Hurricane Maria strengthened into a Category 2 storm on Monday and pushed toward the Leeward Islands in the eastern Caribbean, as forecasters warned it was expected to become a major hurricane by early Tuesday.
Over the past 12 hours, rainfall accumulations across Barbados ranged between 2 and 3 inches.
In its 5 a.m. bulletin, the forecasters noted that shower activity is expected to be more frequent as the center of Hurricane Maria shifts to the north and northwest of Barbados.
Total rainfall accumulations of 3 to 5 inches are likely and residents have been urged to remain alert and take all necessary precautions.
The Met Office has also advised that the island will continue to experience winds of 29 to 35 miles per hour throughout the day and these conditions will persist into tonight.
In addition, large easterly swells of at least 4 to 6m (13 to 20 feet) are also forecast to accompany the system. Therefore, a high-surf advisory and small-craft warning remains in effect until midday Tuesday, September 19, 2017.
At 5 a.m., the center of Hurricane Maria was located near 14.6 degrees north, 59.5 degrees west or about 100 miles north of Barbados.
Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 90 miles per hour (150 km) with higher gusts.
Significant strengthening is expected during the next forty-eight hours. The system is moving west northwestward near 13 miles per hour.
On this present track, the center is currently passing to the north of Barbados.
Source/France 24- Barbados Today