Tropical Storm Chris is expected to develop to hurricane strength on Tuesday, July 10, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said in its latest advisory.
The storm was about 210 miles (340 km) south-southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina with maximum sustained winds of 70 miles per hour (110 km/h), the Miami-based weather forecaster said.
Chris is expected to gain additional strength on July 11, the NHC said.
The storm, which formed off the North Carolina coast early on July 8, was packing maximum sustained winds near 70 miles per hour on the afternoon of July 9, 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.
A tropical storm becomes a hurricane when its top sustained winds reach 74 mph (120 kph).
Chris will begin a northeastern course from July 10 off the U.S. Atlantic coast, the center said, adding that projections showed it accelerating in that direction on July 11 and 12.