Tropical Storm Elsa weakened as it reached Florida’s Gulf Coast Wednesday, dumping rain along the region but sparing the state from significant damage and power outages.
The storm has since carved a destructive path up the East Coast after killing one person in Florida and injuring several others in Georgia.
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- Tropical Storm Elsa carved a destructive and soaking path up the East Coast after killing at least one person in Florida and spinning up a tornado at a Georgia Navy base that flipped recreational vehicles upside-down and blew one of them into a lake.
Elsa’s winds weakened to 40 mph (65 kph), but it was dropping torrential rains over the Carolinas as it made its way through South Carolina early Thursday, the National Hurricane Center said in its latest update. Elsa was expected to move over North Carolina later in the day, pass near the eastern mid-Atlantic states by Thursday night and move near or over the northeastern United States on Friday.
Some re-strengthening was possible Thursday night and Friday while the system moves close to the northeastern United States.
A tropical storm warning was in effect north of Great Egg Inlet, New Jersey to Sandy Hook, New Jersey, and for the coast of Long Island from East Rockaway Inlet to the eastern tip along the south shore and from Port Jefferson Harbor eastward on the north shore. A warning was also in effect from New Haven, Connecticut to Merrimack River, Massachusetts including Cape Cod, Block Island, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket.
There was a chance Long Island in New York would see sustained tropical storm-force winds late Thursday night and into Friday morning, the National Weather Service in New York warned.
Elsa seemed to spare Florida from significant damage, though it still threatened flooding downpours and caused several tornado warnings. The coasts of Georgia and South Carolina were under a tropical storm warning. Forecasters predicted Elsa would remain a tropical storm into Friday, and issued a tropical storm watch from North Carolina to Massachusetts.