Hurricane Ivan today knocked out power in Barbados, headed for the eastern Caribbean and threatened to strengthen into a "very dangerous hurricane", forecasters and emergency officials said. The eye of the powerful storm moved over Barbados this afternoon, and headed for the eastern Caribbean, where officials issued a hurricane warning for St Vincent, the Grenadines and Grenada. Ivan packed sustained winds of 195km/h and was expected to strengthen further, the Miami-based National Hurricane Center (NHC) said. "Indications are that there will be a very dangerous hurricane over the northwestern Carribean sea, western Cuba or the southeastern Gulf of Mexico in five days", informs the Herald Sun. According to Bloomberg, Ivan, packing winds of 120 miles (195 kilometers) per hour, was 35 miles east-southeast of Grenada, where a hurricane warning was in effect, the National Hurricane Center in Miami said in a bulletin at 2 p.m. New York time. The storm is taking a more southerly path than Hurricane Frances, which smashed into Florida Sunday and caused billions of dollars in damages. Ivan, capable of blowing down large trees and destroying mobile homes, is a Category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale, on which Category 5 is the strongest. The hurricane center said the storm is moving west at 18 mph. The effects of Hurricane Ivan was felt in Barbados today, with winds from the storm already destroying many homes and sending many roofs flying. Our Barbados correspondent reports a lot of trees across the Island was also damaged as winds of 65 m.p.h. roared across the island. The south and south-east ends were most affected including some hotels, Escape, St Lawrence Gap, and Atlantis the oldest located in Bathsheba. Heavy rains are expected for tonight. Meanwhile, the National Hurricane Center in Miami has clarified that Trinidad is not under a hurricane warning but the threat has been downgraded to a tropical storm warning. A hurricane warning, however, remains in effect for Tobago, St. Vincent, The Grenadines and Grenada while a tropical storm warning is also in effect for Barbados, Martinique and St. Lucia. A hurricane watch is in effect for Bonaire, Curacao and Aruba. At 2 p.m. the eye of Hurricane Ivan was located about 35 miles east-southeast of Grenada in the windward islands and moving toward the west near 18 mph. The Grenada government has closed all offices and schools today and urged workers to stay at home, reports Hardbeatnews.
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