Hurricane Omar, which strengthened into a fast-moving Category 3 storm Wednesday night with sustained winds of 125 mph, passed between St. Maarten and the U.S. Virgin Islands early Thursday before swirling away to the northeast and the open waters of the Atlantic, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Omar's current track poses no threat to the mainland U.S.

There were no immediate reports of serious storm-related damages to the areas affected. Tourism officials were out early Thursday assessing the situation on the ground.

All the islands in Omar's track, including several of the Leeward Islands such as Anguilla, Antigua, St. Kitts and Nevis, Montserrat and St. Maarten/Martin, reported heavy rains and high surf conditions.

In Puerto Rico, Omar passed too far off the eastern coast to cause much more than flooding along several smaller roads. Six roads on the island did experience mudslides; 15 public schools remain closed.

Hurricane warnings were discontinued on Thursday morning throughout much of the northern Caribbean.

The airports in St. Thomas and St. Croix were expected to reopen sometime Thursday as was the airport in St. Maarten; San Juan's airport reopened for business as usual Thursday morning.

Several airlines, however, are waiving fees and penalties for itinerary changes for travel to the affected areas. Clients are encouraged to check with the individual airlines for details.


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