/Isaias weakening but will bring heavy rain, gusty winds to central North Carolina early Tuesday; Tropical Storm Watch issued for parts of state

Isaias weakening but will bring heavy rain, gusty winds to central North Carolina early Tuesday; Tropical Storm Watch issued for parts of state


RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) — Hurricane Isaias has now weakened to a tropical storm as it approaches the eastern coast of Florida.

As of 5 a.m., Isaias remains 45 miles east-northeast of Fort Lauderdale in Florida. The National Hurricane Center says the Florida east coast will see tropical storms conditions and dangerous storm surge through early Monday.

Wind speeds have decreased from the 11 p.m. update with maximum sustained winds of 65 mph with gusts increasing to 75 mph and is moving northwest at 9 mph.

The northwest Bahamas will continue to see tropical storm conditions through today.

A tropical storm watch is now in effect for North and South Carolina.

Gov. Roy Cooper has since authorized the activation of up to 150 members of the North Carolina National Guard to be used if needed in hurricane response and water rescue teams are prepared to respond if need be.

RELATED: Evacuations begin on NC coast as Governor Cooper activates National Guard

Meteorologist Steve Stewart says the system is very disorganized due to wind shear and dry air off of Florida. He says the storm is not likely to strengthen. It will either keep its strength due to the warm water or weaken.

The system’s path has been tracking farther and farther west, closer to the I-95. It’s predicted the Triangle will have an elevated risk of severe weather

With its eventual turn to the north, Isaias is still expected to bring heavy rain and potential flash floods to low-lying areas across Florida and the Carolinas.

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WHAT WE CAN EXPECT:

Late Monday into early Tuesday, our area can expect heavy rain and flash flooding.

Rain totals could be between 2 and 4 inches. Winds will likely be gusting from 35 to 55 mph. This means there’s a possibility for some power outages and isolated tornadoes east of the storm.

FULL STORY HERE: Gov. Roy Cooper declares state of emergency for NC ahead of Hurricane Isaias

As soon as the system makes its turn north, the ABC11 First Alert Team will be able to make a much better assessment of the specific impacts Isaias will have in your neighborhood.

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Meanwhile, a mandatory visitor evacuation is in order for Hatteras Island, Holden Beach, Ocean Isle Beach and Ocracoke Island. Areas will be restricted to residents, homeowners, vendors, and other essential personnel.

On Friday, Cooper issued a state of emergency for the state of North Carolina ahead of Hurricane Isaias.

On Thursday, more than 400,000 customers in Puerto Rico lost power, according to ABC News. Some were trapped in flooding.

The North Carolina coast is already seeing effects of Isaias as a high risk rip current went into effect starting Friday stretching from Hatteras down to Carolina Beach. The elevated threat will go on as the storm continues to move north.

Colorado State University hurricane researcher Phil Klotzbach said Isaias is the earliest ninth Atlantic named storm. The previous record was Irene on August 7, 2005.

Stay with the ABC11 First Alert Weather team as they monitor this hurricane and any threats it may bring to North Carolina.

WATCH: Big Weather’s hurricane emergency kit

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