Jose downgraded to tropical storm

Houses are seen on Friday in Codrington Antigua and Barbuda devastated by Hurricane Irma

Houses are seen on Friday in Codrington Antigua and Barbuda devastated by Hurricane Irma

People who live along the U.S. East Coast from North Carolina up to New England should monitor Hurricane Jose, forecasters say.

The storm, which is now 640 miles south-southeast of Cape Hatteras, is moving northwest at 10 mph.

Hurricane Jose has been doing loops in the Atlantic for days now, but the latest GFS and European models have shown that the storm has moved west and could end up coming very close to the United States. "A gradual turn toward the north is expected later today and on Saturday", the NHC said in its latest advisory.

The hurricane was located far from land but is generating powerful swells that were affecting coastal areas in Bermuda, the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, Hispaniola, and the southeast US, the National Hurricane Center said. "These swells are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions", it added. "While the exact strength and track of the storm remain uncertain, there is a low chance for strong gusty winds and heavy rain Tuesday into Wednesday". "Interests along the US east coast from North Carolina to New England should monitor the progress of Jose during the next several days".

The hurricane was a powerful Category 4 storm last week. The depression also strengthened to 40 miles per hour winds forming Tropical Storm Lee.

The National Hurricane Center expects Jose to veer northeast later Thursday in an arc that keeps it off the East coast.

Long-range models suggest that the strengthening high-pressure area will then force the hurricane to move west-northwest toward the East Coast, according to the Weather Underground.

A tropical storm watch may be needed for a portion of the coast of North Carolina on Saturday.

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