Chris strengthens to a category 1 hurricane far off North Carolina coast

7-10 Beryl

Swells from Chris are expected to affect portions of the coasts of North Carolina and the mid-Atlantic states, the hurricane center warned.

The storm strengthened to a category 1 hurricane far off the North Carolina coast Tuesday afternoon.

The storm, however, may produce risky surf conditions, including a high rip along the coast of North Carolina and the mid-Atlantic states in the next few days and potentially creating life-threatening conditions, the NHC said in an advisory.

Chris now has winds of 60 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.

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The Florida-based weather forecaster said some additional strengthening was forecast for Tuesday night and Wednesday. Hurricane Beryl was the first.

It also issued a flash-flood watch for the U.S. Virgin Islands through Monday evening. Looks like another storm right next to Tropical Storm Chris, but it won't ever get named and here's why.

Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello said the territory had opened more than 40 evacuation shelters for those in need. Peak wind speeds may reach 90 miles per hour, it added.

A study released in May estimated the death toll from Maria was about 4,645 - not the 64 long pegged by the island's government as the official death toll - which would make it one of the deadliest natural disasters in USA history.

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