Isaias Expected to Become a Hurricane Monday Night as it Approaches the Coast
Tropical Storm Isaias is continuing to maintain its tropical storm strength but the National Hurricane Center still expects this system to make landfall as a Category 1 hurricane Monday night.
Isaias is currently located about 115 miles (190 kilometers) to the south of Charleston and moving north at 13 mph (21 km/h) as of the latest advisory from the National Hurricane Center. No significant change has been observed with Isaias' wind speeds as they continue to maintain maximum sustained speeds near 70 mph. However, there has been a slight decrease in the central barometric pressure which would indicate a strengthening within the system.
Tropical Storm Isaias has been delivering outer rain bands to the South Carolina shorelines along with some strong tropical storm-force wind gusts. Monday morning tropical storm-force wind gusts were already being felt across coastal regions of the LowCountry with a peak wind gusts near 43 mph (69 km/h) at Tybee Island and another peak wind gust of 41 mph (66 km/h) recorded at the Folly Beach Pier near Charleston Monday afternoon.
Isaias is expected to make landfall later tonight around the Pee Dee region either as a high end tropical storm or a low end hurricane. A hurricane warning is in effect for coastal areas north of the South Santee River with Tropical Storm Warnings in effect for areas to the south, including the cities of Charleston and Hilton Head.
A Storm Surge Warning continues to remain in effect for areas north of Edisto Beach ahead of Isaias. Surge heights between 2 to 4 feet are possible between Edisto Beach and the South Santee River with higher amounts of 3 to 5 feet forecast north of the South Santee River.
Flash Flood Watches are in effect mainly for parts of the Pee Dee region with expected rainfall amounts between 3 to 6 inches with isolated maximum accumulations near 8 inches.
Tropical storm conditions are forecast across the coastlines of the LowCountry and Pee Dee regions for the remainder of Monday afternoon with rainfall and tropical storm-force winds expected to remain in the Charleston area until around 6:00PM EDT. Areas near and around George Town will begin to see conditions deteriorate between 6:00 and 8:00PM EDT. Finally, areas around Myrtle Beach will see deteriorating conditions between 9:00 and 11:00PM EDT.
Hurricane conditions are possible mainly around the northern LowCountry, Grand Strand and Pee Dee regions Monday evening and last through the first part of the overnight. These regions are also under a slight tornado risk beginning this evening and lasting through the overnight as Isaias tracks into the shoreline. Isolated brief tornadoes will be possible tonight for northern parts of the Pee Dee and northeast Midlands region. Conditions will begin to improve Tuesday morning as Isaias continues to track northward into the Mid-Atlantic.