Dorian nears Puerto Rico

National News From ABC

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Tropical Storm Dorian is moving west over the Caribbean as residents in Puerto Rico prepare for a possible impact.

Dorian was even weaker Tuesday than it was Monday.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) has issued a hurricane watch for the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico though the storm may not be strong enough to become a hurricane.

Dorian is expected to pass between Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic Wednesday evening into early Thursday morning with winds approaching 70 mph.

Puerto Rico Gov. Wanda Vazquez has signed an order declaring a state of emergency as she warned residents to prepare.

“Hurricane Maria was a lesson for us and nearly two years after its devastating passage, today we can say that we are better prepared,” Vazquez said Monday.

More than 7,400 generators and three mega generators are already on the island, according to the governor. 

At least 360 shelters will open with a capacity of holding 48,500 people.

By the end of Tuesday, radios and satellite phones will be delivered to mayors and police departments throughout the island at all municipalities, officials said.

Vazquez added that she is in communication with the White House and there is a new Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) representative on the island assisting in response coordination.

If the storm survives landfall, it’ll reemerge over the Bahamas early Friday.

The storm may then move over the Bahamas and come close to Florida by the weekend. But the system will be fighting a lot of wind shear that will keep it from strengthening.

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