It is likely to strengthen into a tropical depression, and then a tropical storm with maximum sustained winds of at least 39 mph, over the next day, forecasters say.
Regardless of wind strength, “there will be rain … over (an) area that certainly doesn’t need any rain,” CNN meteorologist Chad Myers said.
The disturbance, for now named Potential Tropical Cyclone Nine, was centered about 140 miles east of Great Abaco around 8 a.m. ET Friday with maximum sustained winds of 30 mph, the National Hurricane Center said.
Looking further ahead, the storm could approach Florida’s Atlantic coast with tropical-storm-force winds Saturday afternoon into early Sunday, forecasters say.
Tropical storm warnings have been issued for areas of the northern Bahamas, and a tropical storm watch has been issued for portions of the east coast of Florida, according to the hurricane center.
Heavy rain expected over Dorian-impacted islands
Isolated sections of the northwestern Bahamas could see up to 6 inches of rain, the hurricane center says.
Rain totals could be lower — perhaps 1 to 3 inches — on Grand Bahama.
The storm is expected to turn its attention to the US Southeast Coast. The coastal areas from central Florida into South Carolina could receive 2 to 4 inches of rain through Sunday, the hurricane center says.