Update: Tropical Storm Rafael Affects One Cruise, Could Become Hurricane

October 14, 2012

Update, 10/16, 2:15 p.m.: Tropical Storm Rafael has become a hurricane and is expected to reach Bermuda by Tuesday. We have contacted Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line, both of which have ships scheduled to call on King's Wharf. So far, no itinerary changes have been made.

(2:15 p.m. EDT) -- Tropical Storm Rafael, which is swirling about 195 miles south of Bermuda, has become a Category 1 hurricane and is expected to reach land by Tuesday.

According to the National Hurricane Center, Rafael is headed north-northeast at 23 miles per hour, accompanied by maximum sustained winds of 85 m.p.h.

Cruise Ship Itinerary Changes

Carnival Victory scrapped a call on St. Maarten on Saturday and spent the day at sea instead.

Royal Caribbean and Norwegian both have ships slated to be in the area, but neither line has yet confirmed itinerary changes.

Weather Outlook: Possible Affected Ships and Ports

The NHC reports that the storm is likely to turn to the northeast on Tuesday before passing just east of Bermuda, where a tropical storm warning is currently in place. Some increase in speed is expected, but slow weakening is expected within the next 48 hours.

We've reached out to other lines with ships in the area -- including Norwegian and Royal Caribbean -- to inquire about itinerary changes, but so far no additional alterations have been made. We'll keep you updated.

--by Ashley Kosciolek, Copy Editor