Hurricane Maria causes Tropical Storm watches for all of eastern NC

6 ways this hurricane season is different
Hurricane Maria's center nearing Turks, Caicos Islands with wind speeds near 125 mph
Author

26 September, 2017

Forecasters expect Maria to take a turn more toward the north-northwest later today as it travels around the underside of a mid-level high pressure area centered south of Bermuda.

A Tropical Storm Watch has been issued for the North Carolina coast from Surf City to the North Carolina-Virginia border, including Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds.

First, the known impacts: The hurricane center said waves stirred up by Maria will reach the U.S. East Coast over the next few days and could cause rough surf and deadly rip currents. Jose is a large system, and swells are affecting Bermuda and much of the USA east coast.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center says people along the Carolinas and the Mid-Atlantic coasts should watch the progress of Maria.

Hurricane Maria did weaken some after it passed over the mountains of Puerto Rico, and its wind field almost doubled in geographic size, which typically happens when a cyclone weaken or fluctuates in intensity. This storm has winds of 45 miles per hour and is moving north northwest at 3 miles per hour.

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Maria's is still a strong Category 3 hurricane, with some uncertainty in track as it comes closer to New England by late Thursday or Friday next week. We need to monitor this storm closely as it may skirt the NC coast around midweek.

Hurricane Maria remains out in the Atlantic but is still roiling waters along the coast of Florida while another hurricane has formed.

Forecasters think the core of the hurricane will stay offshore, but it could come close enough that parts of the coast will feel some of its effects. The warmest start to Fall in Indianapolis history will continue as more 90-degree heat is likely on Sunday.

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".

Meanwhile, after falling apart and regenerating, Hurricane Lee is still a Category 1 hurricane as of Sunday evening. However, Lee will remain no threat to land and stay far out over the open waters of the Atlantic Ocean this week, and is never expected to be a bother to anyone. A widespread destructive hurricane is very unlikely in that region, but there could be some travel issues and coastal evacuations, and there nearly definitely will be problems with large waves and rip currents on the beaches.


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