Hurricane Maria stays strong, Lee a Tropical Storm again


Swells from Jose are affecting Bermuda, the Bahamas, the northern coasts of Hispaniola and Puerto Rico and the southeast coast of the US, the center said.

Tropical Storm Maria, which formed Saturday in the Atlantic, is likely to become a hurricane later Sunday and forecasters say it will likely strengthen to a major hurricane as it nears Puerto Rico.

Lee is the furthest east of the storms, still closer to the Cabo Verde Islands of Africa than the Caribbean.

The hurricane center said the depression was expected to become a tropical storm later Saturday and could be near hurricane status when it approaches the Leeward Islands on Tuesday.

Tropical Storm Maria, which only materialized as a depression Saturday morning, is now a named storm, and the National Hurricane Center expects it to strengthen into a hurricane before it reaches the Leeward Islands on Monday (Sept. 17).

As of just before 5 p.m. ET, Jose - with winds of 75 mph - was located about 485 miles southwest of Bermuda.

Forecasters say the storm is expected to cause unsafe surf and rip currents.

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New reports also claimed that the weather forecasters believe that Jose could possibly bring strong winds and Nor'easter-like conditions in the areas of NY and Boston sometime next week. Antigua and Barbuda are in a hurricane watch, issued by their local governments; 95% of the structures and homes on Barbuda were completely destroyed by Irma and the island residents were evacuated to temporary shelters last week on Antigua.

The Weather Channel also continues by warning beachgoers taking advantage of these September summer-like temps that they should be on the lookout if they are in these areas that are expected to possibly be impacted by Hurricane Jose. It won't hit North Carolina directly, but it will make a close pass to the Outer Banks, and beach-goers should take notice.

News 12 New Jersey meteorologists say that winds could reach around 35 miles per hour in areas east of the Garden State Parkway Tuesday when Jose is expected to be closest to New Jersey.

Tropical storm conditions were possible on Monday in those areas as well as St. Lucia, Martinique, Barbados, St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

And there are now two other tropical storms to the south of Jose that bear watching as well.

The hurricane center urged those in the Lesser Antilles and the British and U. S. Virgin Islands to watch Maria closely and said additional watches and warnings will likely be issued early Sunday. It's path could put it well off the coast of New Jersey and NY by Wednesday morning, although it may weaken to a tropical storm again by then, the center said.