Tropical Storm Bret Strengthens Over Bahamas

July 18, 2011

(6:45 a.m. EDT) -- The Atlantic's second named storm of the 2011 Hurricane Season, Tropical Storm Bret, formed over the Bahamas on Sunday, and has strengthened slightly overnight. After a brief jaunt southeast, Bret is expected to change course today toward the northeast and away from the United States. The predicted storm path has caused the northwest Bahamas to issue a tropical storm warning for Grand Bahama Island and the Abaco Islands, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC).

Maximum sustained winds from Tropical Storm Bret have increased to approximately 50 miles per hour/85 kilometers per hour, with stronger gusts, and additional strengthening is expected over the next 24 hours, according to the NHC's website. The storm is currently moving east at 3 m.p.h.

Cruise Ship Itinerary Changes

Both Royal Caribbean and Carnival Cruise Lines have ships in the Bahamas, with RCI's Freedom of the Seas in tender in CocoCay, Carnival Sensation in Freeport, Carnival Valor in Half Moon Cay and Carnival Fantasy in Nassau. Cruise Critic has contacted the lines and is awaiting response concerning potential interruptions or changes to itineraries.

--by Jamey Bergman, U.K. Web Content Manager