Belmopan - 16 July, 2005.
At 9:00 AM today, the Government of Belize issued a tropical storm watch for the coast of Belize from Belize City north to the Belize/Mexico border. A tropical storm watch means that tropical storm force conditions are possible within the watch area during the next 36 hours. This was done as a precautionary measure.
At 9:OOAM the centre of Hurricane Emily was located near latitude 16.2 degrees north and longitude 77.3 degrees west. This position is 764 miles east of Punta Gorda, 729 miles east by south of Belize City, and 717 miles east by south of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye.
Emily is moving toward the west north-west at 18 miles per hour and this general motion is expected to continue for the next 24 hours. At this rate tropical storm force winds could begin affecting San Pedro at midday on Sunday and spread to Belize City, but considerably weaker, by 6:00 PM, eventually affecting the northern third of the country. Conditions would improve across Belize by mid-afternoon on Monday.
Maximum sustained winds are estimated at 145 miles per hour, making Emily a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale. Hurricane force winds extend outward 70 miles from the centre and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 150 miles from the centre.
Hurricane conditions are not expected to affect Belize, but tropical storm force winds could affect northern Belize. As Emily gets closer to Belize, the area under tropical storm watch could be reduced. Nevertheless, residents living in the watch area are advised to make preparations for tropical storm conditions.
July 16, 2005.