Chantal weakens, but still poses flood threat

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Tropical Storm Chantal is no longer expected to make landfall in the Dominican Republic or in Haiti, but it’s still posing a flood threat — even though it has lost some of its strength.

The storm today has been skirting the southern coast of the island shared by those two nations. And forecasters say it could bring heavy rain to areas where many people live in vulnerable homes of plywood and corrugated steel.

People have largely ignored warnings issued by the governments of both nations to leave their homes. Instead, people have been fortifying houses with extra tarps and wood, and gathering supplies.

The storm is headed west about nearly 30 miles an hour, with top sustained winds of 45 miles an hour. Forecasters say it’s on a track to head north across Cuba and toward the Bahamas and Florida, but that it will probably weaken to a tropical depression by tomorrow.

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