Tropical Storm Isaias was upgraded to a hurricane early Friday morning, according to the National Weather Service website.
“Isaias formed a little bit ahead of time, but it should be a fast-moving system,” said Scotty Powell, Carolina Weather Group meteorologist.
Hurricane Isaias is on track to make it’s way over the Bahamas on Friday, and pass the Florida coast on Saturday. Powell said most of the models agree on Isaias’ short-term track, but the long-term track — which could impact the Carolina coast — is still up in the air.
“It’s not looking like Isaias will break down enough to keep away from the South Carolina and North Carolina coasts,” Powell said. “We may not see landfall on the coast, but it is a possibility along with rain and wind gusts.” The good news, Powell added, is that Hurricane Isaias is moving so fast that it shouldn’t cause flooding at the Carolina coasts.
As far as the Catawba Valley goes, Powell said the area won’t see any direct impacts from Hurricane Isaias. “We should see cloud coverage begin on Monday,” he said. “The hurricane may aid in the process of rain development, but any rain we see won’t be directly from Isaias.”
Temperatures in the Catawba Valley should stick around the low to-mid 90s over the weekend, with partly cloudy skies and 30-40% thunderstorm chances in the afternoons.
Powell said the heat index on Saturday and Sunday could reach into the mid-to-upper 90s. “We probably won’t see a heat advisory issued, but we will experience hot, sticky air,” he said.
Cloud coverage will move into the area on Sunday, and some areas in the Catawba Valley could see rain showers depending on the track Hurricane Isaias takes.
Powell said Monday will see a little cool off, with temperatures in the low 80s. Tuesday temperatures should be in the mid-to-upper 80s in the Catawba Valley, and the coast should be clearing out as well by this time.
Powell said there are a few areas developing in the ocean that could be a concern. “We’ll be watching these areas for any more development, but I think Hurricane Isaias is a warning shot,” he said. “We’ve been seeing a pretty active hurricane season so far, and it should stay active now until September.”
“We’ll just need to keep our eyes open and be prepared for whatever develops,” Powell added.
Emily Willis is a general assignment reporter at the Hickory Daily Record.
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