Maria regains hurricane strength - NHC

Warm until late week, Hurricane Maria stays offshore

A storm surge of 2 feet to 4 feet is possible on Ocracoke with up to 2 inches of rain possible through Wednesday. "We do not expect Maria to regain hurricane status".

Maria's tropical storm force winds will extend quite far from the storm's center.

Waves churned up by Maria are also expected to reach the southeast coast of the USA mainland today, forecasters said.

Hurricane Lee has maximum sustained winds at 110 miles per hour and is moving north at 9 miles per hour, the National Hurricane Center said.

Although all warnings have been dropped for the East Coast, forecasters said waves stirred up by Maria will pose a threat of rip currents and unsafe surf along beaches for the next day or two.

Those along the East Coast of the U.S. are warily watching the Category 3 hurricane, but forecasters believe it will spare the mainland after battering Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands on Wednesday.

Tropical Storm Maria isn't projected to make landfall on the Outer Banks, but Maria could bring two to four feet of storm surge, which prompted the evacuation of Cape Hatteras and Okracoke Island.

Lee is no threat to land and is expected to turn to the northeast and speed away later today.

Officials expected conditions to improve quickly Thursday on the Outer Banks as Maria raced east, so schools could reopen, sand could be removed from roads and the ferries that provide access to Ocracoke Island can begin running again.

A tropical wave in the northwest Caribbean will bring heavy rain to Florida over the next few days.

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