Maria intensifies to Cat. 3, will it affect the US?

Jose to pass the Outer Banks; Maria a potential problem

The tropical storm Maria, which formed on Saturday in the Atlantic Ocean, has developed into a Category 1 hurricane with the Caribbean islands put on alert, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said in a statement.

The storm's sustained winds are 75 mph and Jose is moving north at 7 mph, slightly slower than it was traveling three hours earlier. Sandy, which was no longer a tropical storm when it hit land, caused heavy damage, especially across Connecticut's shoreline.

Jose will remain a hurricane until Monday evening. It's located about 270 miles east-southeast of Cape Hatteras and about 380 miles west of Bermuda. The east coast from North Carolina to MA is under a Tropical Storm Watch.

Along the coast, Jose's biggest impact will be in the form of battering waves and beach erosion, as well as the threat for minor to moderate coastal flooding at high tide times on Tuesday.

The storm, which forecasters believe will behave like a nor'easter, is expected to bring strong winds out of the northeast, heavy rain, unsafe surf, rip currents, rough seas, flooding and beach erosion.

A Tropical Storm Watch has not been issued for the city, but it was issued Sunday afternoon for Mid-Atlantic States up to Nantucket.

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In New Jersey, warnings are up for rough surf, powerful winds and even a chance for storm surge by midweek.

Forecasters upgraded Tropical Storm Maria to a hurricane Sunday as the storm heads toward the Leeward Islands. A tropical storm warning is in effect for Antigua and Barbuda, Saba, St. Eustatius and St. Lucia.

Hurricane Jose is off the North Carolina coast, well out to sea, and moving north, while Hurricane Maria is gaining strength as the National Hurricane Center is forecasting it to reach major hurricane strength.

The windy and rainy conditions are expected to last through Tuesday night.

Tracking the Tropics: "Jose" will stay northeast of Florida but could threaten the upper US coast... there are several other areas to watch over the Atlantic Basin though nothing imminent for Jacksonville.

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