Jose strengthens into dangerous Category 3 hurricane

Hurricane Irma (L) and Hurricane Jose are pictured in the Atlantic Ocean in this September 7, 2017 NOAA satellite handout photo. NOAA/Handout via REUTERS

(Reuters) - Jose strengthened on Thursday into a dangerous Category 3 hurricane on the five-step Saffir-Simpson hurricane wind scale, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said.

The hurricane is about 590 miles (955 km) east of the Lesser Antilles with maximum sustained winds of 120 miles per hour (195 kph), the NHC said in its latest advisory, adding some additional strengthening was possible during the next 24 to 36 hours.

Jose is heading for the Caribbean and models then show it veering to the north before Puerto Rico. Barbuda, which was devastated by Hurricane Irma this week, is under a hurricane watch, it added.

Reporting by Nallur Sethuraman in Bengaluru; Editing by Sandra Maler