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The Cuban Meteorological Institute reports that the storm

Tropical Storm Noel affected the eastern part of the island with heavy rains which has been falling for the last 72 hours. The Cuban Meteorological Institute reports that the storm continues Thursday heading north from Cuba and the same course is expected in coming hours.

At 6:00 local time Thursday, the storm was located at 23.9 degrees latitude North and 78.5 latitude West, around 102 miles southeast of Nassau, in northern Bahamas.

Noel has maximum sustainable winds of 59 mph with higher gusts, while its central pressure decreased to 992 hectopascal.

It is expected the phenomenon gains more in intensity as it advances through the sea.

Cuba maintains the alert phase for the Cuban central and eastern provinces due to the strong and intensive rains.

The weather institute predicts high tides in the northern coast with floodings already reported in many parts of the island.

The civil defense and other authorities have urged the population in that part of the country to be on alert and monitor known points at risk. It slao wanrs the public at large to maintain awareness of a possible situation and tune in to radio and television.

Cuba has a well defined and practiced procedure, acknowledged internationally, which comes into play when faced with natural phenomena. These are tracked continuously. The level of alert and appropriate action, evacuations from places at risk etc. are adjusted according to the danger.

Source: Radio Habana Cuba

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