Tropical Storm Chris continues to strengthen


Tropical Storm Chris, spinning well of the Carolina coast, is expected to grow into hurricane, perhaps late Monday night or early Tuesday, according to the National Hurricane Center.

It has been a mostly stationary storm so far, with sustained maximum wind speeds close to 45 mph extending at least 60 miles from the center.

The storm is expected to generate high surf and risky rip currents from North Carolina to ME, according to The Weather Channel.

The second named storm of this year's hurricane season is now "meandering" off the Carolinas, says an advisory issued early Monday morning by the US hurricane centre.

Despite no longer being a tropical storm, gusty winds and heavy rain will be possible in Puerto Rico Monday and near The Bahamas by Tuesday.

Before the storms arrived, forecasters warned residents in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands that flooding was likely due to the torrential downpours.

Puerto Ricos governor had feared new power outages if Beryl passed near his island as a tropical storm as originally forecast.

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However, the NHC said this might not be the end of Beryl. Although the eye of the storm has grown throughout the day to be about 30 miles wide, it appears to be moving away from the US mainland.

As of Monday afternoon, there were almost 13,000 power outages, a total that included customers who remain without service since Hurricane Maria last September, according to Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority.

There is a moderate risk of rip currents across all east coast beaches that could escalate to a higher threat level into mid-week.

Tropical Storm Beryl is yet another strengthening system that meteorologists are keeyping an eye on.

Tropical storm watch was also in effect for Martinique, Guadeloupe, St. Martin, St. Barts, Barbados, St. Lucia, Saba and St. Eustatius.

Puerto Rican officials declared a state of emergency Friday and urged people in flood-prone areas to seek safety. It would become a Category 1 hurricane when speeds reach 74 miles per hour.

Storm Chris was upgraded from Tropical Depression Three to Tropical Storm less than 48 hours after the first named hurricane, Beryl, appeared.