10:00 PM UPDATE:
A 5 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. update today, Tuesday, July 6, the National Weather Service reiterated the previous warnings for the storm called Elsa, downgrading the danger slightly, although the storm has strengthened.
Elsa has grown from sustained winds of 60 mph as of 11 a.m. to 75 mph sustained winds, bringing it from a tropical storm to hurricane level.
East Central Florida is poised to miss the worst of the effects, as the eye of Elsa remains off shore and moves north-northwest. While most of the West Coast faces Hurricane Warnings, inland Volusia remains under a flood watch, and forecasts warn of the danger of tornado formation.
The strongest effects are still expected for later tonight.
As of noon today, Tuesday July 6, the U.S. National Weather Service based in Melbourne is warning East Central Floridians that the strongest impacts of Tropical Storm Elsa will be felt beginning in the late afternoon today, and through the night until the early-morning hours of Wednesday, July 7.
Elsa is currently over water south of Tampa, and is projected to make its way up the west Florida coast, with possible landfall near the Tampa Bay area.
The storm will bring strong bands of rain and wind moving toward the northwest.
Squalls and lightning storms associated with the rain bands are expected to bring gusts of 45 to 60 mph, torrential downpours and minor flooding, and the possibility of tornadoes.
As of 11 a.m. today, Elsa has an intensity of 60 mph winds.
Local forecasts warn of the possibility of tornado formation overnight.
The strongest possibility for tornado formation in East Central Florida is from sunset tonight to a few hours after sunrise Wednesday. A tornado watch is likely to be issued later today, and a flood watch is currently in effect for inland Volusia.
Up to 2 to 4 inches of rain are expected, with isolated areas receiving around 6 inches.
The National Weather Service will update their local outlook at 5 p.m. today.
For the latest from Volusia County Emergency Management, click HERE.
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