Isaac Could Have Local Impact
Weather service: Chance for rain, tornadoes, downed trees.
The forecast is uncertain, but over the next 4 to 5 days, meteorologists are closely watching Tropical Storm Isaac for impacts in Coastal South Carolina and south Georgia.
If the storm follows its current path — which is still uncertain — it will hit Florida's Gulf Coast as a strong Category 1 Hurricane. From there, the weakened storm will drop large amounts of rain across a 270-mile swath of the South.
The "most likely scenario is potential for heavy rain, isolated tornadoes and gusty winds in rain bands mainly Tuesday and Wednesday, possibly starting as early as late Monday," the National Weather Service office in Charleston said in a Friday advisory.
The most severe impacts would come from tornadoes and falling trees, the Weather Service reported. Though the winds overall are not expected to be strong, once the ground is saturated with water, trees can easily topple even in moderate winds.
For now, the impacts don't seem more severe than a strong storm, but that could change as Isaac's path shifts, the Weather Service reports.
"Based on the current forecast, the possibility of tropical storm watches and warnings look quite low for the area," the agency said in its statement. "However, if Isaac tracks closer to us than currently expected, tropical storm watches could be issued as early as late Saturday or Sunday."
Isaac is the ninth named storm of the 2012 Atlantic Hurricane Season. The 10th storm, Joyce, fizzled in the Atlantic this week, and has just a 10 percent chance of regenerating. A third storm, yet unnamed, has a 30 percent chance of forming. If it's named, the system will be Tropical Storm Kirk.