Tropical Storm Chris reaches hurricane strength in Atlantic

A blanket of white mist is observed from the vantage point of a hill overlooking a section of Tortola mid-morning today July 9

Hurricane Chris has formed in the Atlantic, about 200 miles off the coast of SC.

The storm was expected to remain well off the US coast, and latest projections show it is forecast to pass well southeast of the Canadian province of Nova Scotia in a couple of days, then move near or over southeastern Newfoundland by Friday, the hurricane center said. Eye formation is typically an indication of winds reaching the minimum hurricane threshold at 74 miles per hour.

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Chris, which formed off the North Carolina coast early on Sunday, was packing maximum sustained winds near 70 miles per hour (110 kph) on Monday afternoon, causing swells that will batter the coasts of the Carolinas for the next few days, the National Hurricane Center said.

Rough surf and risky rip currents will continue to impact coastal areas of the Carolinas, mid-Atlantic and the Northeast through much of this week.

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The National Weather Service issued a flash-flood watch for Puerto Rico, warning of thunderstorms and wind gusts. Local officials were advised to monitor the storm's movement.

Environment Canada says Tropical Storm Chris is expected to make landfall in Newfoundland later this week as a post-tropical storm. This means rough surf and unsafe rip currents.

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By late week, Chris will bring heavy rain and gusty winds to portions of Atlantic Canada.

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