At 11 a.m. EDT on Sunday, the storm's center was located about 160 miles south of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina with maximum sustained winds around 45 mph.
As Chris spins over relatively warm water it will gradually strengthen possibly becoming a hurricane late Monday evening or early Tuesday as it eventually heads to the NNE, staying away from land.
The next hurricane advisory is scheduled for 5 p.m. Sunday.
Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 60 miles from the storm's center.
As some East Coast residents gear up for Tropical Storm Chris, New Englanders can rest easy knowing the storm will avoid the area, forecasters said.
Environment Canada issued a tropical cyclone information statement saying that Tropical Storm Chris is expected to move northeastward from Carolina and gain strength by Tuesday. It wasn't projected to directly threaten land over the next few days, though forecasters said it could kick up risky surf and rip tides. Tropical storms can have winds reaching 73 miles per hour.
While there are no current coastal watches or warnings in effect, these swells could cause life-threatening surf and rip-current conditions.
High surf and risky rip currents are expected along parts of the Carolina and mid-Atlantic coasts through early week.
Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Beryl - the second named storm of this season - is expected to dump heavy rain over the Lesser Antilles at the end of the weekend. Gradual weakening is forecast during the next 48 hours, and Beryl is forecast to degenerate into a trough of low pressure as it moves across the eastern Caribbean Sea on Monday. 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.
Puerto Rico, which was devastated by Hurricane Maria in September, remains under a state of emergency.