Elsa still on track to bring some rain and wind Thursday on Outer Banks

Sustained winds of over 40 mph and heavy rain were not keeping sightseers off the Key West waterfront on Tuesday. [courtesy southernmostpointwebcam.com]

Tropical Storm Elsa was blowing and raining along the Florida Keys on Tuesday ahead of an eventual landfall on the Gulf Coast of Florida before what’s left of the fifth tropical cyclone of 2021 passes through the Outer Banks.

While Elsa is expected to weaken into a tropical depression as it crosses the Carolinas, and no watches or warnings are currently in effect for eastern North Carolina, there is still a threat of rough weather on Thursday.

“Heavy rain with localized flash flooding is possible, with up to several inches of rain in heavier downpours,” said forecaster David Glenn at the Newport/Morehead City National Weather Service office. “Isolated severe thunderstorms including a few tornadoes are possible.”

“Gusty winds up to tropical storm force may occur, especially along coastal portions, which may lead to minor water level rises along the soundside portions of the Outer Banks and the Crystal Coast. Also, high surf and dangerous rip currents will be a threat,” Glenn said.

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.

National Weather Service forecast for Nags Head, as of Tuesday 12 p.m.:
This Afternoon – Moderate risk of rip currents, only experienced surf swimmers in the ocean
Sunny, with a high near 88. South wind 8 to 13 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph.

Mostly clear, with a low around 74. Southwest wind 7 to 11 mph, with gusts as high as 16 mph.
Sunny, with a high near 89. South wind 7 to 14 mph, with gusts as high as 17 mph.
Wednesday Night
A slight chance of showers after 2am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 76. Southwest wind 10 to 14 mph, with gusts as high as 18 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
A chance of showers and thunderstorms, then showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm after 2pm. Some of the storms could produce heavy rainfall. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 85. Windy, with a south wind 13 to 18 mph increasing to 24 to 29 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 38 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New rainfall amounts between a half and three quarters of an inch possible.
Thursday Night
Showers and possibly a thunderstorm before midnight, then a chance of showers. Some of the storms could produce heavy rainfall. Low around 75. Windy. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New precipitation amounts between a half and three quarters of an inch possible.
Mostly sunny, with a high near 89.
Friday Night
Partly cloudy, with a low around 76.
Mostly sunny, with a high near 87.
Saturday Night
Partly cloudy, with a low around 75.
A chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 88. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
Sunday Night
Partly cloudy, with a low around 76.
Mostly sunny, with a high near 88.

This story originally appeared on OBXToday.com. Read More local stories here.