Tropical storm watches issued for Florida's east coast as depression forms

Tropical storm watches were issued for Florida's east coast late Monday night after forecasters upgraded a patch of stormy weather to a tropical depression.

The system was about 105 miles southeast of Cape Canaveral Monday night and was crawling southwest at 2 mph. It had sustained winds of 35 mph.

Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center expect it to strengthen into a tropical storm today; it would take the name Arthur, making it the first named storm of the season.

The system was expected to begin turning north by Wednesday and scrape Florida's east coast. Tropical storm watches were issued from Fort Pierce to just south of Flagler Beach.

The system appears to pose no threat to Tampa Bay, though it is contributing to above-normal high temperatures here and did fling some thunderstorms into the area Monday night. The high in Tampa Monday was 96, breaking the record of 95 set in 1959, according to the National Weather Service in Ruskin.

Today's high is is expected to reach the mid-90s with only a 30 percent of rain. Rain chances increase to 50 percent Wednesday, Bay News 9 reported.

Tropical storm watches issued for Florida's east coast as depression forms 06/30/14 [Last modified: Monday, June 30, 2014 11:24pm]

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