Tropical Storm Ida takes shape in Caribbean


FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Tropical Storm Ida formed in the southwest Caribbean on Wednesday, about three weeks shy of the end of hurricane season. It was initially forecast to move north toward the Gulf of Mexico.

It’s too early to say whether the system could pose a threat to Florida, the National Hurricane Center said, but was expected to make landfall in Nicaragua early Thursday.

Late Wednesday, Ida, the ninth named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season, was about 50 miles from Nicaragua, crawling northwest at 6 mph with sustained winds of 65 mph. The long-range forecast, subject to large errors, calls for the system to approach either Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula or western Cuba on Monday. From there, it was expected to move into the Gulf of Mexico.