Coastal New England and Canada braced themselves for Hurricane Lee on Thursday as the large storm continued its move to the north, while attention also turned to a tropical depression expected to form within the next day or so.
Hurricane Lee’s wind field had expanded Thursday, with hurricane-force winds extending outward up to 90 miles from Lee’s center and tropical-storm-force winds extending outward up to 310 miles as of Thursday afternoon.
Meanwhile, the low-pressure system forecast to become a tropical depression is expected to move west-northwest to northwest across the central Atlantic at 10 to 15 mph, according to the latest forecast.
Its odds of developing stayed at 90% over the next two to seven days as of 2 p.m. Eastern time Thursday.
Tropical storm and storm surge warnings went into effect for coastal New England as Lee moved toward the region.
A hurricane watch is in place for the coast of northern Maine to the Canadian border, and most of coastal New England is under a tropical storm warning, including Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket. There is also a storm surge watch for Cape Cod and Nantucket with forecasters predicting between 2 and 4 feet.
Elsewhere in the Atlantic, a weakening Margot was barely clinging to hurricane status, though its top winds had increased to 80 mph as of 11 a.m. Thursday, 5 mph over the minimum threshold for a Category 1 hurricane.
Margot was forecast to downgrade to a tropical storm later Thursday as it continues to meander in a clockwise loop in the open waters of the western-central Atlantic.
Hurricane Lee has weakened to a Category 1 storm with sustained wind speeds of 85 mph and continues to arc northward, accelerating on a trajectory that will carry it along the eastern seaboard of the United States.
Forecasters said Lee will approach the coast of New England and Canada on Friday and Saturday. The National Hurricane Center said coastal New England could see tropical storm conditions starting Friday night. Hurricane conditions will be possible in areas of the southernmost parts of Maine Saturday.
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