Tropical Storm Bonnie, upgraded from a depression as of 5 p.m., is northbound on Florida’s coast, the National Hurricane Center said Saturday afternoon, making for a soggy Memorial Day weekend for South and North Carolina.
With sustained winds of 40 mph and located about 120 miles southeast of Charleston, the storm is moving at about 10 mph as it nears the South Carolina coast.
Forecasters issued a tropical storm warning for the much of the state’s coast, between Savannah River and Little River Inlet. Tropical storm conditions are expected to reach the coast within the warning area later tonight or early Sunday. The area is expected to see between one to three inches of rainfall and increased storm surge and rip currents.
The storm is the second storm of the 2016 Atlantic season, which officially starts June 1. In January, Hurricane Alex formed near the Bahamas, the first January storm since 1938, and made landfall in the Azores as a tropical storm.
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Florida will likely dodge any effects from the storm as it moves slowly west, northwestward over the Memorial Day weekend. South Florida should see a mix of sun and clouds with a high around 85 on Saturday, with scattered thunderstorms possible.
Late Thursday, the Florida Division of Emergency Management warned beachgoers to keep an eye out for warning flags. Double red means the beach is closed.