Chris set to become hurricane, Beryl poses flood threat to Puerto Rico

By Maria Caspani and Rich McKay (Reuters) - Tropical Storm Chris strengthened in the mid-Atlantic and was expected to become a hurricane on Monday evening or Tuesday, while the former Hurricane Beryl dwindled into a heavy rainstorm threatening to bring flooding to Puerto Rico, forecasters said. 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

Reuters July 10, 2018 06:05:28 IST
Chris set to become hurricane, Beryl poses flood threat to Puerto Rico

Chris set to become hurricane Beryl poses flood threat to Puerto Rico

By Maria Caspani and Rich McKay

(Reuters) - Tropical Storm Chris strengthened in the mid-Atlantic and was expected to become a hurricane on Monday evening or Tuesday, while the former Hurricane Beryl dwindled into a heavy rainstorm threatening to bring flooding to Puerto Rico, forecasters said.

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.

"These swells could cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions," it said.

As of 5 p.m. EDT (2100 GMT), the storm was about 215 miles (350 km) south-southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. A tropical storm becomes a hurricane when its top sustained winds reach 74 mph (120 kph).

Chris will begin a northeastern course from late Tuesday off the U.S. Atlantic coast, the center said, adding that projections showed it possibly making landfall in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia late on Wednesday or early on Thursday.

The remnants of Beryl looked set on Monday to bring 2 to 4 inches (5-10 cm) of rain to Puerto Rico, which is still trying to recover from hurricanes that walloped the U.S. territory a year ago, causing an estimated $90 billion in damage.

The National Weather Service issued a flash-flood watch for Puerto Rico, warning of thunderstorms and wind gusts.

It also issued a flash-flood watch for the U.S. Virgin Islands through Monday evening. Tropical storm watches were in effect for Dominica and Guadeloupe.

Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello said the territory had opened more than 40 evacuation shelters for those in need.

Hurricane Maria dealt a vicious blow when it hit Puerto Rico on Sept. 20 with winds close to 150 mph (240 kph), knocking out the island's already teetering electric grid and water supply.

A study released in May estimated the death toll from Maria was about 4,645 - not the 64 long pegged by the island’s government as the official death toll - which would make it one of the deadliest natural disasters in U.S. history.

About 7,000 houses and businesses in Puerto Rico still lack power after Maria levelled an electricity grid that was ill-maintained before the storm.

(Reporting by Maria Caspani in New York and Rich McKay in Atlanta; Additional reporting by Makini Brice in Washington and Jon Herskovitz in Austin, Texas; Editing by Peter Cooney)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

OPEC+ sticks to plan to ease oil output cuts from May 1
Business

OPEC+ sticks to plan to ease oil output cuts from May 1

By Rania El Gamal, Olesya Astakhova and Ahmad Ghaddar DUBAI/MOSCOW/LONDON (Reuters) - OPEC, Russia and their allies will stick to plans for a phased easing of oil production restrictions from May to July amid upbeat forecasts for a recovery in global demand and despite surging coronavirus cases in India, Brazil and Japan. The group known as OPEC+ ditched plans to hold a ministerial meeting on Wednesday, four OPEC+ sources said, following Tuesday's meeting of ministers who are members of a market monitoring panel.

U.S. consumer confidence soars to 14-month high; house prices accelerate
Business

U.S. consumer confidence soars to 14-month high; house prices accelerate

By Lucia Mutikani WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. consumer confidence jumped to a 14-month high in April as increased vaccinations against COVID-19 and additional fiscal stimulus allowed for more services businesses to reopen, boosting demand and hiring by companies. The upbeat survey from the Conference Board on Tuesday, which also showed a strong increase in vacation plans, suggested the economy continued to power ahead early in the second quarter after what appears to have been robust growth in the first three months of the year, believed by many economists to have been the second strongest since 2003.

Musk trolls Bezos as space race between world's richest men heats up
Business

Musk trolls Bezos as space race between world's richest men heats up

(Reuters) - The space race between the world's two richest men went into hyperdrive on Tuesday after Tesla chief Elon Musk took a swipe at Jeff Bezos' attempt to challenge a major NASA contract. The two billionaires, who have been trying to launch long-range orbital rockets, were competing for a coveted contract from the government to build a spaceship to deliver astronauts to the moon as early as 2024. Musk won.