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Tropical Storm Paula forms in the Caribbean

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • Maximum sustained winds of 60 mph
  • Paula formed quickly and is expected to intensify into a hurricane by noon Tuesday
  • Models predicting Paula's path vary widely

(CNN) -- Tropical Storm Paula, with maximum sustained winds of 60 mph, has formed in the Caribbean, the National Hurricane Center said Monday.

Hurricane warnings have been issued for parts of the Mexican Yucatan Peninsula, including Cancun and Cozumel. Heavy rains are expected to hit parts of Central America and Mexico, including Honduras, Nicaragua, Belize and the Mexican Yucatan Peninsula.

The disturbance developed quickly during the afternoon and was expected to intensify into a hurricane by noon Tuesday if not sooner, CNN Meteorologist Dave Hennen said.

The official forecast has the storm remaining in the western Caribbean over the next five days. But models predicting its track vary widely: Some predict the system will move south, while others take the storm over Cuba, the Bahamas or south Florida.

It is too early to tell what effect Paula might have on the United States.