Lee creates dangerous waves on the East Coast; Marut moves north

Hurricane Lee has turned northwestward, beginning its long-awaited arc northward, away from Florida, and is expected to run parallel to the U.S. East Coast over the coming days as it accelerates and expands, the National Hurricane Center said late Tuesday afternoon.

The Atlantic Basin is active with three other systems.

Hurricane Margot is expected to remain a Category 1 storm, but its path will turn northwest and north at the end of the week. Farther east, two tropical waves near Africa are in the process of merging into one system that will likely form into a tropical depression by the end of the week as it moves northwest toward the central tropical Atlantic.

Although forecasters expected the hurricane to weaken slightly as it headed north, hurricane hunter planes on Tuesday found that its width had increased dramatically, strengthening its impact area. The storm will be parallel to the east coast of the United States and remain west of Bermuda.

The NHC describes Lee as a “very large hurricane” whose hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 125 miles from the center and tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 240 miles.

The storm’s increased wind field is expected to impact Bermuda on Thursday, with Lee expected to turn north and move faster, prompting the Bermuda Weather Service to issue a tropical storm watch. The outer Lee Ranges could bring 1 to 2 inches of rain to the island.

Long Island and southern New England could see tropical storm force winds arrive early Friday.

The hurricane center’s forecast extends through Sunday morning, at which time the storm may have dissipated into a tropical storm, making landfall likely in an area including coastal Maine, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.

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