Isaias remains a Tropical Storm as of the Sunday 11:00 a.m. advisory. The center is currently west of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, will continue to hug the coastline of Florida’s East Coast through Monday, bringing high winds and dangerous storm surge of 3 to 5 feet above ground level.
As Isaias it moves into very warm water (85-degree sea surface temperatures,) slight strengthening remains possible as it interacts with the gulf stream of 85 degree sea-surface temperatures. In the next few days, a trough will approach the east coast and southwesterly wind shear takes place. Once the system makes landfall in North Carolina, the rain will move from the north and east side to the north and west side. A Tropical Storm Watch as been issued for much of the North Carolina coast, including the Sounds and the Outer Banks. Additional watches will likely be issued later today or tonight for Virginia and Delmarva Coast.
Rain will develop across the Lower Mid-Atlantic late Monday as an easterly wind takes over. This will also help with orographic lift across the mountains and heavy rain will develop in these locations first. Then, the Carolina’s and Central and Eastern Virginia will see rain develop as the center of Isaias moves north-northeastward across Eastern North Carolina into Hampton Roads and the Mouth of the Chesapeake Bay late Monday night into the day on Tuesday.
Our latest rainfall forecast is blended with all forecast models. It should be noted that if the system is slower than expected, higher rainfall totals are more likely. At this time, we are forecasting 3 to 5 inches with up to 8 inches possible across South Central Virginia and the Richmond Metro area. On the east side of the system, rain bands will produce potential severe thunderstorms which will likely cause locally heavy rainfall and the chance for a few isolated tornadoes.