COLUMBIA, SC — What is shaping up as the first tropical storm of the Atlantic hurricane season could bring soaking rains to South Carolina by the weekend.
The system, officially 91L but likely to be named Andrea eventually, is over the Gulf of Mexico and drifting toward Florida. Its winds are expected to reach tropical storm strength of 39 mph but not hurricane strength, according to the National Hurricane Center.
Computer models show it turning northeast at some point and moving up to South Carolina either along the coast or just offshore.
“Expect a soggy Friday at the beach,” said Mark Malsick, severe weather liaison for the State Climate Office. “Winds? Offshore sporty but not scary.”
Charleston could get up to 2 inches of rain Thursday and Friday, according to National Weather Service forecasts. If the storm stays offshore or just along the coast as expected, Columbia would get less rainfall.