Season's first tropical storm likely to form off coast within days

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The first tropical storm of this year's hurricane season could form within the next 48 hours.

A low pressure system, currently tracked as Invest 91L, is centered about 125 miles east of Melbourne, Florida. Meteorologists tracking the system say winds are not that strong.

As it moves toward the south-southwest, it is expected to encounter some dry air and stronger upper-level winds which are likely to hinder the storm's development.

But over the next several days, the system is likely to strengthen and eventually become either a tropical depression or a tropical storm. If it does, it would be named Arthur.

The National Weather Service says there is an 80 percent chance that development would occur over the next two days.

According to Live 5 Chief Meteorologist Bill Walsh, the forecast track takes it north along the Florida coast to just off of the GA and South Carolina coast by Thursday and Friday.

"We could see an impact along coastal waters depending on how close it gets to land," Walsh said. "We will likely see an increasing in showers and surf."

A tropical depression is a storm with tropical characteristics and sustained wins less than 38 m.p.h. A tropical storm has sustained winds of at least 39 m.p.h. A tropical storm does not become a hurricane until sustained wind speeds reach at least 74 m.p.h.

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