So the past may not be in the past for the season’s first hurricane, as Elsa is now back to a tropical storm while it continues to sprint just south of Hispaniola.
Saturday’s midday update has it still as a weak tropical storm with a bit of rain and some gusty winds as it crosses eastern North Carolina and the Outer Banks on Thursday.
Elsa became a tropical storm on July 1, the earliest ever for the fifth named tropical cyclone of the year to form in the Atlantic, breaking the record set in 2020 by Eduardo.
A hurricane warning remains in effect for portions of Haiti and the Dominican Republic, where near-hurricane conditions and dangerous storm surge are expected through this evening.
Widespread heavy rain will move across southern Hispaniola and Jamaica today into Sunday where isolated to scattered flash flooding and mudslides will be possible.
Heavy rain will impact the Cayman Islands and Cuba Sunday into Monday, resulting in significant flooding and mudslides over Cuba.
As Elsa approaches the Florida Keys and southern Florida early next week, isolated flash flooding and minor river flooding will be possible.
Tropical storm conditions and dangerous storm surge are expected with hurricane conditions possible in portions of eastern Cuba beginning early Sunday, with tropical storm conditions possible in central Cuba Sunday night and Monday.
There is an increasing risk of tropical storm conditions, storm surge, and rainfall impacts beginning Monday in the Florida Keys and the southern Florida Peninsula.
“Elsa could bring impacts to eastern North Carolina as early as midweek,” said forecasters at the Newport/Morehead City National Weather Service office. “It is too early for any specific impacts, but residents and visitors are urged to pay close attention to the forecast over the coming days.”
Meanwhile, it’s going to be perfect weather for the Independence Day holiday weekend on the Outer Banks.
National Weather Service forecast for Nags Head, as of Saturday 11 a.m.:
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