MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Tropical Storm Iota is expected to strengthen and become a powerful hurricane before making landfall in Central America early next week.

Honduras and Nicaragua are expected to feel its effects beginning Monday.

With the 4 p.m. Saturday advisory, Iota was about 375 miles south of Kingston Jamaica. It had maximum sustained winds of 60 mph and it was moving slowly west southwest at 7 mph.

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The storm is not expected to affect South Florida.

Watches and warnings

The government of Colombia has issued a tropical storm warning for the islands of San Andres and Providencia.

A tropical storm warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area within 36 hours.

A westward motion with some increase in forward speed is expected to begin later Saturday and continue through Monday.

On the forecast track, Iota will move across the central Caribbean Sea during the next day or so, and approach the coasts of Ncaragua and northeastern Honduras by Monday.

Steady to rapid strengthening is likely to begin Saturday night or on Sunday,
Iota is forecast to be at or near major hurricane strength when it approaches Central America.

Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 90 miles from the center.

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