While Hurricane Florence is forecast to hit the Carolinas as a major hurricane later this week, the National Hurricane Center is monitoring two other hurricanes — Isaac and Helene — and a tropical wave in the northwestern Caribbean Sea.
Florence is expected to become a major hurricane Monday morning and “remain an extremely dangerous major hurricane through Thursday,’’ the hurricane center said in its 8 a.m. advisory.
Florence is located about 625 miles southeast of Bermuda and 535 miles north-northeast of the Northern Leeward Islands. It is packing maximum sustained winds of 105 mph and is moving to the west-northwest at 9 mph.
“An increase in forward speed is expected during the next couple of days,’’ the hurricane center said. “A turn toward the northwest is forecast to occur Wednesday night or Thursday.’’
The forecast cone has Florence making landfall late Thursday or early Friday. Residents in southeastern and mid-Atlantic states are encouraged to monitor the hurricane’s progress.
Meanwhile, Isaac is about 1,230 miles east of the Windward Islands. It has maximum sustained winds of 75 mph and is moving to the west at 13 mph. Isaac is expected to move across the Lesser Antilles and into the eastern Caribbean Sea on Thursday.
“Additional strengthening is expected over the next day or two,’’ the hurricane center said. “Weakening is forecast to begin by the middle of the week as Isaac approaches the Lesser Antilles.’’
As for Helene, it is about 305 miles west of the southernmost Cabo Verde Islands and has maximum sustained winds of 85 mph. It is moving to the west-northwest at 17 mph.
The hurricane center projects that Helene will strengthen Monday but “weakening is forecast to commence Wednesday morning.’’
And finally, a tropical wave and an upper-level trough in the northwestern Caribbean Sea has a 30 percent chance of developing into at least a tropical depression in the next five days. Chances of development are expected to increase when the system moves across the western Gulf of Mexico, beginning Wednesday.
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