ST. PETERSBURG -- An area of low pressure off Florida's Atlantic Coast intensified into Tropical Depression One late Monday night.
According to Bay News 9 meteorologist Juli Marquez, the depression is likely to become Tropical Storm Arthur, our first of the Atlantic Hurricane Season, later today.
A tropical storm watch remains in effect for the East Coast of Florida from Fort Pierce northward to Flagler Beach.
As of early Tuesday, the storm is located about 100 miles southeast of Cape Caneveral. The depression is moving toward the west near 2 mph. A turn toward the northwest and then toward the north is forecast by Wednesday.
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"The storm won't have as much impact to the Bay area," Marquez said. "The storm is forecast to move out into the Atlantic after strengthening."
On the forecast track, the center of the tropical cyclone is expected to remain offshore and move east of the east-central coast of Florida during the next day or so. The system is forecast to pass east of northeastern Florida on Wednesday and Wednesday night.
Maximum sustained winds are near 35 mph with higher gusts.
Some strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours, and the depression is expected to become a tropical storm later today.
The depression is expected to produce total rainfall accumulations of 1 to 3 inches, mainly across east-central Florida and northeastern portions of the Florida peninsula with possible isolated maximum amounts of 5 inches through Wednesday.
Rainfall amounts of 2 to 4 inches with isolated maximum amounts of 6 inches are possible over portions of the northern Bahamas through Wednesday.