National Security Minister Wayne Caines will host another news conference at 12 noon today, in the AB Place Media Room to provide residents with the latest update and relevant hurricane preparedness information, as Hurricane Humberto bears down on the local area.

A Hurricane Warning is now in effect.as the Category Three storm remains a threat to Bermuda.

Forecasters at the Bermuda Weather Service say: “Expect showers, squalls & patchy heavy rain, as well as gusty thunderstorms.

“Southerly tropical storm force winds begin around lunch time Wednesday ramping up to 50 knots by evening with hurricane force gusts until around midnight. Winds veer through west for a time before going north.”

As of 8am EST, Humberto was situated at 31.8N, 68.9W, some 240 miles or 390 km west of Bermuda, with maximum sustained winds at 115 mph with gusts to 185 mph, moving ENE or 65 degrees at 16 mph.

The minimum central pressure as of 8am was 951 mb.

Forecasters say Humberto has increased its forward speed as it moves towards the island.

According to the National Hurricane Center (NHC): “This general motion with an additional increase in forward speed is expected through early Thursday, followed by a northeastward to north-northeastward motion through Friday.

“On the forecast track, the core of Humberto is expected to pass just to the northwest and north of Bermuda later tonight.

“Some fluctuations in intensity are likely during the next day or so, but Humberto should remain a powerful hurricane through early Thursday.

“A steady weakening trend should begin later on Thursday,” the NHC added.

“Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 60 miles (95 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles (280 km).

“The eye of Hurricane Humberto passed over NOAA buoy around 5am. The buoy measured a sustained wind of 76 mph (122 km/h) and a wind gust to 90 mph (145 km/h) at 4-meters elevation, and also reported a pressure of 954.2 mb (28.18 inches) during the eye passage.

“Winds are expected to reach tropical-storm strength later this afternoon, making outside preparations difficult or dangerous.

“Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.

“RAINFALL: Humberto may bring periods of heavy rain to Bermuda through Thursday, with rainfall accumulations of 2 to 4 inches with maximum amounts of 6 inches expected.

“SURF: Large swells generated by Humberto will increase along the coast of Bermuda today.

“Dangerous breaking waves, especially along south-facing beaches, will be possible Wednesday night into Thursday, and could cause coastal flooding.

“Swells will continue to affect the northwestern Bahamas and the southeastern coast of the United States from east-central Florida to North Carolina during the next couple of days. These swells could cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions. ”

The NHC also urged local residents to “consult products from your local weather office and the Bermuda Weather Service” moving forward.

“. STORM SURGE: Storm surge and breaking waves could raise water levels by 1 to 3 feet above normal tide levels along the immediate southern coast of Bermuda.”