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Hurricane Lee expected to regain strength as it moves northwest: NPR

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Hurricane Lee is expected to strengthen in the coming days, the National Hurricane Center said Sunday.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association/Screenshot by NPR


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National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association/Screenshot by NPR


Hurricane Lee is expected to strengthen in the coming days, the National Hurricane Center said Sunday.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association/Screenshot by NPR

Hurricane Lee, a powerful Category 3 storm, is expected to head north of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands within the next two days, the National Hurricane Center said. But the hurricane is gathering strength and could create dangerous surf conditions along the US East Coast starting Sunday.

The hurricane, which has maximum sustained winds of nearly 120 mph with higher gusts, is already causing life-threatening rip currents affecting parts of the Lesser Antilles, British and Virgin Islands Antilles, Puerto Rico, Hispaniola, and the Turks and Caicos Islands, And the Bahamas. And Bermuda, forecasters said Sunday evening.

The center said dangerous surf conditions have begun hitting parts of the southeastern coast and are expected to worsen and spread north along most of the eastern coast over the next two days.

Later this week, a lee is expected to swing west of Bermuda and could bring wind, rain and high waves to the island, according to meteorologists, but they said it is too early to determine the exact timing and level of those impacts.

However, no Hurricane Lee coastal advisories or warnings were in effect at that time.

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Lee’s forecast has fluctuated dramatically in recent days. It quickly reached Category 5 strength above record high water temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean before it was downgraded early Saturday. The center said that the hurricane increased its wind speed on Sunday, and it is expected to intensify further on Monday and Tuesday, with some fluctuations.

A Category 3 storm, considered a major hurricane, can cause devastating damage to well-built homes, downing trees, as well as cutting off power and water supplies for several days.

“It is still too early to know what level of impacts, if any, Lee may have along the East Coast and Atlantic Canada late next week, especially since the hurricane is expected to slow significantly over the southwestern Atlantic,” the center said in a statement. 5pm ET on Sunday.

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