Although the storm was almost stationary this morning and little motion is expected today, Richard is still forecast to intensify and could become a hurricane over the weekend. Hurricane watches and storm warnings are now in place for parts of Honduras.
According to the National Hurricane Center's 11 a.m. EDT update, Richard is located about 150 miles east-northeast from Cabo Gracias a Dios, which is on the Nicaragua-Honduras border. Maximum sustained winds are at 40 miles per hour. The storm is moving in a westerly direction at three miles per hour.
Cruise Ship Itinerary Changes
At this point there are no cruise ship itinerary changes -- we'll keep you posted.
Weather Outlook: Next Affected Ships & Ports
A hurricane watch is now in effect for Honduras from the Nicaragua-Honduras border westward to Limon. This means that hurricane conditions are possible in around 48 hours. A tropical storm warning is also in effect for Honduras from the border with Nicaragua west to Limon. That means tropical storm conditions are possible within 36 hours. Tropical Storm Richard is expected to produce heavy rainfall which may begin to affect north-eastern Honduras late Saturday.
Projections show the storm is headed in the direction of Belize and Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula after the weekend.
Representatives from NCL, Holland America, Royal Caribbean and Carnival -- the four lines have ships in the Western Caribbean (but not within the storm's cone) -- said there are no changes to report at this time.
In a related note, John Deiner, Cruise Critic's managing editor, is onboard Norwegian Epic this week and is reporting heavy rains in Cozumel. Check out his picture of a soggy ship and read his take on cruisin' in the rain in our blog.
We'll keep you posted.
--by Kelly Ranson, U.K. Editor