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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Hurricane Matthew is gaining strength in the central Caribbean Sea.

At 11:00 p.m., Hurricane Matthew was located about 125 miles north of Curacao.

Matthew has maximum sustained winds of 80 mph.  Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 45 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 185 miles.

The hurricane is moving toward the west near 14 mph. A westward motion with some decrease in forward speed is expected during the next couple of days.

Gradual strengthening is expected during the next 48 hours.

There is a Tropical Storm Watch in effort for Bonaire, Curacao and Aruba where residents have been stocking up on fuel and other emergency supplies, as well as the Colombia/Venezuela border to Riohacha. Forecasters say people along the coasts of Venezuela and Colombia should be among those who are watching the progress of the storm.

Matthew, when it was still a Tropical Storm, passed over the eastern Caribbean on Wednesday, causing at least one death. Officials in St. Vincent say a 16-year-old boy died there as he tried to clear a blocked drain.


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