HAGÅTÑA, Guam (December 16, 2001 – Pacific Daily News)---Weather officials upgraded Tropical Depression 31W to a tropical storm yesterday. 

The erratic storm had intensified throughout the day Saturday, bringing strong winds and heavy rain to Kosrae and nearby islands, according to a National Weather Service advisory. 

As of 2 p.m. yesterday, the storm was located near 5.0 north latitude and 161.9 east longitude, or about 80 miles west-southeast of Kosrae.  It is still too early to tell if the storm will head to Guam, NWS officials said. 


By Mark-Alexander Pieper

HAGÅTÑA, Guam (December 15, 2001 – Pacific Daily News)---Weather officials are tracking a tropical depression that was expected to intensify throughout last night.

Jim Middlebrooke, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said Tropical Depression 31W was located at 5.1 north latitude and 162.2 east longitude as of 11 p.m. last night.

It was slowly moving north-northwest at 3 mph with maximum sustained winds of 35 mph, he added.

"It is becoming better organized, meaning that it is starting to come together," NWS meteorologist Ernie Jillson said yesterday afternoon.

"While that does not necessarily mean it is stronger, it means that it begins to better intensify."

Jillson said it is still too early to tell if the depression will head to Guam. The depression was about 1,300 miles east-southeast of Guam, as of 11 p.m. last night, Middlebrooke said.

The depression will bring heavy rain, strong winds and rough seas and surf to Kosrae and nearby islands, weather officials said.

For additional reports from the Pacific Daily News, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Newspapers/Pacific Daily News (Guam).

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