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Tropical Storm Elsa Will Likely Strike Florida as a Hur...

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Tropical Storm Elsa Will Likely Strike Florida as a Hurricane

epa08565326 A handout satellite image made available by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) shows Hurricane Douglas heading towards Hawaii, USA, 25 July 2020. This satellite image has been acquired using multispectral IR at night. Hurricane Douglas has moved over slightly cooler water and is slowly weakening as it encounters drier air. According to the Central Pacific Hurricane Center (CPHC), Douglas will likely downgrade to a category 1 hurricane or strong tropical storm as it approaches the Hawaiian Islands. EPA-EFE/NOAA HANDOUT HANDOUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY/NO SALES
By Bloomberg
06 Jul 2021 0

Tropical Storm Elsa is strengthening as it nears Florida’s Gulf coast and is expected to make landfall as a hurricane Wednesday north of Tampa.

By Brian K. Sullivan

Word Count: 323
(Bloomberg) — 

Elsa’s top winds reached 70 miles (110 kilometers) per hour Tuesday and will likely hit 75 mph, just above the threshold to become a Category 1 hurricane, the National Hurricane Center said in a 2 p.m. EDT advisory. A hurricane warning has been posted from Egmont Key to the Steinhatchee River and a storm surge warning has been issued along the coast including Tampa Bay.

“Hurricane conditions are expected tonight and early Wednesday along a portion of the west coast of Florida,” Richard Pasch a forecaster at the center, wrote in his outlook. “As Elsa moves near or along the western Florida Peninsula through Wednesday, heavy rainfall may result in isolated flash, urban and minor river flooding.”

Elsa is the fifth Atlantic storm this year and briefly became the season’s first hurricane as it moved through the Caribbean last week, killing at least three people. It will also be the third named storm to hit the U.S. this year. While meteorologists don’t expect the tally of Atlantic storms in 2021 to reach last year’s record of 30, they’re predicting a more active hurricane season than normal.

Elsa, which is too far east to disrupt oil and natural-gas production in the Gulf of Mexico, could raise ocean levels by up to 4 feet (1.2 meters) along parts of Florida’s coast. It will also bring as much as 8 inches of rain across the Florida Keys and 6 inches across the rest of the state. From there Elsa will move across Georgia and the Carolinas, bringing heavy rain as it weakens.

The storm will likely re-enter the Atlantic south of New Jersey, gaining strength as it sweeps past New England and into the Canadian Maritimes by the weekend.

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