Isaias Strengthens Into Hurricane, Will Track Through Bahamas

(National Hurricane Center)

Tropical Storm Isaias has strengthened into a hurricane and will track through the Bahamas and near Florida. Hurricane Isaias will produce heavy rains and potentially life-threatening flash flooding and mudslides across the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Turks and Caicos and the Bahamas. Heavy rains may begin to affect Florida beginning Friday night and the Carolinas early next week, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC).

The storm became a hurricane late Thursday, after winds reached 80 mph. Isaias remains a Category 1 hurricane, according to Weather.com.

Hurricane conditions and dangerous storm surge are expected in portions of the Bahamas Friday and Saturday and a hurricane warning has been put in effect in these areas. “Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion,” the NHC said in its latest update at 5 a.m. EDT Friday.

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Tropical storm conditions are possible along portions of the Florida east coast beginning on Saturday; a tropical storm watch remains in effect. These areas include Miami, Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. Storm surge watches are not needed for this area yet but may be required later in the day if the forecast track shifts closer to the coast.

There is a risk from winds, heavy rainfall and storm surge late this weekend from the northeastern Florida coast and spreading northward along the remainder of the U.S. east coast through early next week, the NHC adds. The details and intensity forecast remain uncertain.

Heavy rain triggered serious flash flooding in several areas of Puerto Rico early Thursday. Multiple fallen trees, mudslides and flooding was reported in southwest Puerto Rico. The U.S. Virgin Islands says it has resumed business operations following the passage of Tropical Storm Isaias. The storm brought heavy rainfall, but with little to no impact to the territory’s tourism infrastructure, the Department of Tourism has reported.

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