Isaias expected to regain hurricane strength as it approaches Carolinas


By Live 5 Web Staff | August 1, 2020 at 8:52 AM EDT - Updated August 3 at 11:05 AM

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Forecasters say they anticipate Tropical Storm Isaias regaining hurricane strength before it makes landfall in the Carolinas Monday night.

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Live 5 Meteorologist Joey Sovine says the heaviest rain, strongest winds are expected late Monday afternoon and Monday night. The best chance for tropical storm winds will be near the coast, he said.

The storm will have the biggest impacts in South Carolina from northern Charleston County to the Grand Strand.

Forecasters say Isaias could reach hurricane strength before it reaches the Carolinas, but Chief Meteorologist Bill Walsh said there is little difference between a high-end tropical storm and a weak Category 1 hurricane when it comes to damage.

Tropical storm warnings continue up and down the South Carolina coast as far inland as Orangeburg and Kingstree. A storm surge warning is in effect for two to four feet above ground level especially along the coast because of the high tide of a moon tide Monday night.

State emergency officials urge precautions ahead of the storm

SCEMD officials say residents should finalize their storm preparations ahead of Tropical Storm Isaias.

Forecasters say high winds, rain, flash flooding, isolated tornados and an estimated storm surge of 1-4 feet are all possible.

The South Carolina Emergency Management Division recommends the following:

  • Bring in lawn furniture and other loose objects, such as garbage cans, that may become hazards in high winds.
  • Double check to make sure you have all emergency supplies listed in the South Carolina Hurricane Guide. Include items like hand sanitizer and face masks to guard against COVID-19.
  • Keep your cell phones and mobile devices fully charged in case of power outages Monday night.
  • Have multiple ways to get emergency warnings for your area. Some options include the Live 5 First Alert Weather app,Wireless Emergency Alerts on your mobile phone, NOAA Weather Radio, and CodeRED Emergency Notifications.

Heed warnings issued by local public safety officials. When you hear an official alert, take safety precautions immediately.

Officials with the National Hurricane Center say Isaias is expected to produce heavy rain and potentially life-threatening flash and urban flooding, especially in low lying and poorly drained areas across Florida’s coast, and across the Carolinas to the mid-Atlantic.

The Live 5 Weather team declared Monday a First Alert Weather Day to remind people to prepare for possible impacts from the tropical storm.

The National Weather Service says there will be a high risk for rip currents for Georgia and South Carolina beaches through at least Monday night. An elevated rip current risk will likely remain into early next week as the storm passes by

11 a.m. update

At 11 a.m., the center of Tropical Storm Isaias was located by an Air Force Reserve reconnaissance aircraft and NOAA Doppler weather radars near latitude 30.7 North, longitude 80.1 West.

Isaias is moving toward the north near 13 mph. A turn toward the north and north-northeast along with an increase in forward speed is expected later Monday and Tuesday. On the forecast track, the center of Isaias will pass well east of the Georgia coast through Monday morning. The center of Isaias will then approach the coast of northeastern South Carolina and southern North Carolina within the hurricane warning area later Monday.

The center will then move inland over eastern North Carolina Monday night, and move along the coast of the mid-Atlantic states on Tuesday and into the northeastern United States by Tuesday night.

Maximum sustained winds are near 70 mph with higher gusts. Some strengthening is anticipated, and Isaias is forecast to regain hurricane strength before it reaches the coast of northeastern South Carolina or southern North Carolina Monday night. Slow weakening is forecast after Isaias makes landfall in the Carolinas and moves across the U.S. mid-Atlantic region tonight and Tuesday. Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 125 miles (205 km) from the center. The estimated minimum central pressure is 998 mb (29.47 inches).

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for...

  • Edisto Beach, South Carolina to Cape Fear, North Carolina
  • Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds, including the Neuse and Pamlico Rivers
  • Oregon Inlet North Carolina to the North Carolina/Virginia border

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for...

  • Cape Fear to Oregon Inlet North Carolina

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for...

  • South Santee River, South Carolina to Surf City, North Carolina

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for...

  • Altamaha Sound Georgia to South Santee River South Carolina
  • North of Surf City North Carolina to the Mouth of the Merrimack River
  • Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds
  • Chesapeake Bay
  • Tidal Potomac River
  • Delaware Bay
  • Long Island and Long Island Sound
  • Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket, and Block Island
  • Flagler/Volusia County Line Florida to South Santee River South Carolina
  • North of Surf City North Carolina to west of Watch Hill Rhode Island
  • Chesapeake Bay south of North Beach
  • Tidal Potomac River south of Cobb Island
  • Delaware Bay
  • Long Island and Long Island Sound
  • Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for...

  • Mouth of the Merrimack River to Eastport Maine

A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area. A warning is typically issued 36 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical-storm-force winds, conditions that make outside preparations difficult or dangerous. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.

A Hurricane Watch means that hurricane conditions are possible within the watch area. A watch is typically issued 48 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical-storm-force winds, conditions that make outside preparations difficult or dangerous.

A Storm Surge Watch means there is a possibility of life-threatening inundation, from rising water moving inland from the coastline, in the indicated locations during the next 48 hours.

A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area within 36 hours.

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area, generally within 48 hours.

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