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Faraway Tropical Systems Could Still Impact Florida This Weekend

Forecasters with the National Hurricane Center say Hurricane Grace will come ashore in Mexico sometime on Aug. 20, 2021.
Forecasters with the National Hurricane Center say Hurricane Grace will come ashore in Mexico sometime on Aug. 20, 2021.

Two potent tropical systems do not pose a direct threat to Florida, but their impacts could still be felt across Florida — and the greater Tampa Bay region.

High surf and dangerous rip currents are possible this weekend as Hurricane Grace is poised to make landfall in Mexico and Tropical Storm Henri is likely to strengthen into a hurricane on a path toward New England.

Jeff Huffman, meteorologist with the Florida Public Radio Emergency Network, said beachgoers on both coasts will want to use extra caution this weekend.

“Both storms will send ocean swells to our beaches — Grace from the Gulf, Henri from the Atlantic,” Huffman said. “This will lead to a high rip current risk through early next week.”

Hurricane Grace had threatened to take a path similar to Tropical Storm Fred, which moved well off-shore of Florida’s West Coast and made landfall in the Panhandle on Monday.

However, Grace tracked south of Cuba, and forecasters with the National Hurricane Center say it will come ashore in Mexico sometime Friday night.

Meanwhile, New England could experience its first direct hit from a hurricane in 30 years as Henri — which is projected to become a hurricane by Saturday — moves west-northwest along the Eastern Seaboard.

A hurricane watch has been issued from portions of Long Island to areas near Cape Cod as forecasters say Henri could reach maximum sustained winds of 85 mph on Saturday prior to making landfall in New England on Sunday.

Information from the Florida Public Radio Emergency Network and Associated Press was used in this report.

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