Cuba is bracing itself for the impact of Hurricane Paula as the weather system approaches from the north-west of the western tip of Caribbean island.
While Paula is bringing winds of up to 80mph the strength of the hurricane is weakening, with Cuban official primarily concerned with torrential rain.
Pictured: Residents prepare for Hurricane Paula
Hurricane Paula headed towards Cuba after brushing Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula with strong winds and downpours.
Paula is the first hurricane to hit the island during this year’s season, with Cuba’s civil defence authorities putting residents living in the western Pinar del Rio province on high alert.
Chief meteorologist, Jose Rubiera, said the hurricane was expected to weaken.
“The rains at times could be strong or intense in some areas of Pinar del Rio, but the truth is they shouldn’t be that strong.
“They could be prolonged, however, and that could lead to heavy accumulation.”
Hurricane Paula has also brought strong winds and heavy rain to north-east Honduras, where houses were damaged.
Ahead of the storm almost a dozen cruise ships, - including six Carnival vessels - have been forced to alter their itineraries.
Holland America Line altered the itinerary for the October 10th sailing of the Ryndam, while Celebrity Cruises also had to revise its route for Celebrity Solstice.
Carnival revised routes for Ecstasy, Triumph, Conquest, Valor, Imagination and Legend. The changes meant the ships avoided Western Caribbean ports such as Cozumel, Roatan, Progreso and Belize.