Isaias now a hurricane and will grow stronger Friday

The Weather Authority

Isaias strengthened into a hurricane late Thursday night, and will likely continue getting stronger as it approaches the Bahamas on Friday. From the National Hurricane Center:

At 1200 AM EDT (0400 UTC), the center of Hurricane Isaias was located near latitude 20.4 North, longitude 72.2 West. Isaias is moving toward the northwest near 18 mph (30 km/h), and a generally northwestward motion with some decrease in forward speed is expected for the next couple of days followed by turn toward the north-northwest. On the forecast track, the center of Isaias will move near or over the Southeastern Bahamas overnight.

The government of the Bahamas has issued a Hurricane Warning for the central and southeastern Bahamas, which include the Acklins, Crooked Island, Long Cay, the Inaguas, Mayaguana, the Ragged Islands, Cat Island, the Exumas, Long Island, Rum Cay, and San Salvador..

NHC 11 PM Advisory

The National Hurricane Center’s forecast track takes the storm toward Florida this weekend and near the Carolinas early next week. A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for southeast Florida.

Isaias will be over some very warm water and have favorable conditions for strengthening off Florida’s coast, so this storm likely poses a serious threat to the East Coast: not the Gulf Coast.

If you have beach plans this weekend on Alabama’s beaches or those in Northwest Florida, Isaias will not have a significant impact.

Indirectly impacted by Isaias?

When a storm goes up the East Coast, Alabama and Tennessee usually get an ‘indirect’ impact. That means the tropical cyclone is influencing the weather without ‘hitting’ us with nasty wind, rain and severe weather.

In this case, the effect would be to enhance a push a drier, ever-so-slightly cooler air from the north early next week: a fresh north breeze, lower humidity, and heat that doesn’t make you want to hide indoors all day (but is still hot enough to know it’s summertime).

Expect highs in the 80s (below average), lows in the 60s (below average) and no significant, widespread rain or thunderstorms for several days next week. In fact, we don’t see a really substantial chance of showers and storms at all until potentially next Friday or Saturday. We have additional information about the local forecast on our WHNT News 19 Forecast Discussion page, which is available here.

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