Published: Wed, July 11, 2018
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Tropical Storm Chris reaches hurricane strength in Atlantic

Tropical Storm Chris reaches hurricane strength in Atlantic

It took it a few days, but Tropical Storm Chris strengthened into a hurricane Tuesday as it started to move away from the USA coast.

As of 5 p.m. EDT (2100 GMT), the storm was about 215 miles (350 km) south-southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina.

Hurricane Chris now has a maximum sustained wind of 85 miles per hour and is moving northeast at 10 miles per hour. The storm will be between a trough digging southeast in the eastern US and a ridge of high pressure to its south. ABC13 meteorologist Collin Myers says the hurricane has a defined eye and is picking up speed as it heads in a northeasterly direction.

However, Chris is expected to remain well offshore over the next several days, moving slowly at first and then accelerating away from the United States later in the week. It's far enough out in the ocean that there are no coastal watches or warnings in effect. More data should be available later in the day. Still, the storm is expected to be upgraded to a hurricane later Tuesday as it moves into warmer waters.

Forecasters from the National Weather Service said they expected Chris to create a moderate, or elevated, risk of risky rip currents forming along the entire Jersey Shore on Wednesday, from Sandy Hook down to Cape May.

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