Tropical storm watch issued for much of NC coast

Cheryl Sanders
September 25, 2017

By late Tuesday and Wednesday, Maria will be near the coast of North Carolina. The National Hurricane Center said waves will reach 6 to 10 feet.

Lee is now a Category 1 storm with winds of 85 mph, located about 860 miles east of Bermuda and 1,370 miles west of the Azores islands.

The storm, which killed 13 people in Puerto Rico and is causing storm swells on the east coast of the United States of America, is forecast to merge with Hurricane Lee north of Bermuda. Forecasters said the storm was weakening as it traveled north at about 9 miles per hour.

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area, generally within 48 hours, while a Storm Surge Watch means there is a possibility of life-threatening inundation from rising water moving inland from the coastline.

Met Office forecaster Charlie Powell said: "Hurricane Maria looks like merging with Hurricane Lee off the east of the USA and moving across the Atlantic, with the latest thoughts being for them to pass between the north-west of Scotland and Iceland on Monday or Tuesday". It is expected to turn more to the north by Saturday evening.

Along with the threats of unsafe breaking waves and rip currents, some beach erosion and overwash is also possible, especially during each high tide through Monday, forecasters said in the briefing.

"Maria should be steered on a general north-northwesterly course into the start of next week", AccuWeather Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski said.

Maria actually weakened a little on Sunday but it is still a unsafe storm with winds of over 100mph. For the next several days, this storm will continue moving north. This year has seen 13 named storms so far (the designation tropical storms get when their winds exceed 39 mph), making it an "extremely active" year according to the National Hurricane Center.

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