Lee, Maria, both tropical storms, moving far into Atlantic

Lee, Maria, both tropical storms, moving far into Atlantic

The storm was located about 165 miles east of Cape Hatteras, N.C. and was moving north-northeast at 6 mph, the National Hurricane Center said. There are also storm surge warnings and storm surge watches for the Outer Banks, including Cape Lookout. Swells generated by Maria will cause rough seas and surf for much of the East Coast over the next several days; mariners should seek safe harbor and beachgoers will need to be aware of the unsafe surf and a high rip current risk. The latest wave models, Stewart said, call for 20- to 25-foot seas along the Outer Banks on Wednesday.

However, tropical storm force winds extend outward over 200 miles from the center which means tropical storm conditions will likely affect the Outer Banks and adjacent coastal areas from Tuesday afternoon through Wednesday afternoon.

Tropical storm warnings have been issued for parts of eastern North Carolina, including much of the Outer Banks. That will place Lee over cooler waters and over an area with more wind shear, causing the storm to weaken to a tropical storm by Saturday. Florida keeps their gradual slide going with chest high-range leftovers but the morning winds aren't looking as pleasant as they have been the past few days. Dare County Emergency Management advises drivers to stay off Highway 12 during high tide. "While we all want visitors to return to Hatteras Island as quickly as possible, safety is the top priority".

"The people most able to leave - professionals, middle class - may well chose to leave", Watson said Sunday.

"North Carolina is weathering the storm well so far, but it's early and we can't let our guard down", Gov. Roy Cooper said Tuesday. The storm stayed about 150 miles offshore as it passed by, but large swells created risky rip currents and a storm surge of 2 to 4 feet, which, in some cases, resulted in minor coastal flooding. Officials also warned unsafe rip currents were possible in the ocean for the rest of the week. There will be a period of moderate coastal flooding and significant beach erosion along the Outer Banks and southeastern Virginia coast.

"It's insane how much the beach has eroded", said Midgett, who moved many of her belongings off her floor, just in case. Puerto Rican officials said electrical power may not be fully restored for more than a month after the grid was destroyed by Maria's Category 4 hurricane winds last week.

Standing near Avon's closed fishing pier, Meekins said anything is possible when it comes to Maria. As of the 11AM advisory from the NHC, Lee has winds of 105 miles per hour and is a category 2 hurricane.



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