MIAMI - What is likely to become Tropical Storm Ophelia is sitting just off the coast of South Florida Thursday evening.
It is currently a non-tropical area of low pressure but over the next twenty-four hours as it moves north, it is forecast to become Tropical Storm Ophelia. The storm will impact the Mid-Atlantic coast this weekend and early next week before moving out.
The National Hurricane Center classifies this as a potential storm so they can issue tropical advisories even though the system itself is not yet tropical. By the time it does become tropical it will be very close or right on top of the Mid-Atlantic coast.
Tropical storm conditions will develop starting Friday and continuing through the weekend. In addition to the wind and rain, storm surge will be a problem with 2 to 4 feet of surge expected in the Outer Banks.
The heavy rain with this storm will then spread north into New Jersey, Pennsylvania and even parts of New York. Heavy downpours will lead to flooding in addition to damaging wind gusts.
Here in South Florida the winds will gradually this to the north-northeast as the storm moves into North Carolina. This may allow drier air to move into the area, lowering our rain chances and dropping temperatures a bit overnight. The breeze along the coast may increase the waves and surf. The elevated rip current risk is expected to continue through the weekend.
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