Tropical storm watch discontinued

Rain and storm winds blowing trees

As Chris continues to strengthen, Tropical Storm Beryl is dispersing as it "races" towards the Leeward Islands in the northeastern Caribbean Sea, according to the National Hurricane Center.

The tropical storm, now building near the Carolinas, is expected to strengthen into a hurricane Monday and will most likely remain offshore for two to three days, forecasters said.

A state of emergency was in effect, the statement said.

The National Hurricane Center will still be watching this area of showers and thunderstorms as there is a 30% it could redevelop into a tropical system once it moves over the warmer waters near the Bahamas and the upper level wind shear relaxes later this week.

High surf and unsafe rip currents are expected along parts of the Carolina and mid-Atlantic coasts through early week. Beryl has weakened significantly, meteorologists said, and tropical storm watches have been lifted for Martinique, St. Martin, St. Barthelemy, Saba, St. Maarten and St. Eustatius. Clean Bed & Breakfast in Dominica, said in a phone interview.

Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello met with his Cabinet and meteorological experts on Sunday to prepare for Beryl's arrival, Rossello's office said in a statement. They're the ones who have been forgotten. It was centered 210 miles (335 kilometers) east of Martinique and was moving west-northwestward at 23 mph (37 kph). Its maximum sustained wind speeds were at 45 miles per hour.

A flash-flood watch was in effect for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands from late Sunday through Monday evening, NWS San Juan said on Twitter. It was seen staying well off the US coast.

The storm, 150 miles south of Cape Hatteras, packs maximum sustained winds of 40 mph.

A disorganized Tropical Storm Beryl was closing in on the chain of islands that form the outer perimeter of the Caribbean, where it was expected to bring tropical storm conditions to the islands of Guadeloupe and Dominica on Sunday night.

National Weather Service meteorologist Carlos Anselmi told the AP that 1 to 2 inches (2.5 to 5 centimeters) of rain was expected across Puerto Rico, with double that in isolated areas.

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