The centre of Tropical Storm Bertha is now approaching Martinique, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) is reporting.
A tropical storm warning is however still in effect for Dominica, Martinique, Puerto Rico, Vieques, Culebra, US Virgin Islands and British Virgin Islands.
A tropical storm watch is in effect for the eastern Dominican Republic, from Cabo Frances Viejo to Isla Saona.
A tropical storm warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area, in this case within the next 24 hours, while a tropical storm watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area, generally within 48 hours.
At 2 p.m., the centre of Tropical Storm Bertha was located near latitude 14.5 north, longitude 60.3 west. Bertha is moving toward the west-northwest near 22 mph or 35 km/h, and this general motion is expected to continue for the next couple of days.
On the forecast track, Bertha is expected to pass near Martinique during the next several hours, move into the northeastern Caribbean Sea tonight and approach the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico on Saturday.
Maximum sustained winds remain near 50 mph or 85 km/h with higher gusts. Upper-level winds are currently not favourable for additional strengthening and little change in strength is forecast during the next 48 hours.
Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 115 miles or 185 km mainly to the northeast of the center.
The minimum central pressure recently reported by an Air Force reserve hurricane hunter aircraft is 1007 mb/29.74 inches.
Hazards affecting land
WIND: Tropical storm conditions are expected to first reach the warning area this afternoon, making outside preparations difficult or dangerous. Tropical storm conditions are expected in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands on Saturday.
RAINFALL: Bertha is expected to produce rainfall amounts of one to three inches with isolated amounts up to 6 inches across portions of the Leeward Islands as well as the US and British Virgin Islands. Rainfall totals of three to six inches with isolated maximum totals of 10 inches are possible across Puerto Rico with the heaviest totals across the southern portion of the island.