A low pressure weather system off the coast of Florida could develop into a tropical storm later this week and take a turn toward the Carolinas, according to a National Weather Service forecaster.
The National Hurricane Center issued a forecast Sunday, saying that the system has a 60 percent chance of developing into a tropical storm in the next 48 hours. There's an 80 percent chance the system will become a tropical storm by Friday, the center said in a nationally issued forecast.
The storm, according to the forecast, is expected to become more defined late Tuesday as it travels over Eastern Florida coastal waters. Tropical storms have sustained winds of 39 mph to 73 mph, and can bring several inches of rain.
The weather system is currently about 230 miles east of St. Augustine, Fla. Julie Packett, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Charleston, said the system is currently traveling south west toward the tip of Florida but that it's expected to take a northerly turn toward the Carolinas later this week.
Packett said current weather models are forecasting the storm will travel north parallel to the South Carolina coast. As of Sunday, the system was not predicted to make landfall in South Carolina, she said.
"Of course a lot can change over the next couple days," Packett said. "It's something to definitely keep a close eye on."
The tropical storm predictions are a departure from forecasts last week when Charleston National Weather Service Meteorologist Wendy Sellers said predictions weren't "calling for anything tropical."
The national Climate Prediction Center global hazards outlook also indicated that conditions wouldn't be conducive to a tropical storm for at least the next week.
If the system becomes a tropical storm, it will be the first tropical storm of the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season which began on June 1. Should the storm be upgraded to a tropical storm it will be named Arthur.
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